Nextaff Talent Blog

5 Smart Ways To Ace Temp Job Interview Questions

Posted July 15, 2019

Most people interviewing for temp jobs know the positions are temporary, but fail to see the importance of preparing differently. And that's where the rain starts beating potential candidates. Why?

What an employer or a staffing agency is looking for in a temp employee can be extremely different from a permanent one. In fact, most employers have separate criteria that a successful candidate must fulfill.

Generally, temp jobs are more transactional. A company or an organization is looking for someone to work on a project or fill a certain position for a specific time. Demonstrating that you're the perfect fit can make a huge difference between getting an offer and being turned down.

 So, apart from other ways of surviving interviews, here are five tips that can make you stand out from other temp job seekers.

Know What Recruiters Want

When interviewing for a permanent position, hiring managers want to make sure you're an excellent hire for the position and the company's culture. That means, they're already thinking about your long-term career plan, objectives, passion, and more. But that's not the case with temp jobs.

Temporary positions are short term, so hiring managers tend to focus on your ability to complete specific tasks and how quickly you can adapt. So, there's no need to share your ambitions to become the CEO, head of department, or entrepreneur.  

Concentrate On Your Skills

During the interview, focus on the skills and experience needed for the required position, not passion. The best way to show this is to use very specific examples.  

For instance, if you're interviewing for bookkeeping, and recruiters ask about reconciliation, don't just say you've done it before. Hiring managers want to know specifics, like how, when, where, how many times, and for how long.

Be Prepared To Start Immediately

The recruitment process for a permanent job can take several weeks or months to unfold. But for a temp job, it often moves at a very quick pace.

Employers looking for temp workers usually have a pressing need, so be ready to move fast. It is not uncommon to be interviewed in the morning, get an offer in the afternoon, and start work the next day.

Don't Request For A Permanent Job

Although you may prefer a full-time job, there's no need to bring it up during the interview. The hiring managers are interested in temp workers who can remain committed for as long as needed.

Therefore, be careful how you answer long-range questions. For example, if you are asked if you might be interested in a permanent position should an opportunity open up, you can say something along the lines of:

"Yes, but right now I want to concentrate on really honing my skills, and this role gives me that opportunity."

Remember, you can find ways to turn that temp job into a permanent one once you are hired, so focus on getting on-board.

Discuss Salary Beforehand

Once an offer is made, there is little to no room to negotiate salary with temp jobs. Therefore, discuss your salary with the staffing agency before the interview.  Keep in mind that you will be paid by the recruiting company or agency.

There are significant differences between permanent and temporary jobs, and it starts with the interview. If you don't prepare adequately, you could miss out on a great opportunity. For more helpful job and interview tips check out our talent blog or contact us!

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Categories: Interview, Interview Tips, Temporary Staffing Agency, Local Staffing Office, resume, job hunting, career, job, job search