In the survey that ran Dec. 10 and Dec. 11, ResumeBuilder asked 1,250 retail business owners and managers how difficult it was to hire seasonal staff in the current climate, marked by the ongoing pandemic and labor shortages.
A lack of qualified candidates made hiring challenging for 44% of retailers who responded to the survey, and 4 in 10 retailers had the misfortune of hiring temporary workers who quit after just a few days.
“There is a pervasive energy out in the workplace that is resonating with all workers, that there is something better out there for them,” she said. “With the abundance of job opportunities available, and the messaging from the media that now is the time to get the job you want, job-seekers feel empowered to do as they please during the hiring process. Seasonal employees may continue to look for permanent positions and will leave when they find them, even if it’s only a few days after starting a new position.”
Just over 6 in 10 retailers blame COVID concerns for their hiring struggles. Since remote work has become more common, Haller said, many people are exploring it for extra income, in part due to higher flexibility but also due to a lack of exposure to others who may be ill.
Retailers did what they could to entice more applicants, though. The most popular incentive, enacted by 49% of retailers, was increasing pay. Others (44%) offered sign-on bonuses, and 40% hoped employee discounts would attract temporary staff. More popular incentives offered by retailers included health insurance (38%), permanent job offers (36%), and paid time off (34%).
“[Lack of staff] is definitely one of the top, if not the top, challenge retailers have faced this holiday season. What’s amazing, is that is not the only challenge they have had to deal with this year,” New Jersey Retail Merchants Association President John Holub told NJBIZ.
“And even with labor shortages, supply-chain disruptions, inflation, and now the new COVID-19 variant, it doesn’t appear to be impacting sales. None of these challenges appear to impacting consumer demand. Retailers are on track to having a record setting year,” Holub said.
Without enough temp workers, though, ResumeBuilder found that many retailers have relied on permanent employees to work overtime (52%).
Nearly 5 in 10 have experienced delays in fulfilling orders and have ditched extended store hours due to staff shortages; and about 4 in 10 have put non-sales employees on the retail floor to service customers.
Editor’s note: This story was updated at 2:29 p.m. EST on Dec. 23, 2021, to include remarks from New Jersey Retail Merchants Association President John Holub.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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