Staffing Employment Steady in 2017


New Data From Quarterly ASA Staffing Employment and Sales Survey

U.S. staffing companies employed an average of 3.19 million temporary and contract workers per week in 2017, down slightly (-0.6%) from 2016, according to data released today by the American Staffing Association. This is the third-highest number of staffing employees since 2006, just before the Great Recession.

During all of 2017, staffing companies hired a total of 15.49 million temporary and contract employees. The average length of employment with a staffing company was 10.7 weeks in 2017, slightly shorter than the tenure of 11.5 weeks in 2016.

In the fourth quarter of 2017, average weekly staffing employment totaled 3.34 million—3.7% higher than in the third quarter, which is the largest quarter-to-quarter increase since 2014. On a year-to-year basis, the average weekly number of temporary and contract staffing jobs in the fourth quarter of 2017 was unchanged (0.0%) compared with the fourth quarter of 2016.

“During the past year, the staffing industry helped more than 15 million American workers find jobs and advance their careers,” said Richard Wahlquist, ASA president and chief executive officer. “But demand for qualified talent continues to outpace supply. Looking ahead, a top priority and focus must be on training, retraining, and upskilling the current and future American workforce.”

Annual temporary and contract staffing sales in 2017 totaled $133.87 billion, up 4.2% from 2016. Fourth quarter sales grew to $34.93 billion, 3.6% more than in the third quarter of 2017 and 4.6% more than in the fourth quarter of 2016.

To learn more about the quarterly ASA Staffing Employment and Sales Survey, visit You can also follow ASA research on Twitter.

Interviews with ASA executives are available.

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About the American Staffing Association

The American Staffing Association is the voice of the U.S. staffing, recruiting, and workforce solutions industry. ASA and its state affiliates advance the interests of the industry across all sectors through advocacy, research, education, and the promotion of high standards of legal, ethical, and professional practices. For more information about ASA, visit

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