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Temp vs. Permanent Workers - What Legal Employers Must Know

Posted on May 09, 2019 by Law Dawgs | For Employers
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Most everything in life has good aspects and bad. Temporary and permanent employees are no exception. The reality is that both types of professionals have the potential to boost the business of a law firm and/or corporate legal department. However, the converse holds true – there are times when hiring either a temp or permanent employee might be unfavorable. It’s critical, therefore, for legal employers to know the good and bad associated with each so that they can make the right decision for their business.

The Pros and Cons of Temporary Employees

There are two oft cited benefits for temporary legal employees. These are that temps:

  • Provide a firm or company with flexibility; and,
  • Offer the same a “good look” at a candidate before bringing him/her on full time.

The flexibility element lies in the fact that sometimes an employer will experience surges in new business, or, upswings in certain existing cases. For example, a law firm may have a long-time client that wants a new large-sized project completed. In these instances, temporary employees allow a company to bring in a group of workers for only the limited time it takes to complete a task or meet rising levels of new work. Once these are achieved, the temps’ period of employment ceases.

As to the second benefit above, a temporary worker allows a firm to take a good look at a professional before deciding to bring him/her on a full-time basis. This saves the time and expense of having to hire and fire multiple candidates before the ideal one is found. These saviors may also help fuel efficiency.

The number one con of hiring a temp relates to when an employer might have many instances to bring on temporary employees. In these situations, a law firm or company will have to spend much time in training these workers. Several training periods over a short amount of time will translate into a loss of productivity and an increase in expense.

The Pros and Cons of Permanent Employees

The two main benefits with a permanent workforce are that it:

  • Saves time in training; and,
  • Provides opportunities for growth.

A good permanent legal employee only needs one, or a few, sets of training. With less training needed, this employee can spend more time at actually getter better and more efficient at his or her job. The result here is that the employee will be an all-around better worker that can actually help a firm or company grow its business – as opposed to merely meeting demands.

The primary disadvantage to a permanent legal professional relates to work levels. An entity may bring a full-time professional onboard, but it soon may find that it doesn’t have enough work to keep the person busy. This can result in either:

  • A frustrated worker that may decide to leave the nest, or
  • The firm or company having to cut back the worker’s hour or lay the person off.

The problem with the latter is that if it happens a lot, a legal professional may be wary of taking on full-time work with that employer.

Business models and goals are completely different from one employer to another. LAW DAWGS knows this. And, we work with law firms and corporate legal department to find the best and most efficient solutions for their particular situation, needs, and aims.

Both temporary and permanent workers provide great answers to workforce questions. At times, though, they might also cause hiccups in levels of effectiveness. Let’s work together when it comes to deciding between the two options. We’ve been helping businesses just like yours for almost 30 years now. We know a few things about differing work forces. Contact us today and let us help!


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