Get organised for those seasonal peaks and employ seasonal staff
The decision is made. You need to employ seasonal staff.
This may be a new experience for you, or you may be an ‘old hand’ at taking on a temporary workforce.
Either way, you need to be organised and ahead of the game if you want to find that valuable member of staff who will be an asset to your business.
How to nail it, not wing it!
The first, and important, piece of advice is not to leave it too late to start the search. Get on it!
It may be simply the time of year where you know customers and footfall are going to increase and you really need to employ seasonal staff – think retailers at Christmas, or scenic boat trips in the summer! This is easy to schedule and to be proactive for – we all know when Christmas is and when schools break up for the summer, so your recruitment drive timings should really stay the same year on year. The beauty of a stable calendar of high days and holidays!
Put it in your diary to start recruiting for Christmas staff in August/September, and start the search for your summer workers in April. Get your vacancies listed on Holiday Staff in February if your busiest time coincides with the Easter bunny!
Canoes, worms and tomatoes – be prepared for the weird and wonderful
As well as the immovable seasons that are set in stone (and shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone!) there are other scenarios in which seasonal staff may be needed outside the ‘normal’ times.
Are there any large events happening in your area? Will your town suddenly have an influx of visitors because there is a festival held locally or a major sporting event?
Again, these one-off or annual occasions are normally set in the diary in advance, to allow time for planning, organisation and operational necessities, so make a note of these and plan ahead.
We already know Glastonbury is in June 2020, the worm charming competition is booked in for May in Devon, the Loony Dook is on New Year’s Day in South Queensferry, and the Canoe Slalom World Championships are in London in September 2023!
Do you have fond memories of those food fights at school? Take on a Spanish seasonal job, and head to La Tomatina, held in August each year near Valencia!
Residents of Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales, will be bracing themselves for an influx of visitors in August for the World Bog Snorkeling Championship, and it sounds like watersports suppliers (and no doubt soap makers) will be kept busy!
So everyone in the vicinity of those events, we’ve given you a heads up, so make a note to find your staff early!
How to beat your competitors when you employ seasonal staff
One of the main benefits of being organised and starting your staff search in good time is that you will hopefully have the pick of the crop! Whatever you do, don’t leave it to the last minute when you find that all the good candidates have already found their holiday job.
You want to get in there early so you can pick and choose the best applicant for your business – you know you need to employ seasonal staff, and you know what skills, experience and qualifications you need, so don’t let your rival businesses cream off the good ones!
Once you have found your perfect candidate, allow time to conduct interviews and access references. Build in extra time for on-the-job training, and your new member of staff should be able to hit the ground running when you really need them!
One very important piece of advice is one we’ve heard time and time again from applicants and it’s a good ‘un – please please respond to all applicants, both good and not so suitable.
Ignore this at your peril! We have had so much feedback from job seekers using other forms of job application (not Holiday Staff, I hasten to add!), saying how frustrating and upsetting it is to apply for jobs, only to never receive any sort of response or acknowledgement from the employer.
This in turn will affect your reputation, as those very job seekers will undoubtedly share their negative experiences with friends and online via forums and chat rooms.