01/09/2001

The Temporary Staffing Industry - A Growth Industry in an Era of Increasing Labor Mobility

Yuko Shozugawa 

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Introduction

The temporary staffing market is undergoing vigorous growth. Due to the changing labor market and workers’ increasingly diverse values and employment needs, non-regular employment has progressed to the point that temporary staff workers have become as important to companies as part-time and contract workers.

For companies, advantages include corporate streamlining through the reduction of fixed labor costs, and having a ready supply of skilled labor for starting up new operations, accommodating seasonal fluctuations in business, and so forth.

Along with the transformation of the lifetime employment system, companies are moving toward more diversity in hiring strategies, types of employment, and work styles (flexibility in workplaces and work hours), while a social consensus is forming to eliminate age discrimination and mandatory retirement. Despite the temporary labor, the temporary staffing industry has developed methods for personnel evaluation and matching of individual competencies with company needs. In addition to this capability to coordinate labor demand and supply, the industry’s system of recruiting and training human resources is expected to significantly impact the labor market in the future.

In this paper, we examine the status of the temporary staffing industry following the revision of the industry law in 1999, and identify trends in this fast growing industry while referring to the findings of the Council for Regulatory Reform.

Yuko Shozugawa

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