For the past 15 years or so, I've been setting up training programs from conception for sites where I've worked.

Over that time, I've come to learn, that my best employee is my most educated (trained) employee.

For all practical purposes – there is no difference between the type and quality of training a new, existing or temporary employee receives. What changes is what topics are covered based on the risk the given employee is expected to encounter during the performance of their duties.

Recently, however, OSHA took serious interest in training, especially for temporary employees. As I thought about what a temporary employee has been for me, I realized that I have actually had at least 3 types of temporary employees I had to train (your take may vary on this one):

  • Contract Employee – is a contractor working at the site full or part time under the supervisory direction of a facility employee (consider Security Employees hired through a Security Company who "reports" to the EHS Manager, cleaning crews and interns)

  • Seasonal Temporary Employee – Any temporary employee hired for an extended part of the year (generally to cover the busy season) who is expected to perform all or most of same activities as the full time facility employees. This could also include a Temp to Hire.

  • Short Term Temporary Employee – Any temporary employee hired for limited period and is expected to perform limited activities, such as repackaging, relabeling or cleaning

To me, a Contract Employee = Seasonal Temporary Employee = New Employee – therefore the training doesn't change. Once they are in door and working at the facility, then Existing Employee training applies. The only real difference between a Temporary Employee and a Regular Employee is who covers their benefits including medical and workman's compensation.

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