Report: Temp labour gives competitive edge

by 22 Feb 2012

Report: Temp labour gives competitive edgeThe demand for temporary workers has outpaced the demand for full timers, according to a new report presented in Sydney this morning.

The Adecco Group’s second edition of the Temporary Labour Report underlines the fact that global economic uncertainty, combined with the high Australian dollar, is driving many employers’ to adopt greater workplace flexibility to survive. As a result, an unprecedented demand for temporary workers has outpaced demand for total employment by over 38% in 2010/11.

“Temporary labour is an important factor in sustaining a competitive advantage in today’s marketplace, and even more so in this economic climate. A temporary workforce gives employers the flexibility to efficiently manage the demand and supply fluctuations in their business,” Adecco Group CEO Jeff Doyle said. And it’s not just employers who want greater flexibility in the workplace – 41% of employees choose temporary work to maintain a flexible lifestyle, and 84% of temporary employees said they would recommend temporary work.

According to the survey, employers remain concerned about the skills shortage, and some 65% of businesses expect to experience the problem first hand in 2012. Key findings from the report included:

  • 30% of organisations intend to use temp labour to address the skills shortage this year
  • 25% will increase training
  • 13% will seek external recruitment

Doyle said the profile of temporary labour continues to change in Australia, and that while historically physical labour jobs made up the majority of the temporary workforce, this has shifted to incorporate all types of roles across all industries. “Organisations ranging from ASX Top 100 companies to small businesses increase the efficiency of their workforce and access specialist skills or expertise when required,” Doyle said.

By sector, temporary labour was used for:

  • 68% in the semi-skilled sector
  • 48% unskilled
  • 32% trades
  • 30% professional
  • 12% management

Employer advantages of using temporary labour:

  • Allows flexibility for demand fluctuations for our products/services 32.5%
  • Manage workforce as efficiently as possible 28.8%
  • Solve site specific labour shortages 26.8%
  • Enables organisations to be competitive 6.4%
  • Access to outside skills 2.9%
  • Other 2.7%


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