Nearly Three-in-Ten Retailers Plan to Hire Seasonal Help for the Holidays, According to CareerBuilder's Job Forecast
Seasonal Pay Trending Up
30 Percent of Employers Across Industries Who Are Hiring Seasonal Help Plan to Transition Some into Permanent Employees
PR Newswire

CHICAGO, Nov. 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Employers expect seasonal hiring in 2011 to be on par with 2010, according to a nationwide CareerBuilder survey.  Companies across industries expect to hire a similar number of seasonal workers for key areas such as sales, customer service, shipping, administrative support and other positions.  Nearly three-in-ten retailers (29 percent) plan to have extra hands on deck around the holidays, a moderate decline from 2010.  One-in-ten (10 percent) hospitality companies will add seasonal staff, the same as last year.  The survey was conducted among more than 2,600 employers between August 16 and September 8, 2011. 

"Employers are keeping the status quo for holiday hiring as economic uncertainties shake consumer confidence," said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder.  "While retail has the lion's share of seasonal jobs, you can also find opportunities in various industries and corporate roles.  Hiring managers continually tell us that they will transition some seasonal workers into permanent employees, so you want to apply early and let the employer know up front that you're interested in long-term employment." 

When looking at functional areas within an office or store, popular areas for recruitment this holiday season include:

  • Customer Service – 30 percent
  • Administrative/Clerical support – 16 percent
  • Shipping/Delivery – 15 percent
  • Technology – 12 percent
  • Inventory management – 10 percent
  • Non-retail sales – 9 percent
  • Accounting/Finance – 8 percent
  • Marketing – 8 percent

Companies are hiring the same, but paying more

More than half of employers (53 percent) reported they will pay $10 or more per hour to seasonal staff, up from 48 percent last year.  Fourteen percent will pay $16 or more, up from 9 percent last year. 

It's not too late to get a seasonal gig

While holiday jobs fill up quickly, 33 percent of employers who are hiring seasonal staff reported they are still recruiting for open positions in November.  Eleven percent said they may still be recruiting as late as December.

How can workers turn a seasonal gig into a full-time, permanent position

Thirty percent of employers who are hiring seasonal help plan to transition some employees into full-time, permanent staff.  To stand out as a candidate for a long-term opportunity, hiring managers recommended the following:

  • Provide above and beyond customer service.  Offer help instead of waiting to be asked for it. – 66 percent
  • Let the employer know up front that you're interested in permanent employment – 49 percent
  • Proactively ask for more projects – 45 percent
  • Ask thoughtful questions about the organization – 39 percent
  • Present ideas on how to do something better or try something new – 34 percent

What are the biggest turnoffs for employers when interviewing for seasonal jobs?  A lack of flexibility or expressed interest top the list, according to employers surveyed.

  • Someone who is unwilling to work certain hours – 70 percent
  • Someone who isn't enthusiastic – 63 percent
  • Someone who is more interested in the discount than anything else – 40 percent
  • Someone who knows nothing about company/products – 36 percent
  • Someone who shows up wearing clothes or merchandise from a competitor's store – 22 percent

Survey Methodology

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive© on behalf of CareerBuilder among 2,696 hiring managers and human resource professionals (employed full-time, not self-employed, non-government) between August 16 and September 8, 2011 (percentages for some questions are based on a subset, based on their responses to certain questions). With a pure probability sample of 2,696, one could say with a 95 percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 1.89 percentage points.  Sampling error for data from sub-samples is higher and varies.

About CareerBuilder®

CareerBuilder is the global leader in human capital solutions, helping companies target and attract their most important asset - their people. Its online career site,®, is the largest in the United States with more than 24 million unique visitors, 1 million jobs and 40 million resumes. CareerBuilder works with the world's top employers, providing resources for everything from employment branding and data analysis to recruitment support. More than 9,000 websites, including 140 newspapers and broadband portals such as MSN and AOL, feature CareerBuilder's proprietary job search technology on their career sites. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI), Tribune Company and The McClatchy Company (NYSE:MNI), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit

Media Contact:
Jennifer Grasz

SOURCE CareerBuilder