How to Choose a Temp Labour Agency

When you consider hiring workers to accommodate your fluctuating staffing requirements due to the seasonal or project oriented nature of your business you may consider hiring temporary staff.  
Although there is a number of sources that businesses nowadays can use to attract and hire staff,  when it comes to contingency personnel, the temporary labour agencies or staffing agencies that offer temporary staffing are the most popular choices by far. 
An agency, while helping you maintain adequate staff levels is also taking off your hands most of the hassles related to recruitment, coordination, scheduling, worker orientation and on boarding tasks, it is also eliminating the burden of payroll administration and maintenance. In essence, it helps you allocate more time and resources to focus on running your business.

Choosing the right temporary staff agency is critical to ensure your organization can ultimately benefit from the service. How do you know you are selecting the right temporary staffing agency?

Here are a few things to consider:

Resources and Expertise

Is the agency you are considering a general staffing agency or does it specialize in a certain niche?  If you are a manufacturing plant, relying on the agency that specializes in healthcare personnel is obviously not practical. Yet it is totally different if you are a health care facility, in which case when you request the service, a specialized agency can be positioned better to determine the right fit and skill sets that satisfy your requirements to get the job done.
General staffing providers are great for companies that may hire employees for a range of positions or if most of your positions is non-skilled and require close to no training.
An industry-specific employment agency will most likely have a better quality pool of potential candidates and will better understand your company’s market, project needs, and required labour requirements. 


You would want to check the agencies reputation not only to make sure that they can handle the job, but also to make sure the agency will not expose you to a liability.
To check and research an agency’s reputation, examine the agency’s client base. Long-standing clients are a good sign that a staffing agency maintains a solid reputation. Strong social media presence across different platforms is also a good indicator.
Ask what kind of projects or companies have the agency supplied the labour for. What kind of projects did they work on? Are they able to handle high volume and multiple shift scenarios?  Be sure to check if the agency has enough experience that fits the criteria of your projects to ensure the quality and the quantity of their labour pool.

Recruitment Process

Every agency may hire temporary employees differently. Examine your own hiring practices to check if they align with a chosen temporary employment agency. 
If you require specific training to be provided to workers ask what training the agency is providing to the selected candidates and if required, ask if they can accommodate a new training that is specific to your operation. Make sure you go over these special conditions with an agency before you commit.  


Although workers provided by the agency are the employees of the agency, you should be aware that there are a number of possible liabilities that can hurt your company’s bottom line as well as your company’s reputation. Under Canadian legislation, businesses using the temporary labour are jointly responsible for the salaries of the workers of the agency, and if the agency you hired did not pay the worker correctly you may be held responsible. If the agency you are using is not properly remitting payroll taxes, HST, etc. your company name can be tied up to it as well. 
Besides possible monetary liability a bad temp agency can harm your own reputation in the public and customer’s eyes. 
Be sure to include in your practice periodic audits of the agencies payroll records. An agency in good standing should be able to produce the records of filing HST, payroll deductions, WS&IB, and EHT. Make sure the numbers make sense in the context of your billings with the agency. If you hear that the agency workers get paid in cash that could also be a strong indication that something is going on. Although cash payments are technically legal, they are largely associated with the “under–the-table” arrangements. 

Here are a few more tips to consider when hiring temporary workers:

•    Pricing: Consider your project nature, budget and the number of employees you wish to hire. In some cases, agencies may offer volume discounts.
•    Satisfaction Guarantee: Check the temporary agencies guarantee conditions, most agencies will offer a satisfaction guarantee.
•    Added Services: Check other added services that a staffing agency may offer such as criminal background checks, etc.


If your organization is interested in partnering with the staffing provider to facilitate the services of temporary or on demand workers -Alliance Employment Services will be glad to assist. With more than 20 years of servicing Industrial businesses in GTA area we have the infrastructure and resources to serve you. Learn More 


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