Retailers have an opportunity this holiday season to fortify their workforce numbers for the coming year by using strategies to attract and retain seasonal workers. Retailers are expected to hire between 450,000 and 600,000 seasonal workers nationally this year, and holiday hiring serves as a significant pipeline to year-round work. Many retailers are using broader recruiting tactics, simplifying their hiring processes, and offering higher wages and benefits to maintain a talented workforce.
Speed is essential in hiring, so having an application that takes as little as five minutes and a response time or job offer to candidates within 48 hours can give retailers a definite edge. This doesn’t mean cutting corners but rather composing an application of questions that truly matter. Macy’s, for example, has moved to converting associates immediately into open permanent roles rather than waiting until the end of the holiday season to determine permanent hires.
Retailers across the country have also raised their hourly wages and benefits to remain competitive. Walmart offers tuition reimbursements and helps its associates save money on gas and delivery with free membership in its Walmart+ program.
One of the critical components to keeping talented employees is offering a long-term career path. NRF Foundation’s RISE Up program helps provide retailers in the onboarding process by providing training and skills certification programs.
RISE Up currently offers four different credentials. The program’s partners include high schools, community colleges, and workforce organizations to train participants, preparing them for their first retail job. Ninety-four percent of credential holders say the training helped them feel more confident when applying for jobs, and 92% say the credential would help with future career success.