Patrice Rice featured in Business News Daily

Seasonal Hiring: 6 Tips for Employers

This article was written by Saige Driver and originally featured on  the Business News Daily’s website. View the original article here.

The holidays can be the most wonderful time of the year. But if you are a business owner, it can also be the most stressful. Business picking up during the holiday season is great, but days like Black Friday can put a strain on the employees who are left doing the extra work.

Many small businesses combat this by hiring seasonal help. However, there are some important things to consider, as regulations for hiring short-term workers differ from hiring regular full-time employees. No matter what stage of growth you’re in, here are a few things to keep in mind when looking for short-term workers.

Carisa Miklusak, CEO of tilr, suggests creating a seasonal hiring strategy, just as you would for other business initiatives.

“It’s easy to get behind with a seasonal hiring strategy and having a timeline of who needs hired by when, but holding your internal team accountable to the strategy can define your success,” she said.

It’s important to start the hiring process early, because you want adequate time to train your new employees. For example, if you need extra staff for the holiday season, start advertising for it as soon as summer is over, said Steve Pritchard, HR consultant for giffgaff.

“You need to be realistic about how long your seasonal staff will need to get to grips with their responsibilities, and it’s better to be safe than sorry,” he said.

Worker classification is an incredibly important part of taking on any hired help. Depending on the type of business you run, you may have a choice between bringing in a regular employee and an independent contractor.

“Whether it’s long- or short-term, judge your demand and decide which [type of worker] you need,” said Steve DelVecchia, founder of online staffing platform Adaptive Professional Solutions.

A worker’s status is usually dictated by the level of control the employer has over the individual’s daily tasks, as well as the worker’s overall contributions to the business. The key difference is that employees are listed on payroll and covered by a company’s benefits and insurance, whereas contractors are not. This can make a huge difference in the time and money you spend bringing a particular worker into your business. [Are you familiar with these important business labor laws?]

 

Companies increasingly use social media to find the best and brightest full-time talent. C.J. Reuter, advisory board member for social recruiting solution Work4, said that social media can also be a great recruiting tool for employers who need seasonal help.

“Leverage what your marketing team has already done to market yourself as an employer on social media,” Reuter told Business News Daily. “Social media shows [candidates] what it’s like to be there. You can publish photos on social networks showing the behind-the-scenes, day-to-day culture. It’s more believable, especially to the younger generation.”

Since seasonal hiring tends to be very geo-specific, you can use social media to find qualified candidates in your local area and reach out to them throughout the year, Reuter said. This will put your company on local workers’ radar when they’re looking for a part-time seasonal job or internship.

Patrice Rice, CEO and founder of Patrice & Associates, advises using social media and word of mouth to find potential seasonal employees. “Do not underestimate the power of word-of-mouth recruiting,” she told Business News Daily. “When recruiting candidates, be clear on the length of the assignment as well as the responsibilities that come with the position.”

Since seasonal hires are frequently part-time and will only spend a few months with you, it’s easy to forget what this means for your insurance policy. Don’t assume all your workers are automatically covered.

“It’s important to look out for all workers, regardless of employment status,” said Steve Carlson, vice president of select workers’ compensation for Travelers Insurance‘s small commercial department. “Think about what insurance coverage you need and don’t need, and what the cost will be [if you don’t have it].”

Carlson advised speaking with your insurance agent about the types of employees you’re taking on – part-time, full-time, paid interns, volunteers, etc. – and finding out what that means in terms of your local labor laws. Depending on their status, employees may not be covered by your workers’ compensation policy, so you’ll need to research the proper steps to take should they be injured on the job.

Although they will only work with you temporarily, you and your seasonal hires should get the most out of that time. Once you’ve hired the right people for the position, train them efficiently and well so they can do the best job possible.

“Bringing someone new on is about training them and making sure they understand what’s involved in the job,” said Scott Humphrey, director of technical services in Travelers’ risk control department. “They’re eager to do a good job and get something done as quickly as possible, but as an employer, you want them to take their time and do it right. Supervise them and give them feedback about what to do and not do – the same way you would treat any employee.”

It’s important to keep a positive work environment because it keeps employees happy, and cared-for workers are more productive.

“Keep in mind that successful temporary hires may return to the business next season, turn into customers and/or be a good referral sources for the future,” Rice told Business News Daily. “Be sure to build a positive relationship between the business and employee. Think about the different ways that you can value their hard work, such as offering perks like discounts and/or a competitive wage.”

A way to create a positive work environment is to include seasonal help in events and competitions going on in the company to make them feel part of the team, Miklusak said.

“Including seasonal employees in company events that happen during their time with the organization, competitions and/or simple office building practices can go a long way in helping seasonal employees feel acclimated and included,” she wrote.

At the end of the season, have an offboarding program, which allows seasonal employees to give valuable feedback.

“Make sure that you have an offboarding program, including exit interviews,” said Miklusak. “Having exit interviews allows you to recruit for the next season, learn how to improve the experience for next season’s workers and provide departing resources.”

 

Additional reporting by Nicole Fallon. Some source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article.

Back

What Clients Say About Patrice & Associates

  • Darryl Jackson makes you his priority! 

    I would say that Darryl Jackson was very professional and helped me in all aspects of my job search.  Darryl took my resume and made it more attractive and appealing, he was also very attentive to my needs and what my expectations were.  What I feel was a key part of the success in our relationship was the constant communication on his part.  Darryl makes it his business to know his client and always speaks to you in a positive manner.  He tries to make you see the good aspects of each individual employer.  In the future if I would need to seek other employment I truly believe I would look for his availability.    

    Thanks,

    Luis C

    Darryl Jackson makes you his priority!
  • Thank you all for everything Bruce Leininger!

    Bruce Leininger is an exceptional and irreplaceable asset to Practice & Associates.  Bruce took the time and really get to know me, my passions and personality.  He understood my wants when it came to my career move .  He took the time to talk to me and build a relationship with me.  Bruce had a lot of patience and was always in communication with me in regards to different opportunities.  I respected and appreciated his advice and input.  I will always be grateful to Bruce, as he listened with all his heart.  I will always remember what Bruce has done for my family and I and I will make sure that everyone I know who wants a career change only talks to Bruce!                  

    Respectfully,

    Sami Simaan

    Thank you all for everything Bruce Leininger!
  • The professionalism and care from Francisco Chevez was simply fantastic! 

    He was so informative, prepped to give me the best help whether it was by phone or video call, it gave me the confidence and readiness to succeed in my interview and land the job I was looking for.  He was in constant communication with me and the employer for the entire process, it truly felt like he cared for my needs the entire time and made sure they were met as well.  I am beyond happy with Francisco Chevez and Patrice & Associates, they will be with you 100% during the process and even after to make sure everything is going well. Phenomenal job and thank you so much!      

    Regards,

    Gerrie

    The professionalism and care from Francisco Chevez was simply fantastic!
  • Chris Bovio has been helpful through and through. 

    He was polite, professional, and fast acting.  He listened to what I was looking for and was impactful in his decision making.  His communication was open and offered a hand at anytime.  He made the job seeking hunt 10x easier and made it a seamless process.  I would recommend Chris and his services to anyone!    

    Jessica Pritz

    Chris Bovio has been helpful through and through. 
  • I am so grateful for Sarah Straniero and her tenacity!

    I appreciate your help Sarah. You have been professional and helped me throughout this process. Thank you for helping me with the GM opportunity.        

    Andre F

    I am so grateful for Sarah Straniero and her tenacity!