MARK GILLESPIE/Livingston County News
Coastal staffing branch manager Tammy Underhill and staffing coordinator Coral Burns.
Temp agency touts personal touch
Coastal Staffing, with its new office in the East Avon Plaza, is the latest entrant into a growing local field of temporary employment agencies.
Branch manager Tammy Underhill says the company specializes in arranging short-term staffing for manufacturers and warehouses — as well hiring clerical workers, general laborers and custodians.
“What happens is a company approaches us and says, ‘We have a really busy month coming up and we can’t do it with our permanent employees,’” explained Underhill.
“It’s then my job to look through the temps we have on file and send them some workers,” she said. “We do all the interviewing, and all the paperwork — including tax forms, payroll and worker’s compensation. The company doesn’t worry about anything.”
Coastal Staffing also brokers for various professional employee associations which handle “employee leasing.” According to Underhill, these arrangements allow companies to offer employment and benefits while keeping costs low.
Coastal Staffing is part of a chain of temp agencies founded by Ken Tencza in 1997, with other offices in Buffalo, Orchard Park, Ithaca and Naples, Fla.
Underhill has a background in sales and business management. She was owner of the Curves gym, located next door to the new Coastal Staffing office. Temp employment is a family specialty, says Underhill, as her mother has worked in the business for over 25 years.
She has found that temp employment offers a lifestyle some people come to prefer. “They like to pick and choose when they want to work. A lot of people are wives with kids in school who are then not available during the summer.”
Underhill says Coastal Staffing has many competitors in Livingston County and Greater Rochester, but she works to make her business stand apart by offering a “personal touch” in her dealings with employees and clients.
“A lot of companies will ask employees to complete an online application. We want to interview the person face-to-face and get to know them.”
Also, because Coastal Staffing does not have a franchise agreement with a national company, “we are able to accommodate a more diverse customer base and keep costs to a minimum.”