Most warehouses and distribution centers are addicted to a reactive approach to temporary staffing. They need labor — now — so they call the staffing agency and request a certain number of workers for the next day.
It’s a quick fix method, and it’s easy to use staffing on this kind of a retail basis. If you need 10 people, place an order. Flip the switch ON tomorrow, and flip it OFF at the end of the week.
But there’s a problem with the traditional approach to temporary staffing. You’re going to the same well whenever you’re in a crisis situation, but the well only reinforces the crisis.
What’s Wrong with the Traditional Temporary Staffing Model?
Most people start their temporary staffing journey in a reactive, crisis situation. And because they believe that’s the only way to do it, they stay reactive and constantly in crisis.
In a traditional staffing solution, you place a request for, say, 10 workers on a Monday. The staffing company goes into their database and randomly notifies perhaps 30 workers, hoping that 10 will show up for work on Tuesday.
The workers arrive at your distribution center the next day, but they don’t know anything about the work, who to report to, what to wear, or what the expectations are. They’re just a random selection of people. More often than not, several of those workers show up, but don’t stay long. They may leave without working, or after working a shift and deciding it wasn’t for them.
On Wednesday, you expect to see the same 10 people from the staffing agency, but only six arrive. Now you’re in crisis mode again, and you go back to the agency and place an order for four more staff. In the meantime, you’ll be paying the remaining six laborers to work overtime today.
If some of those workers don’t like working overtime, they may be a no-show tomorrow. And the four people who come in on Thursday won’t be enough to meet your staffing needs. That means you’re going back to the well again, and paying for more overtime today.
And so on.
Because of this reactive approach to staffing, you’re constantly dealing with absenteeism, high turnover rates, reduced productivity, overtime pay and constant staffing management.
But there’s another way to approach temporary staffing: embedded staffing.
A Better Solution to Temporary Staffing
In the embedded staffing model, an onsite relationship manager is at your distribution center every day. An embedded staffing supplier gives you many immediate and important advantages:
- Real time responsiveness to staffing needs
- Staffing is handled for you
- Reliable workforce with lower turnover rates
- Increased retention and productivity
- Less overtime to be paid
The embedded onsite manager coordinates the scheduling, onboarding, and attendance of your temporary workforce. As needs arise, the relationship manager responds immediately to find the best people for the work, the environment, and your particular expectations.
Here’s how it works.
You give a request to the onsite manager. Perhaps you need 10 people the next day. This manager goes into the staffing database and identifies people who fit the experience and qualifications you’re looking for. The manager then contacts those people and conducts a phone interview with each of them. As part of that call, they provide specific details about the work, the environment, and the expectations. That same day, the workers come down to the warehouse, where the onsite relationship manager walks them through the environment, introduces them to the supervisor, and talks with them about the company.
The onsite preliminary visit gives exposure to the workplace, pre-employment. People get a better understanding of what the work is, what the environment is like, and what the expectations and requirements will be. Everyone knows if it’s not a good fit before the worker shows up the first day.
That means fewer unpleasant surprises, less absenteeism and turnover, and less overtime to pay.
The next day, 10 handpicked qualified workers arrive with proper expectations and greater preparedness. They’re more likely to stay for as long as they’re needed, and they’ll do better work because they’re a better fit for the job.
If one or two of the workers aren’t working quickly enough or aren’t strong enough for the job, you can report it to the onsite relationship manager and trust them to find the best replacement possible, in real time. Because they know your expectations and the work environment, they know how to search for a replacement.
Related reading: Can You Afford To Keep Temporary Wages Low?
The On Time Advantage
On Time Staffing’s managers are close to you and walking in your shoes every day, interacting with you and our employees on a daily basis. That alignment allows us to source better people for you, because we understand your company and your needs better. It also gives us better exposure to our own people, which provides better service to you.
When you have a trusted staffing service who is embedded at your warehouse, you can be agile and proactive to staffing needs the moment they arise. You aren’t stuck in an endless cycle of reactive staffing with an agency that doesn’t know you or invest in the success of your business.
It’s always better to have someone with you every day who can help you to manage your contingent labor, rather than doing it from afar. Trust in On Time Staffing, an Eclipse Advantage company, to be your staffing partner.
Light industrial staffing is all we do. Find Out how On Time Staffing can support your labor needs.