Heres an interesting new thread...Do we really "make money off" employees?
Yes. "Making money" means producing more than one consumes, i.e., making a profit. Profit is the creation of wealth where it did not exist before.
A simple example is a farmer who grows more corn than he can consume. He can then trade his excess corn to the tanner who has more hides than he can use. Etc, etc.
In our case, we trade marketing, sales, organizational skills to our clients and our employees/ subs. We provide a service to both. I will address the employee part of this, since that was the question.
The employee could offer his services to the public. Why doesn't he? He doesn't want to market/ sell/ administrate/ etc. As an employer we do these things, plus more. We also train him, and do other things to add to the value that he provides.
As an example, his basic painting skills might be worth $15 an hour. But with our marketing, sales, admin, training, insurance, etc. his skills become worth $50 an hour. If it only costs us $40 an hour to provide all of this, we have made money off of him. But we earned it. It isn't a bad thing for either party.
Every economic transaction should be mutually beneficial. That means that everyone should gain something from it.