October rings in the start of many autumnal delights that we must prepare for each year.
- Seasonal allergies: Time to bust out the antihistamines…
- Seasonal decorations: Doesn’t everyone have an inflatable turkey on their lawn?
- Seasonal brews: Oktoberfest! Pumpkin ale! Lederhosen!
- Seasonal shopping: Christmas is only 76 days away. (Who’s counting…?)
- Seasonal hiring: Start bringing staff on now for the holiday rush.
Now, you might think it’s a bit early to be talking about seasonal hiring. After all, it’s only October 11. When we think of seasonal hiring, we think of the Black Friday shopping blitz and subsequent weeks that close out the year with holiday cheer. However, I’m personally a big fan of being prepared well in advance (I was so ready for Y2K…). CareerBuilder is backing me up with regard to early seasonal hiring, recommending that companies post their seasonal requisitions earlier than you might think. According to CareerBuilder, “While many companies target November to place their first openings, [they] really should start the recruitment process in September or October.” (full article here).
So what can you get a jumpstart on now before the hiring onslaught begins and the competition for talent ensues? Consider how the aforementioned autumnal delights can guide the way!
Gesundheit! Your health is important, and you could be putting it at risk by not getting a jumpstart on your seasonal hiring. Overdramatic? Perhaps. But planning ahead can limit the amount of overtime you find yourself racking up as you scramble to fill open requisitions. And late hours at the office and the stress of last-minute hiring can cause even the healthiest of recruiters to become tired, run down, and more susceptible to the effects of allergies or the dreaded influenza bug. Plan out your holiday hiring in advance. Post your requisitions or schedule your job postings ahead of time. Then go home, get plenty of rest, and take your vitamins.
Deck your halls. Depending on your line of business, there are a variety of ways that you can display your seasonal jobs to build your pipeline. In the retail sector, consider how pretty a kiosk would look in your store alongside vampire bats or candy cane décor. Candidates are quite often also customers, and kiosks enable them to apply for jobs right in your store. Lacking a physical storefront? Dress up your corporate website and social media networks with content that pushes readers to your career site. Promote your seasonal job offerings online and watch as applications flood in. And with an applicant tracking system, you can automate sorting through the resumes and reporting on the best candidates.
Shop around. Some of the best deals on gifts and décor for the holidays can be found earlier in the season. The same can often be said for talent. By posting your job requisitions early and planning ahead for your seasonal needs, you can attract top talent to build your pipeline…giving you the opportunity to be selective in who you bring on for the busy season. Conversely, top talent will also be shopping around to choose the employer that will be the best fit for them, and many are looking to secure their seasonal jobs early on. With seasonal employment out of the way, both HR professionals and candidates alike can turn their focus to spending that hard earned cash.
Drink up! What makes seasonal brews so wonderful? Is it the hint of cloves? The blend of all-natural pumpkin puree with deep roasted malts? YES! But it is also a great study in how to market a product (i.e. company) while taking advantage of the season. Get your brand and your seasonal job offerings out there to the masses. Have fun with it – play up the season and have your jobs stand out from the rest. Candidates will recognize you in the crowd of job offerings out there, and they’ll also remember your organization in the future, as a candidate or as a consumer. Then sit back, relax, and enjoy a cup/mug/stein/five-gallon bucket of your favorite beverage as the holiday season gets underway.