The Red Guide to Temp Agencies

Review of Progressive

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18 East 41st Street
New York, NY

Total time with agency:
11 months

Wait for first assignment:
2 Days

Average wait between assignments:

Last five jobs:
Job Title Length Client Hourly Wage Typical of agency?
3 Months Y

Tests given:
They had me leave a voicemail message for the client to see if they liked my voice.

Payroll policies:
On-site time sheet pickup:
Direct deposit of payroll checks:
Free check cashing at agency's bank:

Medical insurance:
Dental insurance:
Paid vacation:
Transportation allowance:
Entertainment allowance:
Matching contributions:

Last year Progressive sent me on a job (along with tens of other temps) on Wall Street taking proxy votes via phone from shareholders. I stayed three months. It paid $10 an hour and I worked from 5:30 pm to 11:00 PM after my day job. The work wasn't horrible and I learned a lot about stocks and trading. I had little contact with the temp agency after the initial interview, but the counselor was very nice. There were a lot of problems with the Wall Street company that Progressive sent me too last year. The supervisors were really petty and unfair to each other. The HR person in charge was a terror... the streotype of a psychotic supervisor. The temps got a lot of attitude and grief from the permanent employees who turned the break room into an elementary school cafeteria. I also experienced some racism. I'm white and was accused by several black employees of making a racial slur to a black woman. I called her "hon" (I said "Hey, hon, how goes it?"). There was a big stink about it.

The pettiness of it all was NOT a reflection of Progressive. They are always hiring temps for this Wall Street gig. Call and ask for Jessica. I suggest doing it and keeping your mouth shut at all times. It's steady work and the only way to get fired is to mouth off to a shareholder over the phone or fall behind in the number of outgoing calls. It's sort of like telemarketing, but better. The computer dials the numbers for you and you ask already existing shareholders for votes on issues. It's a breeze after they train you on the basics of stocks and trading (which is good to know anyway). Day and evening hours are available and, if you want extra money, you have the option of working some Satudays. However, if you get night work, don't expect to EVER get the day shift at some point. Likewise for daytime workers. There are soooo many temps asking for this and that and the other, so forget about. You have to be there for a year to even be considered for permanent hire so don't even ask about it till then. Shut up and do your work.

Paychecks are delivered to the job, which is a big plus.



Mon Aug 23 17:45:27 GMT 1999

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The Red Guide to Temp Agencies is copyright 1994-2004 by Angus B. Grieve-Smith.
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