November 28th, 2018 | Sterling Talent Solutions

Holiday Shopping Season Is Here: Here are Four Seasonal Hiring Tips for Employers

Thanksgiving has just passed, which means…it’s almost December. And, for retailers, that means an entirely separate can of worms cranberry sauce: it’s already…peak holiday shopping season! From managing influxes of inventory to preparing for early arriving customers to training seasonal employees, there’s certainly a lot on the holiday plate for business owners and retail managers to handle. One key to success during the holidays and other seasonal hiring periods: finding those ingredients at your own company that make both customers and employees happy. With the goal in mind of taking the hassle out of seasonal hiring, here are a handful of important tips for business owners who are busy bulking up their staff.

1) Maintain a Robust and Consistent Hiring Process

Most business owners look forward to major spending holidays, with their eye on the coming boost in revenues. However, for many store owners the holiday rush can also bring a fair share of internal chaos, resulting in a lack of attention to detail and occasionally even more serious issues employee theft. To help avoid these potential problems, after job offers are made, always conduct a background check on both full-time and seasonal hires. While you might be in a hurry to staff up for the season, don’t let this be an excuse to sacrifice your hiring standards. With all the stressors that the holiday season puts on business owners, the burden of having to worry about having an honest and dependable staff doesn’t have to be one of them.

2) Conduct a Thorough On-Boarding Process

The orientation for a seasonal employee should look nearly identical to that of a full-time employee. Connections and company loyalty can develop even over very short periods of time—lasting long after the job offer has come to an end—making it crucial to cultivate a sense of belonging. Keep in mind that although turnover rates are high for seasonal staff, they are still ambassadors for your business. Ensure that all team members are cultivating a positive company message by making company values and mission statements a daily reminder for seasonal employees.

3) Assign Senior Employees to Each New Hire

Jumping into a new job, even if only for a handful of months, comes with its fair share of challenges. Seasonal employees are equally as accountable for meeting and exceeding sales expectations, providing excellent customer service and upholding the company’s reputation. As such, it is essential that seasonal employees be comfortable within their role, while also emphasizing the importance of their daily duties. One way to ease new hires into their position is to pair them with a knowledgeable senior employee who can show them the ropes and explain company protocol. This will simplify the transition for the new hire, and even elicit a sense of pride to be working for a company with a strong support system.

4) Set Expectations in Advance, and Tailor the Job Offer

The principal differentiating factor between seasonal and full-time hires is the length of time they will ultimately be working for a company; therefore, it is crucial that any job offer presented has been adjusted accordingly. For any employer, it is crucial to take measures to ensure that you and the employee are on the same page from the get-go. Establish scheduling, salary expectations and post-holidays job outlook, and include these details in the job offer. Essentially, before any work begins, you want to clarify: Is this a “retain and redeploy” situation or, for the employee, is it more of a “one and done” gig? Address these questions in advance and, throughout the season, do keep lines of communication open—as plans, needs and expectations can all shift, whether on your end or employee’s, so be open to that dialogue.

With the right preparation, the holiday season can be a productive and rewarding time of the year for both consumers and business owners. It takes a full team to keep the operation running smoothly, so being selective with your staff and lending them support is the first step toward a profitable shopping season.

This publication is for informational purposes only and nothing contained in it should be construed as legal advice. We expressly disclaim any warranty or responsibility for damages arising out this information. We encourage you to consult with legal counsel regarding your specific needs. We do not undertake any duty to update previously posted materials.