Forecast: Temp Hiring Growth Strong Through Year End

2014 Palmer forecast q4On the heels of a survey finding that a quarter of all employers plan to add temporary staff this quarter comes a forecast that agency staffing will increase 8.7% over last year.

Temp industry consultant G. Palmer & Associates says temp employment will average 2.978 million workers in the fourth quarter. For the last quarter of 2013, the average was 2.739 million, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics reporting temp agencies employed a record 2.934 million workers in September.

“Our forecast for the 2014 fourth quarter follows recent trends, demonstrating growth and indicating another increase in demand for temporary workers, marking the 19th consecutive quarter of year-over-year increases,” says Greg Palmer, founder and managing director of the Newport Beach, California human capital advisory firm.

“The data is also showing that with the advent of lower unemployment rates, labor is tightening, wages in certain categories are increasing, and temp help as a percentage of new job growth is beginning to tapper off.,” he adds. “This points to the likelihood of increases in margins, direct hire and conversion fees in the staffing industry.”

Since the beginning of the year, staffing agencies have added workers at an average of 17,980 a month, a pace exceeded only once since 2000. That was in 2010 the first full year after the official end of the recession when temp expanded at an average of 29,230 workers a month.

Article Continues Below

Workers employed by staffing firms now account for 2.1% of the total U.S. workforce, a historic high. In addition, companies employ millions more temporary workers, usually referred to as the contingent workforce. Staffing Industry Analysts estimates that these temps account for somewhat more than 16% of the workforce at most large companies.



John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


1 Comment on “Forecast: Temp Hiring Growth Strong Through Year End

  1. “Workers employed by staffing firms now account for 2.1% of the total U.S. workforce, a historic high.”

    Having a contract worker be (technically) an employee of the staffing agency gives the hiring company the freedom to work that new hire into their system and routine even if they don’t have the budget to hire them officially. They get the help they need, the time to train the new hire, and the time to work out the numbers.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *