Labour Hire Companies Independent Review
At some stage of your working holiday you are probably going to put your name down with a labour hire company. Labour hire is hit or miss – sometimes they have loads of work on and will keep you busy for your entire stay, other times you will never hear back from them. In case you are not sure what these guys do, they basically specilise in short term and casual work. They have a bunch of employers on their system who call them if they need extra staff for a contract, function or event or if they need someone to fill in for a person on maternity or sick leave. They pay the company, the company pays you.
During my own working holiday in Australia, I signed up with a bunch of labour hire companies in Darwin (NT) and Toowoomba (QLD). In both instances I looked them up out of the phonebook, arrived in person to the office, filled out an application, submitted my resume and waited to hear back. In Darwin I contacted 8 companies and heard back from two of them. In Toowoomba I contacted 5 companies and heard back from 1 of them.
So what sort of work did they provide? In Darwin I worked for Chandler Macleod (Ready Workforce) and these guys kept me really busy. Here is a snap shot of some of the jobs I did for them:
Bar Tender – Sky City Casino
Waitress – Holiday Inn
Room Service Person – Holiday Inn
Kitchen Hand – Darwin Convention Centre
These guys always had loads of work on for me and really I didn’t need any other work. I also did some cleaning and gardening work for another company but I can’t remember their name. In Toowoomba I basically did all my work at the Toowoomba Turf Club, sometimes in the kitchen, sometimes the bar, sometimes waitressing. This was all function work and usually only happened on weekends so it wasn’t enough to support myself fulltime.
I focused mostly on hospitality agencies but you can also obtain temp work in administration, cleaning and general laboring amongst more specilised positions. Sometimes you will be asked to sit an exam or pass a typing test (if going for administration) prior to getting hired.
The thing I love about working for labour hire companies is that you can pick and choose your jobs. For example while working for Chandler Macleod in Darwin I quickly worked out which places were great to work for and which were not so awesome. This way I could say no to the jobs at the sucky places and only take on the jobs at the good places where I knew I was going to be happy.
These companies are a great idea to earn some extra cash for your trip but you will probably need to put your name down at all them, rather than just one because some of them you will never hear back from.