How to nail an interview for a temp role!

How to nail an interview for a temp role!


With more and more employees opting for temp or contract work in 2022 to further enhance their skills and experience or lifestyle choices, we thought it was timely to discuss how to nail an interview for a temp role.

Flexibility is key!

We know it’s a candidate market – but its still important to put your best foot forward and prove your worth. When it comes to temp and contract work, they way you stand out as an absolute winner is by demonstrating flexibility. Employers right now are dealing with increased requests for leave, employees who want to work from home when their managers want them in the office, staff who want to work part time only now – the challenges are never ending. When you offer full flexibility with days and hours you are like a shining star that they have been searching for in the dark!


Too many people believe that if an interview is for a temp role the need to prepare is minimal. Well, we can tell you from experience that this is not the case. If an employer is taking the time to interview you, it means they care about your ‘fit’ for the role and this is a good thing. Do the same things recommended when preparing for interview re a permanent role – review the position description, consider your past experiences and where your most relevant examples from your background are from, check out their website and Linked In profiles, dress to impress, be on time, prepare some questions etc etc

Emphasise your ability to ‘hit the ground running’!

One of our favourite terms internally when we are talking about high value temps – she would absolutely hit the ground running! Generally when an employer needs a temp its because someone is off on leave (sometimes unexpectedly), or they have a hiring freeze and need to prove the roles worth in the business, or there is an extra heavy workload that needs to be managed… So what do they need alongside flexibility? A confident individual who knows how to build effective working relationships quickly, be resourceful and figure out how to add the best value in a new environment. Have you done this before? Tell them about!

Don’t talk money!

As a general rule your temporary assignments will be coordinated by a recruitment agency, who will be your actual employer at the time, with the client being your host employer. Therefore negotiations in relation to hourly rates need to happen with your Consultant at the agency, not with the client directly. And if the role is with the client directly, we recommend that you refrain from talking about money in the actual interview unless the interviewer brings it up. Chat to HR or the person who coordinates the initial interview after a screening process, or follow up with an email or conversation afterward. Its often easier to negotiate outside of a setting where your abilities are being assessed.

Be patient regarding permanency

Ever been to an interview for a temp role and thought WOW WOW WOW this is my dream job? Let us give you a word of advice. If you start in the role as a temp you are 100% in the drivers seat to prove your capabilities and position as an outstanding permanent option. This is much easier to prove once in the role, than at interview. If you come across as too pushy in relation to permanency it might ruin your chances of even getting the temp role. The client might think you are unwilling to commit to temporary work and overlook your suitability even if you have the right skills.

Need more advice? Contact Lyndsay Gates on 02 8042 1840 for a confidential chat. With over 50 years of experience amongst our team, supporting temporary and contract employees, we know we can assist your on your employment journey.

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