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Temporary Staff Positions

Whether you are a first-time or transitional job seeker, college graduate, graduate student, experienced professional or retiree, we have a variety of temporary positions that may be just what you are looking for! Our temporary openings range across many business units as well as job functions at Northwestern.

Become a Northwestern temporary employee

Length of assignments

Lengths of assignments can vary depending on department needs. A position could range from a few days to several months or longer. It is not uncommon for assignments to be extended by departments. 

While we continuously seek to retain outstanding professionals that will help make Northwestern a better place, we cannot guarantee a full-time position given the ever changing landscape of the University. Whenever possible, the successful completion of a temporary assignment could indeed lead to a full time role, or to a referral to another department.

Application process

All applicants must complete the online application process and apply to specific temporary opportunities on our website. To apply for a temporary job, log in to the Careers Website and filter Job Openings on the left hand column by “Temporary.”

The process includes a preliminary prescreen, Microsoft Office software assessment, completion of professional references, and proof of education and certified credentials. Additionally, candidates that are selected must successfully complete a criminal background check. All applicants must meet the qualifications to be considered eligible and part of the temporary pool for employment.

What's next?

After your application is submitted, it will be reviewed by our Talent Acquisition team. If your skillset matches the needs of the position, a Talent Acquisition team member will reach out to arrange an initial screening interview. From there another interview may take place with the department.

Please know the application process takes time. We are unable to contact each applicant on the status of their application due to the high volume of resumes received. If you come across more than one temporary opening of interest, we welcome multiple applications!  

Have a question you didn’t see listed? Please review our Frequently Asked Questions for Applicants for Temporary Employment for further assistance.


**IMPORTANT UPDATE Regarding Temp Hire Microsoft Office Licenses 2021**

  • After June 30, 2021, Northwestern will no longer provide non-student temporary or contract employees with a license for the desktop version of Office products (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.).
    • Departments that employ these individuals will either need to purchase the licenses outright, or will need to transition to the online version of Office for these employees.
  •  While the online versions will remain available for temps and contractors, there are some limitations:
    • The individual must have an active internet connection to access Word, Excel, and PowerPoint; they cannot work offline.
    • These versions are a little slower than the desktop clients.
    • The user cannot open an existing file directly from their hard drive or shared network drive; they will need to upload the document into their Microsoft OneDrive account first, and make edits from there.  If needed, they must copy the updated file back into their network drive to share it.

A full list of limitations can be found here.

If the department wishes to purchase a desktop license for their temporary/contractor employees, it would be their responsibility to locate a seller, purchase the licenses, and track their accounts.  Microsoft offers either one-time purchases or monthly subscriptions, and costs can be found on Microsoft's website.

*Please note this affects only non-student temps and contractors. Regular employees, graduate students, and undergraduate students with a temporary job are not impacted.