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The title “Weak Outlook for New Hiring” doesn’t sound very optimistic, but a recent Wall Street Journal article by that name does offer a glimmer of hope. While many large employers are still reporting low staffing levels, mostly due to weak consumer spending, the article notes that temporary/contract staffing firms are starting to see growth. This is a very good sign because temporary staffing usually does pick up before permanent hiring resumes.

It also means that this is the perfect time for recruiters to mine some contract placements. Companies may want to hire but are nervous because they don’t know what is going to happen with the economy. You can suggest contracting as a way to bolster their staffs without making the direct-hire commitment.

And with any luck, this surge in temporary/contract staffing will be a harbinger for the return of perm hiring!

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