the role of staffing organisations
The recruitment industry plays a crucial role in the economy. It enables businesses and public sector organisations to secure the skills, operational flexibility and higher productivity needed to adapt to an economy in transformation and deliver higher quality services.
A 2016 study by KPMG for the Department of Employment found that 15% of vacancies in Australia are filled by recruitment organisations, which help both employers and candidates seeking either permanent or temporary work. They can also provide fully outsourced employment solutions for contact centres and production facilities. Many organisations use recruiting partners to help them overcome growing skills shortages and make the most of evolving approaches to the sourcing and selection of candidates, including social media and new forms of profiling and screening.
The recruitment industry’s knowledge of both sides of the labour market – candidates and employers – provides dynamic intermediation by:
• helping employers manage fluctuations in demand
• helping to match the right people with the right organisations
• helping workers move to more rewarding and fulfilling positions.
From an economic perspective, on-hire workers can provide a ‘shock absorber’ during a downturn by enhancing flexibility and opportunity within the labour market. When the economy begins to recover, the availability of on-hire workers enables businesses to quickly respond to rising demand and strengthen overall growth. The valuable role played by the recruitment industry includes providing a ‘stepping stone’ into the labour market for unemployed people, young people coming out of education and people returning to work after a gap.
On-hire workers, who can be identified by using an agency, are a simple solution to fill temporary gaps, such as maternity or paternity leave, sickness, or when a particular project requires more hands on deck. They are also a lower-risk option for employers in times of economic uncertainty and tend to be highly focused and results-oriented.
The on-hire employee services industry includes businesses that employ workers and provide a service to other organisations (host organisations). The host organisation pays the on-hire business a fee for providing on-hire employees to work for them. Therefore, on-hire employees are not employees of the host organisation. However, the host organisation has obligations – such as health and safety in the workplace and non-discriminatory practices – which apply to the hired worker just as for any permanent employee.