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Equipment maker Caterpillar, Inc., announced in its third quarter earnings statement that it has added 9,000 people to its “flexible workforce,” according to a recent news release by Staffing Industry Analysts.

This flexible workforce includes Catepillar’s part-time and temporary staff as well as workers brought in from staffing firms. In the release, Catepillar CEO Doug Oberhelman expresses that he is happy to put people back to work and hopes to do more in 2011, but that they are going to continue to keep a watchful eye on cost control due to the slow economic recovery.

This is just one example of a growing trend we have been tracking where companies that need extra help are turning to temporary/contract staffing over direct-hires as the economy remains uncertain.

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