JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) --Around Region 8 it is a pretty good time to be a temp worker if you are trying to get back into the workforce.
Many companies here who laid off workers due to drops in orders are looking to hire back workers.
Granted, many right now are being hired through temp services because companies are unsure of the future but never the less they still need workers. Some need a lot.
For months we have reported layoff after layoff of workers around Region 8 and the rest of the country.
Now new information from the labor department says that while over all employment has declined...
Temporary service hiring's have increased for the 5th month in a row.
There are a couple of ways to look at this.
One, this is a rebound and companies need lots of bodies quickly.
Or two, companies are being cautious in hiring temps until they are really sure where the economy is going.
Whatever the case, for now it is a good time to consider temporary employment.
Working any kind of a temp job is really a day to day thing. You never know when the job will be over and your services are no longer needed. Especially in an economic downturn.
Paul Pickens is the District Manager for Staffmark. Watching the ebb and flow of temp employees is a good indicator of the health of a company.
"We're sort of a pretty good gauge cause we're gonna see it go bad first because we are the one's hit first as far as a layoff standpoint."
But recent numbers released from the US Department of Labor are showing an increase in temp hiring. Pickens says that many companies cut so far back in lean times that now with orders coming in many are hurting for help.
"Their capacity is not there to produce the products so they are reaching out to us to supply that help to them."
Pickens said there is a need for clerical help to replace workers as well as in manufacturing, especially in the Blytheville industrial area.
Companies are hedging bets by hiring temps instead of recalling laid off workers. Paul Pickens says temp work is a good way to get back into a company.
"You want to be able to get into a company again and this is the best way to do it. I don't know when companies are going to be hiring again on their own."
Pickens says some companies in the manufacturing areas are making nearly all their temp hires, permanent workers.
So is this recent hiring rush an indicator of good times or are companies being cautious without having to commit on insurance or an unsure economy?
Pickens, "You know, that's the million dollar question, we don't know."
But the important thing is that many companies are hiring. Now may be a good time to re-enter the workforce or enter the first time.
"This is a new pool that we have dipped into. We are slowly getting the people back that have been laid off and have been drawing benefits and are now looking back the job market again. Right now is right now. It's best to take what is out there and grow from it."