Survey: 34 percent of firms to add temporary workers

04.06.2012


Demand for temp workers is rising among private U.S. companies.
Demand for temp workers is rising among private U.S. companies.

Employment agencies are experiencing record demand for their services, as the findings of a new study indicate U.S. businesses are increasingly looking to hire temporary workers.

CareerBuilder released the results of its latest survey on the American job market this week, affirming that employers are increasing their use of temporary labor as they work to meet increased business demands. The U.S. economy is the midst of a sustained recovery, according to economists, and that has bolstered demand for temp agencies, which work with such job seekers.

The CareerBuilder survey, which was conducted by Harris Interactive, polled more than 2,000 hiring managers and human resources professionals across a wide array of industries throughout the U.S.

According to the survey's results, approximately 37 percent of employers said they had hired contract or temporary workers in the first quarter of this year. That figure represents a significant uptick from the 26 percent figure recorded during last year's iteration of the poll.

Moreover, the survey's results suggest the market for temporary workers is continuing to grow. Thirty-four percent of those polled said that they plan to hire contract or temporary workers in the second quarter of this year, which is up from 26 percent the same time the year prior. Roughly 24 percent of those who participated in the survey also said they are planning to transition at least some contract or temporary staff into permanent employees in the second quarter, up from 17 percent in 2011.

CareerBuilder chief executive Matt Ferguson said that the new results are encouraging, especially when taken in context. Business confidence was falling a year ago as the effects of the natural disasters that struck Japan began to reverberate across the global economy, but this year economic optimism in the U.S. has remained elevated.

"We have moved from an anemic job market to one that is stable and growing," Ferguson said in a statement. "While still cautious, employers are feeling better about the state of the U.S. economy and the debt situation in Europe. Forty-one percent of companies reported their sales have increased over the last six months, which is helping to fuel greater confidence in hiring. The amount of job listings we're seeing for key categories on CareerBuilder.com are similar to that of 2007. All indicators point to steady improvement in the job market in the second quarter and beyond."

The survey also found that many employers are also mulling over paying their workers higher wages as demand for their goods and services rises. According to the results of the poll, roughly 41 percent of respondents said they expected to increase employee compensation by as much as 3 percent. What's more, 17 percent of those polled said they are planning to pay their employees between 4 percent and 10 percent more. An additional 3 percent of respondents affirmed they expect to give their workers a pay increase of more than 11 percent.

Experts said the new survey results indicate the economy is continuing to heal following the effects of the financial and housing crises. In fact, the percentage of employers planning to hire is nearly back to pre-recessionary levels, rising 28 percent in the past year alone.