5 Tips for Hiring Seasonal Workers

by Katie Sawyer, 3 minutes read
HOME blog tips for hiring seasonal workers

You’re looking at the calendar and can’t believe it. It’s almost the end of the year. And that means holiday shopping is just around the corner. And to prepare, you need to build out your seasonal staff.

Whether you’re searching for the perfect Santa or an extra cashier, hiring seasonal workers is important to prepare for the holiday rush. And with the right planning and a little know-how, you can hire the perfect staff to get you through the busy retail season. Read on for five tips for hiring seasonal workers.

1. Plan ahead — and hire early

When your business turns on the holiday music in September or you wait until mid-November, the bottom line is that you should plan ahead for your holiday hires.

Doing so will give you plenty of time to advertise the positions you have available, interview candidates and provide necessary training. Your new staff members will be ready to perform their jobs with little disruption to your operation. With staff issues at a minimum, you can concentrate on keeping inventory and sales running smoothly

2. Encourage and reward employee referrals

While advertising your open roles can land you great prospects, employee referrals may be an even better way to fill openings. A trusted employee will recommend good candidates, essentially screening applicants for you. You save time and are more likely to get a dependable new employee.

To encourage your employees to make referrals, offer them meaningful incentives, such as a bonus for each referral hired or extra time off — to be taken after the first of the year, of course.

3. Write targeted job descriptions

In the hustle and bustle of the season, you may be tempted to use brief, general job advertisements. “Wanted: Holiday staff for sales and cashier positions.”

You will save time and avoid frustration by carefully targeting your ads toward people with the right skills. Do you need someone with computer skills? Someone with sales experience? People with inventory management skills?

Be specific so you only attract the applicant pool you need. You’ll be less likely to end up with the wrong crew. You may even end up with some new, permanent employees on your staff.

4. Highlight job benefits

Temporary or seasonal employees know their jobs come with certain limits. Their pay is usually lower than permanent employees, and they are unlikely to get benefits such as insurance. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t offer them some perks.  

Let applicants know if they’re eligible for employee discounts, sales bonuses, or other extras. You’ll be happy when you attract a bigger pool of candidates.

5. Offer quality training

You’re already a customer-first business. But when it comes to the holidays, your customers really need to be #1. And that means your employees need to have the right training to handle any situation.

Good training takes time and effort, but it pays off immediately because workers can be productive from day one. To make it easier, pair up your newbies with some seasoned workers to give them the lay of the land. You can also create a fun quiz for staff to complete at the end of their first week, just to make sure they know all the basics for the job.

Growing your business this holiday season

The holiday season is one of your busiest times of year — and also when you hire extra staff. When you’re making the extra investment into additional staff, you want to make each hire count.

Streamline your workflow with smart workforce management technology that keeps you (and your staff) happy. Sign up for a free trial of Deputy to see how retailers make the holiday craze less stressful.

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