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November 4, 2010 5:04 AM Subscribe
How do I improve my chances of staying at a temp job?
posted by anonymous to work & money (5 answers total)
I work in a lab. The work we do is largely seasonal, and I'm one of the temp workers hired for rush season, which is ending...in the next few weeks.
In a meeting today, it was announced that with the impending downtime, the temps hired will eventually be cut...mostly. There are a few permanent positions that, once accounted for and confirmed, will have postings, in which all staff (temps or permanents) who are interested are welcome to apply for.
So far, everyone seems all hard workers, all get along, no slackers, etc. So the obvious weeding out of idiots who do no work, or everyone else hates, doesn't apply.
I have had feedback from several other coworkers (permanent and temps) that I do a very good job (and they think I'll be kept as a permanent). Sadly, other than a 'good job' kudo from my manager at my learning speeds two weeks after I got here, I haven't yet heard any direct feedback about what management thinks I'm like. I suspect they like me, but question is whether they like me enough... I have put in a considerable amount of hours here during the crazy rush (so, basically, not ditching my things halfway for the night shift to pick up; I finish as much as I can). However, this is not a very difficult job (although I do possess far more experience than a random temp at this business, the stuff that I've been doing so far isn't terribly difficult to learn...it's a very routine job). Of course, the permanent positions being opened can be for simpler jobs like mine or higher up the chain, so that adds a level of the unknown... I have been starting to get cross-trained into a few other tasks, but at least for my current position at this point in time, I'm easily replaced. (I think.)
Given that, what can I do to best maximize my chances of being kept?
1. I have enough experience at my current level to probably try for one step higher on the chain (as in, one level above my current position), given proper training after hire. However, since I do not have (much) direct experience with the one-step-higher positions, assuming they're even available, should I bother trying for them? Or should I just mass-apply for everything at roughly my current job's level of difficulty, try to get my foot in the door, and then worry about advancement later?
2. Can some helpful soul tell me what kind of process this would be? I originally thought management would just tap some shoulders some random day and go 'hey, would you be interested in staying permanently?'; I didn't expect a formal application process. Does this mean once the postings go up, it's the whole resume/cover letter rigmarole all over again? *wince* How formal/not formal am I looking at here?
3. I'm on a 'good morning!' basis with everyone (even my somewhat cold-fish direct supervisor) and work-friends (hopefully transitioning soon into 'friends' without qualifiers) with a few others. Some of said friends are permanents, others are temps who may or may not (likely the former) be competing with me for whatever job gets posted. Do I start keeping cards close to my chest (and if so, how?), or just keep on being open and frank like I always have?
Any other random advice for me? Pay negotiations? Dress code? (We don't have one, everyone including management runs around in jeans all the time, but if looking nicer helps...) I'd like to note that in discussions with work-friends, at least two gets higher pay than me, even though I have better credentials/experience than at least one of them. So while I'd be pretty happy if I can just stay as permanent where I am, it'd be even better if I can really stress to management that I am awesome and can be crosstrained more places and generally kept around (hopefully for more money).
Anonymous in fear of the very slim chance that any of my bosses are on MeFi.