Outsourcing manpower: temporary or contract - which is better?

Posted on 18/07/2023
High Angle Men Wearing Equipment

Whether you are new to business or year in, staffing will always be a subject you need to consider. Planning your staff makes a significant impact on business outcomes. But how do you know if you need temporary or contract workers?


In this blog post, we will help you understand the differences between temporary and contract work, and then guide you to the right choice.

What is the difference between outsourcing temporary or contract staff?

While temporary and contract staff fill short-term vacancies, they are different modes of employment.


Temporary staff are usually outsourced via a staffing agency (like mselect) to cover shortages, specific projects or seasonal roles. Their temporary employment contracts can serve as full-time, part-time or substitution. The staffing agency (or recruitment management agency) is responsible for pay, taxes, invoices, legal and incidental costs, while staff are regarded as your employees.


Let’s give an example. Imagine you are expanding your FMCG into a new territory. You could invest in a large-scale recruitment drive to fill the vacancies new headquarters and sub-offices will need. Outsourcing your manpower could cut time and costs by providing you with everyone you need quickly and efficiently.


Contract staff, by contrast, are essentially independent contractors (freelancers) who remain self-employed during their time with you. As such they are responsible for their finances, tax and legal requirements, and they often have other clients. They act as partners to your business instead of company employees, so you do not control when or how they work. As a result, they are more likely to be contracted for specific projects or functions that need intermittent work.


Common examples of contract or freelance work would be web design, marketing or IT functions. Something you need expertise in, but not as full-time or part-time positions.

How to work out if you need temporary or contract staff

Understanding a little more about the differences between temporary and contract staff opens the door to deciding which is the best fit for your business.


Here are the three things we recommend you work out to see which staffing solution fits.


  1. Project scope and timeline - Finalising the project scope allows you to see exactly which job functions you will need for the project to be successful. Understanding your timeline will indicate how many people you will need to complete the project.

  2. Job roles - Clarifying job functions allows you to plan for specific job roles. For example, you may have decided that you need a logistic function, but how many staff will you need to optimise the function during your project?

  3. Hours - Once you have job roles, you can estimate hours for each staff member, giving you a clear idea to brief your staffing agent.


If during that time you can see that a freelancer or set of freelancers would work better then you can begin your search.


Otherwise, call your recruitment management agency to get the ball rolling.


Not used manpower outsourcing services before? Read our guide to, “Why outsourcing your staff will help you master your workforce planning.” (LINK when published)

How mselect simplifies outsourcing manpower

We provide end-to-end recruitment management, from sourcing your temporary staff to clerical, financial and legal work. This means no time wasted sifting through CVs or working out payroll or immigration headaches - we do all of that for you!


In offering you a complete outsourced manpower experience we believe we can save you valuable time and money.


While we work in a wide range of industries some of our more popular staffing requests include:

●      Industrial and manufacturing work

●      Maintenance and cleaning contracts

●      Technical support in Oil & Gas

●      Administrative and clerical staff


But you may have other needs we can cater for in our 5,000 strong staff database.


Providing skilled staff efficiently is what we do best, so contact us today with details of your project.

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