Recession –Accessing the Temporary Workforce

For Hire

With gasoline at an all-time high, warehousing stockpiling and inflation rising, hiring new employees may be needed yet could be risky long term. Let’s talk about accessing the temporary workforce.

Contract workers come in all forms and segments/niches of the markets; various levels of experience will dictate the range of pricing. Finding the correct person for the job means someone who will thrive in your company culture.

As ultraHealth Agency is a staffing and recruiting company, I am asked all the time about temporary workers: their cost, commitment, and quality. Although every business need is unique there are some basics to consider in assigning a contract:

Cost: about 1.5 their hourly salary. If that person is making $100 an hour as a temporary employee, you will be paying the agency $167 per hour on the contract. There may be overtime, shift differentials, as well as other costs. Weighing these costs against hiring a full-time employee is suggested. The true benefit of cost is most agencies are taking care of their insurance and benefits. If the work starts to slow down, you will let people go, often with compensation. There is also an emotional business cost to laying people off.

Term: The average contract is 13 weeks. Contracts for less than a month can be tough. Although contractors may not be looking for long-term stability, securing contracts in general can be a tedious task. Six months is normally the maximum timeframe for a temporary contract. The idea is to have the temporary person come in and accomplish the job. You will get a chance to see how they fit within the organization. If it is mutually beneficial to extend the terms, then it’s a good match. On the other hand, If things slow down and you don’t need the worker any longer, there is nothing wrong with letting the contract expire. The cost benefit analysis can be done before the contractor comes into work.

Quality: The way to get the most qualified talent is to think about the exact person needed for the job. It also pays to determine what the contractor needs to accomplish. It would help if the client gives the personality traits they desire such as an upbeat person or a quiet worker with a serious demeanor – whatever is the best culture fit. The key to finding quality is knowing what will make this particular person successful.

After the pandemic, companies went on a hiring spree as. They faced low unemployment and fewer candidates. It is always good to have options, and none of us can predict the future.

Working from Home isn’t for Everyone

ultrahealth agency

Elon Musk shocked the TESLA employees working remotely when he recently stated, “…The more senior you are, the more visible must be your presence.” He was requesting that employees come back to the office. COVID-19 had everyone rethinking work, health, and the work-life balance as they were forced to work remotely. Now that things are getting back to normal, the executive demand for employees to return in person has increased.

Musk decried that some people were “phoning it in” across the working remote spectrum, no doubt some people are. Let’s skip the fact that working remotely isn’t for everyone. Certain home environments are simply not conducive to it.

Not everyone can concentrate at home. Certain environments are distracting and bothersome. Some people lose focus on their tasks and have a difficult time with deadlines. Some need a manager looking over their shoulder.

There is also the question of leadership. Can a good work culture be established remotely? For every company is it different. There are organizations that strive for creativity and collaboration while other companies need autonomy and have heavy demands on deliverables.

The hybrid work remote culture is an asset for some organizations: it allows employees to have a proper work life balance and maximizes their capabilities. For others, it is a detriment when employees are not at their best and projects are not completed. Musk is the CEO of his organization; and if he wants employees in the office rather than home, it is his prerogative. It is also the choice of said employees to find positions in companies that match their life goals and meet their preferred work-life balance.


Dane Flanigan

ultraHeath Agency

Who Are the Best Employees?

Often, we miss out or error in misclassifying good workers; sometimes we let them leave or fail to recognize their true value. Employee retention is a company’s secondary goal.

They like their work. If people like their work, they are comfortable in their environment and willing to perform the necessary tasks to get things done. If they love their work, they will excel and take on challenges to improve their skill set.

They are responsible. Dependability is the number one asset. A good employee is responsible for their work and when asked to get something done, rest assured those tasks are accomplished. One could be the best computer programmer or top-notch surgeon, but if they are late for deadlines or surgeries, they quickly become categorized as bad apples.

They believe in the company.  It is the teenager who takes a job at the local movie theatre, just because it is their favorite place to watch a film. They believe in the theatre, the seating, the popcorn and they become a part of helping the business run. They are also there to help patrons and provide a pleasant movie going experience as well.

They grow. They learn, they give back, making the organization better; they enjoy their time, and they are compensated for their work. Work is a part of the journey. Successful companies are on that journey, and they cultivate, help and compensate good employees on their adventure.

By Dane Flanigan

Workforce Shortage or Labor Movement

The industrial revolution was a movement from making goods by hand to making them by machine. Since  the early 2000’s, Asia has become a dominant player in manufacturing consumer based goods many of those jobs in the US have transitioned as we are moving to more robotic manufacturing.

As a recruiter for both contract and permanent positions, I see the workforce changing not only in healthcare but also in hospitality, entertainment, technology, and finance – even retail. The pandemic created a call to action to focus on our health, combat COVID-19, and change our lives.

The other day in Target one early morning, a number of shoppers were directed to the self-checkout counter. Even our favorite local restaurants require a wait, not for a table or section but so the servers have time to attend to their tables. They too are starting to implement self-serve ordering systems as many fast casual restaurants have always done. In 2019, several labor groups worked to limit self-checkout counters at grocery stores as there was the fear that they would displace the need for labor. Now there is a shortage of labor.

At the ultraHealth Agency, we see the clinical nurse who now wants to travel to different medical facilities. A friend or spouse may one day decide they hate their job – has always hated their job – and it’s time to leave. Then there is the co-worker who opted for the company with a remote position. In 2021,  2.4 million Americans retired early; the remaining US workforce is still active. So why is there a labor shortage?

Could it be that life is too short: maybe it this is the adage we need to do what we love. Could it be with the reduced workforce, employees saw opportunities with other companies or industries. Could it be about compensation?

For everyone it’s different: it could be the location and moving from urbanization to the suburbs or different states or even countries. It all makes a difference as to why the labor markets are being redefined. It’ not a shortage: it’s a change.

The workforce didn’t disappear; it has simply shifted much like it shifted in the late 1700’s. It is a shifting in the workforce  but not a shortage.

Start Hiring for Diversity

Photo by Andrew Harnik

Recruiting for the Best Candidates

There have been a lot of praises and eyebrow raises for President Biden stating that he wants to nominate a black woman for the Supreme Court corporate America should be mimicking his diversity.

When you examine President Biden’s selection of positions, he has done a terrific job at diversifying the staff in his administration. Organizations should look to copy the same attributes when finding a range of people to work within their companies.

At times, we hire people we are comfortable with. It’s not malicious, it can be and America’s inhuman history of colonization, slavery , segregation and racism, we cannot ignore the past. In order to shape the future with the best people, executive leadership must move outside the comfort zone, and that is not always easy. We tend to pick people who are like us, come from the same background, or share some of the same qualities. It does make it easier, but you don’t always get the best people.

A diversity hire is not just defined by race; diversity hiring goes beyond race it is religion, age, sex identification, geography, schooling, and physical abilities all make people unique, and these qualities allow for a more diversified employee workforce and a richer company culture.

Now is the time to change our hiring practices and start to look at individuals who can make our business better. With hybrid and remote work environments, we can relieve social pressures and focus on the work and how well the person performs in their role.

The more we allow ourselves to get away from the norm and our comfort zones, the truly better we become equipped at hiring the best person for the job.


Dane Flanigan CEO

ultraHealth Agency