While Jingle Bell Rock may not have made it to your retail’s playlists yet, holiday hiring is already in full swing. It’s the time of year where everyone is preparing for an influx of employees in the coming few months to deal with the rush of holiday shopping that occurs from November to January. But while you may know when you should get started, and what you should be looking for in a candidate, one thing you need to consider is where you actually find these job-seeking temporary employees from. Below are some of the job candidates you should be considering for your seasonal hiring, as well as what they bring to your organization to help it thrive this holiday shopping season.

1. The College Students:

seasonal hiring, holiday hiring, retail candidates, talent acquisitionThese employees may have worked in your store previously, or they may be home for the holidays and looking for part time work. There’s also the likely chance that they are staying in their college town and looking to fill the gap between semesters. Whatever the reason, these candidates are an ideal target to onboard, but you’ll need to start recruiting them now. Target local colleges for holiday opportunities, and reach out to former employees who went away for school and see if they’d be interested in coming to work during the holidays after they return home.

2. The High School Students:

Very similar to their college-aged counterparts, but there’s a couple of things to consider with these potential candidates: they might have more restrictive hours and less flexible schedules, and they’ll also likely need a little bit more patience for training. Furthermore, because of their age you might be limited to where you can put them on the floor or what responsibilities you can give them. Despite this though, high school students are a great bet – they’ll work hard, gain experience, and can be great to transition into summer hires.

3. The Retirees:

They may be out of the office workforce, but many retirees still look for part-time jobs, and the seasonal hiring that goes on is a great opportunity for them. Hiring a retiree also helps tremendously with what you’re looking for personality wise – mature workers with positive attitudes and customer service skills. As a bonus, they’re likely to help your younger staff become acclimated with their positions, offering “on floor help” to those who need it.

4. The Stay-at-Home Parents:

These are going to be scarce but still out there. Some parents who are considered “stay at home” might be looking for a temporary job opportunity to get some extra income during the holidays, or simply looking to enter the workforce part time while they spend the rest of their time at home. Their hours can be ridged so be prepared for availability limitations at times, but also realize that at other times they could be willing to do obscure-hour shifts when they’re not on parent duty, filling a need in your store while giving them an opportunity of their own.

5. The Referral:

There’s no better way to find faster or more reliable talent than through referrals. Ask your current staff if they have friends or know of anyone who’s looking for seasonal work, and offer them a chance to come and interview for a position. It reduces the amount of effort you have to make to find holiday talent, and you can incentivize the referral effort to make your employees excited about it. Plus, referrals tend to be the most reliable candidates.