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Why Use Temps for Valet?

The needs of a valet service often fluctuate depending on the day of the week, the season of the year, or the special events scheduled. Maintaining a permanent staff and providing each employee with consistent weekly hours can be challenging. Many business owners will find that keeping a bare minimum staff of permanent workers can usually suit their needs, if they are willing to hire temps during busy seasons or for special occasions.

Seasonal Temps
Most valet services have certain seasons when they get more business than others. This could be during the holiday season, or during a popular vacationing month. Bringing in temporary valet workers could give you the work force you need, without leaving you overstaffed during the rest of the year. Check your business records to locate a pattern of the busiest weeks or months of the year, and plan to bring in temps during those periods of time. During regular seasons, keep your permanent staff low and affordable.

Temps for Special Occasions
Temporary workers can also be hired on a short-term basis ranging from one evening to one weekend. If you service a restaurant or venue that occasionally hosts large-scale events, temporary valet workers will help keep your head above water for a couple days. Temp workers come pre-trained, so you can bring them on for only a few hours without needing to waste time training or instructing them.

Benefits for Hiring Temporary Valets
Even if you need full-time help, you will not need to include a benefits package of sick days, vacation days, or health insurance for the temps you hire. If you aren’t sure how long you need an extra valet, no worries. Temps can stay long-term, and they can be cut when the need is over without guilt. Temp agencies also save time during the hiring process. Experienced temps are available even on the shortest of notices.

Looking for a temp to join your valet team? We can help. Visit our website or contact us at 877-836-7527.

Sources:
Business Know How
Daytona Employment

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Using Temps for Special Occasions

As the economy has taken its toll on everyone over the past decade, businesses have inevitably been forced to keep staff at a bare minimum in order to keep from going under. While most businesses can successfully operate with fewer employees, some businesses, such as restaurants and caterers, can sometimes find themselves in a difficult position. In these markets, consumer volumes can fluctuate greatly. These businesses usually perform well when understaffed if consumer volume is low, but in times of high volume, during special occasions or events for example, it is simply not cost effective to hire more full time or even part time employees.

Temps for Restaurants

If you are implementing a new sale or hosting a large event in your venue, it will become necessary for you to have more staff on hand in order for your business to operate proficiently. In addition to your regular employees, it may be a good investment to hire temps to aid your staff. These are people who you will contract to work for you only on a temporary basis. Depending on what is required of your temps to fulfill their job duties, you may be able to give only minimal training so as to save time and resources.

Temps for Caterers

Catering companies experience many highs and lows throughout the year, especially around the holidays. It could be beneficial to employ temps to help you prepare or serve food to your clients during the busy seasons. In this setting, your temps will undergo more direct training and will be more prepared for similar jobs in the future. They will also become prime candidates for you when you eventually seek full time staff members because they will already be used to working in this type of environment.

Hiring Temps

Temps can be an invaluable asset to any hospitality or customer service industry. If you are looking for a qualified and experienced worker to help out during your next big event or busy season, visit us online to learn more about our services.

Sources:

National Restaurant Association

University of Arizona

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Effective Temps

Temporary Labor Offers Permanent Perks

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Temporary Labor Offers Permanent Perks

Taking advantage of temporary labor to staff catered dinners, conferences, and other events can benefit your business in many ways.

Skill

The skill level of temporary workers ranges from general abilities to specialized areas of expertise. A staffing agency has access to an array of temporary talent. The people whom the agency provides to work for you will precisely match your company’s needs.

Flexibility
A staffing agency is expert at providing qualified help to work for you. It can respond to you quickly, with a small or large number of workers to work whatever hours and days necessary. This is especially helpful for seasonal increases in business or for managers who need to staff events.

Eagerness
Temporary workers choose to work as temps for many reasons. They often like the opportunity to explore different career fields and appreciate the chance to build their resumes. While permanent employees can sometimes lose their drive and simply fall into a routine of going through the motions, temporary workers are eager to impress, and always striving to make that great first impression.

Cost Savings
In shaky economic times, using temporary workers can be a smart way to reduce expenses. Permanently hiring a large number of workers with general skills or a few with specialized skills can be a big expense, while “borrowing” their help temporarily is very cost-effective. You’ll pay to get your job done well, but not for hours you don’t need, overhead, or other associated expenses. In the case of event coordinators, a temporary agency is an extremely cost effective means of staffing functions with your balance sheet in mind. It may be hard to keep full-time workers if you do not have constant events. Temps know from the start that they are working for only a specific amount of time.

Commitment
When you use temporary labor, the temps are working not only for you but for the staffing agency as well. We are committed to doing an extraordinary job as a matchmaker, and being the solution to your staffing challenges. It will make choosing to use temporary labor benefit your business, and be your go-to contact for questions or concerns in regard to any of the provided temporary workers.

Whether you need extra hotel staff for banquets or if you operate a catering company, temporary labor is an option that you should look in to. The tourism industry here in Arizona only adds to the number of events that our state hosts. As it is such a viable business, business owners and managers need be aware of their options.

Sources:

CEO Blog: Temporary Jobs Will Begin the Boom (CNBC)

Increase in Temp Workers is Encouraging (USA Today)

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Why Go Temp To Hire

Finding Quality Employees; That’s Our Job

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Compensations and Regulation

People who occupy their time running a business know that sometimes—and by sometimes we mean all the time—your employees will be partially consumed by the subject of compensation. After all, compensation is the quantitative expression of the employer-employee relationship. To make sure that you are in compliance with both the United States Department of Labor and the Industrial Commission of Arizona, we will cover some of the finer points of compensation.

The Rules

  • Pay schedule: Obviously you have to pay your staff, but legally you are required to keep some form of a payment schedule. You must pay at least twice a month and your pay periods cannot be separated by more than sixteen days. You can, of course, pay weekly if you prefer. Many wage employees seem to prefer frequent paydays. We even make pay available daily to our temporary workers.
  • Amount of pay: We all know that we must pay at least minimum wage, which has been set at $7.35 per hour since January 1, 2011. We must also pay overtime to any employee who works more than forty hours per week. As soon as their workload hits forty hours, you must pay time and a half. This is a federal guideline, not one from the state of Arizona, which does have exceptions. By and large the exceptions apply to sales people and other professionals. Hospitality employees, construction workers and manufacturing staff are all due overtime pay. You cannot make an arrangement in advance with the employee that allows you to omit overtime pay or use any other form of compensation outside of wages paid on a paycheck. If overtime is a necessity for your business but seems to be affecting your bottom line, we would be happy to help.
  • No holding wages- In most cases you cannot withhold an employee’s wages from them. This also means that you must pay employees who quit, under any circumstances, the full amount for their time worked. The only exceptions involve:

If you fail to comply with regulations associated with compensation, you may end up in trouble. You can be reported to the State Labor Department for violations. If you are reported, the department will perform an investigation, which will include looking into your compensation policies and practices. If they feel that you are out of compliance, they will request that you get caught back up in a reasonable amount of time. If you fail to do this, they will exact other punishments including fines.

It is important to keep in mind that sometimes State and Federal laws differ when it comes to compensation law. For instance, in California and Nevada overtime is paid to employees who work more than eight hours per day as opposed to more than forty hours in a given week. The regulations described here are pertinent to the State of Arizona. Taking the time to brush up on employment law in your state is a necessary part of running a business.

Large orders require manufacturers to work their staff more; busy season means restaurateurs need more man hours worked; and deadlines can do the same thing to the construction industry. If you would like to avoid the possibility of being fined or subject to oversight, then temporary employees might just be the answer to your troubles.

Sources:

Industrial Commission of Arizona

United States Department of Labor

United States Department of Labor

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Drug Testing in Arizona

Workplace safety can be enhanced or undermined by a variety of factors. One such factor is employee substance use and abuse. In an ideal world, this topic would not be an issue, but let’s be honest: substance abuse is a factor in society that sometimes finds its way into the working world. As an employer, you must be on the lookout for anything that could cause your operations to be less efficient or that might lead to an accident. Substance abuse is closely tied with both of these negative outcomes, so it is important to consider the subject when organizing your business.

In Arizona, drug testing is not required by law–with the exception of a limited number of particular job descriptions. By and large drug testing in our state is at the discretion of the employer. According to state legislation drug testing can legally be used:

  • To help screen an applicant before hiring
  • To terminate a current employee who test positive for controlled substances
  • To suspend an employee (with or without pay) who tests positive for controlled substances

If you plan to drug test your staff, there are some considerations that you need to make as an employer. You are responsible for certain things associated with the testing and could be held liable for privacy issues

Requirement to Consider

  • Screening facility- You must select a drug screening facility that is approved by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the American College of Pathologists, or the Department of Health Services to ensure accurate testing by a facility that meets certain sanitation and scientific standards.
  • Types of tests- You can require staff to undergo screenings that require samples of “urine, blood, breath, saliva, hair or other substances from the person being tested.” (Arizona State Legislature) The type of test used is at the employer’s discretion.
  • Confirmation- If a candidate or employee does test positive for drugs or alcohol, you are required to have a second confirmation test performed to rule out the possibility of a false positive test. The confirmation test must be a different form of drug screening than the original test.
  • Privacy- Regardless of the results of the screening, you cannot share them with anyone except for the employee/candidate; internal employees who are directly associated with the human resource or management functions directly concerning the screening results; or an outside arbitrator or judge who may be brought in to settle a dispute. Otherwise nobody–not internal employees or anyone else who might have an interest in the employee–is allowed to know the results of the test. If you go afoul of this point of law, expect to lose a lawsuit.
  • Transparency- If you choose to screen employees you must be up front about your policies. Put it in writing in your employee manual and take other efforts to ensure that your staff is aware of your substance use/abuse policies. You must inform your staff of:
    • Who can be tested
    • How they will be tested with a description of the procedure
    • Substances you test for
    • Implications of a positive drug test (what actions you will take as an employer against staff who fail a drug test)
    • A confidentiality statement
    • The employee’s right to be provided with the results of the screening
    • The consequences of refusing a test

This is a basic overview of the drug screening process in Arizona. These are statewide regulations, so an employer in Tempe is subject to the exact same laws as one in Flagstaff or Phoenix. If you would like a full listing of regulations feel free to consult with the Arizona State Legislature. If you would like reliable staff who can show up at a moment’s notice, consult Labor Systems Job Center online or call 877-522-7797. We will work with you to provide candidates who have been drug screened if that is your preference.

Sources:
Arizona State Legislature
Industrial Commission of Arizona
Worker’s Comp Cost Reduction Resource Center

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Employee Benefits

Employees expect that they will be duly compensated for their time and efforts. While most immediately think of salaries and wages, any manager or employer can tell you that compensating employees goes far beyond a paycheck. Employee benefits are yet another way that employers “pay” their staff. Many employees and job seekers evaluate benefits along with financial compensation when choosing a place to work.

Popular Employee Benefits

Some Will Cost You

  • Paid time off- Who doesn’t like a vacation? That is what you should be asking yourself when deciding whether or not to provide your staff with paid time off. While many wage positions do not receive this benefit, it is a great perk that consistently ranks at the top of the popularity list with employees. You can predetermine your employees’ days off, or you can elect to let employees choose their days, depending on personal preferences and the industry you are in. While it might not make you happy to have staff out, you can always find reasonable ways to cover their absence.
  • Paid sick leave- This benefit is also very popular with employees. While you can require that employees use paid time off to cover illness, allowing a conservative number of sick days can be a good way to show labor that management understands real-life situations.
  • Health insurance- Currently this issue is up in the air. Our nation may or may not have regulations requiring health insurance for staff in the future. Regardless many employers already offer health benefits. While employees pay for part of this benefit, health insurance represents a considerable expense on your balance sheet. As you provide coverage for more staff, your cost per employee will decrease. Be sure to ask your accountant about the best way to write off this expense and reap any additional tax benefits that might be available.
  • Retirement plans- This is possibly the most expensive benefit an employer can offer. There are a lot of diverse retirement plans for employers to choose from, so if you do want to offer this benefit you can find the plan that best meets your goals and keeps your costs in line. Most employers match their employees’ contributions, up to a certain percentage of income. This benefit used to come in the form of a pension, but as we have seen it is financially impossible to pay all of your staff decades after they have retired, no matter how great of a philosophy it is.

Some Benefits are Cost Effective

  • Flex Time- This benefit is not for every employer. It allows your staff to choose their own hours. If you can make this concept work for your business, it is a great way to make employees happier that does not cost you very much. In the hospitality industry, you have the opportunity to provide this benefit due to the hours that your business must be open. If you can swing it, then it also works out very well in office environments. Unfortunately this benefit cannot do much for the construction industry, since employees must work together while they have sunlight.
  • Telecommute- People hate traffic and the rat race. Some employers can help ease this burden by allowing their full-time staff to perform some of their job functions from home via the internet. This is another cost effective benefit, but bear in mind that you need trustworthy staff and a solid IT department to make sure everything goes smoothly.

Employee benefits are a great way to improve employee relations and show your full-time staff that you care. Considering that they usually represent another cost for you, it might be a good idea to find other means of saving a few bucks when it comes to employee-related expenses.

Sources:
Investment News
Small Business Advisory
Life123

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Things Are Looking Up

The end of the year is here. We hope you were able to minimize any losses that might have occurred in 2010 and are putting together a sound strategy for 2011. By most predictions, next year should be a lot better for businesses than this year, as the economy continues on a slow but seemingly steady uptick. Let’s take a look at some of the facts and predictions that are in place, which should make doing business in 2011 less stressful than it was in 2010.

2011 Positive Outlook

  • The WSJ Economist Survey predicts a 3% increase in GDP (sum of all goods and services produced within the United States) in 2011.
  • The survey also indicates a reduced prediction that a double digit recession will occur to 15%; the number was at 22% in September.
  • Economists polled in the survey also estimate Increases to be experienced especially by those businesses that operate in retail sales and manufacturing.
  • 80% of CEO’s involved in the Business Roundtable predict sales increases in first half of 2011.
  • 59% of CEO’s involved in the Business Roundtable expect to increase their spending on equipment (great for the manufacturing industry).
  • A payroll tax cut pertinent to Social Security taxes will be granted to employees (employers will not experience a reduction in the amount that they match), which puts more disposable income in consumers’ hands, which should be immediately felt by the hospitality and retail industries

These predictions provide a basis for a lot of optimism for business people in 2011. The economy should be growing, which will present more opportunities and hopefully in the long run, more customers. To be fair there are some predictions for cost increases that will directly affect business owners.

Potential Cost Increases for 2011

  • Materials- As the economy rebounds, basic supplies and resources are expected to become more costly. This could especially impact commodities, which include everything from oil to copper.
  • Health care- While health care reform is still not set in stone, it would be unwise to not calculate a cost increase here.
  • Labor- Hiring is expected to increase, so with it comes more salaries, payroll expenses, taxation matching, etc.

As you can see, economists and CEO’s alike seem to be predicting more good than bad on the horizon. While that is great news, 2011 will still require a steady hand and a carefully prepared plan for business owners. Two of the anticipated cost increases are pertinent to labor and health care. Both of those increases will directly affect your bottom line and will be financially measurable the first quarter that you start bringing on new people. There is no reason to be too pessimistic; after all bringing on additional staff means that you are growing and on your way to increased profits.

Taking a cautious approach to hiring will be the best way to grow while reigning in your company’s spending. Using temporary labor might be just the answer you are looking for. Think about the advantages of temps when you need to be cautious with spending.

  • No money spent on recruiting-Save yourself from paying for job listings, paying to interview, and paying current staff to take time to perform both of those functions.
  • Predetermined expenses- Temps come with a set fee and we take care of all of the extrinsic costs like payroll and taxation matching.
  • Simple to terminate unnecessary employees- If your predictions are a bit optimistic and you decide that you don’t need that much staff, it is easy to reduce payroll costs by simply using fewer temps, as opposed to laying off a new hire.

We wish everyone the best in their financial endeavors in 2011. If you are looking for ways to save money and time while you grow, feel free to give us a call at 1-877-522-7797. We can tell you how to save on staffing throughout Arizona, from Phoenix to Flagstaff.

Sources:

Bloomberg Businessweek

Wall Street Journal

Bloomberg

Arizona Central

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Making Emergencies Easy

Running or managing a business can be a very rewarding experience, especially if you are the type of person who thrives on change. Management can provide opportunities to showcase your flexibility and ability to think on your feet. While overcoming obstacles can be very rewarding, sometimes business presents us with opportunities that are double-edged swords. Yes, they might be an opportunity to grow and develop, but they might also be coupled with hurdles that must be bested in order to take advantage of the opportunity.

In many cases staffing is a hurdle that must be jumped. Think about what can happen to your staffing situation, literally overnight, if:

  • You suddenly gain a large customer or an existing customer suddenly places a huge order
  • You are presented with a time sensitive opportunity
  • A large number of staff defect to a competitor simultaneously

In any and all of these cases a reliable staffing agency is your best means of fixing the situation. They will allow you to remedy your staffing problem in a very short amount of time, usually the amount of time it takes to make a phone call. Staffing agencies pre-screen candidates and have a list of capable employees who can work on short notice. This is their whole business model. If they could not sufficiently supply this service then they would not be in business; it is as simple as that.

What to Look For in a Staffing Agency

It is understandable that you might be a little apprehensive about bringing in temporary workers for certain assignments. If you ask around, colleagues who have used temporary labor to their advantage will likely be able to tell you about the benefits and assuage your fears about trusting a temporary agency. Be sure to ask them to recommend a company that has:

  • A solid history in the staffing industry
  • A variety of temporary workers that will allow you a little more flexibility in choosing your new staff members
  • The ability to send staff over the very next day if needed. Even if this isn’t what you need, it shows that you are choosing a company that has superior customer service and is prepared to fill any overnight gaps that might arise in the future
  • Will allow you trade out workers hassle free if you feel that a different temp might be a better fit for you
  • Enough reach to help you at all of your geographic locations. If you have offices in Phoenix and Scottsdale, it is beneficial to select a temporary service that can help you in both cities.

Tips for Using a Staffing Agency

Now that you are comfortable using a temporary service to fill your emergency staffing needs, take a couple of tips that will help you to effectively work with a staffing agency and use their services.

  • Know what you are looking for. The staffing agency will be far more likely to set you up with the right workers if you can be specific about what you need from the standpoint of workload to be accomplished and skill set necessary to do the work.
  • Build a relationship early. Emergencies develop very quickly and it will be helpful to have a relationship with an agency that you like. Maybe start out by using an agency to cover a vacation or to send over a couple of temps to help you decide whether hiring on full-timers is worthwhile.
  • Expand your relationship. Talk to your representative at your staffing agency about your current and prospective needs. They will be able to help you to determine what it will take to cover your temporary staffing needs and get a better idea of which temps will work out best for you.

Sources:

Entrepreneur

New York Times

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Why Go Temp-to-Hire?

One of the most flexible options that any staffing agency can ever offer their clients is the option to try out an employee on a temporary basis and then decide whether or not they would like to hire the employee on full time. This is a great option for both the employer and the employee, as it fuses the best aspects of both temporary employees and direct hire services.

There are many reasons that an employer benefits from finding new staff in this manner. Let’s begin with the benefits that are borrowed from temporary staffing and direct placement as separate entities.

  • Save money up front by not having to fund the hiring process or costs associated with payroll and benefits.
  • Save time by locating a capable employee with a phone call as opposed to the interview process.
  • You can immediately replace an employee who leaves unexpectedly.
  • You can retain peace of mind knowing that your new staff member is coming from a trusted source.

While those advantages exist for temporary staff and direct placement, temp-to-hire offers its own advantages due to its flexibility.

  • You can make sure that your company really needs a new staff member. We have all been there: we identify a gap in our operations and automatically assume that we need a new hire to fill it. Sometimes we regret the new hire because we realize that if we changed some internal processes or simply outsourced something, we could have bridged the gap more effectively and at a lower cost.
  • You can make sure that the new hire meshes from a company culture and personality standpoint. It might take a while to truly gauge new person’s personality and work ethic. The temporary aspect of temp-to-hire gives you this trial period.
  • We handle your probationary period for you. Temp-to-hire employees come in knowing that the job might not last. In spite of probationary periods, regular hires do not usually take this into consideration. This can make termination considerably more difficult and uncomfortable for the employer.
  • You have the ability to easily replace the employee in the event that you decide that you do in fact want another staff member, but feel that the original employee that you located might not work out. It just takes a hassle-free phone call to replace the temp with someone who is a better fit for your needs, which may change slightly after the original employee comes on.

While temp-to-hire is a great option, it may not be for everyone. Some employers know for certain that they need a permanent staff member, while others know in advance that their staffing issue is a temporary situation. If your situation does dictate that you need flexibility you will likely be very happy with the temp-to-hire option. We arrange everything so that you only have to focus on your bottom line.

Sources:

ABR Employment Services

Reference for Business

Business Know How

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Unemployment and Your Business

Recent figures put unemployment in the state of Arizona at 9.7%, which represents one of the highest figures since the 1980’s. We all know that the economy, both locally and nationally, is in a recovery period, but that does not help with the current state of things. What does unemployment mean to a business owner? Can we take advantage of the situation, or is it just another aspect of the current downtrodden economic cycle?

How Does Unemployment Affect Me Again?

As an employer you likely know that you pay an unemployment tax. As long as you have anyone working for you at least part time 20 weeks per year or pay a worker $1500 in a quarter, you are subject to the tax. The actual costs to individual businesses differ based upon how much your payroll is and how long any former employee that you are currently paying out worked for you during their base period. The base period is a predetermined amount of time that the state deems representative of an individual’s income. If employees receive unemployment, the amount they receive is based upon how much they earned during the base period.

In essence, if a worker was under your employ for the whole base period, you pay the employer’s entire share of their unemployment payments (the State and Federal Governments also contribute to unemployment payments). Likewise if they worked for you for half of the base period you pay half and so on. You are charged by the state and they compile your unemployment payments into an account. When former employees are granted unemployment, the state takes money from your account and uses it to pay part of the payments. If your account ever gets too low, you can expect your unemployment taxes to increase.

Unemployment taxes are an unavoidable part of running a business that hires on workers. As you can imagine, the current economic times mean that a significant amount of money is being paid to citizens who are out of work. Some businesses are likely experiencing increases in taxes due to their accounts being drawn below acceptable limits. Hence it is costing them more money to do business, possibly with less staff. This is definitely a negative aspect of unemployment and the current economy.

So What Can We Do?

Since giving up is not an option for most business owners everyone must find ways to deal with the situation. As a staffing company, we are obligated to point out that using our services could help you bypass the unemployment costs associated with some of your new hires. When it comes to temporary workers, we are the employer so we handle the unemployment costs for you. We can let you bring on new people and try out new positions. Instead of your payroll, and of course your unemployment taxes, going up, your expenses do. While this might sound bad at first, increased expenses equal less taxes in the long run, so by using temps you could actually decrease your taxes and get the workers you need. Not a bad deal.

Otherwise as employers it is important to remain positive and optimistic. We can look at the large pool of unemployed workers as potential opportunity. It means that we have more options to choose from to staff our businesses, so long as you have the time to evaluate multiple candidates. It also means that we should all be focused on growth. The lessons learned from running a lean staff have shown us how to effectively operate with fewer people. They have also shown us the value of having a few more sets of hands around. As we grow, our businesses we will be able to effectively put the citizens of Arizona back to work, while increasing our own profits. That has the potential to be a win-win situation.

Sources:
Business Week
Arizona Department of Economic Security

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