Workplace Culture

Temp Jobs Fall by 4,900 in August

By Staffing Analysts

Sep. 7, 2012

The number of jobs in the “temporary help services” industry slipped to approximately 2.52 million in August, down by 4,900 from July, according to seasonally adjusted numbers released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In addition, the number of temp jobs added in July was cut to 6,700 from the initially reported gain of 14,100.

Temporary employment as a percent of total employment — the temporary help penetration rate — slipped to 1.89 percent in August from 1.90 percent in July.

However, employment rose by 6,700 jobs, or 0.4 percent, in the “employment services industry” to 3.2 million. The employment services industry is a broader category that includes temporary help services as well as employment placements agencies, executive search services and professional employer organizations.

Total nonfarm employment disappointed in August with the U.S. adding only 96,000 jobs for total employment of 133.3 million, seasonally adjusted.

August’s job gain comes in below the estimated gain of 201,000 private sector jobs estimated by the national employment report released Thursday by Automatic Data Processing Inc. (NASD: ADP).

The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent in August from 8.3 percent in July, according to seasonally adjusted numbers from the BLS. However, the labor force participation rate declined. The college-level unemployment rate, which can serve as a proxy for professional employment, was unchanged in August at 4.1 percent.

“The meager 96,000 job gain in August, after a downwardly revised gain of 141,000 in July, reflects a labor market that remains slow in a disappointingly weak economy,” said Kathy Bostjancic, director of macroeconomic analysis at The Conference Board. “Companies are focused on squeezing more productivity gains out of existing workers and keeping a tight lid on labor costs.”

Staffing Industry Analysts is a sister company of Workforce Management. Comment below or email

Stay informed and connected. Get human resources news and HR features via Workforce Management’s Twitter feed or RSS feeds for mobile devices and news readers.


blog workforce

We build robust scheduling & attendance software for businesses with 500+ frontline workers. With custom BI reporting and demand-driven scheduling, we help our customers reduce labor spend and increase profitability across their business. It's as simple as that.

Book a call
See the software

Related Articles

workforce blog

Workplace Culture

5 lunch break statistics that shed light on American work culture

Summary Research shows how taking lunch breaks enhances employee engagement and productivity. Despite t...

lunch breaks, scheduling, statistics

workforce blog

Workplace Culture

6 Things Leadership can do to Prevent Nurse Burnout

Summary Nurse burnout is a serious issue in the healthcare business and has several negative consequenc...

burnout, Healthcare, hospitals, nurses

workforce blog

Workplace Culture

5 tips to reduce employee no call, no shows

Summary No call, no shows are damaging to businesses. High no call, no show rates could suggest problem...

absence, attendance, no call, no shows, time