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Companies reduce healthcare costs and taxes by using temporary workers

Local expert expects firms to continue expanding use of temporary and freelance workers
by Brianna Bailey Published: August 31, 2014

Employers are increasingly turning to temporary and freelance workers to fill their staffing needs, according to a new report published by the Oklahoma City-based staffing company Express Employment Professionals.

During the Great Recession, more companies used temporary workers to fill staffing needs due to economic uncertainty, and the trend hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down even as the economy has recovered, said Bob Funk, chairman and CEO of Express Employment Professionals.

“In response to the Affordable Care Act and higher taxes, companies are responding to uncertainty by turning to temporary employees,” Funk said.

While about 2 percent of United States’ workforce is made up of temporary employees, temporary workers make up more than 4 percent of Europe’s workforce, because of higher business costs and taxes, Funk said.

Funk predicts that the United States’ workforce will begin to look more like Europe’s over the coming years.

The number of temporary employees in the United States has increased by about 50 percent since the end of the Great Recession, according the report America’s Changing Workforce and the Rise of the Contingent Employee, a new report released by Express Employment Professionals for Labor Day.

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that Express compiled, the temporary help services industry now employs around 2.7 million Americans per week — an all-time high.

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