This site uses cookies. If you continue you consent to this but you may change your cookie settings at any time.

Hays Global Skills Index

Join our Social Network

Advice from the Experts

Temp & Contract
Here you will find advice from the experts for both temp and contract roles.


Your consultant

The first thing to consider is that the process moves extremely quickly. Temporary roles are often vacant only for a matter of hours, and working and communicating effectively with your consultant is vital if you want to secure the best assignments.

Your consultant can explain the best way of working together when you meet but as a general guide it is beneficial to speak at least once a week, to respond to messages as quickly as possible wherever you can and to give your consultant a clear idea of the type of work you will consider from the outset. This will speed up the process when opportunities arise even if you cannot be contacted immediately.

Pay rates and salaries

It is important to bear in mind that while temporary assignments often pay a ‘premium’ above the permanent salary for a particular job, the rates of pay associated with a particular assignment are determined by the type and level of work to be carried out. While as an individual you may possess skills and capabilities beyond those required by a specific assignment, the rate of pay on offer will only reflect the skills required by the role in question.

Your consultant will discuss current market conditions and pay rates with you at interview, but it is wise to be as flexible as you can if you want to be working as quickly and as frequently as possible.

Preparing your CV

Ensuring your consultant has up to date information is vital when looking for a temporary job. Our clients will invariably want to know not only your career history, but also what are currently doing, in which business sector and for whom. So keeping your consultant up to date with new skills, systems knowledge and qualifications is critical.

The presentation and content of your CV is something that your Hays temporary consultant will ensure is tailored to finding temporary work. When seeking the right temporary worker, organisations are generally less concerned with aspirations and career plans and tend to focus on technical skills, flexibility, availability and how you will fit in with their existing team.

Attending interviews

Not all temporary positions will require an interview, but many will - particularly those of a long term or more senior nature. While it may be tempting to view the interview as less formal than that associated with a permanent position, competition for temporary posts is no less fierce.

As a result, a little time spent preparing for the interview will always pay off. Tips for success are really no different than those for a permanent position.

Research the organisation

  • What is their nature of business? Who are their competitors?

  • Are they a plc, partnership or a not-for profit organisation?

  • Who are their customers and what are their products and/or services?

Make a memorable first impression

  • Allow plenty of time to get to the relevant address

  • Always wear a business suit regardless of the company’s dress code

  • Smile and shake hands firmly

  • Accept tea, coffee or water if offered

  • Complete any application forms neatly and accurately


  • Strong communication presents a highly positive interview style

  • Speak clearly with authority and confidence but avoid being arrogant

  • Be aware of the speed, volume and pitch of your voice

  • Make regular eye contact and smile!

  • Try to be calm, measured and assured

  • Prepare some sensible questions in advance

  • Think about how you will answer some of the standard questions that might arise e.g. “What are your strengths and weaknesses?”



Find your next job


Save job searches and manage your applications.

Register now

Speak to a consultant

Speak to a recruitment expert at your local Hays office. 

Contact us

Latest Hays Journal