Temporary staff are not disposable

James Rix, founder and managing director of Street PR, wants the staffing industry to forgo the temporary hire

Few marketing activities have the potential to deliver the same impact as face-to-face experiential, whether at an event, a festival, on the high street or in a busy train station.

If you can get your product into the hands of your target audience, or talk to them about your services for even just a few minutes, you are more than half-way to converting them into consumers and even fans.

So it’s unforgiveable that so many campaigns are being completely undermined by atrocious promotional staff. There’s no excuse for that; staffing agencies should invest time, money and effort into recruiting, training and retaining quality people.

Yet many staffing agencies are actually advertising for people – often for jobs they are supposed to be delivering within days – on job forums and social media sites. Where’s the quality in that? Where’s the duty of care, which should be owed to clients?

Every brand ambassador an agency supplies should be interviewed by them to make sure that potential recruits are people who are fit to represent the client. For any staffing provider, its brand ambassadors should be its biggest asset, not something to be treated like a commodity, bought at a knock down price from a website.

As an industry, we should be investing in measuring the effectiveness of the staff we are supplying, both for our own sake (so we can become better at supplying quality people) and so we can report back properly to our clients. Clients expect to be able to track the effectiveness of their marketing spend; if we don’t offer them some kind of auditing services, they will do it themselves.

The idea that promotional staff are in some way “temporary” is one we have to get rid of in the staffing industry. They may be temporary from the client’s point of view, because they only hire them for a day or a week; but staffing agencies should be building employee loyalty, longevity and quality.

Our people aren’t disposable – they should be our greatest assets.

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