New Survey Reports On Wages And Benefits For Temporary Help Services Workers


TEXT
Table 1.  Employment and earnings of workers in temporary
Table 2.  Paid holidays for temporary help supply
Table 3.  Paid vacations for temporary help supply
Table 4.  Health insurance coverage for temporary
Table 5.  Training for temporary help supply

 
 
 
Technical contact:                     USDL:  95-334 James Bjurman  202/606/6246
 
Media contact:                         FOR RELEASE:  10:00 A.M. (EDT) Kathryn
   Hoyle  202/606/5902         Wednesday, September 6, 1995
 
NEW SURVEY REPORTS ON WAGES AND BENEFITS FOR TEMPORARY HELP SERVICES WORKERS
 
 
 
   The pay of employees placed by the nation's temporary help services firms
averaged $7.74 an hour in November 1994, according to a survey by the Bureau of
Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor.  The survey, which covered more than
1.1 million temporary workers in establishments employing 20 workers or more,
found that the earnings of individual workers varied widely, reflecting such
factors as the skill level and occupation of the worker and local labor market
conditions.  (See tables 1 and A.)
 
   BLS found that many temporary help supply firms offer a package of employee
benefits, including paid holidays, paid vacations, and health insurance, to
workers who meet minimum qualifications.  However, few temporary workers
actually receive these benefits, either because they fail to meet the minimum
qualification requirements or, as in the case of insurance plans, they elect not
to participate.  (See tables 2-4.)
 
   In this Occupational Compensation Survey, temporary workers, or "temps," are
workers who are supplied to clients of temporary help supply firms.  These
workers are under the direct or general supervision of the client, but are on
the payroll of the help supply firm.
 
Changes in Employment and Wages, 1989 to 1994
 
   Since a similar study in 1989, employment  in the temporary help supply
services industry has grown much more rapidly than in the rest of the economy.
Over the 5-year period, the number of workers employed by the nation's temporary
help supply firms rose by almost 350,000 or 43 percent.  (See chart A.)  In
contrast, total nonfarm employment  grew by approximately 5 percent over the
same period. (The 1989 Occupational Compensation Survey of the temporary help
supply industry was limited to firms employing 50 workers or more, while the
more recent survey included firms with as few as 20 employees.  The smaller
firms accounted for approximately 30,000 workers in November 1994, or about 3
percent of the workers covered by the survey.)
 
        Chart A. Percentage employment change, 1989 to 1994 (can't see)
 
   The occupational  composition of the temporary help workforce changed
significantly from 1989 to 1994 as growth in blue-collar jobs outpaced that in
other occupations.  In 1989, white-collar jobs accounted for 58 percent of
industry employment,  and  30 percent of the workers were in blue-collar jobs.
By 1994, white-collar employment dropped to 49 percent of the industry total,
while blue-collar employment rose to 40 percent.  Service worker employment was
virtually unchanged over the period, accounting for about 5 percent of the
workers in each survey. Laborers, other than construction, and electronic
assemblers  were among the fastest growing of the individual occupations
studied.  On the other hand, the number of registered nurses and licensed
practical nurses in the temporary help industry declined significantly.
                             - 2 -
 
   Overall, average hourly earnings of temporary workers were little changed
over the 5-year period, rising from $7.59 an hour in October 1989 to $7.74 an
hour in November 1994, an increase of about 2  percent.  Changes in the
occupational mix of the industry's workforce were largely responsible for this
limited wage movement, as the increased employment in the lower-paid blue-collar
jobs served to hold down the industry-wide average earnings.  When comparisons
were limited to individual occupations or occupational groups, a varied pattern
emerged.  Pay for most occupational groups increased by 9 to 17  percent.
Average earnings for the numerically important clerical group increased 9
percent.  Pay for professional and technical employees was virtually unchanged;
pay rates for executive, administrative, and managerial workers rose 17 percent;
and precision production workers reported a 19 percent decline.
 
        Chart B. Percentage wage change, 1989 to 1994 (can't see)
 
Occupational Earnings Vary by Establishment Size and Metropolitan Area
 
  Average earnings of temporary workers varied according to the size of the
temporary help supply establishment, ranging from $9.97 an hour in the smallest
size establishments to about $7.27 an hour in the largest.  (See table A.)  This
pattern can be explained, at least partly, by looking at the occupational
composition of the establishments.  Smaller establishments had a much higher
proportion of their workforce in white-collar jobs than did the larger ones.
These smaller establishments tend to provide temporary help services within a
narrow occupational niche, often in higher-paying occupations such as engineers
or computer systems analysts.  Large establishments, on the other hand,
typically supply a wide range of occupations, including the lower-paying
blue-collar and service jobs, to their clients.
 
Table A.  Average hourly earnings, temporary help supply
services, by size of establishment, November 1994
 
Establishment size                Average
                                  hourly wage
All establishments                  $7.74
 
Establishments employing:
    Under 50 workers                $9.70
    50-99 workers                   $8.76
    100-249 workers                 $7.87
    250-499 workers                 $7.67
    500-999 workers                 $7.46
    1000-2499 workers               $7.24
    2500 or more workers            $7.27
 
 
   Among  the 21 metropolitan areas for which separate data are available,
temporary worker pay ranged from an average of $6.05 an hour in Tampa to $11.46
an hour in Boston.  (See table B.)  These differences may reflect, in part,
differences in the occupational mix of the temporary help workforce in each
labor market.  For example, in Tampa,  just over half of the workers were
classified in the lower paid blue-collar and service occupations, whereas,  in
Boston, only  about a quarter of the workers were in these categories.  However,
comparison of individual occupations also reveals wide variations in local pay
levels.  Average pay for laborers, except construction, ranged from $4.84 an
hour in Cleveland to $7.62 in Washington, D.C., a difference of 57  percent; and
general office clerks spanned a 32 percent band, from $5.71 in Baltimore to
$7.56 in Boston.
                             - 3 -
 
   In general, average pay for the individual white-collar occupations studied
was highest in Boston or Washington and lowest in Tampa or Orlando.  For
blue-collar and service workers, individual occupation averages were typically
highest in Boston and lowest in Cleveland, Orlando, or St. Louis.
 
Table B. Average hourly earnings, temporary help supply services,
selected metropolitan areas, November 1994
 
Area                All temps          White-collar            Blue-collar         Service-worker
 
United States (1)     $7.74                $9.37                  $6.02                 $6.28
 
Atlanta                7.43                 8.13                   6.03                   -
 
Baltimore               -                    -                     5.97                  6.59
 
Boston                11.46                12.95                   7.49                   -
 
Charlotte              7.23                  -                     6.38                  5.73
 
Cincinnati             6.87                  -                     5.77                  5.75
 
Cleveland              7.02                  -                     5.26                   -
 
Columbus               6.56                 7.33                   5.98                  6.28
 
Denver                 7.14                 7.99                   5.97                  6.13
 
Detroit                 -                    -                     5.80                  7.35
 
Houston                8.78                  -                     5.47                   -
 
Los Angeles            7.49                 9.89                   5.64                  6.58
 
Miami                  7.19                 8.02                   5.70                   -
 
Milwaukee              7.63                 9.12                   6.30                  5.87
 
New York              10.79                11.49                   5.40                  5.68
 
Orlando              7.05                  7.73                    5.66                  4.99
 
Phoenix              7.81                   -                      6.11                  6.48
 
Portland, OR         7.65                  9.21                    6.22                   -
 
Seattle              9.76                   -                      6.24                  8.22
 
St. Louis            6.73                   -                      5.3                  15.53
 
Tampa                6.05                  7.02                    4.97                  7.47
 
Washington, D.C.    11.13                 11.69                    7.09                  7.12
 
  1  Includes data for geographic areas studied but not shown separately.  Alaska and Hawaii
were not included in the survey.
                             - 4 -
 
NOTE:  Dashes indicate that data did not meet publication criteria.
 
Employee Benefits Many temporary help supply firms offer a package of employee
   benefits,  including paid holidays, paid vacations, and health insurance,  to
   workers who meet minimum qualification requirements.  The incidence of
   employee benefit plans was little changed from the 1989 survey.  Holiday and
   vacation plans were available to about three-fourths of the workers and
   health insurance to about one-half.  However, few temporary workers actually
   receive these benefits, either because they fail to meet the minimum
   qualification requirements or, as in the case of insurance plans, they elect
   not to participate. In firms employing most of the temporary workers, less
   than one-half of the workers -- often less than one-tenth -- qualified for
   holiday and vacation benefits.  Similarly, most firms reported that less than
   10 percent of their temporary workers participated in a company-sponsored
   health insurance program.  These insurance plans typically require the
   employee to pay part or all of the cost of coverage.
 
   Temporary help supply firms typically make training programs available to
their employees.  Such programs may cover a variety of subjects, including data
entry or word processing skills, computer programming, customer service, and
communications; workplace rules; and interview and resume development skills.
Training in one or more areas was available to about nine-tenths of the
temporary workers.  Training programs were most commonly voluntary, but about
four-tenths of the workers were selected for training by the help supply firm or
were trained at the request of the client.
 
Technical Note
 
   This study covered establishments employing 20 workers or more in the
temporary help supply industry (part of industry 7363, as defined in the 1987
edition of the Standard Industrial Classification Manual).  A sample of 1,033
establishments employing 399,551 workers in the industry was selected to
represent 5,429 establishments employing 1,184,342 workers.  Data collected from
the sample of establishments were appropriately weighted to represent all
establishments within the survey.  (Alaska and Hawaii were not included in the
survey.)
 
   Reports summarizing the results of temporary help services surveys in each of
21 metropolitan areas across the country also are available from the BLS or its
regional offices.  A comprehensive bulletin, summarizing survey data for the
United States and each area,  will be issued later this year.  Results from the
1989 survey were published in Industry Wage Survey: Help Supply Services,
October 1989, (Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bulletin 2430, September 1993).  For
additional information regarding these reports and other BLS  publications,
please write to the Bureau of Labor Statistics at:  Division of Occupational Pay
and Employee Benefits Levels, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, N.E., Washington, DC
20212-0001 or call the Occupational Compensation Survey Program information line
at (202) 606-6220.  Information in this publication will be made available to
sensory impaired individuals upon request.  Voice phone: (202) 606-STAT, TDD
phone: (202) 606-5897; TDD message referral phone:  1-800-326-2577.
 
Table 1. Employment and earnings of workers in temporary
help supply services, by occupation, November 1994
 
                                              United States(1)
Occupation
                                            Number of     Average hourly
                                             workers        earnings
All Help Supply Workers..............        $1,122,165       $7.74
 
White-Collar Occupations.............           547,671        9.37
Professional Specialty and
     Technical Occupations...........            75,265       17.68
Professional Specialty...............            33,236       24.11
    Commercial/Graphic Artists.......             1,712       17.63
    Computer Systems Analysts........             1,779       28.75
    Designers........................             8,351       23.04
    Engineers........................            10,243       28.54
    Registered Nurses................             6,164       21.98
    Technical Writers................             1,377       22.71
  Technical..........................            42,029       12.60
    Computer Programmers.............             2,492       25.40
    Drafters.........................             5,821       13.64
    Electrical and Electronic
       Technicians...................             6,853       10.32
    Licensed Practical Nurses........             4,908       14.30
  Executive, Administrative, and
     Managerial Occupations..........             9,124       17.22
  Accountants and Auditors...........             4,323       13.96
    Accountants......................             4,220       13.96
    Auditors.........................               103       13.83
  Marketing and Sales Occupations....            31,513        6.61
  Cashiers...........................             3,397        5.72
  Product Promoters..................             9,082        6.43
  Telemarketing Sales Workers........             9,041        7.18
  Clerical and Administrative Support           431,769        7.96
  Bookkeepers, Accounting and
     Auditing Clerks.................            18,332        8.30
  Computer Aides.....................               249        9.44
  Computer Operators and Printer
     Operators.......................             4,217       10.63
 
  Customer Service Workers...........            18,068        7.81
   Data Entry Operators...............           57,416        7.15
  General Office Clerks..............            90,182        6.78
  Inventory Clerks...................             4,683        6.59
  Receptionists......................            39,733        7.07
  Secretaries........................            61,353        9.49
  Typists and Word Processors........            57,173        9.85
 
 Blue-Collar Occupations.............           444,895        6.02
  Precision Production, Craft, and
     Repair..........................            47,354        7.23
  Assemblers, Electrical and
     Electronic Equipment............            32,495        6.60
  Machine Operators, Assemblers, and
     Inspectors......................           111,593        6.26
  Assemblers, Other than Electrical
     and Electronic..................            73,092        5.97
  Transportation and Material
     Movement Occupations............            10,853        7.03
 
  Motor Vehicle Operators............             7,164        7.34
  Handlers, Equipment Cleaners,
     Helpers and Laborers............           275,095        5.67
  Construction Laborers..............            10,503        5.39
  Helpers............................             6,768        5.93
  Equipment Cleaners and Vehicle
     Washers.........................             1,282        5.43
  Laborers, Other than Construction..           194,030        5.64
  Material Handlers..................            62,512        5.80
 
 Service Occupations.................            56,624        6.28
  Janitors and Cleaners..............            10,220        5.67
  Maids and Housekeepers.............             2,912        5.26
  Nursing Aides, Orderlies and
     Attendants......................            28,387        7.01
  Nursing Aides and Attendants.......            28,121        7.02
 
  1 Alaska and Hawaii were not included in the study.
  2 Excludes premium pay for overtime and for work on
weekends, holidays, and late shifts.  Also excluded are
performance bonuses and lump-sum payments, as well as
profit-sharing payments, attendance bonuses, Christmas or
year-end bonuses, and other nonproduction bonuses.  Pay
increases, but not bonuses, under cost-of-living clauses
and incentive payments, however, are included.
Note:  The "All Help Supply Workers"  estimate includes data
for workers in catefories not shown spearately.  Also, overall
occupations may include data for subcategories not shown separately.
 
 
Table 2.  Paid holidays for temporary help supply
workers(1), November 1994
 
                  Item                                     Percent
 
   All help supply workers..............                     100
 
Employees in establishments which do not
   provide paid holidays................                      11
 
Employees in establishments which
   provide paid holidays................                      71
 
   Days provided to eligible employees:
       Under 5 days.....................                       4
       5 days...........................                       5
       6 days...........................                      49
       Over 6 days and under 7 days.....                      (2)
       7 days...........................                       6
       Over 7 days......................                       7
 
Average number of days for eligible
      employees receiving holidays......                       6.0
 
Eligibility requirements:
       Minimum hours of service.........                      14
       Based upon employee working the
          day before the holiday, day
          after, or both................                       7
       Combination of hours of service
          and whether employee worked
          before or after the holiday...                      48
       Other requirement................                       2
 
Employees in establishments eligible
      for holidays:
       None eligible....................                      (2)
       Some, but under 10 percent.......                      37
       10 percent, but under 25.........                      18
       25 percent, but under 50.........                      10
       50 percent, but under 75.........                       3
       75 percent and over..............                       2
 
Employees in establishments which
   provide paid holidays only at request
   of client............................                      18
 
  1 Alaska and Hawaii were not included in the
study.
  2 Less than 0.5 percent.
Note:  Because of rounding, sums of individual
items may not equal totals.
 
 
Table 3.  Paid vacations for temporary help supply
workers(1), November 1994
 
                  Item                     Percent
 
   All help supply workers..............     100
 
Employees in establishments not
   providing paid vacations.............      13
 
Employees in establishments providing
   paid vacations.......................      74
 
   Employees in establishments eligible
      for vacations:
       None eligible....................     (2)
       Some, but under 10 percent.......      46
       10 percent, but under 25.........      16
       25 percent, but under 50.........       6
       50 percent, but under 75.........       1
       75 percent and over..............       3
 
Employees in establishments which
   provide paid vacations only at
   request of client....................      12
 
  1 Alaska and Hawaii were not included in the
study.
  2 Less than 0.5 percent.
 
 
Table 4.  Health insurance coverage for temporary
help supply workers(1), November 1994
 
                  Item                     Percent
 
   All help supply workers..............     100
 
Employees in establishments which do not
   provide medical insurance............      32
 
Employees in establishments providing
   medical insurance....................      49
 
   Employees in establishments eligible
      for medical insurance:
       None eligible....................       1
       Some, but under 10 percent.......      21
       10 percent, but under 25.........       2
       25 percent, but under 50.........       3
       50 percent, but under 75.........       5
       75 percent and over..............      16
 
   Employees in establishments eligible
      for medical insurance by
      contribution:
       Financed wholly by employer......       3
       Financed wholly by employee......      25
       Jointly financed by employer and
          employee......................      20
 
   Employees in establishments eligible
      for medical insurance by
      participation:
       None eligible....................       5
       Some, but under 10 percent.......      35
       10 percent, but under 25.........       3
       25 percent, but under 50.........       1
       50 percent, but under 75.........     (2)
       75 percent and over..............     (2)
 
Employees in establishments which
   provide medical insurance only at
   request of client....................      19
 
  1 Alaska and Hawaii were not included in the
study.
  2 Less than 0.5 percent.
Note:  Because of rounding, sums of individual
items may not equal totals.
 
 
Table 5.  Training for temporary help supply
workers, United States(1), November 1994
 
                  Item                     United
                                           States
 
   All help supply workers..............     100
 
Employees in establishments providing
   training.............................      89
 
     Criteria for employee training
 
  All employees are trained.............      23
  Employees volunteer...................      71
  Establishment selects employees.......      40
  Client requests employee training.....      41
 
 Methods by which training is provided
  No training provided..................      11
  Classroom work, lectures..............      43
  Written self-study material...........      49
  Audio-visual presentations............      44
  Computer-based training tutorials.....      78
  Other.................................       9
 
         Professional/Technical
 
  Data entry
      Provides training.................      25
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      60
  Word processing
      Provides training.................      29
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      55
  Computer programming language
      Provides training.................      14
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      71
  Workplace rules and on-the-job conduct
      Provides training.................      48
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      36
  Customer service skills
      Provides training.................      27
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      57
  Communication skills
      Provides training.................      16
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      69
  Interview and resume development
     skills
      Provides training.................      31
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      53
  Other training
      Provides training.................      18
      No workers in this category.......      16
      No training policy................      66
 
 
             Clerical/Sales
 
  Data entry
      Provides training.................      71
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      23
  Word processing
      Provides training.................      75
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      19
  Computer programming language
      Provides training.................      27
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      68
  Workplace rules and on-the-job conduct
      Provides training.................      72
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      23
  Customer service skills
      Provides training.................      52
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      43
  Communication skills
      Provides training.................      18
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      76
  Interview and resume development
     skills
      Provides training.................      33
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      61
  Other training
      Provides training.................      19
      No workers in this category.......       5
      No training policy................      76
 
              Blue-Collar
 
  Data entry
      Provides training.................      14
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      76
  Word processing
      Provides training.................      16
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      74
  Computer programming language
      Provides training.................     (2)
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      91
  Workplace rules and on-the-job conduct
      Provides training.................      56
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      35
  Customer service skills
      Provides training.................      14
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      77
  Communication skills
      Provides training.................      14
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      77
  Interview and resume development
     skills
      Provides training.................      17
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      74
  Other training
      Provides training.................      18
      No workers in this category.......       9
      No training policy................      73
 
                Service
 
  Data entry
      Provides training.................      15
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      64
  Word processing
      Provides training.................      15
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      64
  Computer programming language
      Provides training.................       2
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      77
  Workplace rules and on-the-job conduct
      Provides training.................      45
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      33
  Customer service skills
      Provides training.................      18
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      61
  Communication skills
      Provides training.................      17
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      62
  Interview and resume development
     skills
      Provides training.................      16
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      63
  Other training
      Provides training.................      15
      No workers in this category.......      21
      No training policy................      63
 
  1 Alaska and Hawaii were not included in the
study.
  2 Less than 0.5 percent.
Note:  Because of rounding, sums of individual
items may not equal totals.