Whether you need extra hands on deck for Valentine's Day in your flower shop or some backup in December at your clothing store, seasonal help is a lifesaver. With the right seasonal help, your sales will increase and you can grow your business (all without feeling overwhelmed and inefficient). Hiring for seasonal help has a few differences from regular full-time staff. Here are some tips for hiring seasonal help to get you through a rush.
1. Consider Employment Status
You may be used to hiring people on a part-time or full-time basis, but could you use contractors to help you get by during busy times? Many jobs, such as accounting, can be outsourced to contractors during the busy season. In general, someone may qualify to be a contractor if you are not controlling how they conduct their tasks or providing their tools of the trade. You won't be responsible for withholding taxes from their paycheck or offering them traditional benefits.
If you need to hire someone as a part-time employee, be aware that they must be given the same benefits demanded by law for regular employees. For instance, even seasonal employees on your payroll have the right to workers' compensation coverage. Figuring out which type of worker you need in advance -- contractor vs. employee -- helps you hire smart.
2. Start Hiring Early
You know when your busy season is. Don't leave hiring seasonal help to the last minute! About 60% of employers are already scouting for summer help by April. If you wait too long to put out a job ad, you may miss the opportunity to snag some of the best seasonal workers in your area. Start asking for help two to three months before you will need them on the schedule.
3. Be Very Specific In Your Ad
An ad that simply says "Needed: Seasonal Help" may not deliver the results you need. Even though these staff members will only be with you for a few months, you should take the hiring process as seriously as you would with any other worker. Some small businesses think of seasonal employees as disposable so they hire anyone willing to show up -- don't make this mistake! Your seasonal employees will be representing your business to the public as much as any other employee.
It's important to be specific about the necessary certifications and skills for the job. Do you want a retail worker who has experience with a specific POS system and can lift up to 20 pounds easily? Mention this is your seasonal ad to narrow down your candidate field.
4. Keep Good Seasonal Hires on File
Some small businesses think of seasonal hires as expendable, and they start the process all over again every year. If you love a seasonal hire, why not keep them on file even if you can't hire them on full-time at the end of the season? Growing a list of reliable seasonal employees makes filling your seasonal roles easier in the future.
Is your busiest season approaching? Hiring for seasonal help is an important task that can make or break an important time of year. Hire early, look for specific skills, and encourage your best seasonal workers to contact you next year for more work!