Ten Tips for Finding Seasonal Jobs at Holiday Time

Breaking news for Santa’s helpers! After a long gray year, affluent shoppers are finally buying again at upscale retailers. Your favorite luxury store may still be hiring additional seasonal sales staff and service personnel.

More cheers: Posh retail stores aren’t the only employers beefing up holiday teams. Substantial numbers of seasonal job orders are said to be in the pipeline at warehouses, delivery service centers, restaurants, and hotels.

You’re not too late to scout for ways to cash in during this year’s merrymaking season. But heed two words: move fast. Here’s how.

  • Job factories. Staffing agencies’ phones are ringing with employers seeking a variety of temporary workers. To connect, browse online for “temporary employment agencies” followed by your city’s name.

  • Rugged individuals. Cruise your neighborhood and the mall, keeping an eye peeled for help-wanted signs in windows. Ask every person within ear reach: “Know of any holiday jobs?” When you hope to land an elf job at a particular company, go directly to that employer’s Web site.

  • Newspaper resources. Scour classified job ads in daily and weekly newspapers, including the free papers.

  • Online odysseys. Locate part-time jobs, often seasonal, on such purpose-driven job boards as Juju.com, SnagaJob.com, and Guru.com. Don’t overlook yuletide job tidings on Craigslist.org. and the new TwitterJobSearch.com.

    Stop in at traditional favorites CareerBuilder.com, Monster.com and HotJobs.com. Wrap up your seasonal employment shopping spree with two big job search engines that pull together virtually all postings: Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com. Good search terms are “seasonal,” “part-time,” and “holiday” jobs.

  • Job auctions. The lure of pocketing quick cash attracts job hunters to talent auction sites that you can check out for seasonal gigs.

  • Social searches. Tap into your social media network on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and LinkedIn. Do an instant shout-out for seasonal leads and names to contact at prospective employers.

  • Seasonal ringtones. Job search applications for iPhones and iPods have become so numerous they could almost decorate a Christmas tree or Hanukkah bush.

  • Holiday horizons. Apply everywhere. Just because you’re an art student doesn’t require that you work in a framing shop or gallery, for example. Nice work if you can get it, but you’re chiefly committing to a few weeks of seasonal work for folding money, not making a career move.

    Have a look at this list of holiday-time employment possibilities:

    • Backroom supervisor — shops

    • Candy packager — manufacturers, stores

    • Cashier — stores and restaurants

    • Christmas lights installer — decorating services

    • Customer service clerk — retailers

    • Dog sitter — individuals

    • Food delivery driver — pizza parlors

    • Garage sale contractor — self-employed

    • Gift wrapper — stores

    • Holiday greeter — stores

    • Kettle bell ringer — charities

    • Musician — malls, parties

    • Retail sales clerk — stores, mall kiosks

    • Santa — malls, parties, and local attractions (such as, zoos and museums)

    • Seasonal driver — package delivery contractors

    • Ski instructor, patrol — resorts

    • Stocking clerk — stores

    • Tax preparers — tax preparation companies

    • Tree sales representative — Christmas tree lots

    • Warehouse worker — warehouses, retailers

  • Good impressions. Show cheerful flexibility — you’re glad to work evenings, weekends and holidays. You can be counted on to come in on your day off if needed. Long hours are no problem.

  • Interviewing aces. For short-term jobs, the personal essentials are reliability, a healthy respect for showing up on time, honesty, and a positive attitude for doing good work.

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