Tuesday, October 26, 2010

ASA Staffing Index Holds Steady at 100 for 4th Wk.


"During the week of Oct. 11–17, 2010, temporary and contract employment increased 0.45%, maintaining the ASA Staffing Index at a value of 100. At a current index value of 100, U.S. staffing employment is 45% higher than the level reported for the first week of the current year and is 20% higher than the same weekly period in 2009."

From the monthly report:

"Staffing employment in October is 20% higher than in the same month last year, according to the ASA Staffing Index. The index for October is 100, up four points from 96 for September, suggesting that staffing employment has increased about 4% over the past month."

From an ASA Backgrounder

"Jobs, flexibility, a bridge to permanent employment, alternative employment arrangements, training—these are the benefits staffing firms offer today's workers. Work force flexibility and access to talent—these are the benefits staffing firms bring to businesses. Jobs, labor market flexibility, efficient bridging to permanent jobs, and training—these are the benefits the industry brings to the economy." 

MP: The ASA Staffing Index has remained at a level of 100 for the last four weeks, which is the first time since April-May 2008, almost 2 and a half years ago, of four consecutive weeks at 100 for the nation's key barometer of the demand for contract, temporary and freelance employment.  As a leading indicator of nonfarm employment, the ongoing improvements in temporary help signal future gains in permanent employment opportunities.  

3 Comments:

At 10/27/2010 9:49 AM, Blogger Buddy R Pacifico said...

If the Staffing Index can stay at the 100 level through December then 2011 will be much better then expected.

 
At 10/27/2010 1:53 PM, Blogger juandos said...

Hey Buddy, consider this bit from a site called Economic Policies for the 21st Century:

ObamaCare's Symptoms Include A Prolonged Recession

 
At 10/28/2010 2:38 AM, Blogger sethstorm said...

I'd like to know how the ASA is willing to stand on the side of the working individuals in these suboptimal arrangements, versus siding with regulation-dodging businesses. The only answer I'd get from them is a few crickets chirping.

Tearing the ASA's own words apart:

Jobs, flexibility, a bridge to permanent employment, alternative employment arrangements, training—these are the benefits staffing firms offer today's workers.

The flexibility is a business-side benefit, not a worker-side benefit. Alternative employment arrangements are a bit less so, but generally hand over more risk for less pay. As for the training, it's electronic only, worth less than a permanent employee's highly focused training. Temporary work subtracts from the worker in the greater scale.


Work force flexibility and access to talent—these are the benefits staffing firms bring to businesses.

The only truthful claim they really have, but not for their reason. That flexibility is a business-side benefit for its ability to lord over the greater amount of people. The staffing agency helps by being more sympathetic to business by putting the screws to the temporary worker, even when the business is at fault. The only thing they have access to (on the large scale) are desperate people in a bad position to negotiate.


Jobs, labor market flexibility, efficient bridging to permanent jobs, and training—these are the benefits the industry brings to the economy.

Labor market flexibility really means the ability to lord over a person at the worst possible time. The more efficient bridge to employment is to simply offer permanent work. Of course, that would mean a business would be unable to relieve stress by firing a temp and asking for the staffing agency to act on the person as well. They couldn't string someone on for infinite time without there being a more permanent arrangement.


The few people that may be favorably served by temporary arrangements are those who have the ability to easily get permanent work. The majority end up dealing with less choice, and arrangements that are only voluntary by technicality. What good is this choice if it's simply the ability to jump over to the fire faster from the frying pan?

 

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