How to Get Out of a Temp Position without Souring your Agency Contract

Get Out of a Temp Position Innovo Staffing


Finding a full-time position after an extended period of contract work is a blessing for most, but can also be a minefield when it comes to delivering the news tactfully and professionally. When figuring out how to get out of a temp agency – or indeed, any workplace – a carefully-considered resignation and handover plan is essential in maintaining your reputation and future hire ability.


Whether your reasons for leaving are positive, negative, or simply due to a change in circumstances, the same principle remains: learning how to successfully navigate the resignation process so that all parties are left feeling respected is an essential life skill to master.  


Temporary jobs are convenient for a number of reasons, such as filling in the gaps between pursuing full-time work or getting to experience a variety of roles and industries before making a commitment. However, if your ultimate goal is full-time employment, the moment will eventually arrive when you have to leave one job and start another, and sometimes before your current contract has ended.


So, what is the most diplomatic way to get out of a temp agency or general contract earlier than expected, without burning bridges?  While there are no hard-and-fast answers, preparing yourself adequately is key to getting where you want to be: closer to your new full-time position.  


By maintaining a positive, professional attitude at all times, you can ensure the doors of opportunity will always be open for you– even if you aren’t able to see your contract through to its expiry.  Here are a few steps you can take to ensure you’ve considered all angles of a successful resignation:


Men Discuss Work
Men Discuss Work


Contact your temp agency

If you found your current job through a temp agency, such as Innovo Staffing, the first step you should take is to contact your agency representative and inform them of your decision to leave, especially if it is prior to the agreed date. 


Generally speaking, you’re considered an employee of the temp agency even if the majority of your time has been spent with the contract employers you are currently with.


While this may seem a little off-course for those used to direct employment, contacting your temp agency first is the right way to go when planning your resignation.  Firstly, the reputation of your temp agency is largely hinged upon the quality of candidates on their books, and they’ll want to make sure that any possible surprises are handled with the utmost professionalism and care. Furthermore, with a wealth of company background knowledge to assist the process, they will be able to give you the best advice on how to go about leaving.

Review your contract

Before you compose your resignation letter, it’s important to read over your contract carefully to check that you’re not in breach of any policies. Some contracts stipulate a mandatory notice period you may have to work through before leaving your job. If this isn’t specified in your contract, a minimum of two weeks’ notice is the industry standard. 


You should consider your notice period when negotiating the terms of your new full-time position, though some companies can pile on the pressure for an immediate start.  It is always a good idea to leave the start date open to negotiation so that you’re able to fulfill your contractual obligations at your current workplace. Though it may be inconvenient for your new employer to wait, they’ll certainly be able to appreciate your concern and loyalty towards your current company, knowing that you’ll treat them with the same respect.


Your contract may also detail set leaving procedures, such as how to report your resignation and in what order. Calling your temp agency representative is typically enough to get the ball rolling and ensure everything is handled properly. You should always follow up a phone call with an email, so that there is a written, time-stamped trail of all communication.


The temp agency representative may want to inform your current employer of your intention to leave, since you’re still technically an employee of the agency. They’ll also let you know when it is best to inform your employer personally and will confirm your final workday.

Compose a positive, professional resignation letter

Once you’ve gathered all the information you need and know where you stand contractually, you can begin composing your resignation letter.  It should briefly explain your reasons for leaving, the date upon which your employment will end and your gratitude towards the company for providing you the opportunity to grow in your field.


This considerate approach is where you can easily express your thoughtfulness and empathy, leaving your employer no room for contention.


Refrain from airing any personal or work-related grievances, even if they are relevant to your reasons for leaving.  The aim is to remain positive and demonstrate compassion, thankfulness and professionalism.

Deliver in person

Organize a meeting with your boss or designated supervisor to deliver your resignation letter in person, if possible. This is a great opportunity to create an open dialogue between yourself and your employer, who may ask you to elaborate on your reasons for leaving.  Whatever the reasons, stay as diplomatic and understanding as possible, and steer the focus toward making your transition out of the company as smooth as possible. Make sure any feedback is tactfully delivered with the intention of helping the company be the best that it can be moving forward.


Maintain your employer’s trust and follow through on your commitments to complete short-term projects, and organize handover materials additionally, to ensure your replacement gets on board quickly and with minimal disruption.


Collecting Things From the Workplace
Collecting Things From the Workplace

Leave a lasting impression

Working diligently during your notice period is notably one of the most important ways you can make a lasting impression. Following through on your final tasks with positivity and grace will demonstrate that your work ethic is ingrained in your values, and not circumstantial.  


Continuing to nurture your professional relationships with a friendly attitude is a surefire way to be remembered as someone who is easy to work with and deserving of positive recommendations. 

Exceptions to consider

Most of the time, navigating resignations at temp agencies should be fairly simple if the above steps are taken into consideration.  However, you may encounter certain unexpected issues if things don’t go to plan– for example, if you quit your temp job but your permanent employer doesn’t follow through on hiring you. This could cause many complications, such as being disqualified for receiving unemployment benefits because you quit. Consider how getting out of a temp position or agency might affect any future contracting you do.


One way to preempt such a possibility is to ask for a pre-employment contract or a hiring contract from your new employer as a guarantee that you’ll actually start your employment.  That way, you can quit your temp job without worrying about being dropped in the meantime. If navigating this situation concerns you, it may be best to consult an employment attorney.


Beginning a full-time position can be nerve-wracking, but these considerations will help you maneuver through the process with ease. We wish you the best of luck in all your future endeavors.


This article is brought to you by Innovo Staffing, a full-service employment agency located in New York, New Jersey, and Philadelphia.  We specialize in pairing interim, direct-hire, and consulting professionals in financing and accounting industries.  Each recruiter at Innovo Staffing is highly knowledgeable and experienced, with an impeccable track record of success in the recruiting industry.  All candidates and clients are treated in the highest regard and provided with exceptional value and career guidance.


Need talent or want to find a job catered to your interests, skills and expertise? Don’t hesitate. Get in touch with us today!

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