October 28, 2020

Seasonal Hiring Needn’t Be So Stressful

You saw the headline yesterday: Amazon announced its plans to “add 100,000 seasonal workers in a holiday hiring blitz.”

The seasonal-hiring rush goes on. Year after year after year. In fact, it sometimes happens throughout the year. There are two tax seasons, so accounting companies often have two seasonal hiring seasons. There’s “Prime Day,” Christmas hiring, summer hiring … and then there was the rush to fill jobs for companies like Instacart when the pandemic hit.

But these cycles could get a lot smoother. After all, Walmart can hire people in hours.

The road forward is a platform that would help companies hire when they need, for the roles they need, bringing on people who match their needs. 

With a Talent Intelligence Platform, companies, particularly those doing high-volume hiring in the logistics and delivery sector, looking to hire during any season would:

  • Use a “Talent Network” to hire. This would massively reduce the need for all of the seasonal-hiring advertising dollars being spent. Companies would begin with the people who know them best: past employees, contingent workers, past applicants, and people who’ve been referred by all of the above. Typically, a Talent Network is about 200 times the size of a company’s employee count.
  • Use AI to instantly view their pipelines. Companies would search their Talent Networks to see who in their pipelines has the capabilities needed for their roles. Instantly, they’d see who’s a strong match. 
  • Automate outreach. Using a Talent Intelligence Platform, companies can send messages out to all candidates who are a match to open roles. 
  • Automate engagement. After outreach, companies automatically engage with candidates through the platform. If someone is a strong match, an interview can be scheduled automatically. If the candidate has questions, a chatbot will answer. Automated, highly personalized emails are sent leading up to the interview. This is the best of the business-to-consumer experience brought to the hiring process.
  • Automate interview administration. The system works behind the scenes to schedule interviews, making talent-acquisition departments far more efficient. One airline cut the time scheduling and coordinating interviews by 48 percent.  
  • Adjust as work evolves. The capabilities needed one year or one season aren’t the same ones needed another. For example, in logistics, as pointed out by PwC, cloud computing, robotics, blockchain, drones, 3-D printing, and self-driving vehicles are all impacting company needs. A Talent Intelligent Platform allows you to continually tweak the capabilities needed, and view the pipeline of seasonal workers who are a match. 
  • Forecast and plan. Scott Wintrip is the author of High Velocity Hiring: How to Hire Top Talent in an Instant and named one of the “Staffing 100” by Staffing Industry Analysts. “Companies that end up scrambling to fill hundreds or thousands of seasonal jobs have something in common,” he says. “They haven’t taken the time to put a plan in place that anticipates their upcoming hiring needs.” Using a Talent Intelligence Platform, an enterprise always has visibility into the skills and capabilities its workforce has, and where it lags competitors. It enables a company to end the mad-scramble approach to seasonal hiring and be proactive in solving talent gaps.

Seasonal hiring can be predictable, such as around holiday time. Or, it can be unpredictable, like when the pandemic caused a sharp increase in demand among some industries. Regardless, seasonal hiring need not be chaotic. You can prepare for the waxing and waning need for staffing, expected or not.