How interim placements can be advantageous for businesses and candidates
Organisational restructuring? Leadership maternity cover? Unexpected resignation? There are many reasons why interim placements may be the right choice for a business but they all have one thing in common – a leadership role has become vacant and needs to be urgently filled to ensure continuity and the smooth running of your business.
Why would a short-term role be right for candidates? Flexibility, experience, the expansion of skillsets and networking are amongst just a few of the advantages of being placed in an interim role. Interim placements can be advantageous to both businesses and candidates, as long as they are handled successfully at the recruitment stage.
What’s the difference between interim placements and temporary jobs?
Temporary workers are usually paid an hourly rate and are employed by a temp agency rather than the employer themselves. Generally, temporary workers don’t receive the same benefits as their permanent colleagues.
Interim placements are for executive roles when a team or project needs to be immediately managed. They are temporary roles but tend to require expertise. The difference between an interim and a contractor is the interim’s role in leading and managing a team.
Why interim staff may be needed
There are a raft of reasons why interim placements may be necessary – some planned, some rather more unexpected.
You may need to quickly fill the position of a member of staff who has resigned or been dismissed. You may need to cover maternity, sick leave, or a sabbatical. Sometimes it is to do with business restructuring, a merger or acquisition.
You may have a specific issue to address, fix or improve, a short-term goal that needs a certain skill such as digital technology onboarding or a project with an unusual remit.
It may be that you can’t find a permanent hire fast enough but need to fill a role in the short term while the right candidate is found.
Increasingly, businesses are choosing to hire interim executives with a specific set of skills and niche expertise to solve a problem or lead a set project. It enables them to address a temporary skills shortage without the expense of taking on a permanent member of staff.
The benefits to businesses of high-level interim staff
There are many benefits to recruiting an interim leadership role rather than a permanent one, dependent on the reasons for the need to hire one.
Time to hire speed
Interim staff can be recruited in a short amount of time and have the skills to hit the ground running, enabling you to immediately fill a leadership gap or start tackling a challenge instantly and see results quickly.
Interim placements offer flexible contract times, meaning you can hire them for as long as needed without the commitment of a permanent hire. When a project needs a specific skillset or a leadership role needs to be filled in haste, businesses can quickly hire interim staff to cover those needs. In a world where change is now, the norm and businesses need to adapt quickly, flexibility is key to continued success.
Permanent hires are costly and it can be a time-consuming process to get it right. Utilising interim staff as part of your recruitment strategy means that you can add skilled staff when you need them on a short term basis, effectively only paying for what the business needs at the time.
Bringing someone in from outside the business – especially someone who has worked in a variety of different organisations – can bring a fresh perspective and new ideas to a project and invigorate a team.
Why choose an interim role?
Mid/Senior Management and Executive interim roles fit those with great leadership and communication skills who are experts in their field. If you can step into a situation and immediately understand the needs of the business, the project and the team and are seeking career flexibility then an interim placement could be for you.
Expand your skillset
One of the most important skills in the workplace today is adaptability and interim placements can increase your ability to adapt and be agile.
Working in different environments, with diverse teams and learning how different businesses work gives you fantastic experience and increases your value. It’s also a great way to find out more about yourself at work – your strengths, weaknesses and what you want to work on.
If you are looking to move into a permanent role in the future it will help both to narrow down what you really want and to network. Many permanent jobs have been offered as a direct result of an interim placement or further down the line by those you’ve previously worked with.
Often interim staff will be brought in to work on a specific project or tackle certain challenges and will expect results quickly. Some might find this stressful but it can be both exciting and incredibly rewarding, allowing you to have a real impact on a business.
The pandemic has taught us all the true value of business agility. Interim placements allow businesses to react quickly to circumstances and ensure continuity of leadership to keep teams and projects cohesive. If a permanent hire is needed, it allows time to find the right person for the job.
For candidates, interim placements allow flexibility and the ability to take on different projects and challenges whilst continuing to receive the benefits that permanent members of staff do. As part of a flexible workforce, interim placements can be incredibly valuable.