The 7 Sins of Seasonal Recruitment

Hiring Managers Recruitment Agencies
The 7 Sins of Seasonal Recruitment

For many companies the winter period can be a busy one, so they choose to recruit a number of seasonal employees to keep up with the festive rush. But even when they’re only on the payroll for a short period of time, bad hires can still have a negative impact on an organisation, especially when it effects the productivity and morale of your permanent staff. Cutting corners in your seasonal recruitment process can lead to long-term headaches, so whatever season is your seasonal rush, here are a few mistakes to avoid:

  1. Not maintaining high hiring standards

One of the most common mistakes that hiring managers make is seeing seasonal employee’s as placeholders, so they don’t show as much care in the employee’s that they choose to hire. No matter how long they’ll be with you, your employees represent your business and its culture, and any mistakes or misconduct can reflect badly on both. Don’t let the way you assess your candidates slip – hire your seasonal workers the same way that you would your full-time employees.

  1. Not spending on an effective training programme

Another mistake often made is not putting enough time and effort into training seasonal employees – even though you should probably be putting more energy into this than training your full-time employees. Your regular staff already know how to do their jobs, and your seasonal employees could reflect badly on your organisation if they don’t know how to do theirs.

Providing effective training is critical for maintaining a productive, fair, and safe workplace. Not only should they be trained on how to do their day-to-day tasks, but it’s still crucial to train them in areas such as health and safety – regardless of their length of employment.


  1. Rushing the recruitment process

Many of the common mistakes that are made in seasonal recruitment are made because recruiters just don’t leave enough time to recruit effectively, or not being prepared enough for unexpected fluctuations during the festive period. For many organisations, especially those in retail and hospitality, seasonal staff can make or break how successful you are over the Christmas period, so why isn’t this a top priority?

Start early by assessing the needs of the business to make sure you’re well prepared for the festive period, and make sure you have a strategy in place for the case of employees leaving before the end of their contract with you – it’ll be harder to get organised once things get busy.

  1. Not considering tools for high-volume screening

Seasonal recruitment campaigns are known for receiving a large number of applicants in a range of different industries. Many of the roles offer a lot of flexibility and the idea of temporary, flexible work appeals to a wide variety of people looking to make some extra money short term. But if you want to find the best candidates manually in a giant pool of CV’s, it’s likely that you’re going to struggle. Using screening tools like video interviewing can help you see and screen candidates faster and help improve the quality of your hires.

  1. Not making the most of employee referral programs

You’ll often find that your current hardworking and dedicated staff surround themselves with people who have similar traits. Reach out to your staff and see if they can recommend friends, family, and even acquaintances who might be interested in applying for a temporary role.

Employee referrals will improve the quality of your applicants and are more likely to be hired than other candidates, because your employees refer people who they believe will be suitable for the job. It’s better to have a few high-quality candidates than hundreds of unsuitable ones!

  1. Making seasonal employees feel less valued

Both management and staff can make seasonal employees feel like they aren’t part of the team because they know they’re only there temporarily. Making sure your workforce is inclusive and makes all employees feel valued for their work is great for morale, and you will see the full potential of your temps (probably best not to actually call them temps!). These people have the potential to one day become one of your full-time employees, so it’s important to provide positive experiences in your workplace.

  1. Not having an on-boarding, training, and exit strategy

But the last thing to consider is, even if you avoid the previous 6 mistakes, you won’t be able to take full advantage of the knowledge and experience that your temporary employees bring into your workplace without having a full strategy in place for their time at your organisation.  You need to consider the different stages of their employment with you and make sure that you’re well equipped for each, including their on-boarding, training, and exit strategy.


Providing bad employment experiences can ruin your reputation as an employer. Not providing the same service as management to your temporary staff as you do to your full-time employees will disregard the well-being of your seasonal workers, who should be treated as equals. High turnover workforce’s can have a negative impact on any organisation unless managed properly, so make sure you provide employment experiences that protect your employer brand image and make temporary workers want to come back.

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