After peaking at $98.3 billion in
2007, temporary and contract staffing
sales slid 3.8% in 2008 and plummeted
24.1% in 2009 to $72.0 billion—a total decline of $26.3 billion (see Figure
13).34 The staffing industry’s sales losses in 2009 were the biggest ever, even
though temporary and contract employment in some sectors began to grow
again in the middle of that year.
In 2010, sales increased 21.3% to
After seven consecutive quarters of
year-to-year declining sales—from the
second quarter of 2008 through the
fourth quarter of 2009—growth resumed
in the first quarter of 2010 at 8.5%.
Year-to-year sales jumped 25.2% in the
second quarter of 2010 and pushed up
to a 28.2% increase in the third quarter,
making it the strongest ever quarterly
sales performance in the history of the
ASA employment and sales survey,
which has been tracking sales quarterly
Sales growth eased a bit in the fourth
quarter (up 23.2%) and eased further
in the first quarter of 2011 (up 19.5%).
Temporary and contract staffing sales
would have to grow at least 10.5% in the
second through the fourth quarters of
2011 for the annual total to match the
$98 billion peak of 2007.
With the exception of outplacement
(a countercyclical sector in the staffing
industry) and health care staffing, all
industry sectors grew in 2010, according
to Staffing Industry Analysts Inc.35
Among temporary and contract staffing
services, industrial staffing showed the
strongest growth (27%), followed by
information technology, engineering,
Search and placement sales peaked
at $18.0 billion in 2007, according to
the U.S. Economic census conducted
by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
Sales declined 12% in 2008 and then
were devastated by a 51% falloff in 2009,
SIA estimates. Sales turned upward by
22.8% in 2010, according to SIA. Apply-
Figure 13: Temporary and Contract Staffing Sales Increased by 21.3% in 2010.
Sales (Billions of U.S. Dollars)—Annual Totals
68.9 68.2 70.5
2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1994 1993 1992 1991 1990
Create Jobs By Stripping Away
Strip away outdated policies that no longer support companies or the people who
work in them. Job cycles have become incredibly short nowadays; independent contractors and part-time employees move in
and out of the work force. These types of
workers miss out on benefits that are tied
to length of service as they move from job
to job. Social benefits tied to work should be
based on employment, not the employer. It
shouldn’t matter where you work or for how
long. And the income tax needs to be revisited, perhaps by including a value-added tax
instead of an income- or revenue-based tax.
The tax structure should be based on the
amount of value created by companies as
they innovate and produce products, rather
than how many people they employ.
—Carl Camden, president and chief
executive officer of Kelly Services n