HR Leads Business

Oct 11, 2018 | Barry Lawrence, MBA, aPHR, Staff Writer

Companies Roll Out Red Carpet for Seasonal Hires

Are you ready for the holidays? For many organizations, preparations for the holiday dash began as early as August in the rush to attract the best seasonal employees.

Retailers, hotels, restaurants and other businesses say they have more seasonal job openings than ever. And many are offering significantly higher wages than they did in 2017 to compete for talent.

A survey conducted by Snag, an online job board that connects hourly workers with jobs, finds that the average seasonal worker will earn $15.40 in 2018, up nearly four dollars from 2017 seasonal wages.

The competition for talent is expected to be “fierce,” employers say. More than 3-in-4 businesses report they will offer perks such as paid time off, training and development opportunities, childcare, tuition stipends, health insurance and transportation reimbursements.

HRDIVE reports that many employers got a jump on seasonal hires. Kohls, for example, began hiring seasonal workers in August.

Harver, a pre-employment screening company, advises companies to make sure they have the necessary HR resources to attract and onboard seasonal workers. It may be smart to hire temporary HR and recruiting professionals to handle high-volume recruiting challenges.

“If your hiring team consists of just a few people,” Harver says, “the chances are high that they will struggle to keep up with hiring for the multiple seasonal vacancies in such a short time.”

Recruiting Chatbots on the Rise

Chatbots are a new way organizations are gaining a competitive advantage for talent. A chatbot is an application that allows a company to simulate a text or voice conversation. Chatbots are commonly used to respond to routine tasks or questions, but they are also used by companies to provide faster responses to customers.

Chatbots are helping recruiters at L'Oréal improve how they process the more than 2 million applications the organization receives annually, TechTarget reports.

L'Oréal is using chatbot technology developed by San Francisco-based Mya Systems to answer questions from job seekers. The transcript then becomes part of the applicant tracking systems. L'Oréal says that the chatbot’s initial vetting of candidates saves the recruiters time and allows them to spend more time focusing on the most qualified candidates.

Low Unemployment Rate

It is a challenging time for recruiting, in general, with a September unemployment rate reported at 3.7 — a 49-year-low.

This is the lowest the jobless rate has been since the Vietnam War.

Companies are hungry for talent to meet rising consumer demand. With a strong labor market and economic activity on the upswing, the Fed is forecasting that the economy will grow 3.1 percent this year — up from the 2.8 percent it projected in June.

The tight applicant market means greater competition for talent, even part-timers. Employers, HR managers and recruiters will have to be more agile and creative than ever to land top talent.