In some ways, job interviews for staffing agency jobs aren’t any different from other jobs, but there are some differences that you should be prepared for. The staffing agency will call you in for a formal interview and testing (yes, testing) process. The better you do, the more likely you are to be placed by the staffing agency. Here are a few points to remember:
The way you dress in your staffing agency interview is, for the agency, a preview of how you'll present yourself on your assignment. It's important you make a good impression because both your reputation and that of the agency's is on the line. First and foremost, wear something you'll be comfortable in. Be sure to wear limited jewelry, a professional hairstyle and minimal perfume or cologne. Keep your nails manicured or trimmed.
- Ladies: Solid color dress pants or skirt, a coordinated shirt, dress shoes, hose or tights (optional) and understated makeup are appropriate.
- Gentleman: Solid color, conservative dress pants, a white (or light-colored) long-sleeve shirt, conservative tie, dark socks and dress shoes.
Most staffing agencies will have you complete a variety of tests to assess your skills and abilities. This will help match you with the jobs you'll do best in.
- Typing: At a minimum most agencies will want you to be able to type around 50 words per minute (WPM). Some specific employment advertisements will specify higher or lower numbers based on the position. A typing test will give the staffing agency a good idea of how fast you type.
- 10-key test: For many data entry and accounting positions, the number pad on your keyboard will be more important than the letters. A 10-key test assesses your speed and accuracy in using your index, middle and ring finger on the keypad to enter numerical data. Results are usually in strokes or keys per minute (kpm). The minimum score is usually around 140kpm.
- Spelling and grammar: It's important that you're able to communicate well, so writing samples will test your punctuation, spelling and reading comprehension. Some assignments will involve written correspondents, and these types of positions will require better scores.
- Customer service: Not unlike most job applications, a multiple choice assessment will ask questions to get a general idea of how you'll respond in various customer interactions.
Be prepared: Nothing is more embarrassing than not having what you need in a job interviewing. Be sure to bring your driver's license, a list of references and your detailed availability to any staffing interview.
Something else you should be prepared for: having to do the whole process all over again. Most staffing agencies require you to reapply after three to six months.