Temporary Workers


Temporary Workers


Employees who work on an assignment or contractual basis are called temporary workers. They usually work through agencies, staffing offices, or placement centers that place qualified workers in jobs that last from one day to months according to their educational background, work experience, or profession.

People work as temps for several reasons. The majority of people temp because they are between full-time positions. Some enjoy the flexibility that temporary assignments offer. Others use the opportunity to try out different...

Quick Facts


Median Salary



Employment Prospects



Minimum Education Level

Associate's Degree



Prior occupational experience required



Business Management


Personality Traits



Temporary workers are paid hourly or per project by the agency or personnel supply firm. In turn, the agency bills the client company for every hour of work, including any fees or commission. According to the American Staffing Association (ASA), temps receive a little more than 70 percent of the billable rate; the agency keeps the remainder. For example, if the temp is paid $21 an hour, the age...

Work Environment

The work environment depends on the particular assignment. Industrial work most often takes place at factories or outdoor facilities. Most office assignments are indoors. Some agencies ask clients to provide temporary workers with desks or designated workspaces, especially if the project is long term.

Workdays and hours also vary from assignment to assignment. Usually temporary workers f...


Almost every industry—from manufacturing to health care—uses temporary workers or consultants, so employment opportunities usually abound. The coronavirus pandemic, however, has had a negative effect on staffing employment in 2020, with business lockdowns contributing to an economic slowdown. On the other hand, temporary and contract workers continue to be needed, and as businesses start reopen...