When it comes to seasonal hiring, one thing is for sure: starting the process well in advance of needs is key. In fact, it’s important to keep candidates warm — to nurture them — in an ongoing fashion throughout the year.
Peak, back-to-school hiring is upon us and the holiday season is around the bend. That means it’s time to start thinking about your digital hiring strategy. A well-thought-out digital strategy that’s focused around a candidate’s needs can help you attract quality seasonal employees. Then, it can help keep them in the pipeline, so you have the resources you need — when you need them most. The thing is, you need to start now, with a targeted, multifaceted approach.
With a peak hiring season fast approaching, I recently co-hosted a webinar which led to a spirited discussion around digital’s role in seasonal hiring strategies. Here are a few highlights you may find helpful in preparing yourself for the upcoming talent search.
It’s almost impossible to watch the news without hearing about how retail is going through major disruption and change. In the past year, more than 9000 brick and mortar retail stores closed their doors, mostly due to digital disruptions by online retail powerhouses like Amazon and Walmart. However, in spite of the headlines, you might be surprised to learn that the retail sector actually added nearly 670,000 new jobs during the last quarter of 2017.
After spending more than a decade with retailers around the world as they embarked on their digital transformation journeys, thinking about peak and seasonal spikes is ingrained in me. Over the last three years, I continued working with retailers, but in the context of the candidate experience rather than the consumer experience. I knew there was an immediate opportunity to apply the same concepts that were disrupting consumer behavior to help with the talent acquisition strategy for the peak season. Retailers spent the whole year planning for the peak season and ensuring that the stores and digital infrastructure were ready to handle peak, but not as much planning went into the hiring strategy.
Some brands have successfully brought digital to the core of their talent acquisition process in different parts of their candidate experience. At Symphony Talent, we are very passionate around this topic since it is directly aligned with our vision of redefining how brands and talent connect. As you prepare for your seasonal hiring, here are some patterns we see across the industry that can disrupt your strategy in a positive way.
Do I have enough people? Do I have the right people? Do they have the right availability? Are they happy? Will they stay the whole season?
These are questions that keep hiring managers up at night.
After working in retail management for over ten years, I know the struggle, and the struggle is real. You stop associating the word “holiday” with something fun and exciting. Instead, you have flashbacks to the times you didn’t have enough associates on staff to make a solid schedule, or your merchandising manager decided to move away the week after Christmas (totally not personal examples).
But guess what? Your hiring managers don’t have to go through this.