There are two technical environments at Kelly, the internal, corporate environment, and the environment of the customers served by KITR.

Kelly's internal environment is run on Sun Solaris and UNIX Enterprise 4000, 5000, and 6000 servers, along with NT-based Dell desktops and laptops. Kelly has 6,000 PCs, including 1,000 at corporate headquarters. The development language used at Kelly is Uniface, Compuware's Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) package. Oracle components used include Database Server, Financials, Human Resources, and Applications Implementation Methodology. One of Kelly's sample projects, StaffNet, keeps track of which people are available to be assigned to a given customer, and when they are coming off a project. The company's new online ordering service allows customers to order temporary help over the web. A customer's history in ordering services before is used to anticipate and suggest appropriate services. A third sample project was development of the Web-based resume database and search engine, the Kelly Career Network. Recruiters can search the database for needed skills and candidates can be notified by email when an appropriate assignment becomes available. These systems were all developed using Oracle as the database and Uniface as the development tool. Kelly was one of the first users of the Web for job posting and recruiting.

KITR's environment spans that of its Fortune 500 and global client base, including a wide range of hardware and software platforms. Sample projects for KITR include providing network administration for Daimler Chrysler. KITR places people in all the large, automotive companies, understandable given its roots in Detroit, but also has been placing a number of people with Internet companies in Silicon Valley, in response to the need for quick ramp-ups. Job assignments range from network administration, to web development, applications programming, and research.

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Kelly corporate offices are in a suburban campus setting. Dress is casual at Kelly. Hours at Kelly are 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. A 45-to-50 hour week is average. Hours over 50 a week at Kelly are compensated with compensatory time, which may be cashed in or redeemed for additional training hours. Extra vacation hours, except for two weeks a year, may also be cashed in. Benefits include medical and dental coverage and a 401(k) plan.

Benefits are similar for KITR, while on assignment, but overtime is paid. Salary and benefits do not continue between projects at KITR. Dress is business formal at KITR.

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Kelly provides temporary staffing through its 1,800 offices in 25 countries for accounting, call centers, teaching, engineering, health care, information technology, legal, manufacturing, marketing, office, and scientific services. Its professionals include accountants, auditors, nurses, programmers, database administrators, lawyers, biologists, chemists, and physicists. On an annual basis, it employs more than 770,000 temporary staff. On an average day, 150,000 staff members are deployed, including 3,500 IT professionals.

Kelly's services include on-site management of vendors, a "super-contractor" or master vendor role, as well as managing departments such as payroll, accounts payable, and shipping. Kelly's temporary-to-full-time option, sometimes called temp-to-hire, with no fee or penalty, gives customers and staff members a reciprocal opportunity to evaluate the skills and fit between employee and job before the company extends an offer of full-time employment, or the staff member accepts.

Kelly IT Resources (KITR) is the division responsible for temporary information technology assignments. Initially a response to customers' requests for PC technicians in the 1980s, the services requested expanded into database administration, call center and help desk outsourcing, and e-commerce initiatives. KITR was established as a separate division in 1999.

Kelly is the second largest staffing company in the United States, after Manpower, and the third largest in the world, after Adecco. It differentiates itself from its competitors with its ability to standardize reporting and processes across all offices, internationally, and thirty years of experience managing other vendor relationships for its customers.

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Kelly has 250 technical staff members. The level of experience of current staff members ranges from zero to thirty years and averages five to seven years. Education levels range from an Associate's degree to Master's degree, with a Bachelor's degree the average.

Kelly expects to hire between 50 and 60 technical professionals in the next year. Turnover is less than 10 percent. White looks for candidates with relevant technical skills, but also for retail, services, or transaction processing business experience. Says White, "We are not writing systems for stamping out #2 pencils, and our products do not have bar codes on them. You have to be flexible because the service we provide is highly variable." The services Kelly provides vary multi-dimensionally, between customers, but also between each individual staffer. Explains White," It is like providing an electronic catalog that is unique for each customer. The skills are unique; the rates are unique; the way we get paid is different. We don't ship a bill of lading. We only get paid when the time card shows up at payroll. Candidates with credit card processing experience, for instance, will understand the high-volume transaction environment."

Candidates for Kelly are found through employee referrals, advertising, online recruiting, and employment agencies. Top colleges for recruiting at Kelly include Oakland University, the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, the University of Detroit, Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan, and Mercy. Kelly's career web site, under Full-Time Employee, includes IT positions both for its own, headquarters jobs, and for full-time positions it is filling as a recruiter for its customers. Kelly jobs at located in Troy, Michigan.

KITR has 2,500 technical staff members. KITR rarely hires entry-level professionals. The company has an extensive online training catalogue for staff members to upgrade their skills with new technologies. The largest number of jobs filled in KITR are for Help Desk Support, PC Technician, Programmer, Systems Analyst, System Engineer, System Administrator, Software Tester, Quality Analyst, Database Analyst, and Database Administrator. Mike Shebak, Vice President, KITR, says that while some customers are looking for someone who has done what they need in the last few years, others train temporary staff along with their own staff when they roll out a new technology. "It is important that candidates be able to move easily from one technology to another. Our staffers are free agents." Since staff members work at a customer's site, continues Shebak, "communication skills and enthusiasm are critical." Shebak looks for self-starters with a history of growing their skills consistently.

John Healy, National Business Development Manager with KITR, looks for opportunities for staffers to grow their skills throughout their career at KITR, "We had one client migrating from Macs to PCs. We provided all their desktop support technicians and network administrators. They took their staff and our staff through training." One of the advantages of temporary assignments is that staffers can test an environment before taking a full-time position with a company they want to investigate. Says Healy, "Dot.coms are hiring KITR people. We have a client that is pre-IPO, an emerging Linux tools company, that ran out of people they knew to hire and started using some of our staff. After eight months, they hired two of our people."

Candidates for KITR are also found through employee referrals, advertising, online recruiting, and employment agencies. KITR has more than one million resumes of technical staff members and these employees may also be offered or apply for positions within Kelly corporate IT. KITR links to Kelly's career web site. Look for positions in the Contractor category.

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Job Title





Sr. Database Analyst   5-7 years Oracle 8i, SQA, OPS Troy, Michigan (employee)
Lead UNIX Administrator BA/BS CS 5 years C, C++, EMC, NIS+, NFS, Sun Enterprise class servers, UNIX System Management Troy, Michigan (employee)
Sr. Middleware Engineer BS CS, Industrial Engineering 2-4 years Uniface, MyEureka, SQR, SQA, CC:Harvest, PVCS, Endeavor Troy, Michigan (employee)
CIO/CTO   10-15 years $100M facility, wireless communications, channel modeling, digital communication, mobile Melville, New York (employee)
Software Engineer - Cartography BA/BS 5 years NIMA, USGS, MultiGen Creator, ESRI Arc/Info, ERDAS Imagine Akron, Ohio (employee)
Sr. Design Engineer BS CS 5-8 years Ada, Rational Apex, Yourdon design methodology
Rochester, New York (employee)
e-Commerce Project Analyst BA/BS preferred 10 years Java, JavaScript, Vignette, JSP, FTP, DB2 Utilities, SQL Warren, Michigan (contract)
Java, J2EE, JSP Developer   5+ years Java, servlets, JSO, EJB, XML, Oracle New York, New York (contract)
Java/ Web Developer BA/BS 2 years Java, servlets, JavaScript, UNIX, WebSphere, Visual Age Auburn Hills, Michigan (contract)
Software Test Engineer     C++, WinRunner Test Direcctor Carlsbad, California (contract)
SQLServer DBA     SQL Server 7.0, Sybase, ASP, VB, ODBC, perl, VB Reston, Virginia (contract)
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  • Information Week, "Kelly Gets Y2K on Schedule," May 10, 1999
  • Information Week, "IT Puts the Right People in the Right Place," September 27, 1999
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