5 tips to help you navigate the temp world

Companies reluctant to ramp up their full-time workforce have long ago realized they can accomplish their targets with temporary workers. This trend is showing no sign of abating despite the improving economy.

If you’re looking for work, or searching for a position in a new field, this is a good time to take a temporary or contract assignment. 

Job seekers who take on temporary and contract assignments can choose what assignments or projects they want, meaning they have greater flexibility and a work style that fits better into their schedule.

If you’re considering a contingent or temporary job, here are 5 suggestions for navigating the field and taking advantage of the growing use of contract and temporary workers:

1. Keep your options open. When you take temporary or project-based assignments, you can earn money during a period of unemployment and get a better understanding of what you may want to do next, especially if your previous field no longer offers an abundance of opportunities for stable work. No matter what type of job you may want to investigate, it’s likely you can find a short-term gig.

2.  Build your skills. Whether you take on a temporary contract or begin freelancing, use the opportunity to learn new skills. Become involved in as many projects as you can and talk to as many experienced members of the team as possible to gain valuable insights. We also suggest taking online courses to gain certifications and make yourself more marketable. Many courses are low cost and sometimes free.

3. Let your network know you’re open to temporary work. Even though you may be seeking a full-time job, we suggest you let your personal and social networks know you’re open to short-term or project-focused jobs. On the flip side, if you’re already in a temporary or contract position, make sure your supervisor and other decision makers in the organization are aware that you’re open to a longer-term position.

Tweak your resume. Temporary and project-based assignments help broaden your experience, whether you’re fresh out of college or a senior-level executive. The experiences you gain help build your resume, give you current work experience to share, and show that you’re involved in your profession actively and that you’re keeping up with relevant skills.

5. Give your temporary position your all. Take advantage of everything a temporary job offers. It’s a networking opportunity, a chance to learn new skills in a new business sector, and, most importantly, a way to get your foot in the door to prospective full-time employment.

About the Author

Larry Hannappel

Larry spent 16 years with Century Casino’s and was instrumental in the start-up and growth of the company through expansions in Canada, South Africa, the Czech Republic, Poland and on several cruise ships as well as in Colorado. He was most recently the SVP, Principal Finance Officer and COO of North American operations for Century Casinos Inc., a multinational, Nasdaq-traded gaming company. Earlier in his career, Larry worked at the Johns Manville Corp. Larry spent 13 years in various accounting and finance functions in the company’s fiberglass manufacturing division and was key in the start-up of a molding plant in Indiana. Larry and his wife Kathy and three children live in Colorado. He enjoys four-wheeling, motorcycling, golfing, skiing and brewing beer.

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