All businesses experience highs and lows in demand, but they are usually manageable with a few requisite adjustments. However, at times businesses experience drastic workload fluctuations that make it challenging to ensure optimal staffing levels at all times.
The peak season varies from industry to industry. Instead of using different recruitment models to hire or lay off permanent employees in response to demand fluctuations, most businesses depend on seasonal employees. They are a key investment for businesses seeking to maximize their production levels during peak seasons and minimize their labor costs in times of low demand.
Useful Tips to Hire Seasonal Workers
Sourcing for temporary open positions as seasonal peaks approach puts tremendous pressure on the HR department. It requires advanced planning to attract the right number of qualified candidates at the right time that can adapt quickly to the fast-paced work environments.
Below are six useful tips to meet hiring needs during seasonal fluctuations:
Collaborate With Professional Recruiters
Businesses often turn to temporary workers to manage their workload fluctuations. However, suitable help is hard to find, especially during busy times of the year, such as Christmas, Thanksgiving, or the new year. Limited access to qualified seasonal labor and the added burden of controlling extra workers at times of high demand affect overall business productivity and profitability.
For this reason, businesses must hire professional recruiters like a staffing agency in Pittsburgh to help fill temporary roles with the most suitable talent. These professionals have access to an extensive labor pool, making it easier to hire skilled seasonal workers quickly and efficiently. This, in turn, reduces the workload of existing employees, enabling them to operate more efficiently as well.
Moreover, professional recruiters help seasonal businesses to build flexible workforces without compromising their finances. They provide skilled workers to sustain productivity levels during periods of high demand and allow businesses to scale back during low demand without incurring additional expenses.
Develop Accurate Job Descriptions
Just as a workplace investigation process is required to resolve employee complaints, a well-developed job description is needed to attract qualified seasonal workers. The first step to creating an effective seasonal job description is to identify the type of talent required for the role, whether seasonal workers or seasonal employees.
Seasonal workers are hired for less than 120 days (approximately four months) in a year; by contrast, seasonal employees are employed for six months or less at the same time every year. A cashier hired for a month to cover a Christmas sale is an example of a seasonal worker. Lifeguards employed during summer each year are seasonal employees. Accurate job descriptions that clearly define job duties, work schedules, and compensation structure compel only candidates with relevant skills to apply to such roles, thereby making it easier to hire the most suitable talent for each role.
Offer Overtime to Best Performers
When considering vacant roles and pending needs, it is common for businesses to give preference to their current employees instead of hiring additional temporary workers. It benefits the employees who wish to earn additional income during the holiday season or otherwise.
When businesses go for less experienced temp staff instead of offering overtime opportunities to their permanent workers, the existing staff may feel undercut. This, however, does not mean that businesses must offer overtime work to all employees; rather, a seasonal business should limit such work to their most competent workers – those who can manage the extra workload efficiently.
Use Tools for High-Volume Hiring
Talent management software helps businesses achieve and manage their seasonal high-volume hiring needs effectively. These tools simplify the entire recruitment process and make it easier for companies to hire, engage and evaluate employees.
As a means of example, businesses often achieve more expedient hiring outcomes by implementing video interviews. They can conveniently screen candidates by watching self-recorded video answers to their interview questions. This saves time and the stress of scheduling in-person interviews during peak season.
Moreover, interview scheduling tools ensure hiring managers utilize time effectively during an already busy season. They eliminate the uncertainty of back-and-forth emails and calls by empowering candidates to book appointments themselves.
Determine Seasonal Hiring Needs Proactively
Not having enough workers to cover peak seasons is a challenge that most employers deal with, especially seasonal businesses. Such organizations must start their talent planning early enough to eliminate issues related to understaffing and overstaffing. The right recruitment tools and technology can help them achieve their seasonal staffing needs.
Businesses can use specialized tools to track, evaluate, and analyze the performance of the seasonal workforce. In addition, they can utilize this data to identify each temporary worker’s skills and capabilities and determine what other tasks can be assigned to them in the future.
For example, if a business hires a worker for packaging but they show interest in driving vehicles instead, the business can assign them to the shipping and delivery department the following season, making it a win-win for both the employer and the employee.
Maintain a Talent Pool of Temporary Workers
Building and sustaining relationships is important for businesses that depend on seasonal recruitment. If employers do not focus on creating bonds with the seasonal workforce, they may end up struggling to fill in seasonal roles in the future.
When businesses have their talent pools, it becomes easier to approach suitable candidates that have worked for them temporarily in the past. Moreover, identifying seasonal candidates that are willing to join again the next year makes it easier for employers to fill open positions quickly during peak demand.
Seasonal businesses rely on temporary workers to increase capacity, maximize revenues, and meet customer expectations while aiming to minimize cost. Seasonal staffing requires a lot of effort, but with timely planning combined with the right strategies for talent acquisition, businesses can attract, hire, and engage suitable candidates efficiently.