Gary Goldstein has some bad news for bankers worried about losing their jobs to mergers or downsizings.
"A lot more skilled professionals who are finding it very difficult finding permanent employment are being forced into taking temporary assignments," said Mr. Goldstein, chief executive of AFGL International Inc., a New York-based firm that supplies human resources management services to banks and other financial services companies. "I think a lot of those people are going to end up in the flexible work force."
Mr. Goldstein sees temporary assignments for higher skilled bankers becoming a fixture in the industry - a development from which he hopes to benefit.
AFGL owns the Whitney Group, an executive search firm, and Furash & Co., a consulting firm. AFGL also recently acquired Irene Cohen Temps Inc., a New York temporary employment agency.
What's more, Mr. Goldstein said, his company is gearing up for a buying spree that he hopes will boost annual revenues from $70 million to more than $250 million within two years.
"We are going to be focusing on national acquisitions in the staffing area," he said, noting that there are about 8,000 temp agencies nationally, with total revenues of $40 billion.
AFGL foresees a day when legions of well-trained bankers will move from assignment to assignment at different banks. In some cases, the firm will act as employer and provide benefits. It already has a foothold in this brand of outsourcing through its acquisition of Irene Cohen's affiliate, Corporate Staffing Alternatives.
Mr. Goldstein also hopes his company can manage human resources departments for financial services companies. AFGL says it could bring the expertise of Furash & Co. to the task.
"We can help come in and provide tactical and strategic work to help you figure out what you do to be competitive in that particular area before you even hire the people," said Mr. Goldstein.