Magazine article Business Credit

How to Work Successfully with a Temporary Employee

Magazine article Business Credit

How to Work Successfully with a Temporary Employee

Article excerpt

Recent economic conditions have created a need for more efficient, leaner staffing operations. At the same time--despite repeated downsizings and restructurings--demand for productivity continues to rise. To accommodate these new imperatives, companies and their credit departments are increasingly turning to a cadre of highly skilled temporary employees.

Temporaries provide credit and collections departments with a number of benefits, from flexibility to highly specialized project skills. They are especially effective for peak workload periods and unexpected projects, which are common in most credit departments. In cases where certain skills are needed for only a short time, temporaries can be particularly useful. But to get the most of each assignment, a few simple arrangements ahead of time will help the temporary employee get started quickly and work at maximum efficiency.

Arrange for Supervision.

To maximize the temporary's productivity, it's helpful to appoint one of your employees as the individual to whom the temporary can address all inquiries. Also, be sure the temporary is given a clear description of the work to be accomplished. The supervisor should provide detailed instructions and be willing to answer any questions the temp may have.

Tell Your Staff.

To help foster a more congenial and productive work environment, explain the nature and length of the temporary assignment to your staff and encourage them to be supportive. Very often, temporaries are brought in to lighten the work load for regular staff. When this is true, the staff should be made aware that the temporary is there primarily for their benefit.

Plan the Assignment.

Set realistic goals regarding the work you want completed, and include relevant information that will be helpful to the temporary. Keep in mind that you are bringing on board a professional who can quickly adapt to the cyclical and time-sensitive assignments of the credit industry.

Prepare a Workspace.

Any employee, whether temporary or permanent, will be more productive when the equipment and materials necessary to complete a project are readily available. If the project requires access to agings or invoice files, for example, determine where the temporary will work, and organize the area so that these items are available when he or she arrives. This, too, will make the temporary feel a part of the team. The end result will be increased productivity and efficiency as the employee experiences tangible support for his or her work.

Proactive Approach Smooths Transition

Although people choose temporary work for a variety of reasons, they all share the desire to make a meaningful contribution. A proactive approach to sharing relevant information and creating a smooth transition into the company or department will help your temporary worker quickly become more productive.

Alert the receptionist.

He or she will most probably be the first person to greet the temporary. The first impression in any business relationship can make a big difference. The receptionist must also know where the temporary will be located, since most services call the worker to ensure that the assignment is proceeding smoothly.

Introduce the temporary to his or her superviser and co-workers.

Let them feel comfortable about approaching the supervisor with any and all questions. …

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