How to get your seasonal job search strategy right

A lot of companies are preparing for making their big push for seasonal hiring. If you’re thinking that means only retail and holiday-related jobs, then you’re wrong. Many of these companies are preparing for year-end events such as tax season or open enrollment or gearing up for their big tourism push.

Most companies – especially in the retail, tourism, and transportation sector – hire seasonal workers for Christmas, which is the busiest season of the year. However, companies even in the tech sector see seasonal employees as a key asset to keep up with the peak demand.

Jessica Mara, a 20-year-old student, spent her last winter working at Kohl’s in Virginia. “I thought it’d be nice if I made some money during the holiday season,” she said. “So, a seasonal job was the best bet.”

Job search engines are an excellent way to find seasonal employment. Popular job sites, such as CareerBuilder, Indeed, TheLadders, LinkedIn and Glassdoor offer advanced search features where you can search by keywords like “local seasonal jobs,” “winter seasonal jobs,” “winter season jobs,” “best seasonal jobs,” “part-time seasonal jobs,” or “best seasonal jobs,” etc.

You can also find jobs on sites dedicated to seasonal employment. There are plenty of job sites to find cool, unusual, odd, and adventurous seasonal jobs: CoolWorks, BackdoorJobs, SeasonalJobs, SeasonWorkers, and Caterer. It’s advisable to include your location in the search tab for maximum efficacy.

Once you’ve identified the position you’re interested in, you can scout companies and apply directly. A lot of employers accept online applications on the website. If you have connections, use them. Referencing someone could also help boost your chances of an interview.

seasonal job search strategy

Seasonal jobs also provide a unique opportunity to explore new positions and new companies and make money while doing so. Regardless of your reason to find a seasonal job, it’s important to take time to research and explore the opportunities.

There’s a whole new world of high-paying season jobs ready and waiting for you. You can even get a position titled ‘Santa Claus’ or ‘Expert Cookie Taster.’ All you need to do is find your perfect job! Monster weighs in on how you can build a seasonal job search strategy.

1. START LOOKING TODAY

One of the biggest challenges job seekers face in finding seasonal employment is the little timeframe. To find the perfect holiday season job, you need to start applying months before the holiday season begins. The earlier you begin applying for seasonal employment, the more choices you’ll have and the more likely you’ll be to find a job that’s a great match for your employment needs.

According to a 2019 Monster poll on seasonal hiring trends, 80% of job seekers are looking for a seasonal gig but nearly 30% of job seekers plan to wait until sometime in October to find one. Now that’s a bad move. As we’ve already established, seasonal hiring typically begins in September. Many employers know months in advance how many helping hands they’ll need during the holiday season. Some employers even begin their recruitment process in the middle of summer! Don’t believe us? This year, Kohl’s started an early wave of seasonal hiring across 500 stores in July. An early recruitment push helps Kohl’s support its back-to-school and holiday season sales. This year on October 5, Kohl’s hosted a national hiring day at its more than 1,100 stores nationwide. It recruited approximately 5,000 seasonal workers in one day just for the holiday season.

2. STAND OUT FROM THE REST

If you’re stopping at a big-box store, warehouse, or even a tech startup for seasonal work, be prepared with your resume and cover letter to participate in an impromptu interview. The trust is, you need more to set an impression beyond shared smiles and handshakes with the interviews. Most interviewers would look at it as a waste of time if you simply hung out with you without engaging in a hiring discussion where they ended up getting to know more about your work experience and skills.

3. DON’T SETTLE

Saying yes to an hourly wage you aren’t excited about a career killer. Determine what hours and days you’re available, and what hourly rate suits your employment needs. You don’t want to commit to a job only to leave your employer in the lurch during the busy holiday season.

4. DRESS FOR THE JOB YOU WANT

Many job seekers (32 percent) said they’re looking for a side gig but they don’t walk in thinking it’s going to be a “real job.” As you’ve heard the saying, “dress for the job you want, not the job you have.” Like it or not, what you wear matters to your future employer. One of the easiest ways to make a good first impression is by dressing up for the job. You never know, you could land a permanent job offer.

Over the past few years, 35% of UPS’s seasonal workers were moved into permanent positions after the holidays. Dressing professionally for the interview shows that you respect the gig and will help you set a great first impression.

It may still be fall, but some companies are eager to hire seasonal workers for the holiday season. If you’re looking to make some quick buck this fall and winter, or want a part-time gig, now is the time to make a move.

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