Direct hire is one of the fastest-growing segments, with roles that would have been temporary less than a decade ago now being posted as full-time. The global direct hire market was worth $28.1 billion in 2018, representing 6.3% of the global staffing market. According to David Papapostolou, author for Staffing Industry Analysts, skill shortages and the lack of qualified candidates are pushing employers to convert contingent worker positions into full-time roles. There are, however, several benefits in going the temp-to-perm route versus hiring a candidate directly.

Before committing to a permanent offer, employers have the opportunity to test the candidate’s performance and determine if the candidate meets the position requirements. For workers, being in the temp-to-perm role is a great way to experience company culture and see if they like the daily responsibilities. In addition, there is less risk compared to hiring for a full-time role. The assignment may end without a conversion, and the contingent worker will not be eligible to file for unemployment, or make claims for wrongful termination, as Angela Stringfellow states on the Wonolo Blog.

Temp-to-perm postings are more attractive to candidates looking for opportunities with sick pay, holiday pay, vacation pay and insurance. Candidates are more open to committing to a “temp” role if they know that that there is a strong chance that these benefits will become available to them in the future. Ultimately, this will allow companies to select from a larger candidate pool.

One of the risks associated with temp-to-perm jobs include the job being more “temp” than “perm”. Organizations must closely evaluate their needs before opening the role for applications, and candidates should ask questions during the interview process to get an indication of their chances to be converted. In addition, current employees may hesitate to share knowledge or information with a “temp” employee, believing that the position would soon be eliminated. To overcome this challenge, the workers should actively try to integrate with the office environment, which could ultimately increase their chances of receiving the full-time offer.

To ensure successful temp-to-perm hiring, here are some best practices to consider:

  • Treat contingent employees as part of the team
  • Make introductions to key stakeholders
  • Assign a mentor or go-to person
  • Set expectations on the responsibilities, quality and quantity of work
  • Evaluate performance and ability to integrate with the existing teams
  • Be transparent about the timing and possibility of conversion to a full-time role
  • Avoid co-employment risks by having the right legal documentation in place