November 12, 2011

Five Tips to Help You Find a Job this Holiday Season

As you may have noticed, the day after Halloween, shopping malls and other retail locations start decorating for the holidays. Most retailers look for extra employees around the holidays, especially to help with the Black Friday rush. While these jobs with retailers may not be long-term, they can definitely help you pay for the extra expenses around the holiday season. As an added bonus, if you do a good job, you might land a year-round gig!

Even with the increased number of positions available in November and December, job hunters outnumber the open positions. Here are five tips that can help you land the job you want:

  • Tip #1: Apply early.

Start applying for holiday positions immediately. Stores like to have time to train new employees, so while your schedule might be light until after Thanksgiving, you’re not as likely to find open positions if you wait much longer to apply.

  • Tip #2: Apply in person.

Many stores advertise open positions online and offer online applications for you to fill out. While you do have to follow a company’s protocols, it is important to meet the managers in person if at all possible. Fill out a paper application if you can, but if not, at least shake their hands in person, noting that you’ve filled out an application and are very interested in a temporary holiday position. Try to go to the store during the middle of the day, when they won’t be as busy, so you aren’t taking the manager away from his or her job.

  • Tip #3: Be a consumer of the store.

Stores like to know that you understand their products and use them yourself. You might not have much disposable income right now, but at least spend some time browsing. Knowing the products and the general “vibe” of the story can help you fit in with the current staff.

  • Tip #4: Be available.

Unfortunately, as the newest member of the staff (and in a temporary position), you aren’t going to get to make your own schedule. The more open you are to working long hours and strange shifts, the more likely you’ll be hired. If the manager who creates your schedule has to work around your schedule, you won’t be as valuable of an employee.

  • Tip #5: Apply at multiple locations.

You might most want to work at your favorite clothing store or that electronics change you love, but you’ll have a better chance at finding a job for the holidays if you apply for as many open positions as possible. Fill out lots of applications and above all, make sure that you don’t miss the call backs you get – often, employers won’t leave a message. They’ll simply move on to the next applicant.

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