While every year it feels like the holiday displays go up just a little bit earlier than the year before it, there’s one thing that most organizations should be starting early on: their seasonal hiring. Holiday shopping is coming quicker than you think, and that means the need for extra holiday staff is coming even quicker. But what’s considered “early enough” for hiring seasonal workers - and what do you do if you haven’t started already?
Seasonal Staffing in Summer
What is considered the right time to start hiring for the holidays?
According to industry experts, we’ve already passed it.
The best time to start hiring for the holiday season, believe it or not, is during the summer, with July and August being optimal amounts of time. Starting this process early is critical, as the search alone can take a toll. Think about it – you not only have to find and interview candidates, but sieve through which ones you'll be hiring and which ones you won't be, put them through a training process, onboard them, and make sure they're doing well – all during some of the busiest times of the year.
The problem, in other words, can compound on itself. Less time for finding talent means less time for interviewing and hiring them, which means less time for training and making sure they’re ready to face whatever position they were hired to be in.
It’s Not Too Late to Start Hiring Seasonal Workers
July and August have officially passed us in the calendar, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late for seasonal hiring as long as you approach season hiring strategically. Consider some of these tips in your strategy for getting started with seasonal hiring:
- Look in the Right Places: Seasonal positions attract a wide range of people, so you need to be sure to target them accordingly. Students, stay-at-home parents, and retirees are all fairly common, so start advertising to them about seasonal opportunities they can apply for now.
- Don’t Waste Time: You could get flooded with a lot of applications, but how many of those applicants will be qualified? How many of them will you be able to hire? Cut down on the hiring process by shaking it up a bit. If you don’t already do so, have applicants take a pre-hire assessment first, and then interview the ones that are qualified.
- Super Skilled Workers: Time is of the essence with seasonal employees. They’ll need to learn the job as quickly as possible while going up against customers who might be much more difficult to deal with, so look for the job candidates who can learn things quickly. Assessments that measure ability to learn and solve problems can be helpful to pre-screen candidates who have the work skills for the position. Personality and skill assessments will tell you if your candidate has the right stuff.
- Leverage Your Network: Unless you’re completely new to seasonal hiring, chances are you’ve already staffed a temporary holiday team before. Reach out to some of them and see if they’re interested in coming back. They’ll appreciate the opportunity to earn money, and it can cut down on the time you’ll spend trying to find and train new candidates.
Hard to believe the season’s upon us, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to start hiring if you haven’t already. Build your strategy and get started right away and you’ll have a successful holiday staff in no time.
For more information, contact us today. Or if you’d like to learn how you can start building a better customer experience (for any time of the year) download our latest infographic below.
Topics: Talent Selection Ideas