Temporary labor force here to stay

Think you’re simply going to graduate from high school and college and find the perfect job. Think again. NBC News reports a growing number of workers now find full-time employment elusive and instead are stuck in temporary jobs. Although the opportunity for temporary labor can be a band-aid and solution for unemployment, it’s not the dream most Americans have, and some fear it may even be a dead-end for their careers.

Companies partly to blame for shift to temporary labor


Many experts warn temporary labor could become the norm, partly because companies love a workforce they can “switch on and off” as their business needs change, grow or shrink. But unfortunately the news is not so good for workers who suffer permanent damage not only to their retirement plans and saving accounts but also their career trajectories. Workers must also contend with a decrease in paid sick and vacation days and health insurance.

Workers have become extremely vocal in their dissatisfaction with temporary labor. For instance, some workers complain their hourly pay is substantially less than they made as salaried, full-time employees, and for those who do eventually get to join a retirement or 401K plan often do so with a substantial reduction in pay, resulting in less savings for retirement.

Temporary labor hires do not fit historical trends


Historically, there have always been what economists are calling temporary hiring patterns when the economy is recovering, but now economists claim they are seeing something different, which could indicate there has been a structural shift in hiring strategies.

Last month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the temp industry added 28,500 jobs. Now there are an estimated 2.8 million workers who are employed currently in temporary or contract positions. And while economists claim the increase in temporary work cannot yet be called a trend, they are not seeing companies move to hire full-time workers as fast as they expected. The reason they suspect is costs. It remains cheaper to use temporary labor, and it allows companies to expand and contract their labor with little effort.

Unfortunately, the move towards temporary labor is not confined to one industry. We are starting to see part-time workers at educational institutions and manufacturing companies alike. There is also an increase in outsourcing with companies using part-time workers from third party companies to perform a variety of services such as human resources, payroll services and janitorial services.

Temporary labor and the benefits for workers


The news may not be all bad for workers. For instance, temporary work may be just want some workers want. In fact, workers who prefer the flexibility, or who have high family obligations may enjoy having time off, but for most workers the uncertainty of temporary work far outweighs the pluses.

Experts also warn about another downside- the ripple effect to the next generation of kids who have grown up with parents who have not had steady work. Not only will these workers be forced to work longer and delay retirement, it’s likely they will not save enough money to send their children to college.

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Beth L. is a content writer for Better Bankruptcy. Good content and information is one of many methods we utilize to bring you the answers you need.