Make sure your holiday job fits workers’ needs

Darrell Jones |
Darrell is Snagajob’s Manager of Content & Copywriting, where he enjoys writing and editing advice that helps workers and businesses align and succeed. His first hourly job was totally chill, bagging ice at an ice cube f-f-f-factory.

To attract the best hourly helpers during the inevitable holiday rush, start by thinking like a holiday job seeker. If you understand where workers are coming from these days, and what they look for in a holiday job, you’ll have the inside track to winning them over.

In our annual Holiday Hiring Report, we recently surveyed nearly 3,800 hourly workers to better understand what’s motivating seasonal job seekers. Let’s break our findings down into three categories: 1. Why they’re interested in a holiday job, 2. What they expect to see in a holiday job post, and 3. What benefits would entice them to take a holiday job.

1. Understanding why job seekers are interested in a holiday job

It’s no surprise that with inflation hovering around 8%, money is the major motivator in looking for seasonal work. Here are some top responses when we asked why they’re looking for a holiday job in the first place.

  • 56% want extra spending money

  • 39% want to gain experience on their resume

  • 32% want to supplement income from their current job

  • 31% want to test out the company to see if they want to work there

  • 11% want to work during the break in their school schedule

Pro tip: Don’t be afraid to offer a little more money than you might have budgeted for. You don’t want to be left high and dry when the crowds roll in. Our survey also reveals how much holiday job seekers are expecting to earn nationwide in each job category (for example, in Retail, the majority (26%) expect to earn a minimum of $15 per hour.

2. Understanding what job seekers look for when scanning a holiday job post

Again, money tops the list (surprise, surprise). But, it’s not the only thing workers are browsing for when they see your online job post. Here are some top responses from our survey when we asked what they scan for when looking at a holiday job post.

  • 74% want to see the hourly pay rate

  • 66% want to see the days and shifts they’ll be working

  • 64% want to see the job’s location

  • 58% want to see if flexible scheduling is available

  • 53% want to see job role expectations and requirements

Pro tip: List your par rate prominently. And make it in actual dollar figures, per hour. Don’t be vague or you’ll lose them. For more recommendations, browse this checklist for optimizing your job post to get 2X applications.

3. Understanding what job benefits will entice workers to click “Apply”

Did we mention that money is important? Thought so. With 45% of hourly workers reporting that they simply can’t pay their bills anymore, it’s no wonder they’re looking for dollar signs. Here are some top responses when we asked what would persuade job seekers to take a holiday job.

  • 69% want a weekly payout

  • 62% want a flexible schedule

  • 51% want a sign-on bonus

  • 46% want the potential for a more permanent role

  • 37% want an end-of-season bonus

Pro tip: Pay holiday helpers at the end of the week, not monthly or bi-weekly, and shout the fact out loud in your job post. They’re having trouble making ends meet, and want to avoid bank overdraft fees and payday lender fees. And you want to avoid them running out of gas on the way to work.

In conclusion, remember that this holiday is like no other in history. What worked in past will not fly today. So think like a job seeker, and you should have no trouble staffing up for the seasonal rush. Check out our Holiday Hiring Report for more tips and best practices.

Browse report

PS: For a holiday hiring 2022 deep dive into the Retail, Restaurant, Hotel & Hospitality, or Warehouse & Logistics industries, check out our four industry-specific editions. Plus there’s also our infographic with a quick snapshot of the report’s findings.