Temporary staff at Christmas – it doesn’t pay to take short cuts.

Let’s be honest, there’s not much glamour when it comes to finding high quality seasonal staff. It can feel like you’ve only just learnt everyone’s names before it is time to say thank you and goodbye! As for motivation, performance or engagement, the reality is can they turn up on time, look tidy and disguise any hangover! Does this sound familiar? If so, read on.

The first challenge is to recruit the right people in the first place. That means, apply the same rigorous application process to seasonal staff as you do to permanent employees.  Don’t settle for second best just because they won’t be with you for long.  Recruit the very best seasonal employees who will do a great job and enjoy working for you. That way you have people who want to return next year.

Consider the best places to find suitable job applicants. If you need staff with specific skills or experience, target your advertising to attract those candidates.  Can you target your job adverts to the places they are living, the websites they visit or the publications they read?

Take time to write a detailed job description so all applicants can decide if the job is right for them.  Provide information about working hours, conditions, tasks and pay.  Describe the ideal personal qualities and skills you are looking for in suitable employees.

During interviews, ensure that potential employees have realistic expectations about the job. If candidates are looking forward to being in the pub with their mates every night, when you need them for the evening shift, there will be disappointments within the first few days.  Make sure everyone knows what the job really entails.

Carry out interviews and job assessments so you select the best candidates. Take up references from previous employers, a teacher or college supervisor.

Use permanent staff to help recruit seasonal ones

A good idea can be to involve your permanent staff in the recruitment process to be confident that there will be a good fit on the team.  If all of your staff are seasonal, perhaps ask experienced returners to be on the interview panel with you.

Explore ways to create a sense of team and community before people start work. This is really important if you have a lot of new starters all at the same time.

You might think about a Facebook group for employees, a series of welcome emails and messages, or opportunities for a social get together before the season starts.

Help new staff be ready to work for you by giving them information about the area and the local facilities as well as telling them all about your business, your customers and the expectations of the job role.

For help recruiting seasonal staff, contact us. Sam@vivohr.co.uk or call 0845 463 9365.  

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