The Staffing Edge Blog

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Stacey Jones

Recent Posts by Stacey Jones

The Staffing Edge and Their Website Are Moving to People 2.0

Posted by Stacey Jones


Apr 15, 2019 9:00:00 AM

The Staffing Edge and Their Website Are Moving to People 20As you know, in 2018, The Staffing Edge (TSE) partnered with People 2.0 to expand into the global staffing market. As a leading provider of global back-office solutions for staffing firms, People 2.0 takes on your temporary placements as our own compliantly-classified employees—helping you grow your business and focus on doing what you do best: placing top talent for your customers.

Now, after a year together, we’re excited to announce that The Staffing Edge is officially moving under the People 2.0 umbrella!

Our Website Will Be Sunset on May 6, 2019

On May 6, 2019, The Staffing Edge is moving to People 2.0’s website, where you’ll still be able to find all the same great content at our new web address.

From industry news to trends and tips, you can continue to learn from our expertise by visiting us at the official People 2.0 site.

If you try to access after May 6, 2019, you’ll be redirected to the People 2.0 website.

Join Us at the ACSESS 2019 National Conference in Quebec

We’re looking forward to launching our rebrand debut at this year’s ACSESS National Conference!

If you’re attending the ACSESS 2019 National Conference in Quebec next month, make sure to stop by and see The Staffing Edge at our official People 2.0 booth.

TSE and People 2.0 would like to thank you for your support. We look forward to our continued partnership, and the new global reach we can offer under the People 2.0 brand!

Interested in learning more about People 2.0 and how we can help you grow your staffing business? Make sure to stop by booth #11, or feel free to check out our website!


Topics: The Staffing Edge

5 Mistakes You’re Making as an Independent Recruiter

Posted by Stacey Jones


Apr 1, 2019 9:00:00 AM

5 Mistakes Youre Making as an Independent RecruiterStriking out on your own as an independent recruiter can be a great opportunity. However, running your own recruitment firm is also a challenge in many different ways. It’s easy to hit some stumbling blocks on the road to success. What matters is recognizing when you’ve made mistakes, then taking steps to correct them.

Download the Ultimate Guide for Independent Recruiters Looking to Offer  Contract Staffing Services

Here are some of the most common mistakes independent recruiters make. If any sound familiar, it’s not too late to adjust your procedures.

1. An Independent Recruiter Tries to Source Clients from Ex-Employers

If you’ve been in the staffing industry for some time, you may have a lengthy list of people you’ve worked with. Many people mistakenly believe they can take this list of potential clients with them when they strike out on their own.

Always check your contract with any current and former employers for non-compete clauses. These clauses prevent you from “poaching” clients when you decide to leave. Even if a client liked working with you specifically, reaching out to them once you’re independent could be a contract violation.

Most non-compete clauses eventually expire, but many last for years. Before going solo, review the terms of your contracts with previous and current employers. Then make a list of clients and when you can contact them. You may find your list substantially narrowed, which can affect your business outlook.

2. You Price Yourself out of the Market

It’s a scenario you might have thought about as an independent recruiter. If your prices are too high, you could find yourself unable to compete with other staffing firms in the area.

Your clients are likely willing to pay a premium to work with you. This is particularly true if you work in a certain niche or you’re considered one of the foremost recruiters in an area.

By contrast, it’s also possible to set your prices too low. This is a much more common mistake. Independent recruiters worry their high rates won’t attract any business, so they lower prices. Sometimes, they lower their rates too much and aren’t able to make ends meet or grow efficiently.

Finding the right price is difficult but possible. Do some careful research, ask current and prospective clients for feedback, and consider your costs to make the right decision.

3. You Ignore Your Niche

Independent recruiters are often most successful when they develop their expertise in one area or industry. For example, you may develop expertise in helping healthcare firms meet their staffing needs.

As an independent recruiter, it can be tempting to focus on horizontal expansion, rather than vertical growth. This creates a twofold problem. First, you go too wide and spread yourself too thin. Second, you fail to capitalize on your expertise and talent.

If you have a niche, be sure you’re giving it attention. If you’re not sure what your niche is, take a step back and identify the industries you do the most business with.

4. You Offer Only Permanent Staffing

Another mistake independent recruiters often make is offering only one type of service. This is most often permanent staffing.

You may feel you can’t compete with larger staffing firms that offer better terms and lower prices. You may also worry about the additional paperwork offering contract staffing services can create.

It’s easy to offer contract staffing services to your clients, even as an independent recruiter. All you need is some back office help.

By expanding your service offerings, you’re better able to serve your clients’ needs.

5. You Don’t Get Feedback from Candidates

Have you asked your candidates why they liked working with you, or why they didn’t return? If not, it’s time to collect their feedback. It could help you identify why candidates aren’t sticking around or how you can source more candidates more effectively.

These common mistakes can be easily resolved. If you see any of them in your business, take corrective action immediately.



Topics: Independent Recruiters

7 Ways Staffing Firms Can Better Compete Against Job Boards

Posted by Stacey Jones


Feb 13, 2019 9:00:00 AM

7_Ways_Staffing_Firms_Can_Better_Compete_Against_Job_BoardsThe latest figures show job boards are as popular with job seekers as ever. For many staffing firms, this presents a problem. How can you effectively compete with giant job boards like Indeed and Monster?

Download "How Small Firms Can Compete with the Top Staffing Agencies" Whitepaper

This is especially the case as Indeed recently announced it would stop providing free traffic to staffing firms. This disrupts the industry standards, which saw job boards and staffing agencies work in tandem over the last 15 years or so.

As Indeed and other job boards slam the door on this long-lived cooperative stance, what can you do to improve your ability to compete? Here are a few ideas to get you started.

1. Staffing Firms Can Still Pay to Play

The first thing to do is realize that Indeed hasn’t said they won’t provide candidate traffic to staffing firms. They simply want a fee for the service, as do many other job boards.

Evaluate your current traffic. If a significant portion of it comes from job boards that are now demanding a fee, it might be worth paying for the service. If your traffic from them is low, you should shift your focus anyway. There are other, more lucrative opportunities for your staffing agency out there.

2. Make the Most of Social

A free alternative to job boards is social media. If you’re not already using your Twitter and Facebook accounts to reach candidates, you should put some effort behind this option in 2019.

Staffing firms can also take the budget they might otherwise allocate to job boards and put it into social media advertising. For example, you can post jobs freely on LinkedIn and Facebook, and then support those postings with ads on both social networks.

3. Adopt Inbound Strategies for Recruiting

You’ve likely heard about inbound marketing, which draws prospective clients to you. In fact, you might already be using it to help build your client base.

You can also successfully use inbound strategies to improve your recruitment process and draw in more candidates. Think about creating a content strategy to draw job seekers to your website and encourage them to apply. Can you offer them tips or how-to videos on improving their resumes? Think about how your expertise can assist job seekers, and then answer their questions.

4. Check Your Recruiting Funnel

Job boards aren’t driving all of your applications, even if they do provide a significant portion of traffic. A bigger problem may be your own recruitment funnel, which could be leaking potential candidates.

Check your funnel so you can convert more visitors to your website and job board. Make sure your website is responsive and mobile friendly, and streamline your application portal to simplify the process.

You can even add a chat feature to answer questions and engage job seekers before they apply. In short, make it easy for people to apply through your own website and you’ll see this traffic source increase.

5. Try Different Advertising Avenues

The big job boards aren’t the only places staffing firms can advertise jobs. If you’re not varying your advertising efforts already, it’s time to start.

Social media advertising is one option that was already mentioned. You can also try search engine marketing and SEO. There are also job aggregators and even talent community websites. Target some of these additional avenues, and watch your traffic sources shift.

6. Focus on the Candidate Experience

Another thing you can do is put more emphasis on the candidate experience. Word of mouth is still an important marketing tactic, and the best way to control it is to ensure each person who applies has a great experience with you.

7. Leverage Technology

Are you using an applicant tracking system? If so, make sure you mine it for candidates before you start advertising. The perfect person may be hiding right under your nose.

With these tips in hand, you can prepare to go toe-to-toe with the biggest job boards.

A CEO’s Guide: Online Marketing for Staffing Firms

Topics: Staffing Agency

Why You Should Analyze Your Back Office Data

Posted by Stacey Jones


Jan 9, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Why_You_Should_Analyze_Your_Back_Office_DataRunning a staffing firm is full of challenges. For people like you, that’s a good thing. The little ups and downs keep you on your toes. You love being able to sit down with a problem and think it through to find creative solutions.

Download "Running a Staffing Agency: The Who, What, When, Why, and How" Guide

One of the most common places to find challenges in a staffing firm is in the back office. With back office data, however, you can start making better decisions to overcome these obstacles.

What Is Back Office Data?

What is back office data, anyway? It’s the data generated by the administrative tasks in your business. Think of the information you generate when administering payroll or creating invoices.

It can also include information about time. How are your employees spending their time? How long does a particular task take in your business?

The information can even include marketing data and overhead costs.

All of this information is important for your business. You probably knew it was important to keep tabs on how much you were spending on payroll and overtime, or how much revenue you brought in.

Back office data can tell you much more about your business, however, provided you analyze it.

What You Can Learn

When you begin analyzing data in your business, you’ll learn much more than just how much revenue you’re bringing in or how much you’re spending.

You might have already known about the kinds of information you can gather in financial data reports. You can see increases in expenditures or decreases in overheads. You can then tie that information back to changes in the regulatory environment or new programs you’ve implemented.

Data analysis can tell you more about the health of the business than just year-over-year growth statistics. It can show you information about things like productivity, efficiency, and other performance indicators.

Suppose you adopted new staffing firm software. You knew this software cost X dollars, and you were also aware you brought in more revenue and decreased expenditures after adopting it.

The data from the back office can show you more of the story. It can show you that your labour costs came down because your team was spending less time fixing mistakes or inputting data. It also shows they were able to accomplish more in the same time, improving their win rate with new clients. You already knew the outcomes, but now you also know how it happened.

Why Does It Matter?

Some business owners might ask if they really care why their expenditures decreased or their revenue increased. Those are both good trends, so it’s less important why they happened than that they occurred.

Understanding why these outcomes occurred is important, however, since it can help you make better business decisions. If you know how much time your staff spends on particular tasks, you can make better estimates about how much time you’ll save by adopting new tools.

This can help you decide whether adopting the new tool is really worth the investment.

You can also glean other information, such as how long it takes clients to pay their invoices on average. This could help you rethink your policies. Is there a way to entice clients to pay sooner?

You might rethink processes as well. How can you reduce the time spent on a task, for example?

Powering Your Business

It should be clear back office data gives you more information about your business. It helps you make smarter decisions.

As a result, you can provide better service to your clients and better experiences for your candidates alike.

Everything You Need to Know about Starting a Successful Staffing Firm

Topics: Back Office Service Provider

What Staffing Firm Owners Need to Know about Bill 47 in Ontario

Posted by Stacey Jones


Dec 3, 2018 9:00:00 AM

What_Staffing_Firm_Owners_Need_to_Know_about_Bill_47_in_OntarioIn late October, the Ontario government introduced Bill 47, the Making Ontario Open for Business Act. The Act was a direct response to the changes to employment legislation under the previous government. Bill 148, or the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, had received a cool reception in the business community.

Download "Running a Staffing Agency: The Who, What, When, Why, and How" Guide

Many of the changes in Bill 148 left business owners, including staffing firm owners, scrambling to adjust. Increased personal leave, new formulas for public holiday pay, revised rights around scheduling, and the minimum wage hike were all rolled out very quickly.

Bill 47 has passed and is here to take the pressure off staffing agency owners. Here’s what you should note.

Minimum Wage Will Hold Until 2020

The minimum wage in Ontario jumped from $11.60 per hour to $14 per hour in January 2018 as mandated by Bill 148. Another proposed hike was to be implemented in January 2019.

Bill 47 puts a freeze on minimum wage increases until 2020. Afterwards, the government will introduce a series of scheduled, inflation-tied increases to the wage.

Staffing firm owners who were preparing to deal with yet another increase to the minimum wage should be glad to hear they can revise their budgets for 2019.

Personal Leave Is Shorter and Unpaid

Bill 148 had also introduced expanded personal leave for workers. Under it, workers were entitled to 10 days of personal leave per year, and two of those days were paid.

Bill 47 rolls the number of days back to eight in total. It also eliminates the two paid days. An employee, after being employed for 2 consecutive weeks, will now be entitled to up to 8 unpaid days in the following 3 categories:

Sick Leave – up to 3 unpaid days per calendar year for personal illness, injury or medical emergency.  An employer can now ask for a medical note.

Family Responsibility Leave – up to 3 unpaid days per calendar year to be used for illness, injury or medical emergency of a listed family member.

Bereavement Leave – up to 2 unpaid days per calendar year to be used for the death of a listed family member.

While staffing agency owners need to be aware of any obligation to provide leave time, the removal of paid days reduces the administrative and financial burden.

The Old Public Holiday Formula Is Here to Stay

In May 2018, the Ontario government was forced to review the new public holiday pay formula included in Bill 148. Its review concluded the new formula was insufficient and had actually caused problems. It hadn’t been studied properly before being put in place.

The government suspended the new formula.In early May 2018,the government opted to return to the previous public holiday pay calculation. The previous policy came back into effect on June 1, 2018. It will be in place until December 31, 2019.

What does this mean for you? From now until the end of next year, you can continue using the old formula.

Equal Work for Equal Pay

This will remain based on sex. All the provisions implemented with Bill 148 have been removed.

Therefore, the government is no longer requiring equal pay for equal work on the basis of number of hours regularly worked (i.e. part-time or full-time) or differences in the term of employment (i.e. permanent, casual, temporary, seasonal).

6% Vacation Pay

This ruling remains in effect. Once an employee has a period of five consecutive years of employment at the same employer, they are eligible for 6% vacation pay.

New Requirements around Scheduling Are Repealed

One of the aims of the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act was to find better work-life balance for employees. In light of this, it introduced a series of new rights for workers regarding scheduling.

One of the most notable was a provision allowing workers to refuse on-call shifts if they weren’t notified 96 hours beforehand.

Staffing firm owners likely noted the problems this created for them. Sometimes, you don’t have four days’ notice that you’ll require a worker’s services. Sick days, personal leave, and other unexpected absences can leave employers and agency owners alike scrambling to find people to fill in.

Bill 47 rolls back these provisions, relieving the burden from staffing firm owners and other business owners alike.

Bill 148 Amendments That Remain in Place

Employment Standards Act

  1. Extension of pregnancy/parental leave to a total of 18 months is preserved;

  2. Extension of family medical leave from 8 weeks to 28 weeks is preserved;

  3. Creation of critical illness leave, which includes the ability to take critical illness leave to care for a critically ill adult is preserved (replaced critically ill child care leave);

  4. Creation of child death leave (distinct from crime-related child disappearance leave) is preserved.

Labour Relations Act

  1. Deemed sale of business upon a change of building service providers is preserved;

  2. Power of Board to order votes to take place outside the workplace, electronically or by phone, and to give directions about voting process is preserved;

  3. Prohibition on discharge or discipline of employees without just cause during certain bargaining periods is preserved;

  4. Power of Board to make interim decisions and orders, and to do so without providing reasons, is preserved.


Topics: Compliance and Legislation

5 Ways Your Staffing Firm Is Stuck in the Past

Posted by Stacey Jones


Nov 14, 2018 9:00:00 AM

5_Ways_Your_Staffing_Firm_Is_Stuck_in_the_PastOne thing that can prevent a firm from reaching its true potential is outdated policies, practices, and technology. It might be time to update your staffing firm and bring your business into the modern era. You may have been avoiding updates for any number of reasons. Maybe you were unsure about what was a trend and what was here to stay, or perhaps the costs of installing new technology were daunting.

Download "Running a Staffing Agency: The Who, What, When, Why, and How" Guide

In any case, if you happen to notice any of these five signs around your business, it’s time to modernize.

1. Your Staffing Firm Doesn’t Use Staffing Agency-Specific Software

Technology is both boon and bane for many business owners, and those in the staffing industry are no exception. Using the right technology, you can accomplish so much more. Staffing agency-specific software can help you automate tasks and accomplish more in less time.

Many agency owners shy away from this technology, however, because they believe it’s too expensive for them. As it turns out, staffing agency-specific software is often economical. It more than pays for itself by providing you with cost savings and efficiencies.

2. You Don’t Offer Fixed-Contract Services

In the past, many smaller agencies and independent recruiters could get by with permanent recruitment services. In fact, that’s most of what recruiting was but a few short years ago.

Today, however, the market has shifted dramatically. More employers and job seekers are hoping to take advantage of the gig economy. In turn, this means more people are searching for fixed-contract services.

If you don’t offer fixed-contract services yet, your staffing firm is behind the wave. It’s time to get on board and offer your clients what they want.

3. You’re Not Marketing Your Firm the 21st-Century Way

In the past, recruiters and staffing agencies didn’t need to put as much thought into their marketing plans. That was partially because the demand for services was much smaller, and competition wasn’t nearly as fierce as it is now.

The growing demand for recruitment services has made it vital for staffing firms of all sizes to ensure they’re marketing.

One of the best ways for you to market is to get online. Whether you’re using social media or using search engine marketing, you can find economical ways to get the word out about your agency.

4. You’re Not Following Trends in Recruitment

As a recruiter, it’s your job to stay on top of trends. Like any other sector, there are trends in recruitment. The expectations for resumes and job-seeker skills change over time. The best practices around screening and writing job descriptions are also changing.

Have you stayed up to date, or are you using outdated techniques and tactics? Do some online research to get caught up on the latest trends. You’ll be able to source candidates more quickly and easily.

5. Your Compliance Needs Some Work

Another area you need to stay on top of is compliance. It can be difficult to keep up with all of the changes to legislation. You’ve likely heard about the major changes to labour laws sweeping through various provinces, but other, smaller changes may have been missed.

It’s time to go over your compliance and ensure you’re up to date. It’s also a great time to look at the process you use to make sure you’re staying compliant.

If you see any of these five signs, it’s time to take action and start updating your staffing firm today.


Topics: Staffing Agency

How Can We Weed out Bad Apple "Temp" Agencies That Give the Industry a Bad Name?

Posted by Stacey Jones


Oct 22, 2018 9:00:00 AM

How_Can_We_Weed_out_Bad_Apple_Temp_Agencies_That_Give_the_Industry_a_Bad_NameThe gig economy in Canada has been growing, and with it, the staffing industry has been growing exponentially. Many employers are looking for more flexible arrangements with their workers, and many workers themselves are looking for ways to take power back into their own hands.

Download "How a Complete Back-End Solution Helped a Staffing Agency Get  Started" Case Study

This has led to a marked increase in the use of temporary contracts by employers, and workers are taking full advantage. The staffing agency plays a key role by connecting employers and workers seeking opportunities.

Unfortunately, there will always be unscrupulous people running “fly-by-night” operations in any industry, and the growing staffing industry in Canada has been no exception. Bad apple “temp” agencies have been giving the industry a bad name by harming both clients and job seekers.

Is it possible to weed them out of the industry? There are a few tactics people are already trying in an attempt to restore the industry’s good name.

The Problem with Fly-by-Night Temp Agencies

When people outside of the staffing industry think of temp agencies, they’re often thinking of these fly-by-night agencies—the ones who exploit vulnerable workers. They place them with clients without inspecting the sites for safety or providing adequate training. In some cases, they may not comply with the law.

These agencies may look to minimize costs for their clients at the cost of their workers. Their actions give the staffing industry a bad name.

Government Crackdowns

The provincial governments have recognized how problematic these types of agencies are, and they’ve started to take measures to weed them out. In Quebec, the government introduced the Comission des norms, de l’equite, de la sante et de la securite du travail (CNESST), which requires all agencies to register and be licensed. CNESST can then take measures against agencies that don’t comply with laws.

Other provinces are following suit with laws and enforcement agencies. Unfortunately, this also causes problems for legitimate agencies. They have to deal with additional administrative burdens, such as licensing and registration.

Creating Higher Standards

While governments have introduced legislation to help curb the existence of fly-by-night temp agencies, the industry itself can also play a role in creating higher standards.

Currently, there are few barriers to starting a staffing agency. There are no educational requirements, professional licenses, or other accreditation to prevent people from starting a firm. The cost of entry to the industry is also low.

This could be viewed as a strength in some ways, but it also allows unscrupulous businesspeople to start agencies and exploit both clients and workers.

By creating professional codes of standard, requiring professional licensing, and offering formalized education in recruitment and staffing services, major players in the industry can improve standards and create higher barriers to keep bad apples out.

Working with Inspection Boards

Another steps players within the industry can take is partner with government agencies, like the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board of Canada (WSIB). Taking steps to protect workers’ safety is in everyone’s best interest.

The staffing industry should also work with local governments to create laws that will help everyone. Licensing laws and other measures designed to protect workers are steps in the right direction but only if they truly benefit everyone in the industry, from agencies to job seekers to clients.

Weeding out the bad apples of the temporary staffing industry is possible, and these are the first steps in the right direction. The staffing industry can reclaim its good name.

Things You Need to Know When Starting a Temp Staffing Agency

Topics: Staffing Industry

How to Strike out on Your Own As an Independent Recruiter

Posted by Stacey Jones


Oct 15, 2018 9:00:00 AM

How_to_Strike_out_on_Your_Own_As_an_Independent_RecruiterYou’ve been working in the recruitment industry for some time now, and you know the business has been growing lately. With the growth of the gig economy, there are more employers working with staffing agencies and independent recruiters than ever before.

Download "How a Complete Back-End Solution Helped a Staffing Agency Get  Started" Case Study

Maybe you’ve been working for someone in a large agency, or perhaps you’ve been under the wing of another, more experienced recruiter. At this stage of the game, however, you’re beginning to wonder about striking out on your own.

What skills are required to be a recruiter?

You’ll need good business sense, good organization skills, and plenty of people skills to be successful in this business. You’ll probably want to have some technological know-how, as well as a deep understanding of job markets, shifting employer needs, and what workers are looking for in a job.

If you think you’re ready to take the next step and become an independent recruiter, follow this process.

Establish a Client Base

If you’ve already been working for an agency or another recruitment firm, you may have some contacts to start building your client base on. Keep in mind that you don’t want to run afoul of any non-compete clauses, so if you’re leaving a recruitment job, you’ll need to be careful about bringing clients with you.

Nonetheless, the contacts you’ve made during your time working for someone else will serve you well. Be sure to keep up relationships and acquaintances. You never know who might be looking for their next great recruitment partnership.

You should also begin reaching out to new and potential clients at this stage. Creating a larger and more varied client network will help you land on your feet.

Beginning Building a Pool of Workers

The next thing you should do is begin building your pool of workers. It’s one thing to have clients, but you’ll need to be able to fill the positions your clients want filled.

To do so, you’ll need a pool of workers. You can reach out to some people you’ve worked with through other positions in the industry. You should also begin combing your own networks, such as LinkedIn and other places where you may find job candidates.

Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals. Job-seekers who have worked with you formerly may no longer be looking, but they might know someone who is.

Partner with a Back Office Provider

The administration aspect of an agency is one of the toughest for independent recruiters. This is especially true if you’re just starting out or if you offer temporary staffing services to your clients.

Relieve the burden of payroll and other administrative tasks by teaming up with a back-office provider. They can look after the paperwork while you focus on recruitment, advertisement, and more.

Create a Marketing Plan

Another thing you should do as you prepare to strike out on your own as an independent recruiter is create a marketing plan. You need to get the word out about your new business venture. Talking to the people already in your own circle is a great first step, but you need to go beyond this.

Advertising and marketing is crucial to making people aware your business exists. A great marketing plan will help you stand out in a crowded field, helping you win more clients and find more job-seekers.

Make a Budget

One final thing you should do before you strike out on your own is make a budget. How much do you expect to spend, and how much do you expect to earn? Having rough figures can help you as you set out on your journey to become an independent recruiter.

Striking out on your own can be both scary and exhilarating. With these tips, you can make the most of your transition and land on your feet.


Topics: Independent Recruiters

Marijuana in the Workplace: What Staffing Firms Need to Know

Posted by Stacey Jones


Oct 8, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Marijuana_in_the_Workplace_What_Staffing_Firms_Need_to_KnowThe Cannabis Act passed in Parliament in June 2018, setting the stage for legal recreational marijuana in Canada. This makes Canada only the second country in the developed world to make cannabis legal outside of the medical field.

Download "How TSE’s Back Office Support Helped a Staffing Agency Expand  Nationally" Case Study

The Cannabis Act will come into effect in October 2018. There will be many changes when marijuana becomes legal for recreational users, and many industries are already preparing for these new realities. Those in the insurance sector are revising their automobile insurance and homeowners’ policies. Educators are wondering how to keep children safe.

Employers and staffing firms also have many questions about the changes the Cannabis Act will bring to the workplace. How will you deal with a worker who decides to use recreational marijuana? What changes need to be made to employment contracts? What are your responsibilities as an employer?

These questions are important, and staffing firms need to know how to handle marijuana in the workplace.

Staffing Firms Have No Duty to Accommodate Recreational Marijuana

Marijuana will be legal for recreational use in October. What does that mean for staffing firms who are sending workers to clients’ job sites?

First, it’s important to understand there is no duty to accommodate recreational marijuana users. If a worker arrives to a job site under the influence, he or she may be sent home or even dismissed. A worker who is under the influence may not be able to safely perform his or her job, so they cannot remain on the job site.

Clients will need to report these incidents to you if you’re responsible for the discipline of employees. You may need to terminate a worker’s contract with a client. If there are multiple infractions, you may need to terminate your relationship with the worker.

Staffing Agencies Must Clearly Communicate Policies

Many employers are moving to a zero-tolerance policy regarding recreational marijuana usage. If a worker arrives to the work site already impaired or uses marijuana during their shift, they may be sent home or terminated.

Staffing agencies will likely want to consider similar policies. You must clearly communicate these policies to workers. It is important they understand the consequences of using cannabis at the job site or arriving impaired.

You’ll likely need to review and revise some of your other policies. If you conduct drug testing of potential job candidates, marijuana is no longer considered an illegal substance. You may need to revise language in contracts related to past use as it is no longer a criminal act.

Exceptions for Medical Marijuana Usage

Staffing agencies do have a duty to accommodate medical marijuana patients. Workers with an authorization for medical cannabis do not need to submit documentation of their medical need but may opt to do so. This could include a copy of the authorization and a doctor’s note.

These workers will need to be provided with accommodation on the job site. It is your duty to find suitable employment for them that they can perform safely.

The Next Steps

Before October, you should review your employment contracts and language about the use of illegal substances. If cannabis use is mentioned, it will need to be removed from these sections.

You’ll also want to revise your policies about impairment in the workplace. You may already have a policy in place about the use of alcohol during working hours. A policy about cannabis use could be added here. Finally, you’ll need to communicate these new policies and their consequences to your workers. Although marijuana may soon be legal, you do not need to tolerate its use in the workplace.

Finding it hard to keep up with constant changes in legislation? A back office service provider can be a valuable partner to help you remain compliant.


Topics: Compliance and Legislation

How to Take the Leap from Staffing Agency Employee to Entrepreneur

Posted by Stacey Jones


Sep 10, 2018 9:00:00 AM

How_to_Take_the_Leap_from_Staffing_Agency_Employee_to_EntrepreneurYou’ve been working at a staffing firm for many years now. Through this position, you’ve become well-acquainted with the ins and outs of the business, including many of the realities and challenges of running one. You’ve been idly wondering what it would be like to leave behind your job and steady paycheque. You’re thinking about starting your own staffing business.

Download "How a Complete Back-End Solution Helped a Staffing Agency Get  Started" Case Study

How do you start a staffing agency?

Starting a staffing agency requires capital, a business plan, and more. You’ll need to consider things like your location, your branding, your business structure, and the technology you’ll use to source candidates and place them. You have several advantages, however, including the experience and expertise to take the leap.

From Employee to Staffing Agency Owner

The first question to ask is what’s holding you back from starting your own agency? For many, it isn’t a lack of know-how or ability. In fact, you probably have most of the expertise and knowledge you’ll need at your fingertips.

Some people might say capital is holding them back, and cash flow is often a challenge for staffing agencies that are just starting out. You’ll need capital in order to rent or own an office location, and to find the technological solutions you need to ensure things keep running smoothly. Cash flow and payroll are major concerns.

For most people, however, fear is what keeps them from taking the leap from employee to staffing agency owner. If you leave your job for entrepreneurship, you’ll be leaving behind a steady paycheque and any benefits you had.

For the few who are bold enough to leave behind the comfort of a regular, nine-to-five job and trade it in for entrepreneurial adventure, it’s most certainly worth it.

Getting Started

There are many steps you’ll need to take when starting your own staffing agency. Writing a business plan and securing capital are two of the most important. In the business plan, you’ll need to outline things such as your vision for the future of the business. You’ll look to branding and marketing. What makes your business stand out?

The logistics will also need to be investigated. Where will you be located, and which industries will you serve? How will you find candidates and place them with the right employers? You’ll also need to look at business structures and other administrative aspects of the business.

With your expertise and network of contacts, however, these steps are much less daunting. You don’t need to worry so much about who to contact for capital or where you’ll find clients and candidates. You likely even know some people who can provide services.

Partner with a Back Office Solution Provider

One of the best partners you can find when you strike out on your own is a back office solution provider. They can help you manage many of the nitty-gritty aspects of running your business. A total back office solution helps many staffing agency owners face some of the most common challenges in the industry.

The solution provider can help by providing the right technology and administrative assistance, such as help with payroll, compliance monitoring, and accounts receivable. In short, the back office solution can help you get off the ground so you can focus on the front-end of your new business.

With a back office solution provider, your own expertise and experience, and your network of contacts, you’re well-positioned to leave behind working for someone else’s staffing firm and become the owner of a successful staffing agency.

If you’ve been hesitating, now’s the time to take the leap.

Everything You Need to Know about Starting a Successful Staffing Firm

Topics: Staffing Agency

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