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Bleak Employment Market Sparks Staffing Firm Growth

Birmingham Business Journal (Alabama) (07/27/12) Ryan Poe

In metro Birmingham, AL, several locally based staffing firms have found the recession to be the best time to grow. The Onin Group and Personnel Staffing Inc. have both expanded with new offices outside the Birmingham market. Onin Group leaders say they owe their rapid growth largely to the recession, which has created a temporary work force boom. In the past year, Onin opened 15 offices, giving it a total of 52 offices in 11 states, says chief operating officer Jim Weaver. Year to date, revenues are already up about 50% over the past year, he adds.

Personnel Staffing account executive Sylvia Wright says her company has added two branches—one in Tuscaloosa and the other in Chattanooga, TN—giving the company a total of seven offices. “The recession has affected our industry in a positive way,” Wright says. “There is an increase in business for staffing companies.” With the effects of the recession still lingering, Wright says, businesses are wary of committing to long-term employment. “It saves companies money if an employee does not work out,” she notes.