The easy way to hire great summer staff

Posted on by Jo Shaw

Estimated read time: 4 mins

Summer can be the busiest time of the year. Here’s 10 ways to find, hire and get the best out of your short-term employees.

  1. Plan ahead

Don’t leave it until the height of summer to start looking for staff. Create job descriptions and adverts that are clear about the role and get them out there well ahead of time. Make sure you include details about essential elements such as hours and shift requirements to filter out those who won’t be able to commit to what you need.

  1. Get yourself noticed

Make sure you’re advertising roles where your target audience will see them. If the bulk of your summer workforce is made up of students, post on social media, local campus noticeboards and contact relevant departments of your local college. For example, if you’re a food business and you have a catering college nearby there could be a cohort of talented chefs-in-waiting available to share their skills with you.

  1. Use your network

Your existing employees have an excellent understanding of how your business works. Use them to get the word out and encourage them to recommend friends, family and associates for available positions. They will have a great feel for who will fit and who won’t and will support you to settle in new recruits quickly and smoothly.

  1. Go back to what you know

Did you have some excellent temporary workers last season? Get back in touch with them and see if they want to return. Re-hiring previous staff will speed up training times and make your life easier.

  1. Run recruitment events not individual interviews

If you’re hiring a batch of temporary staff, consider running a recruitment day rather than several individual interviews. It will save you time, as well as giving you the chance to observe how a potential group of people might get on with each other. Building a happy and productive team is as much about personalities as skillsets and getting them together beforehand can give you valuable insights.

  1. Let go of perfection

Remember that you’re not hiring your perfect employee. This is a temporary role and you need someone who can hit the ground running, is capable and willing to learn, will be reliable and who understands the ethos of your business. They might not have all the relevant skills but being able to learn them quickly will do!

  1. Be flexible

You might need someone to cover a full day shift, six days a week, but get creative about how this is done. If you find a few talented individuals who want to work shorter hours, could a job share be the answer? Your needs are still met, but your potential employees also get some time to enjoy their summer. Smiles all round.

  1. Make some buddies

Once you have your new hires in place, buddy them up with existing staff to reduce the pressure on you and start to build a harmonious team.

  1. Take out the turnover

If you’ve experienced problems with a high turnover of temporary staff, then consider offering staggered incentives throughout the season to keep people interested. Could you provide an end of season bonus, or a package of discounts that build over time?

  1. Make friends for life

Once the rush is over, take time to end the relationship on a positive note. Your best staff could return next summer to make your life even easier. Keep in touch with them during the off-season and make sure they’re aware of any future opportunities. Even if they don’t personally return, they could recommend others who would fit well.

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