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What Staffing Firms Do During the Holidays for Clients, Staff and Candidates

From cookies and pies to charitable donations, companies find unique ways to thank both clients and candidates.

December 4, 2009
What do staffing companies do for their clients and candidates during the holidays?

Manpower donates to a charity on behalf of its clients, according to Cathy Paige, vice president and general manager for the company’s Northeastern division. Paige says clients like that more than a tangible gift.

“They love that,” she says. “What would you rather have: another note cube on your desk or a contribution to United Way that can actually make a difference in somebody’s [holiday]?”

Last year, the Reserves Network also decided to donate to a charity—the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation—on its clients’ behalf, and that was successful. So the company is exploring the idea of doing something similar this year, according to president Amy Gerrity.

“We just thought in light of the economic times, there were so many needy folks out there,” she says. “It seemed like the right thing to do at the right time, in light of people losing their jobs, losing their homes—in light of everything that was happening in the world.”

Hire Dynamics donates to Samaritan’s Purse on behalf of its clients during the holidays, says CEO Dan Campbell. And for candidates, Hire Dynamics matches whatever its clients are doing for their full-time people, Campbell says.

Bill Stoller, one of the founders of Express Employment Professionals, says that this year clients will get much more of verbal thank you, or perhaps a card in the mail or an e-card, as opposed to a donation to a nonprofit or a material gift.

Talent Tree is a long-term supporter of the American Cancer Society, so the company selects cards designed by children with cancer and sends them to clients and employees, says Ruth McCurdy, vice president of corporate connections.

Additionally, Talent Tree sends clients such goodies as chocolate-covered almonds and gourmet gift towers.

“We’ve found that people enjoy snack food items and love to share,” McCurdy says. “We’ve also given gourmet coffee items.”

Talent Tree also does special things for its associates. For example, one year, the company’s Tuscaloosa, Alabama, branch collected gently used toys and created a “Christmas store” in the office so that associates could shop for toys for their children.

The money was donated to the American Cancer Society.

S3 (Strategic Staffing), like Talent Tree, sends clients holiday cards that have been purchased by a local charity, as well as goodies, according to CEO Cindy Pasky. S3 is “the cookie company,” Pasky says. Every year, S3 delivers thousands of pounds of cookies to customers. The company has been doing it since its first year, when all it could afford to give was holiday cookies—and over the years it has become a fun tradition, Pasky says.

The cookies are ordered through local companies and hand delivered.

“We don’t mail any of them,” Pasky says. “Sales reps show up with cookies with Santa hats on. Some customers have been with us so long, it’s like, ‘When are you coming with the cookies?’ ”

QPS Employment Group orders 4,000 pumpkin pies for clients at Thanksgiving, according to Dan McNulty, executive vice president and COO.

“Sales reps take them out,” he says. “They’re delivered daily, so they’re fresh. They’re boxed up in a nice QPS-logoed box.”

QPS has been doing this for a number of years, and “a lot of people actually look forward to it now,” McNulty says.

Internal staff receive pumpkin pies as well. QPS also gives a couple hundred turkeys to its candidates at Thanksgiving.

And at Christmastime, QPS gives clients red and white wine with a QPS label on it, jackets and blankets with the QPS logo and Starbuck’s gift cards in a QPS mug, McNulty says. QPS also works with one of its clients to give clients fruit baskets, and gives out bottles of champagne for New Year’s.

SALO rents out the Children’s Theater of Minneapolis and treats staff, clients and temporary workers to a performance, according to Amy Langer, a partner in the company with John Folkestad.

Winter, Wyman & Co. takes clients and candidates out to lunch or provides them with lunch as a way of showing that the company values their business, says Scott Ragusa, president of the company’s contract business. Some of the company’s larger clients also receive gift baskets.

Last year, Reliable Staffing Services prepared holiday meals for all of its temporary employees and their families, according to CEO Larry Kidd. Each worker received a grocery bag with enough food to feed a family of four.

Employees also were entered in a drawing for Christmas prizes.