Job hunters often feel they must embellish their skills to land a job, but when you sign up to work with a temp agency, exaggerating your skills may work against you. You could end up in the wrong position. So during your first meeting at a temp agency, be honest, suggests Zach Pigg, recruiter for Omni Staffing Solution, a staffing agency based in Cleveland, Ohio.

At the initial interview with a temp agency, you will be asked such questions as:

  • Have you worked in an environment that involves professional executives?
  • Have you worked in an environment that requires you to support many people versus just one executive?
  • Are you more comfortable in a laid-back office that only requires casual dress, or do you prefer to wear a suit every day?

Your answers to these types of questions will let the agency know about your soft skills. Since these are not already covered on your resume, your honesty here is essential to where the agency will place you. Hard skills, such as experience with software and typing, are easy to test and help you get your foot in the door. Soft skills, the people skills and experience you’ve gained in different offices, may indicate whether or not you’ll last on a certain assignment.

By being dishonest with your agency, you are preventing them from giving you a good placement. And a bad placement doesn’t do anyone any favors.

At the Agency

You’ve made an appointment with a temp agency, and in addition to being honest, it helps to be prepared. Here are a few hints as to what you should do and expect.

  • If you can, arrive with a resume. But don’t fret if you don’t have one. The agency will help you formulate one.
  • Plan to spend several hours there. It takes time for the agency to interview, test and work with you.
  • Dress as if you were going to the office. Temp agency representatives will be able to determine immediately whether you need advice on dressing for success.