‘Tis the Season to be Hiring

‘Tis the Season to be Hiring

The good news: hourly employees are more highly motivated and committed than ever.

The bad news: it’s harder to find and keep them in a job market more competitive than it’s been in years.

For the latest insights, we asked Snagajob, a company solely committed to providing recruitment and hiring solutions to the hourly industry. As they say, they’re pretty good at it, having become America’s top hourly job spot since their founding in 2000, with more than 60 million registered job seekers, and thousands of customers around the country using their technology-enabled hiring solutions, including Chipotle and Dunkin’ Donuts. Kim Costa, a Snagajob job coach, takes a keen look at the company’s eighth annual Holiday Hiring Survey to offer advice to operators looking to take on additional staff for the hectic holiday season and keep them well-after the last shred of New Year’s confetti has been swept clean.

Are wages and hours for seasonal/hourly workers going up as a result of the tight labor market?

With average wages for restaurant workers at $9.33/hour, down nearly 5 percent from 2014, our survey revealed that while employers are in need of workers, they are not yet ready to raise wages to attract them. There appears to be a slight downtick in available hours for seasonal workers, down from 25 hours per week in 2014, to 23 hours per week in 2015.

What are the most important selling points to stress when hiring ... doesn’t pay trump all?

Actually, no. Millennials tell us the company culture is more important, and the more serious applicants are looking for an environment that will allow them to advance and grow.

When is the best time to start looking for seasonal help?

If you haven’t started looking, do it now. The competition is high - over 80 percent of employers surveyed plan to hire additional workers for the holiday season. The earlier you begin, the more options you’ll have.

Is it best to look at seasonal hires as temporary employees only?

Seasonal hiring may mean that you’re taking on temporary employees, but their impact on your brand can be long-lasting. Think of it as a dry run, and if they do well, let them know several weeks before the job formally ends that you’re interested in hiring them. Most of the employers we work with say they plan to keep 68 percent of their seasonal employees on staff after the holidays.

What are the best ways to recruit seasonal help?

The majority of employers post to online jobs boards and company career websites, or spread the word through local community members. Keep in mind that your customers can be one of your best sources for employees – more than 80 percent of hourly workers apply to places they’re already customers of, so treat every job applicant as a customer. Essentially that’s what they are.

How can we make the application process easier and more user-friendly?

Hourly workers are looking for jobs on the go, they’re not looking to fill out a long application listing their strengths and weaknesses, and more than half look for and apply for jobs on their phone. Make yours as simple as possible and you’ll stand out. Over 80 percent of employers surveyed feel that job seekers frequently fail to complete an application because of the talent assessment software used. That’s why we recommend testing out your application and making sure it’s optimized for mobile use. At Snagajob, we use short, image-based assessments and current mobile technology to make it seamless for both employee and employer. Employers of hourly workers are spending over 30 percent of their day on hiring-related activities – by leveraging technology, we believe an hourly job should take minutes, not days or weeks to fill.

How do we retain the best hires?

Keep the environment fun, continually show appreciation for a job well done and highlight opportunities for growth within your organization. If your seasonal employees are returning to school, make it clear that you’d like to bring them back in the summertime.


Portrait of the hourly job seeker:
Your Newest Rock Star?

  • The majority have high school diplomas or GEDs; 23% have earned an associate’s or bachelor’s degree
  • 55% looking for part-time work, 45% for full time
  • 43% live with parents or family (76% of the 18-24 year olds); 35% rent; 21% own their own place (41% of over 35 year olds)
  • 71% drive their own car to and from the job
  • 36% look at the hourly job as a way to pay bills while you pursue other interests (52% of 16-24 year olds); 28% see it as the start of a career path within that employer’s organization (36% of 25-34 year olds); 27% see it as a position they’ll have for a long time (35% of over 35 year olds)
  • 61% are optimistic about their career path options, 20% indifferent, 19% negative

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