Taking Advantage of Holiday Retail Openings

Matt Shelly
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As the holiday season approaches, the number of retail job openings typically increases. Whether you are looking for a way to earn extra money or an opportunity to get your foot in the door with a great company, now is the time to update your résumé and start searching for job opportunities. Some retail job openings are temporary, but others lead to offers of ongoing employment, so put your best foot forward when searching for jobs.

This year has been one of the best for those seeking retail job openings during the holiday shopping season. WANTED Analytics reported retailers had more than 375,000 sales jobs available in September and October. Department stores, home centers, general merchandise stores, and appliance stores had the highest demand for seasonal retail workers during this period. The 2013 holiday shopping season is shorter than usual because Thanksgiving falls on November 28. As a result, retailers started their holiday hiring earlier this year.

If you want to work in retail for the holidays, you must know which retail job openings are typically available. Most people focus on applying for sales jobs, but there are other opportunities. Some retailers need call center agents to process orders and handle customer service issues. Many retailers update their websites to reflect holiday discounts and shipping deals, so there are also opportunities available for people with experience updating e-commerce sites.

Searching for a holiday retail job is similar to searching for any other type of job, but there are some key differences. Instead of mailing your résumé and waiting for a response, it is likely you will be asked to fill out a job application in the store. Because retailers need to fill their seasonal retail job openings quickly, you should also be prepared for an immediate interview. If you are serious about wanting to work in retail, you should take your driver's license, Social Security card, and other forms of identification with you when you apply for a job. If a recruiter makes a job offer, you will be able to prove you are eligible for employment.

When you meet with a recruiter or department supervisor, there are some things you should avoid if you really want to land a seasonal job. Retailers usually want seasonal employees with flexible schedules, especially if their stores are open on Thanksgiving or Christmas Eve. If you tell interviewers you are only available during the day, it will be difficult to persuade them to hire you. You should also make an effort to dress well for your interview. A suit is probably not required, but a smart pair of slacks and a sweater will help you look professional.

Getting a seasonal retail job is a great way to improve your finances or learn skills you can use to land an ongoing job. When you apply for seasonal jobs, make sure you are properly prepared beforehand. Making a great impression will help you land one of the best retail job openings in your area.


(Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net)


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