Strategies for convincing a company to take you (a temp) on permanently

Mr. brown has been temping at a biotech for a year and a half now. He is a designer and biotech facilities drawing manager with much experience in these fields. They really like him there, and have been giving him increasingly greater duties and responsibilities, and he has been doing a bang-up job for them. However, they’re doing the typical thing about taking him on permanently: making vague promises about next year, not following through on such promises, etc. Mr. brown says it’s a case of “why buy a cow when milk is so cheap?”

Who knows some good approaches for lighting a fire under management to cause them to actually hire someone without having such an endeavour backfire?

Handing in your two-week notice, giving the reason that you’ve “accepted full-time employment elsewere” can work wonders, but if they call your bluff you’re in a heap of shit.

Other than that, not much I’m afraid. Companies can pretty much pick & choose their employees these days. It’s not 1998 anymore.

How about making it clear that he likes them as much as they like him, but he is actively looking for other more stable employment even though he wishes he didn’t have to? Probably unwise to simply had in your notice in the hope that it will get a rise out of them.

Canadjun give some good advice. I am an HR person and someone who has successfully been hired from temp to perm a couple times.

One strategy that may work is to apply to other companies (competitors if there is no legal prohibition) that are closely related to the company he’s with. If he’s a temp through an agency, the company he’s working for now most likely has to pay the temp agency a pretty hefty fee if they hire him. Another company could hire him into a similar job and not have to pay that fee. They may well recognize that as a good deal.

Another piece of advice is to make sure he understands the protocol to apply for regular jobs. If he’s placed by an agency, he probably isn’t free to apply for permanent jobs where they’ve placed him–the agency would handle the conversion and take the fee mentioned above. However, if he’s a direct-hire temp by the company he works for, he is probably free to apply for any regular job openings they have posted. Submitting a polished resume and cover letter for those could work in his favor.

Best of luck!

Is it a big firm? Keep in mind that it can take months or years of negotiations in a big firm to get a headcount increase. His boss may have every desire to hire him. His boss’s boss might think this is a great idea. And yet their boss keeps saying “maybe next year, I can’t justify the headcount increase this year.” Or where there is headcount, they put it somewhere else, after all, they already have the contractor expense justified for your husbands role.

Because of this, just giving notice is a BAD idea. Because they will call your bluff, they can’t move that quickly.

Brainiac4 (my husband) just spent something like two years converting a contractor to a full time employee. He’d worked with her before, brought her in specifically, believed he’d have headcount to convert her within a few months, and spent two years justifying it. She is also a good friend of his, so he was motivated by more than just “she does a good job.” At one point he had it justified, but HR “valued” it at a significantly lower salary and they had to go back at start over.