What to do with a temporary worker on their first day

Getting a temporary worker up to speed at their new assignment should be the main priority for supervisors

The first day on the job can be stressful for any employee, but even more so for temporary workers. Since these employees are often working for a short period of time, you may feel as though there is no need for them to go through an orientation/training, like a regular, permanent employee would. And while this is partly true, there is still vital information that should be shared with temporary workers on their first day on the job, so that they can be successful on their assignment.

As a supervisor, there are a few steps you can take to make sure the first day goes smoothly.

  1. Make sure all the paperwork is completed ahead of time. Valuable work time shouldn’t be wasted filling out lengthy applications and tax paperwork. If the temporary employee came to your organization through a temp agency, this should have been taken care of ahead of time. Some time may be spent the first day getting a parking pass or ID badge, but it should be minimal.
  2. Have everything the temporary worker will need set up. There probably is going to be some sort of workspace, computer logins, an email address to set up, as well as access to necessary databases/programs. Your company’s IT department will be helpful in getting all of this setup for the temp. You don’t want the first day to be a waste because they are unable to start working because of technology issues.
  3. Prep your employees who will be working alongside the temporary worker. Clearly explain why you have a temp coming in and what they will be working on. Ask that they be available to the temporary worker to answer any questions/concerns they may have.
  4. Provide a detailed orientation. Show the temporary worker around the office. Include the copy/mail room, restrooms, lunch rooms, parking lots, etc. Additionally, be sure to inform them of safety measures such as, the location of a fire extinguisher, first aid kit, and where the meeting location is in case of a fire or other emergency.
  5. During the tour, introduce the temporary worker to employees who work within the same department. It’s a nice way to make the temp feel welcome, even if they will only be working for you for a short period of time.
  6. Be sure to thoroughly train the temporary worker on their assigned tasks. While they are capable of doing the job, there are most likely specialized steps, materials, software, or SOPs that your company follows that will be new to the temp. If you have a handbook or manuals available, provide those for the temp to reference as they get up to speed on their tasks.
  7. Check in with the temporary worker throughout the day. Remember they may be nervous or shy and may not want to bother you.

Temporary workers can be a great resource for your company to fill in during heavy workload times, cover for vacations/illnesses, or work on special projects. Getting them to feel comfortable and confident in their role quickly will increase their productivity and the value they have to your organization. And isn’t that why you hired them in the first place? If your company has been thinking about adding temporary workers, contact Key Resource Group today and we can develop a staffing solution that will work for you.