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Many job hunters will get an early present this year as retailers hire seasonal employees for the holiday season. Competition for these jobs will be high.
"The holiday season creates a welcome bump in the number of job openings, particularly in the retail and restaurant industry," said BBB President Tom Bartholomy. "While the jobs may be temporary, the income can make a big difference to people who are unemployed.
The BBB offers the following advice for job hunters this holiday season:
Start the job search early - The key to landing a seasonal job is to start searching early. Retail, shipping, restaurants and catering companies are common sources of seasonal employment and now is the time for job hunters to begin submitting applications and resumes.
Work where you shop - Try to identify seasonal employment with businesses you actually shop at or frequent. You will already be familiar with the company and its products, and you will get an employee discount to save you money on Christmas gifts. Employee discounts can range from 10-40 percent for seasonal employees.
Put your best foot forward - Even if you are just picking up an application at a store in the mall, dress your best and be prepared for an interview. This includes being familiar with the company's brand and its products. Retail job hunters in particular need to focus on impressing potential employers with their customer service skills—which is a must when dealing with stressed-out shoppers, long check-out lines and day-after-Christmas returns.
Be flexible - Full-time employees usually have first dibs on the preferred hours and shifts. As a seasonal employee, you can expect to work long hours which will likely include working on Thanksgiving day and Christmas Eve. If this is a second job in addition to your day job, be upfront with your new employer about your available hours.
For more information, please visit BBB or call 1-877-317-7236 toll-free in N.C. and S.C.