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Temp Agency Woes

Temp Agency Woes

Temp Agency Woes

(OP)
I called up a Temp agency (Just call them PersonPower) and specifically told them that the reason that I was calling was to get a job in the IT department of a major hospital, which hires through their agency.

So, they told me that the hospital had a hiring freeze on, but could I go and work at a local shop who needed a programmer.

So, I go to this local shop... I've been there for 3 months... and they pretty much love me.  Which is great.

They want to hire me.

Now, here's the skinny.

PersonPower is paying me $15 an hour, and charging them about $23 an hour.

I'm not making it on $15 an hour.

The company wants to hire me, and offered me $43K a year to start.

The company then called PersonPower, and PersonPower told them that they wanted OVER $7000 for a buyout!

So, this is putting me in a quandary.  I feel as if the temp agency (btw, I have not *cost* them a dime... I didn't take their insurance, I didn't take any of their training... for 3 months, they have made money off of me)... anyway... I feel that the temp agency is WAY out of line by wanting what works out to about 25% of my annual salary for a "buy out".

Meanwhile, to compound things, the temp agency just recently changed their policies on paid holidays, and expect me to work 1800 hours minimum a year to get holidays (Christmas, New Years day, etc) off with pay.  That, in itself, would be enough to make me tell the temp agency to stuff it... however, if I tell them to stuff it, then go to work for the company that wants to hire me, they could be in breech of their contract with the temp agency.

ARRRRRRRRRRRRRGH!

The temp agency is hosing me from getting a good job... but they're not paying me enough to make ends meet.  WHAT DO I DO?
 

Just my 2¢

"What the captain doesn't realize is that we've secretly replaced his Dilithium Crystals with new Folger's Crystals."

--Greg  http://parallel.tzo.com
 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Greg,

The way I deal with issues such as this is to contact my attorney (which I pay for via my $17 monthly fee to Pre-Paid Legal, Inc. (PPL)). Among other benefits that I receive via PPL is that I can get whatever legal advice I need on any topic. They also will send a (threatening, if necessary) letter to the other party in defense of my position. In each case when I have had my PPL attorney send a threatening letter, the other party as slunk away with their tail between their legs. (Most "other parties" consider themselves in a position of power only until they see that you have an attorney in your corner.)

I highly recommend your obtaining economical legal representation to deal with the agency that seems to be behaving contrary to all other contracting agencies with whom I have ever worked.

santaMufasa
(aka Dave of Sandy, Utah, USA)
[I provide low-cost, remote Database Administration services: www.dasages.com]
"Beware of those that seek to protect you from harm or risk. The cost will be your freedoms and your liberty."

RE: Temp Agency Woes

From what I gather from your post, the temp agency may be talking out of its nether regions anyway.

You were employed on a temporary basis and are paid by them.  They are not and have not provided you with permanent employment.  If you work for a different company (i.e. the one that wants you to start) then the terms and conditions imposed by someone who will then not be your employer are completely irrelevant.

Also, bear in mind that you are negotiating from a position of some strength.  You have a solid job offer, and both your and your prospective employers ultimate sanction is to tell the temp agency that they can have 100% of nothing, if they push things too far.  Does this agency want repeat business from your prospective employer, or are they wearing spurs and a stetson?

A reasonable compromise which my employers reached, was that they paid the agency a fee that was staged, and based on the duration of my stay.  That way they didn't pay the full amount if I went permie and then left after 3 months.

Regards

T

RE: Temp Agency Woes


gbaughma,

Did you sign a contract with them????

If so, what did it say????

I have had several friends burned by these temp agencies in the same way, I like Dave's advice about checking with a local lawyer or even your state's labor relations dept.

$7,000 seems high for a $15 an hour job, most of these I have heard were about $1,000 to $1,500 to get out. Since there is a "get out", sounds like someone signed a contract!!

The company could also put pressure on - if they want that company to ever use that temp agency again....... Depends who is willing to "push" !!

Good luck!!

E.A. Broda
CCNA, CCDA, CCAI, Network +

RE: Temp Agency Woes

It is not his contract with the temp company that is of importance.
 It is the contract that the employer signed when seeking temporary employees. Their contract with the temp agency will state things such as they must give 90 days notice before hiring a temp direct, or must use the temp for 1 year before hiring direct. That is where the 7000 dollars is probably coming is, because that is what your contract is worth to them for you to work another 9 months or whatever the time frame is.

Bo  

Remember,
If the women don't find you handsome,
they should at least find you handy.
 (Red Green) www.redgreen.com
 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

(OP)
Well, I don't have a contract with them.

In fact, as I said previously, the temp agency is ticking me off with their letter that essentially said "You will work 1800 hours a year to get christmas day off with pay."

So... my inclination is to tell them to take a hike anyway.

I just don't want to make trouble for my potential future employer.

 

Just my 2¢

"What the captain doesn't realize is that we've secretly replaced his Dilithium Crystals with new Folger's Crystals."

--Greg  http://parallel.tzo.com
 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Quote (Greg):

I just don't want to make trouble for my potential future employer.
Yes, Greg, the "deal breaker" could be the contractual stipulations between your potential employer and the temp agency. Have an HR rep from your potential employer advise you on how to negotiate the fox holes of their contract so that it is at least a Win-Win for you and the employer, and, if they are well behaved and reasonable, a Win for the temp agency, as well.
Please keep us informed of how things go.

santaMufasa
(aka Dave of Sandy, Utah, USA)
[I provide low-cost, remote Database Administration services: www.dasages.com]
"Beware of those that seek to protect you from harm or risk. The cost will be your freedoms and your liberty."

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Agencies will typically have in the contract that exists between them and the client a piece preventing either party from directly hiring talent without some type of fee.  If the contract is for 1 year in your situation the Temp agency is expecting an income of 16640 after they have paid you the $15 an hour. After yuor 3 months they have seen abot 4160 of this.  These numbers exclude any bebfits you may recieve.  

Unfortunately there isn't much yuo can do other than getting an attorney who may send a letter on your behalf.  It is up to the 2 companies to resolve this issue and neither of them have your best intrest in mind.   

RE: Temp Agency Woes

That's the hard thing about working with Temp Agencies--a lot of the negotiation is out of your control.  If the company really wants to hire you on, and they don't like the $7K fee, then it's up to the company and the Temp Agency to work something out between themselves.

When it comes down to it, remember that the current economy is bad, so Temp Agencies are all vying for an even smaller piece of the pie.  If they really want to maintain a relationship with their client, they will work something out in regards to the fee.  Yes, you run the risk of them choosing someone else from a different agency who might charge a couple thousand dollars less.  That being said, if they do go that route, do you really want to work for a company that chooses their employees based on a couple thousand dollars in fee differential, or would you rather work for a company who chooses the best employee for the job?  You already have an advantage over all other candidates in that you've been doing the work for three months.

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Just to echo what has been said here already, usually the temp agency will have a contract with their customer for each engagement that stipulates one of the following:

1.  A no-solicitation clause, meaning that they agree not to solicit your employment.

or

2.  A right to hire clause, meaning that after a certain period of time the customer has the right to hire the employee with or without a fee.

or

3.  A buyout clause, where it is not expected that the engagement will lead to the employee being hired, but that if they are hired the customer will pay the agency a "finder's fee".

In all three cases, there is little that you can do to solve the problem.  It's all between the agency and their customer.

However, most of those agencies also make you sign an agreement not to solicit employment from their customers during the period of your employment by the agency, and possibly for a period of time after your employment with the agency ends.  This may or may not be legally enforceable in your jurisdiction, but by far the biggest deterrent is the possibility of the employee being blacklisted by the temp agency, or the temp agency being blacklisted by the customer.

In almost all cases, the customer is going to have the most bargaining power IF they are willing to exercise it.  If they make use of the temp agency on a regular basis they can say "we want to hire this guy, you can give him to us or lose our business" and the temp agency will most likely give in to the demand.  They can also "grease the skids" a bit by offering to pay a portion of the buyout amount.  If the employer/customer very rarely makes use of the agency's services, then there may be little that they can do.  But they can almost always negotiate, and the temp agency (if they're smart) will probably be willing to cut the rate in order to maintain a good relationship.

Of course, the agency may also feel that they have all of the power in this situation.  You work for them, and their customer wants you.  If the customer doesn't play by their rules the agency can take their ball and go home.  Most business people would see the stupidity of such a course, but I have met a few that would willingly abandon a customer in the name of getting what they felt they were legally entitled to.

Either way, I would put out feelers for another position with a different company.  If the temp agency thinks they're going to lose you and the position anyway, they will be much more likely to work out a deal.

The one thing that I definitely would not do is involve a lawyer unless the temp agency is threatening you.  At the moment the dispute is between the agency and the customer, and I would let it stay there until it is resolved.

________________________________________
CompTIA A+, Network+, Server+, Security+
MCTS:Hyper-V
MCTS:System Center Virtual Machine Manager
MCSE:Security 2003
MCITP:Enterprise Administrator  

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Some temp agencies also have the employee sign a non-compete agreement. That is to prevent the temp from going on their own and stealing the client.

You have every right to work for whomever you choose unless you or the the hiring company signed an agreement with the temp company. The hiring company should already know what they signed. They should already be aware of the fee structure for a direct hire. These can be negotiated, though.

Maybe you split the difference with the hiring company. You work for a $3,500 less the first year and they pay the rest to the temp company.

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Quote:

You have every right to work for whomever you choose unless you or the the hiring company signed an agreement with the temp company.

That may or may not be true, depending on the laws in his jurisdiction.  It's very difficult to make blanket statements like that without being intimately familiar with the laws in Greg's locale.

________________________________________
CompTIA A+, Network+, Server+, Security+
MCTS:Hyper-V
MCTS:System Center Virtual Machine Manager
MCSE:Security 2003
MCITP:Enterprise Administrator  

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Sounds like a difficult situation... But; if the company really wants you; perhaps they can pay that money.  As a hiring manager; I've never had this situation; however if the right person was available and a buyout tax was required; I would really consider paying it.  In the case of my current employer; we had tons of EDS folks around... and many left EDS to join the company.  The company siomply applied a little pressure; that they may not use EDS as much if such conflicts arise... Perhaps the company can use a similar tactic; and put similar pressure on them! Good luck... Tell us how the story ends...  

Steve Medvid
IT Consultant & Web Master

http://www.saveourfarm.com
Chester County, PA Residents
Please Show Your Support...

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Quote:


That may or may not be true, depending on the laws in his jurisdiction.  It's very difficult to make blanket statements like that without being intimately familiar with the laws in Greg's locale.

A local attorney should always be involved. I've been down this road several times in different states in the U.S. The answer is always the same. If you didn't sign any agreement or the hiring company didn't sign an agreement, you are free to work. The problem is that most of the time one or both of the parties have signed an agreement with the temp agency. Another trusim seems to be that a non-compete greater than 1 year doesn't stand up in court. I sued a temp company and won for a 2 yr non-compete. The judge indicated that slavery was outlawed long ago and that one year is long enough.

But, as Bruce Williams always said: "Get an attorney."

 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Kind of a sad state of affairs that in this day and age, there are times when an average citizen needs a lawyer just to get a job.

RE: Temp Agency Woes

(OP)
Well, so far, I'm essentially hosed.

Although discussions are still going on, it sounds like it may be July before the "Price comes down enough that the company can afford to hire me."

That means it will be October before I'm eligible for benefits and so forth.

And I keep on having to scrimp to make ends meet until then.

And I'm ticked.  :(

More as things progress.....
 

Just my 2¢

"What the captain doesn't realize is that we've secretly replaced his Dilithium Crystals with new Folger's Crystals."

--Greg  http://parallel.tzo.com
 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

Nothing stops you from continuing to search for another job... While the economy is dead; there are still some jobs to be had out there... Gook luck.

Steve Medvid
IT Consultant & Web Master

http://www.saveourfarm.com
Chester County, PA Residents
Please Show Your Support...

RE: Temp Agency Woes

what state do you live in?  you could just quit the temp agency and get hired by the other company...if you state is a right to work state

RE: Temp Agency Woes

(OP)
I'm in MinneSNOWta.  lol

 

Just my 2¢

"What the captain doesn't realize is that we've secretly replaced his Dilithium Crystals with new Folger's Crystals."

--Greg  http://parallel.tzo.com
 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

(OP)
Seems that MN is not a "right to work" state.

 

Just my 2¢

"What the captain doesn't realize is that we've secretly replaced his Dilithium Crystals with new Folger's Crystals."

--Greg  http://parallel.tzo.com
 

RE: Temp Agency Woes

(OP)
[Sigh]

Well, the temp agency came down to $5000.

The company said it was still too much.

I feel... well, I feel that I'm being told "Oh, sorry, you're not worth it."

So, my resume is still out there.

 

Just my 2¢

"What the captain doesn't realize is that we've secretly replaced his Dilithium Crystals with new Folger's Crystals."

--Greg  http://parallel.tzo.com
 

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