I know that finding a job, whether through your own means or through a staffing company, can be very frustrating. I wanted to know what really makes for a pleasant experience from contractors who have been through it all with several different agencies. They described what they have experienced in the past, and what they look for in a company now. Here are a few things that you should think about before working with a staffing company:

The company reaches out to me
“It’s very important to me, and I have had the most positive experience when I am able to easily connect with my contract house. If I had to choose again, I would always choose an agency that focuses on the care and keeping of its contractors. There have been companies that I have worked for in the past that have not been reachable. If I had any issues with my paycheck, benefits or my actual contract, I would never be able to get a hold of them. The best experiences I have had are with companies who actually care about you. Not only are they available when I need them for issue resolution or for career counseling, but they reach out to me. I get taken out to lunch on occasion, the contractors at my company are treated to pizza parties and I actually know the company that I work through. I feel as though I am part of a team and not just temporary staff in a building that I sit in.”

“I worked at a company before my current position where I was in charge of employees in 5 states. Part of my performance review looked at how I cared for my employees. I needed to visit each employee twice a year and hold a gathering for them annually in addition to general career counseling or job questions. The reason I chose my current company is because they valued the face to face touch and didn’t rely solely on email and phone. I feel like I am a part of a family”

I am a person, not a commodity
“I have had experiences in the past where I had no personal relationship with my recruiter. Basically what happened is a staffing company called me out of the blue based on my skills, and left me a voicemail saying that they had submitted my resume, and secured an interview. In the meantime I hadn’t even spoken to them in the first place. What I enjoy about my experience now is that my recruiter works with me on reformatting my resume, asks me about my career goals and thoroughly prepares me for my interview, I am even walked in so that I have a support system the whole time.”

“My former employer was a joke. They had zero interest in getting to know me, to see how my job was going or to see if I needed anything. While I am thankful to have gotten a job, I was only a commodity to them. When my contract was up I did not feel any loyalty to stay with them and switched companies. Some contractors like the no touch model, but I would like to be able to speak to a person in person and not have my health benefits and paychecks come from a stranger.”

When looking for a new position, keep in mind some of these stories and don’t feel the need to settle on a company that won’t treat or represent you well.