How to hire seasonal workers

HireHive Team
HireHive Team

For some industries, hiring needs vary from season to season. For example in the retail and hospitality industry seasonal employees are a key part of recruitment. Even at HireHive we notice that certain parts of the year are extra busy – companies are ramping up hiring and need an ATS. One such time for us is November/December because we know that companies are getting ready to have their ATS set up for a busy January.

So we started thinking ‘how do you make seasonal hiring work’? There are some key points that we think are important for seasonal hiring to be a success. We’ve outlined these here:

Start Early

Start your hiring process early! You should be building your pipeline well before you reach your peak season. For example, a department store should look to begin their recruiting efforts in August/September. They should aim to close all hires by October for the busy Christmas rush.

Build your pipeline

It’s so important to build a pipeline quickly. Make sure that your job ads are really targeted and are reaching the right people. Use job boards and your social media channels to engage with job seekers. It’s also a really good time to make use of employee referrals. Your people can probably help you hire more great people. Use a system to manage this so that you can easily track the success of your referral campaigns and reward employees that are helping you hire.

Job Boards

Some job boards even specialise in seasonal jobs so they are worth checking out.

  • Caterer: Hospitality positions in the UK.
  • SeasonWorkers: UK-based job board with positions worldwide (e.g. summer, ski and childcare jobs.)
  • BackdoorJobs: Job opportunities for temporary positions and internships worldwide.

Clear instructions

Clearly outline the work schedule – it’s really important that applicants are aware that the position that they are applying for is seasonal or if there are potential opportunities after the busy period has passed. Will they be required to work in shifts? Add this information to the job description.

Organisation is key

Having your timeline set and making sure you are organised is really important as you’ll be working to a tight deadline. Tools can help with this – like a good ATS. Other tools like Trello are great for short term projects like seasonal hiring. It allows you to keep track of what tasks you need to complete and when.

Don’t forget cultural fit

Always hire for cultural fit. Just because they might be temporary workers doesn’t mean you should forget about cultural fit at your organisation. According to a survey by Snagajob, 67 percent of seasonal hires will be “rehires,” or people who worked the same job the previous year. And 68 percent of employers plan to keep staff on even once the busy season is over so it’s really important that you make the right hiring decision. Also with many of these workers moving on to other jobs, it’s a great opportunity to build your employer brand and have them potentially open up new hires for you through their networks at their next organisation.

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