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Temping Tips

Chronicles of a Job Hunter: Temping Temptations

SavvySugar Community member littlemissjobhunter has been sharing the trials and tribulations of a job-seeker, a journey she's been on ever since she decided to up and move to chase her dream job. So far, she's managed to find a temping job, but everything still seems up-in-the-air.

Ever feel like a teetering top about to topple over . . . circa Inception? Welcome to the life of contract work. Although I cannot say my life since my departure from Asia is the perfect fairytale ending that I wished for, I cannot exactly complain either. This story is dated back to right around the holidays, when for most companies, finance especially, takes on a hiring freeze until the new year when promotions, bonuses, and yearly sweeps have been complete. For retail, this is almost the exact opposite.

I had been in contact with recruiters from two of SF’s premier retail establishment and on Christmas Eve, at 4 p.m. I received an email about a job offer. Sleepy-eyed from my 4 p.m. cat nap, I pinched myself to ensure the reality of this email. The next thought was which position was this exactly? I had applied and interviewed with so many companies, I failed to recollect which position this email was referring to. Now, comes the twist.


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The email had included two attachments — one time sheet, and one personal information log. Now, being unemployed for a few months, I knew right away what this meant. Contract Work. I would not be receiving paychecks from the company directly but from an outsourced agency. Then, listed in plain sight was the start date: January 3, 2011. In officially two weeks, I was asked to work the grind of a 9 to 6 day indefinitely. Now, like most recent graduates, I asked more experienced friends from the corporate world what this actually meant. With differing opinions, and both positive and negative feedback, I decided to give it a try. My decision was consequently made up for me when my other job offer had fallen through. Fast forward to the first day of work, and I learn the semi-permanence of this position was not at all, semi-permanent. As I heard a girl’s name thrown around with no face to match said girl to, I came to the realization that I was replacing “mysterious girl’s role” indefinitely as she was MIA until her appearance back to work.

Fast forward to January 21, 2011 and I have officially completed three full weeks of work within the product development team of a multi-million dollar apparel empire. While I was someone who has loved the apparel industry from a very young age, I had no product knowledge concerning fabric, trims, or colors in any form. From day one to day 15, the expansive retail vocabulary and terminology learned was far superior to any fabric or materials class.

While my future here is uncertain, this story is to illustrate the abundance of potential learning opportunities to further your education and knowledge while actively job searching. On the bright side, even if this position is short-lived, I will have come out learning invaluable industry experience. Want to be a buyer? Learn Excel’s V-lookup and pivot tables. Want to be in marketing? Learn the basics of photoshop! The list does not end there — practice the 3 e’s: enrich, educate, and evolve!

Until next time . . . signing off,


Have a laid off story you want to share? Join our Laid Off Ladies group or vent anonymously in Savvy Confessions — see you there!

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