Best Employment Agencies in Austin

Picking the Best Employment Agency in Austin

If you’re looking to work with an employment agency in Austin, you have many to choose from. ResumeSpice lists at least 100 of them!

So if you’re looking to compare agencies, here’s our tips for doing so:

Tips for Comparing Employment Agencies

Look at their jobs

An employment agency isn’t going to do you much good if they don’t have a job that aligns with your skills and career goals. Also, many employment agencies will specialize. For example, we don’t often staff for warehouse or janitorial roles and many of our positions are office and professional jobs.

However, as opposed to taking one look at the company’s job board and moving on, it’s important to get an assessment of the kinds of jobs they have and check back in periodically if it looks like they may have jobs in the future.

Look at reviews online

Fortunately, many people are eager to tell you about their experience with an employment agency. Less fortunately, you have to take this feedback with a grain of salt–people will be inclined to leave bad reviews for many different reasons, especially with something as important as employment. Read the five-star reviews as well as the one-star reviews.

That said, these reviews can give you a good benchmark. I recommend looking on multiple platforms such as Google, Glassdoor, and even Facebook to assess how positive people are about working for an employment agency.

Look at the culture

Employment and staffing agencies can get a bad reputation. Sometimes, they fail in taking an interest in looking out for their employees’ well being and growth and are more interested in just making a profit from their human capital. You can often get a sense for the ethos and culture of a company by its mission statement and social media.

As a nonprofit employment agency, we help professionals with disabilities find careers. We encourage a transparent and agile culture and a commitment to treating all clients, employees, and future employees with respect. We encourage employees to keep in contact with our staff and also issue an employee of the year awards. Furthermore, we have a redeployment rate of about half of our personnel, about 5X the national average for employment agencies.

Look at their clients

While you are an employee of the employment agency, often it will feel more like you are an employee of the client. Therefore, it’s important to partner with an employment agency who has refutable clients for whom you would be happy to work.

This may not always be obvious since many job descriptions leave it off. But you can often get a general idea from reading the job description and reading online reviews.

For our part, most of our clients are government agencies, nonprofits, and corporations who are committed to disability hiring as part of their DE&I efforts.

Look at their benefits

Benefits are expensive. Sometimes, evaluating an employment agency is a simple as asking them to “put their money where their mouth is.” Some employment agencies skimp, offering little or no benefits. (Especially avoid companies where you are “independent contractors” and not actual employees.)

Peak Performers offers health, dental, and vision insurance covered at 80% by the employer. We also have an Employee Assistance program and just launched a 403(b) retirement program.

Are you looking for the best employment agency in Austin? We would be honored if you considered Peak Performers employment agency! You can find our open jobs here.

Peak Performers Announces New Leadership Team

Peak Performers Leaders Announced

Release Date: Monday, February 14, 2022

“We continue to expand our staffing and recruiting services into new industries and markets in an effort to position Peak for future growth,” said Bree Sarlati, CEO of Peak Performers. “Our new leadership team will enable us to grow our company and thereby expand our nonprofit mission to help people with disabilities get jobs.”

Peak Performers is a nonprofit staffing and recruiting agency that has served the state of Texas and other local governments for 27 years. As a nonprofit, they seek to recruit and hire professionals with disabilities. A list of all our personnel can be found on our company directory.

The new leaders for Peak Performers include:

Chief Growth Officer

Gunther Doran is  a senior business development leader with a track record in staffing operations, marketing and sales management, and operational process improvement. Gunther previously served as the Vice President of Peak Performers.

“Many people with disabilities struggle to find work and many employers struggle to hire and then retain employees with disabilities,” said Gunther. “At Peak Performers, I work to connect these two parties and thereby grow the company and mission.”

Chief Financial Officer

Michael Sergi is a senior financial professional with a knack for business planning, analytics, and continuous improvement. Michael previously served as the Vice President of Finance for Peak Performers.

“Self-sufficiency starts with a paycheck,” commented Michael. “In the role of Chief Financial Officer, I help to ensure our employees get paid and our organization stays solvent.”

Chief Operations Officer

Christi Seaback brings to the team over two decades of corporate recruiting and staffing. Christi previously served as a Staffing consultant and then Recruiting Operations Manager for Peak Performers.

“I seek to ensure operational excellence in serving both our customers and job seekers, as well as helping our organization be nimble to the ever-changing needs of our industry,” said Christi.

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Media contact: myles@peakperformers.org – (512) 453-8833 X 116

Peak Performers launches retirement program

New Benefit: 403(b) Retirement Program

Peak Performers is excited to announce that they are now offering a 403(b) retirement program for all employees!

  • This program is similar to 401(k) programs–employees may voluntarily contribute a percent of their paycheck; the annual maximum contribution limit is $20,500
  • All employees, no matter how long they’re employed with us, are eligible for the program
  • 403(b) programs are “pre-tax” programs
  • This program is administered through T. Rowe Price
  • Upon starting work with Peak Performers, employees will get a series of automatic emails giving them information about how to opt-in to the program

We are excited to offer this opportunity for our employees to save for their future!

Note: Peak Performers is unable to provide financial or investment advice. Current employees should defer questions to T. Rowe Price or their financial advisor.

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Media contact: myles@peakperformers.org – (512) 453-8833 X 116

Job Search Recommendations and Referrals

Job Search Referrals

Ask around for job recommendations and referrals when looking for your next job.

When I first moved to Austin, I needed to find a dentist. So I asked my co-workers and friends. Who do you use? After talking to a few people, I found one who was in my area, covered by my insurance, and well-regarded by multiple co-workers. And they’ve been great–which is especially valuable to me since I’m afraid of going to the dentist!

The jobs we see online are typically the ones that are best advertised. After all, Indeed and Ziprecruiter make a lot of money through paid advertisements.

These jobs may not be the best one for your skill set…or the best paying…or even the best company. They’re simply the most visible. Perhaps ABC Dentistry is going to treat me and my smile right, but I’d feel a whole better about it if someone I knew recommended them as opposed to them just popping up in my Facebook feed.

Ask for Job Referrals and Recommendations

Are you looking for work? If so, call up your friends and colleagues (past or present) to ask them:

  • Do you know anyone who is hiring?
  • Can you get me in touch with someone to discuss the job and the organization?
  • What kinds of organizations in the area could use my unique skills?

Then seek to build relationships with each new person you meet and ask them these same questions. This core to your networking strategy!

Most people want to help you. Even if they can’t think of any job referrals right now, they may help you keep an eye out for future opportunities.

Want to know what people think of us? Check out our testimonials page or visit our listing on Google.

Focus on What You Can Control

Job Seeking Challenges

If COVID-19 and the last couple years has taught me anything, it’s to take a step back and focus on what I can control (because there’s an awful lot of things I can’t!)

I feel the same goes for job seeking…

I talk to many, many job seekers who are feeling frustrated, burnt out, and like their situation is hopeless. They feel like they’re either stuck in a job that they don’t like or stuck without work altogether. This in spite of employers nationally struggling to find workers.

So what can you control?

-What jobs you apply for
-How often you apply for jobs
-The follow up you do with recruiters and hiring managers
-Your networking activities
-Your interview preparedness
-The presentation and quality of your resume, cover letters, LinkedIn, etc.

How to Stay Motivated while Looking for Work

The job search process can be a long one, especially if you’re trying to get back into the labor market, switch careers, have an employment barrier, or are trying to find your very first job.

But I will tell you what I tell all the job seekers I talk to: no matter how many “no”s you get, it only takes one “yes” for you to get hired. The best job search strategy I have seen is persistence. If you keep trying, the odds are in your favor.

 

 

PS: Peak Performers is hiring! Furthermore, you’re always welcome to follow up with us if you submit a resume and don’t hear back. Check out our many open jobs!

Take Advantage of Peak Hiring Cycles

Timing Your Job Search

Hiring often comes in cycles. As a job seeker, you can take advantage of these cycles in order to apply at the right time. Here are several examples of hiring cycles:

Budget-based Hiring Cycles

Typically we see an increase in hiring activity towards the end of the fiscal year for government agencies as they seek to fill headcount and get projects done with their leftover budget. The federal end of fiscal year is September 30 and state of Texas is August 31. Many private companies begin their budget year January 1st.

Seasonal Hiring Cycles

Retail will start aggressively recruiting in the summer in order to bolster their workforce for the coming Christmas season. By contrast, construction and landscaping companies in colder parts of the country will slow hiring during the fall/winter and accelerate in early Spring as the weather warms up. Think about your industry and when do they hire most people?

Surge Hiring Cycles

Tax preparation, for example, is a $10.8 billion dollar a year industry. The Internal Revenue Service also must surge its workforce to handle all of the annual returns. These two entities will often start recruiting heavily around January 1, though the IRS will often keep workers well into the summer to handle all the tax returns.

Staffing firms are often used during these surge hiring cycles to help handle the need for extra workers. If you’re hired during one of these cycles, don’t be afraid to work for a staffing agency.

Project-based Hiring Cycles

The recently passed infrastructure bill, for example, will mean construction and public transportation across the country will see a huge boost. Currently, many of our customers have hired workers to handle COVID-19 -related projects. You can look at other macro trends in your area and your industry to anticipate what workers will be needed.

New-business Hiring Cycles

When a new business moves into town (such as Tesla here in Austin) they will need to hire a lot of people. Local news such as Austin Business Journal and Community Impact Newspaper can help give you a head’s up that there’s a newcomer in town. These businesses will need a lot of people and may want to see your resume!

*You know who’s always hiring? Peak Performers Staffing Agency is! We can help you navigate these cycles to get your resume in at just the right time!

How Do I Compare Multiple Job Offers?

Tips for Comparing Job Offers

Many job seekers now may be getting multiple competitive offers and be faced with a new predicament: which job do I accept?

While it’s tempting to look only at the bottom line—the pay—there are many other intangible factors to consider.

To start off with, as you begin your job search, it can help by making a list of what matters to you. Then seek to compare apples to apples. For this I included a video that can help you evaluate all the offers of benefits packages.

Factors to Consider When Comparing Job Offers

Compensation

This is a straight-forward comparison. Who will pay you more money. However, also factor in location of the job. From a cost of living perspective, a $50k / year in Austin, TX is way different than a $50k / year job in San Francisco CA. Here’s a free calculator to compare cost of living. Also keep in mind any bonuses or commissions you may be entitled to in your equation.

Insurance

Medical, dental, and vision are the primary offerings. When comparing insurance packages, make sure to consider things like annual deductibles, monthly premiums, and out of pocket maximums. Employers may offer disability insurance and life insurance.

Retirement Benefits

This often takes the form of a 401k, pension, or 403b if you work for a nonprofit. Peak Performers is excited to soon be offering a 403b to all of our employees!

Fringe Benefits

Fringe benefits from an employer may include things like a work phone, airline miles, or possibly even a company car.

Paid Time Off

Paid time off from an employer is another key benefit. This often takes the form of sick days and vacation days, but also may be one single allotted amount of time to spend as you choose.

Remote Work/Location

Currently, there are way more job seekers looking for “remote jobs” than just looking for “jobs.” Many job seekers factor in location as key deciding factor. For our part, about 46% of our jobs are remote. And if you are working on-site, factor in your daily commute and how much that will cost you in time and gas.

Time Flexibility

Don’t forget to ask about whether your hours can be flexible. This is important for taking care of things outside of work, such as childcare duties or going to the doctor. Time flexibility is a non-tangible but extremely valuable job benefit.

Workplace Culture

While not a tangible benefit, having ping pong tables in the break room has done the start-up industry wonders! Seek a workplace culture that will align with your own work style. Use social media to research the company and ask acquaintances who are currently working there what it’s like.

Organizational/Role Prestige

Finally, factor in the “prestige” when considering job offers. People spend less than 3 years on average at each job, so this job will likely not be your last. Does the company or your job title look good on your resume? Will it help you find an even better job several years from now?

Don’t Forget…

At the end of the day, remember to politely decline the offers you don’t choose and keep those people in your network. Perhaps that organization will be a fit for you several years down the road when you’re ready for your next career journey?

How do I seek out a job if I’m a veteran?

Celebrating Veterans’ Day with Jobs!

American Flag Veterans Picture - Peak Performers is committed to veteran hiring and helps vets get jobs
American Flag portraying Peak’s commitment to working with veterans who have served our country. 10% of Peak Performers workforce is veterans. We’re here to help veterans get jobs.

Last week was Veterans’ Day. Peak Performers, a nonprofit employment agency, appreciates the sacrifices veterans have made in service to our country. Thank you.

Tips for Veteran Job Seekers

If you are a veteran or know one looking for work, we can help. Feel free to reach out to Myles or to apply online.

1) Seek out support resources. Veterans (and often their spouses) have access to a wide range of resources. In Texas, the Texas Veterans Commission helps orient thousands of veterans every year to a variety of services available, including helping them find work.

2) Attend a hiring eventTexas Veterans Commission and Department of Veterans Affairs hosts several hiring events each year (in person and virtual.) This is a great way to meet local employers!

3) Look for jobs on WorkinTexas. If you are a veteran, jobs posted to WorkinTexas (a job search platform administered by Workforce Solutions) are made available first to veterans and then to the rest of the population. This gives you an opportunity to get your resume in first!

4) Seek out veteran-friendly employers. Peak Performers, for example, maintains a veteran hiring ratio of at least 10%. Peak and other employers like us have made a commitment to hiring veterans.

5) Look for veteran hiring preference. Some organizations (especially government agencies) take it one step further and give hiring and interview preference to veterans. This helps increase your chances of getting the interview.

6) Utilize online tools to translate your resume. Tools like the military crosswalk can help you convert your military experience to “civilian-speak.”

Working from home advice for job seekers and businesses

For job seekers

Is work from home the new normal?

I get a lot of questions these days about work from home (WFH) jobs. I also get a lot of job seekers that are only looking for remote options. Here’s my perspective:

 

Depends on the job.

If you are an office worker, it is more common for your job to be WFH, as opposed to two years ago. There are many jobs that are obviously excluded from WFH options, such as retail, hospitality, and essential roles. What’s less obvious is that lower-level jobs are often still asked to be done on-site. When an entry/junior -level role is WFH, it’s often used as recruitment perk. Temporary roles are often less likely to be WFH as well.

Hybrid roles are more common.

Often job descriptions are binary…is a role remote, yes or no? There is no middle option. Similarly, you can search job sites for only remote roles. More common now is that offices are now shared, fluid spaces and you may be expected to come into work a certain number of days a week. Managers may not have made up their mind about if the role can be WFH or not. Perhaps also a role may start on-site and shift to WFH once you’re a trusted member of the team. In my opinion is worthwhile to get to the interview to politely inquire about WFH options. Don’t screen out opportunities preemptively.

Willingness to work on-site is now a competitive advantage.

There are a lot of job seekers out there seeking only 100% remote roles. Think carefully about whether you really want to say “no” to all on-site opportunities.

For businesses

How can I leverage work from home for my business?

We get a lot of questions these days about work from home (WFH) jobs. We also get a lot of job seekers that are looking only for remote options. In a recent market research, we’ve found Google searches for “remote jobs” to be DOUBLE the searches of simply “jobs.” So what does that mean for you?

 

How common is work from home?

It is more common for office workers and professionals to WFH, as opposed to two years ago. It’s estimated by flexjobs that 41.8% of jobs are remote. There are many roles that are obviously excluded from WFH options, such as retail, hospitality, and essential roles. Also lower-level jobs are often still asked to be done on-site. When an entry/junior -level role is WFH, it’s often used as recruitment perk. Temporary roles are often less likely to be WFH as well.

What about hybrid roles?

Too often job descriptions are binary…is a role remote, yes or no? There is no middle option. Similarly, you can search job sites for only remote roles. More common now is that offices are now shared, fluid spaces and you may be expected to come into work a certain number of days a week. Managers may not have made up their mind about if the role can be WFH or not. Perhaps also a role may start on-site and shift to WFH once the new hire has been trained. Seriously look at your role and how it’s marketed–marking it as strictly “non-remote” may be driving away candidates.

Is it a disability accommodation?

It can be! Here at Peak, we specialize in helping placing professionals with disabilities. We get a lot of questions about accommodations and allowing work from home is one of the easiest and cheapest accommodations your business can make.

The bottom line…

You will attract more candidates if you advertise your roles as remote or hybrid. There is some evidence that some job seekers are even willing to take a pay cut in order to work remotely. Allowing remote work also expands your pool of potential recruits as it expands your geographic recruiting area.

Peak Performers and Texas Veterans Commission Job Search Give Advice

Upcoming Virtual Job Fair with Texas Veterans Commission

Peak Performers recently partnered with the Texas Veterans Commission to share job seeking tips for veterans and job seekers with disabilities prior to their job fair on September 22nd, 2021.

You can watch the video on Linkedin.

“You are more than your disability. Focus on your capabilities.” -Myles Wallace, Strategic Partnership Specialist at Peak Performers.

By the way, did you know that Peak Performers is a veteran friendly employer? 10% or more of our workforce are veterans.

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Media contact: myles@peakperformers.org – (512) 453-8833 X 116

Peak Performers Staffing Featured in local Newsletter

Recognition from Local Newspaper

The Crestview Neighborhood Association recently featured Peak Performers in their monthly newsletter. The text from the article can be found below.

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Media contact: myles@peakperformers.org – (512) 453-8833 X 116

People with Disabilities Face Hiring Challenges

People with disabilities face an unemployment rate that is double that of the national average. In times of high unemployment, they’re often the first to be let go and the last to be re-hired. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that a quarter of all adults in the US have a disability. These might be observable and obvious–such as paraplegia or blindness–or they might have non-observable disabilities, such as ADHD, PTSD, diabetes, or epilepsy. Additionally, many conditions come as a result of age or injury. It’s likely that many people reading this article have a disability or will acquire one over the years. Helping advance employment opportunities for people with disabilities is paramount for creating a more inclusive society and helps protect all of our jobs.

Disability Impacts Chart from CDC
Disability Impacts All of Us

Local Nonprofit with a Vision: Professional Opportunities for those with Disabilities

Peak Performers, an Austin based nonprofit, was founded in 1994, several years following the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). At the time, the majority of jobs that were available for people with disabilities were sheltered workshop environments where those individuals would perform light industrial, janitorial, and assembly activities. These workers were often paid sub-minimum wages and might have required regular supervision from a job coach. Peak Performers wanted to offer something different: professional opportunities for skilled people with disabilities. “I was inspired by my foster brother. He was blind but went on to become a very successful accountant,” recalls Charlie Graham, founder and former CEO of Peak Performers. “Being blind did not stop him from becoming a Chief Financial Officer.” “Our vision is two-fold,” adds Bree Sarlati, current CEO. “To change what it means to be a job seeker with a disability, and to challenge the preconceptions that make employers reluctant to hire someone with a disability.”

Growth and Transformation

Unlike many other nonprofits, Peak is completely revenue-funded and does not apply for grants or solicit donations. Unlike other staffing firms, over 75% of their workforce has a qualifying disability. Peak started off like most staffing companies do: supplying low-wage mailroom and clerical roles. Over the years, their customers began trusting Peak and requesting increasingly hard-to-fill roles: auditors, contract professionals, program specialists, and purchasers. In 2014, Peak began filling information technology roles to fill the demand of existing customers. Then in 2020, while most recruiting agencies were shrinking, Peak saw it’s temporary headcount swell to nearly double as the Texas government turned to its now longtime staffing partner for one of its largest challenges yet: the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, Peak has over 100 attorneys working for the Texas Workforce Commission.

Unique Business Sense

There are many advantages to hiring people with disabilities: reduced turnover, advancing diversity and inclusion initiatives, and the availability of an underutilized talent pool, especially during a time when employers need talent. People looking for jobs and employers with staffing needs can find out more at peakperformers.org.

Now Hiring in Austin – Hot Jobs August 16, 2021

Austin Growing Rapidly: More Jobs Heading to ATX!

This just in: Austin is growing really, really fast. In fact, according to the recent census data, we have seen 21.7% growth in the last decade. As a large MSA, Austin was second in Texas only to Fort Worth which grew 24%. Similarly, we saw surrounding bedroom communities such as Round Rock, Pflugerville, and Georgetown grow rapidly.
With this growth will come more people needing jobs. If you know someone who just moved here, be a friend and send them to Peak Performers. (Also, send them our guide to Austin Job Seeking Resources.) We’re happy to consider them for one of our many open jobs, and they’ll get a chance to expand their professional network in Austin. Right now we’re recruiting for everything from Auditors to Enterprise Data Architects.
*A complete list of our open jobs found on our jobs site.

This is a chart showing Austin's growth according to the census
Austin grew 21.7% in the last decade. Chart showing Austin’s growth

Now Hiring in Austin: August 16, 2021

Grant Accountant Job! Do you have experience with Texas Grants Management Standards and 3 years of experience working in accounting operations? If so, we’re looking for a Grant Accountant. Pay is $27 / hour.

Auditor Jobs! Are you an Auditor? Do you want to work in compliance, investigations, or records review? We are filling multiple positions with multiple agencies. Pay ranges from $20 – $28 DOE.

Grant Coordinator Job! Do you have experience working for a state agency? Do you want to help grant administration, monitoring, and preparing of education material? If so we’re looking for a Post Secondary Education Grant Coordinator. Pay is $29 / hour.

Enterprise Architect Job! Do you have experience working for state agencies and a passion for data modeling, collection, and storage. We’re now recruiting for an Enterprise Data Architect role. Pay is $69 / hour.

Purchaser Jobs! Are you a state certified Purchaser? Are you looking to work for the state of Texas? We now have multiple roles and levels open for experienced purchasers. Pay is $22 – $28 DOE.

Many more jobs can be found on our jobs page.