Regional Network Interview Puts a Spotlight on the DC-Area Jobs Market

November 18th, 2020

Recently, Beacon Hill Associates Regional Director Kristen Johnson was featured in an interview focused on the hiring market in the D.C. metro area. With over a decade of industry expertise, Ms. Johnson spoke to hiring trends, including the rise in contract employment. The segment was originally aired on the 31st of October on WTOP, a Washington, D.C.-based regional news radio station. Jeff Clabaugh hosted the interview and published an accompanying article.

For the full recording of the radio interview, click here.

Below is the complete article:

Beacon Hill’s niche brands provide direct hire, executive search, contract staffing, contract consulting, contract-to-hire, and MSP/VMS and RPO solutions to emerging growth companies and the Fortune 500 across multiple market sectors and all industries. In 2019, Beacon Hill closed the year with revenues approaching $600 million. Over time, office locations, specialty practice areas and service offerings will be added to address ever-changing constituent needs.

Demand in DC for temp workers soars — ‘It’s a great foot in the door’

U.S. companies have eliminated millions of full-time positions since the COVID-19 pandemic began. And while the economy has gained or regained millions of jobs in recent months, more companies are choosing to fill positions with temporary employees from professional staffing firms.

A recent report from research firm Gartner found that 32% of companies are shifting a portion of their workforce from full-time employees to contingent workers. They need the staff, but it significantly reduces overhead.

“We take care of benefits, sick leave, taxes, payroll, all of those things that usually employers are responsible for for their permanent employees,” Kristen Johnson, at the D.C. office of staffing for Beacon Hill Associates, told WTOP.

Demand for professional temp workers in the D.C. region has been broad this year.

“We’re seeing a lot of movement in HR. A lot more companies are hiring executive and administrative assistants. We’ve seen a lot in the digital marketing space. In terms of tech, a lot of cleared work for government clients and a lot of cybersecurity,” Johnson said.

Demand is high for temp workers in D.C. in legal, finance and accounting.

The American Staffing Association estimates that more than 3 million Americans are currently working for staffing companies. Staffing Industry Analysts reports that staffing agencies added more than 100,000 jobs across the country in June, July and August.

For D.C.-area professionals with in-demand skills, temp work can be a good bridge.

“If you work with a staffing firm, your resumé gets to the top of the list because we are sending them directly to human resources or our hiring contacts. I think also, it is a great foot in the door. I can’t tell you how many times a client has ended up extending the contract and then making the candidate a permanent employee,” Johnson said.

Like many full-time jobs, many temporary positions have shifted to remote working this year.

An estimated 2% of the contingent workforce worked remotely in 2019. That has increased to 50% this year, and is expected to stay around 20% even after the pandemic ends.