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Challenging the Perceptions of Temporary Work

Beyond Recruitment

In the New Zealand job market, there has always been a perception about temporary work being a short-term fix; a solution that will only help you for a few weeks. However, with demand increasing considerably across the country (particularly in Wellington), the temp market has changed significantly.

In fact, most of our assignments today are three months or longer. From data entry and administration, through to PAs and EAs, temporary Business Support jobs are more than interim measures to get you by – they are a fantastic way to get a foot in the door and help to build future careers.  

The Changing Demand for Temporary Work

In the past, employees taking maternity leave and other extended breaks were one of the primary sources of temporary assignments. While this hasn’t changed, the demand for people to fill temp roles has noticeably increased in recent times. There are two key factors driving this rising demand and paving the way for more short-term opportunities in our markets.

Firstly, employers are increasingly looking at temporary resourcing to allow flexibility and secondly, there is an increased focus on IT and Transformation projects taking place. In a world where technology is evolving quicker than ever, businesses are undertaking digital change and transformation initiatives to stay ahead of the curve, which opens the doors for temporary workers to join on a project basis.

Increasing Long-Term Opportunities

Not only is the number of temporary vacancies growing – the length of these assignments has also increased, and a lot of temping opportunities are providing longer-term employment. Historically, with the exception of maternity leave, the average assignment might be a few weeks, but now it’s a few months.

As a result, it’s important not to view temporary assignments as merely short-term positions. Once your foot is in the door, they can open up a range of opportunities down the track. It’s very common for our temp workers to be offered extensions, and even permanent roles, at the completion of assignments. So, while an assignment may appear brief at the outset, it could be the perfect stepping stone to something bigger.

The Benefits of Temporary Work

Far from being career stopgaps that keep you afloat during a job search; temporary assignments can provide many notable advantages in their own right. Some of the biggest benefits of temp work include:

  • They are a great opportunity to dip your toes into a position and see whether you like a role or organisation, without having to commit to a permanent position right off the bat.
  • Helping you to step in a new direction by offering the chance to gain new skills and experience, as well as explore a new career.
  • They help to grow confidence and develop communication skills further. As recruiters, we often talk about technical skills and experience, but when it comes to temping, soft skills are just as important.
  • Gain exposure to all sorts of different organisational cultures, management styles and co-workers, honing your ability to adapt to new work environments.
  • Temp roles foster networking and relationship-building, helping to gain new industry contacts.
  • They also provide more flexibility in terms of work schedules.


With the nature of temp jobs, it’s important to hit the ground running, but as long as you have the skills in those high demand areas, you can be confident that you’ll be able to go from assignment to assignment with little down time. If you need more advice on working as a temp, or for support in your Business Support job search, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me, I’d love to help you.

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