Seasonal Employment and How to Find It

Seasonal Employment and How to Find It
  • Opening Intro -

    No matter the time of year, companies are always looking for temporary help to supplement their staffs and to serve their customers. During the holiday season that demand tends to increase, especially in the retail sector.


If you’re looking for work know that the competition can be tough, particularly for the better paying jobs. Here’s how you can find work this season.

1. Get going. To delay looking for work can mean missing out on opportunities. As soon as you can, start visiting stores, offices and other businesses and inquire about jobs. Retail outlets are the easiest to drop in on. Offices tend to be tightly guarded, therefore it may take a phone call first to determine availability. Expect to receive many “no” responses before hearing a “yes, we would love to talk with you.”

2. Prioritize your search. You can cast a wide net and look for a job that way or you can gauge which businesses are most likely to need staff. In retail, the large discounters including Kohl’s, WalMart, Target, and Best Buy may be more likely to hire. But, don’t rule out small retail outlets, craft stores, and toy stores especially before Christmas. These same stores also have peak shopping time just before Easter and again in the early fall. The more flexibility you show with your hours, the better for you too. Nights and weekends are harder to staff and that is where some jobs can be found.

3. Consider food stores. Food stores should also be visited including speciality stores offering much holiday fare. In December, Christmas goodies, meats, breads and wine tend to be in demand. Stores have a hard time keeping up and may need people to replenish stock, wait on customers, and ring up sales. Some stores also put out food and wine sample carts and need staff to oversee them — you may be a good fit if you have a cheerful disposition.

4. Online retailers need help too. Just because a store is online doesn’t mean that they do not need help. Most retailers manage warehouses and need people to pick through items to fulfill orders. They also need customer service people who can assist buyers through chat service, by email and through phone calls. Amazon has warehouses located across the nation. Even big box retailers need staff to work at their warehouses.

5. Reach out to staffing services. The office job you desire may not be attainable except through third-party help. That third-party is typically an employment staffing company such as Manpower, Kelley Services and Adecco. These companies look for talent to help their clients fill skilled positions. If you are particularly adept at computers, your assistance can come in handy. What’s more, temporary office jobs will sometimes become permanent ones (temp-to-perm).

6. Create your own opportunities. Perhaps working for someone else simply does not cut it. Maybe you have skills, a talent or other benefit that you can market on your own. Thanks to online job sites, you can post your availability and find work where and with whom you want. You may find the work much more flexible, lucrative and therefore more satisfactory than other options. Some gigs are work-at-home opportunities; others allow you to work on site or on the road.

Remember to Pay Taxes

Part-time work means you must also pay taxes. Do not forget this point! Have taxes withheld for you or set aside 25 to 30 percent of your income to cover state, federal and related taxes. If you plan to extend your seasonal employment to year ’round part-time work, speak with a tax adviser about quarterly tax payments.

See AlsoCollege Students and Christmas Break Jobs


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Categories: Money Management

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".