9 Questions to Ask an Accounting Temp Agency

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You know you need to work with a staffing firm to hire temporary workers. With your team stretched thin, you yourself don't have time to hire or deal with interim professionals who don't work out. The bottom line is you need an accounting temp agency that can find skilled talent and handle all the steps in the recruitment process that would otherwise bog you down.

How do you find the right accounting temp agency? Start by asking the staffing firms you're considering these nine questions:

1. Do you specialize in placing finance and accounting professionals?

Generalist firms may place professionals in a broad range of fields, but that could actually work against you. A firm that specializes in accounting and finance will understand your needs better, can better evaluate candidates to find the right match and has access to a deeper pool of the specialized talent you seek.

2. How many offices do you have?

An accounting temp agency with many offices can pull from a much wider pool of candidates. This can be a great help if the expert you need is not available locally.

3. Where do you operate?

Even small businesses can benefit from working with an accounting temp agency that boasts a global reach. Your company may have only a local or regional presence now, but a staffing manager with a large firm specializing in accounting and finance placements can assist you if and when you're ready to open a new location in another province or country.

4. How long has your firm been in business?

Younger firms tend to tout ambition and agility, though many lack the evidence to back it up. An accounting temp agency with a long history of success offers stability you can rely on for the long run. They've also had years to perfect their recruiting process. Look for a staffing firm that has the experience to help your business weather economic ups and downs.

5. How deep is your candidate pool?

Inquire about the variety of skill levels the agency's candidate pool covers, from entry- to senior-level positions. Perhaps the firm specializes or has more success in one or the other. Also ask how big or small the firm's clients are to get an idea of how many and what types of positions they place. Do they seem to gravitate toward small local businesses? Are they also involved with large corporations that you might be interested in?

6. How do you recruit skilled professionals?

As a hiring manager, you want an accounting temp agency that has a wide range of recruiting sources, like college and university campuses and networking events, as well as ones you can't access yourself – exclusive trade or industry partners, for example. You want an agency that can find candidates you can't find on your own.

7. Do you guarantee your temporary workers?

You want to know if the agency will send a replacement if you have an issue with the individual they send. What exactly is their client guarantee? Are they able to clearly explain the process for getting help if a temporary professional isn't working out?

8. How accessible are staffing managers?

You want an accounting temp agency that's communicative and accessible. If you're in desperate need of temporary personnel or have a problem, you want to be able to contact someone right away. If the agency is actively recruiting for your open role, you want regular updates to know how the search is going.

9. What testimonials or accolades can you offer?

The answer should provide evidence of happy customers and demonstrate independent verification of good business practices. You need to know if the firm walks the walk or just talks the talk.

Start working on your checklist now and find out how your accounting temp agency options compare.