My Short-Term Job Turned into a Long-Term Career

By Jezabel Southard

Posted on October 10, 2017

Kelsey Jenkins loves jobs that keep her moving and active. For three seasons, she worked as part of a trail crew for National Parks Services, doing drain installation, brush cutting and clearing, grading, and other trail maintenance duties.

During the off season, she’d take up odd jobs like dog-sitting or working as a barista. She even did some construction work.

Unfortunately, an unexpected hiring freeze prevented her from starting a fourth season of trail maintenance.

Knowing that she needed to find a new source of income in the meantime, Kelsey decided to reach out to a top temp agency in Tukwila.

She went to TERRA’s Tukwila branch, looking for a short-term job, and met with Recruiter, Stephanie Launius.

She wasn’t sure what to expect, having never worked with a staffing agency before.

“I was hesitant at first,” Kelsey confessed. “I wasn’t sure how it worked. How contractual was it? Was I under any obligation? Was it a 90-day commitment? Was it a paid service?”

But she needn’t have worried.

“I was pleasantly surprised,” she said. “TERRA was so laid back. They were willing to work with you and for you. They were really flexible and not rigid at all! My recruiter would often say, ‘Is this what you were looking for? We can find you something else that might work better.’”

Kelsey shared with Stephanie what she was looking for. “I wanted something temp. I just wanted to make some money. I wasn’t sure how long I would be available. I wanted a job that would keep me active, a physical job. Something like warehouse work, where I’d be picking things up and moving them.”

Stephanie had a short-term job she thought would be a great fit for her.

“When I initially interviewed Kelsey, I immediately thought she’d be great for one of the companies I staff for. Her personality really reminded me a great deal of the site supervisor’s personality,” Stephanie began. “She came across as earnest and easygoing and she was very polite. She was initially looking for summer work to fill in between dog-sitting jobs. She happened to come in when we had a spot open for this particular client and was able to start working immediately. “

Kelsey made a great impression on her employer.

“Her supervisor was so impressed with her attitude and work ethic that he offered her additional tasks. From there he decided that he wanted to train her as a forklift driver for his crew,” Stephanie said.

The client liked Kelsey so much that they decided to offer her full-time, regular employment!

Kelsey shared, “It’s a friendly, easygoing environment. It’s a great company with great benefits and a great manager. Temping allowed me to get a feel for a company before accepting a permanent job. And I got good vibes and a good impression of the company.”

Regarding her experience with TERRA, Kelsey shared, “I would definitely recommend TERRA. They hit it out of the park the first time around. I’d also like to thank Stephanie. I felt lucky to have her as my recruiter.  She was great from start to finish. She was someone I could call weekly and she worked with me. And she gave me a feel for the client because I could tell that she had a good relationship with the manager.”

Kelsey is a great example of how temporary work can open the door to some fantastic opportunities. She was able to turn a temporary, three-week project into a full-time job that offers great benefits!

She had this advice to share with job seekers who are unsure about working with a staffing agency, or who are put off by temporary work:

If you’re hesitant to work with a temp agency, as I was, remember that you have nothing to lose. If you don’t get a good vibe, leave. Try something new. They can help you.

To be successful, show up for the job. Always act like someone is watching you. Think about what you can do to be helpful – even if you are not on the clock. Help your potential coworkers. Be your best self. Don’t just stand there if you see someone needs help. Have integrity as a worker. Be productive and look for things to do. Honestly, it’s easy to shine in a temp role.

Great advice, Kelsey! We wish you continued success. And thanks for letting us play a part in your story.

Need help with your job search?

TERRA Staffing is a leading temp agency that works with companies large and small, across a variety of industries and we can help open the door for new career opportunities – so you can do the rest.

Getting started with us is easy. Just check out our current job openings.

We have offices in the Seattle-Puget SoundPortland-Metro, and Phoenix-Metro areas and our expert recruiters are waiting to speak with you!

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