Be an employer of choice for seasonal hiring.
By Debbie Bolla
As reported last year, Amazon made headlines with it plans to hire 120,000 employees for the holidays, and other retailers weren’t far behind. This translates to seasonal workers having their pick of opportunities. With such competition, organizations need to ensure they offer a positive candidate experience.
“Don’t forget about the human side of hiring,” says Adam Godson, vice president of global technology solutions for Cielo, a strategic recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) partner. “ Seasonal workers have a ton of opportunities, which can impact conversation ratios if the hiring and onboarding processes are slow.”
A trio of strategies Godson recommends:
- Make sure that technology is easy to use for candidates. “For the majority of hourly workers, the only computer they own is their phone,” he explains. “This means organizations need to offer processes that can be done on that device. If not, potential hires will have to make a trip to use a desktop, and this creates a barrier that sometimes can’t be overcome.”
- Connect with candidates before the interview. When hiring a high volume of employees, organizations that take the time to reach out to the candidates prior to the in-person interviews will benefit. “Hiring teams should conduct an engagement call in order to create a social contract in order to increase interview show rates,” explains Godson. “By engaging with the candidates, they show up and they understand the brand better.”
- Don’t leave managers out of the equation. Access to manager has clout with seasonal hires. “Something as simple as sending out a welcome text message can improve engagement and connectivity among holiday hires,” he says.
Organizations should also consider why each candidate is looking for seasonal work. “Some view seasonal work as a gateway to a permanent position,” explains Godson. “For others, it’s an opportunity for extra cash. It’s important to have the right messaging for each of those groups.”
In fact, a 2017 CareerBuilder survey found that 70 percent of companies that were hiring for the holidays expected to keep some of their seasonal hires on board for full-time positions after the holiday season. For these workers, Godson suggests that managers let them know if a permanent position is a possibility early—even in December—to keep those workers engaged.