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View Full Version : staffing agency- is there such thing as a verbal contract?


Lisa_M
08-01-2009, 10:19 AM
DH applied for a bunch of jobs and I told him about this company to look up, although he forgot to do that. So a staffing agency calls him, one that he applied to, and tells him about a position and the company and asks him if he has heard of them. He says No. However it's the company I told him about. So I look the company up online for DH and find the position listed on the website. I told DH apply to the main company and forget about the staffing agency.

He is concerned that he has an obligation to this staffing agency now, since he told the guy he didnt' hear of them before, even though he did. So my question is, does he have an obligation to them? There was no contract signed or discussion of any contract. What do you think?

branv
08-01-2009, 10:31 AM
Well every state has different employment laws, etc, but I've worked for a staffing company and for a corporations HR and, at least in Texas, no your DH does not have a "verbal contract" and is welcome to pursue jobs at that company.

However.

Few companies do on a regular basis what is called "direct hire" through a staffing agency (i.e. the agency is used to find someone for the company to flat out hire) -- this is usually only reserved for executive or especially hard-to-fill positions. So what they are likely calling him about is a contract position. This would be a temp or temp-to-hire position and he cannot get this kind of work by going directly to the company. That's why they use the staffing company, b/c they don't want to hire someone themselves for what may be a short-term position (or they prefer to test someone out for a while with the ability to quickly fire them without any excuses, without having to pay benefits, severance, etc as they are not their employer..the staffing company is).

So if your DH calls the company directly about the position, and it's not one they are actually hiring for...just contract staffing for...they will either deny it exists or refer him back to the staffing agency. And if the staffing agency hears about it, there's a good chance they'll be ticked off and won't want anything to do with your DH for trying to go around them.

But if it's a direct hire position, he's welcome to do what he wants. Though it's not precisely ethical since, regardless if you already told him about the company, he obviously woudn't have done anything about it. It took the staffing agency to give him info for that to happen. And they may actually be a good tool because not only will they hand over his resume directly rather than it randomly going into what is likely a database, they can be used for negotiation of salary/benefits (esp. if their rate is by salary percentage). Besides, the hiring company pays their fee, not you.

meriface11
08-01-2009, 10:49 AM
I am not sure I understand the issue here. If the staffing agency contacted your husband about a position with a company and your husband also applies directly, the conflict would be between the company and the staffing agency, not the staffing agency and your husband. if the agency submits your husband to the company, regardless of the fact that he might apply directly, if they hire your husband, the company might have to pay the staffing agency the fee regardless. the job applicant doesn't usually pay a fee to the staffing agency.

jedijill
08-01-2009, 11:45 AM
Well every state has different employment laws, etc, but I've worked for a staffing company and for a corporations HR and, at least in Texas, no your DH does not have a "verbal contract" and is welcome to pursue jobs at that company.

However.

Few companies do on a regular basis what is called "direct hire" through a staffing agency (i.e. the agency is used to find someone for the company to flat out hire) -- this is usually only reserved for executive or especially hard-to-fill positions. So what they are likely calling him about is a contract position. This would be a temp or temp-to-hire position and he cannot get this kind of work by going directly to the company. That's why they use the staffing company, b/c they don't want to hire someone themselves for what may be a short-term position (or they prefer to test someone out for a while with the ability to quickly fire them without any excuses, without having to pay benefits, severance, etc as they are not their employer..the staffing company is).

So if your DH calls the company directly about the position, and it's not one they are actually hiring for...just contract staffing for...they will either deny it exists or refer him back to the staffing agency. And if the staffing agency hears about it, there's a good chance they'll be ticked off and won't want anything to do with your DH for trying to go around them.

But if it's a direct hire position, he's welcome to do what he wants. Though it's not precisely ethical since, regardless if you already told him about the company, he obviously woudn't have done anything about it. It took the staffing agency to give him info for that to happen. And they may actually be a good tool because not only will they hand over his resume directly rather than it randomly going into what is likely a database, they can be used for negotiation of salary/benefits (esp. if their rate is by salary percentage). Besides, the hiring company pays their fee, not you.

As a hiring manager, I agree 100%. :)

Jill in CO

Lisa_M
08-01-2009, 12:41 PM
Do people actually get hired when working for an agency initially? I worked for one for 2 years at the same client, but they wouldn't hire me because of the benefits.

If he got laid off from the staffing agency, would they be required to pay unemployment?

Avonlady1001
08-01-2009, 02:43 PM
Do people actually get hired when working for an agency initially? I worked for one for 2 years at the same client, but they wouldn't hire me because of the benefits.

If he got laid off from the staffing agency, would they be required to pay unemployment?

I did. I "temped" at the same company for 8mths when they hired me FT. They had to pay a fee to the agency, but they did hire me...I even got a raise! :)

jedijill
08-01-2009, 04:26 PM
Do people actually get hired when working for an agency initially? I worked for one for 2 years at the same client, but they wouldn't hire me because of the benefits.

If he got laid off from the staffing agency, would they be required to pay unemployment?

I actually prefer to hire from staffing agencies. We call it our "try before we buy". I work in technology and a lot of folks know how to put all the right buzzwords on their resumes but it takes a bit of time to know if they really know what they are talking about and can perform under the unique pressures operations brings. I can weed folks out when they are contractors but I'm pretty much stuck when they are permanent.

Just think...working through a contracting company also helps you decide if a company is a good fit for you. It can be beneficial from both sides.

HTH

Jill in CO

tapplebapple
08-01-2009, 07:43 PM
I don't know if the laws are different in each state for unemployment, but in Massachusetts if you are employed through a staffing agency and are laid off - you are then eligible for unemployment.

One other advantage of using a staffing agency is that many times they work with and have a relationship directly with the hiring manager. Often times jobs advertised through a company website have resumes funneled through HR as a first step. Having your resume go directly to the hiring manager can be an advantage.

bumbershoot
08-02-2009, 01:21 AM
He's not obligated. If I were him I would apply directly with the company and think nothing more about the agency.

trip
08-02-2009, 12:50 PM
Was the staffing agency going to submit his resume? My DH does contracting work and has seen a worker not be considered if his resume comes from 2 different sources (2 agencies and/or self). Sometimes companies don't want to be bothered with who "owns" the applicant.

Lisa_M
08-02-2009, 02:55 PM
Was the staffing agency going to submit his resume? My DH does contracting work and has seen a worker not be considered if his resume comes from 2 different sources (2 agencies and/or self). Sometimes companies don't want to be bothered with who "owns" the applicant.


He's just going to leave it be. I think the staffing agency is going to submit his resume. I don't think DH really realized how agencies work, but he doesn't want to burn bridges with this potential employer, so hopefully this will turn into full time employment but a wage increase over what he makes now. *fingers crossed*

Ava
08-02-2009, 05:06 PM
Do people actually get hired when working for an agency initially? I worked for one for 2 years at the same client, but they wouldn't hire me because of the benefits.

If he got laid off from the staffing agency, would they be required to pay unemployment?
I worked through a staffing agency for the same client for 18 months and they wouldn't hire me. I wanted to find a position that would lead to permanent work, but the staffing agency I was working for wasn't finding me anything. So I went to a different staffing agency who found me a position; I temped there for a total of 6 months, during which I was moved into a higher position and then hired on permanently a month later.

So yes, you can get permanent work through a staffing agency. It just depends on the client and what they ultimately want.

To the OP, I would recommend your DH go through the agency. A lot of companies advertise positions on their website just to fulfill legal requirements (equal opportunity employment, etc.) but they end up filling the position through an agency or promoting from within. Good luck to your DH!

PinkRhombus
08-02-2009, 09:34 PM
I worked through staffing agencies for quite a while, and helped hire people from staffing agencies for the companies I worked for.

If the company gets an employee through a temp agency, they have the option to hire permanently them after a certain period with no additional fee. They may also opt to just pay a finders fee to the agency.

I don't recall there ever being anything said that I could not apply for a position on my own with the same company I was at. But I think it would be underhanded to go behind their back after they sent you on an interview for that same position though. Wouldn't want to give that type of impression.