Do you know who is the actual employer of temporaries? This should be an obvious answer, the responsibility belongs to the staffing service. We process the individual's paycheck, cover all taxes, and provide liability insurance. But, there are some additional steps that you, as a consumer of staffing services, should take to help avoid becoming inadvertently responsible.
The American Staffing Association (ASA) has published a list of do's and don'ts for both staffing firms and their clients. The list is designed to establish a clear understanding of the three-way relationship between the client, the temporary/contractor and the staffing firm. I'd like to share some of this useful information with you:
Client firms should include a policy in their employee handbook stating that temporaries/contractors are not eligible for benefits.
A lot of companies do not consider this since temporaries do not receive an employee handbook, but clarification is key to avoid misunderstandings.
Staffing firms should maintain the right to reassign, provide pay rate changes and terminate and discipline its workers.
The staffing firm, not the client company, must handle work site complaints and/or concerns. You are paying a service fee, so make your service work for it. We should handle all complaints, terminations, and reassignments. If there is a need or desire by the client to be involved in the process, the staffing company should coordinate an onsite meeting with all parties.
Clients should not have the right to unilaterally assign additional projects to the worker without the staffing firm's prior approval.
Communication is an integral part of this three-way relationship; therefore all changes should be communicated to the staffing firm to eliminate any misunderstanding.
Customers should not reimburse staffing firm workers directly for expenses.
The staffing firm should provide customized expense forms and billing for such instances.
The staffing firm, not the clients, should provide general worker training.
The staffing firm should provide temporary workers who have already been trained in the skills sets you require. If additional skills become necessary, a quality staffing firm will offer additional training opportunities to its temporary contractors.
- Jennifer Evans, Executive Vice President