The hiring process for temp jobs (or freelance gigs or contract roles) is different than for permanent jobs. Never mind that there is no such thing as permanent – people change jobs an average of 12 times during their career. When employers hire for permanent roles, they imagine a longer runway to onboard and train the new hire. Hires for temp jobs need to be productive from the first day, to seamlessly and effortlessly slide into an open role .

Given the different hiring expectations for temp jobs vs. permanent jobs, you need different job search tactics. Here are five ways your job search should change if you want to land temp jobs:

1. Broadcast your interest in temp jobs

It is not obvious, especially if you are coming from a permanent job, that you are open to temp work. In fact, when I recruit, I always assume the opposite and don’t pitch my temp openings to candidates currently employed in a permanent role or coming off of a permanent role.

Put “available for temporary, contract and freelance work” in your online profile and resume. In networking meetings, mention that you’re open to hearing about and being considered for temp jobs. Indicate your specific availability – sending a note to your contacts that you are finishing a current project next week is networking outreach that puts you top of mind and signals your availability for temp jobs.

2. Emphasize experience specific to temp jobs

If you already have temp experience, highlight this in your marketing and networking. Being successful as a temp takes a different profile – employers know this and look for this . It is often not obvious on a resume if jobs are temp or permanent, so specify this by including the word, contract or temp, after the employer or title. In addition, highlight which roles were temp or permanent in an interview.

If you don’t have temp experience, highlight when you have worked on short, discreet projects and the results you were able to achieve. Give examples of when you have parachuted into new situations and had to adapt quickly. These may not be official temp jobs, but this experience is directly relevant.

3. Break down your skills to expand the temp jobs you qualify for

Your permanent experience likely encompasses a lot of different responsibilities, but temp jobs by their nature will be more siloed. Therefore, you want to break down your broader roles into specific skills and qualifications that can funnel into a variety of temp jobs.

For example, if you work in marketing, you might be able to fill temp roles in market research, competitor analysis, revenue forecasting, direct mail, or even copywriting. However, each one of these skills may not be broken out on your resume. The recruiter searching for a copywriter may skip over your general marketing resume unless you break down the different areas. Where you list your interest and availability in temp jobs, you can also list your different areas: Available immediately for temp, freelance, or contract jobs in copywriting, market research, competitor analysis, etc.

4. Tap your personal network

You should emphasize networking in both a temp and permanent job search. However, the referral process is slightly different with temp jobs. The hiring process is typically faster and word-of-mouth can really tip the scales in your favor because the employer has less time to sift through candidates.

In addition, your networking contacts may be more comfortable referring you for temp jobs than permanent because the commitment is smaller. Your personal network already knows, likes and trusts you, and if they hear of a temp job and know that you are looking, it is an easier referral to contact the employer and say, “I know someone who’s great overall. You’re in a pinch, and I trust this person.” Unlike a permanent job where the referrer has to think about long-term fit and a broader range of responsibilities (this makes the referral stakes seem high), a temp job is a smaller scope and therefore a smaller imposition on the referrer.

5. Tailor your selling points for temp jobs

Don’t just wait for people to refer you, however. Contact employers who could use your background on a project basis, and pitch yourself as a temp solution. For temp jobs specifically, highlight immediate problems that you can solve and deliver quick results. Remember that the upcoming summer months could mean more temp jobs to cover for permanent employees on vacation.

Highlight your unique characteristics that make you suitable to temp jobs. In addition to temp-relevant experience (see point 2), focus on temp-relevant qualities — you adapt quickly, you can work with lots of different people and in different environments.

You can look for temp jobs and permanent jobs at the same time, and working temp jobs is a great way to buy more time to hold out for the ideal permanent job. Remember that the hiring for temp jobs is different, and your job search should reflect that.

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