Trying Before Buying

Andrew R. McIlvaine

More and more employees should probably start thinking of the temps working alongside them as potentially permanent colleagues.

That's according to Randstad US' Chris Martin, who says he's seeing a substantial increase this year in the number of temporary workers being converted to permanent employees by his company's clients.

This has become especially common among companies in the pharmaceutical, biotech and technology industries, which appear to be relying heavily on temp-to-perm to develop their internal talent pipelines, says Martin. Many IT departments are also making greater use of temp-to-perm, he says.

"In 2012, less than 11 percent of our openings started as contract-to-hire -- in which the company states at the outset that it's looking for someone to eventually hire permanently," says Martin, senior vice president for enterprise solutions at Atlanta-based Randstad US. 

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