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The Christmas Job Search – Do’s & Don’ts

It’s that time of year where employers and businesses are gearing up for the masses and looking to take on extra staff to support their core teams and extended hours – as well as the increased footfall of customers coming through the doors!

Christmas jobs are a great way to get a foot in the door in a chosen industry – Although it will be a temporary contract you should by no means rule out the value of undertaking this type of work.
Here are a few things to remember:

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Do Take it Seriously


Yes, it’s a Christmas job and you will likely be on a minimum term contract, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t behave as you would for any other job – making sure you’re punctual, keeping to scheduled breaks, not taking sick leave or unscheduled leave, working with your colleagues and supporting customers. The majority of jobs will be within retail, customer service and hospitality over this period and it’s a time of year that employers will be looking for competent, enthusiastic individuals to work with them over reams of experience so if you’ve been trying to get into one of these roles it’s a great opportunity to do so.

If you’ve been out of work for a while, it’s a way to get your foot in the door and some recent experience of your CV – Not to mention an up to date reference and some extra money for Christmas!
Your details will be kept in the company’s records for a minimum of 6months (usually) so if you’re genuinely thinking of wanting to be kept on or re-applying in the future, make sure you put your best foot forward.

Don’t Focus on the ‘Temporary’


That being said, there are lots of employers out there who won’t be willing to let good staff go after Christmas. Employers know the value of hardworking, committed staff so this could also be a way for you to show a potential employer exactly what you’ve got to offer. If you can shine through the Christmas period (which anyone who’s worked in retail at this time will tell you, is no easy feat!) then you’re bound to have what it takes to be a success in the business.

Even if after Christmas there are no current opportunities to keep you, a role may come up in the future and if you know you want to work there it’s important to make sure you leave a lasting good impression. Treat it as a permanent role until it isn’t.

Do Get Involved


Having worked in a few temporary Christmas jobs myself, I’ve noticed there can be a bit of ‘us’ and ‘them’ attitude between permanent and Christmas staff. Your colleagues will be grateful for the support, so make sure you put in the effort and show them how valuable you can be!

Take up the opportunity of extra hours if they’re offered, take on board advice and any training from your peers. It’s a chance to really learn about the role, the employer, the company and the industry in general - All of which will prepare for future interviews and jobs.

Don’t Be Unrealistic


I’ve had clients accept jobs in very temporary Christmas positions – the Christmas pop-up shops and bars that start coming up around this time of year – and they’ve been surprised when there wasn’t any work after December, or that they didn’t get paid for holiday or sick leave.

Be realistic when making applications and accepting positions – some excellent big name retailers are looking for Christmas staff right now, so make sure pick the right type of work to get on your CV and that will offer you best chance of progression in the future.

Do Some Networking


As mentioned above, now is your chance to leave a lasting good impression – make sure you speak with the people who matter. Talk to different managers and HR, find out when they typically look at recruiting new staff following on from the Christmas period – or if they know of any other local stores in the company that would be worth speaking with. If you’re asked if you can work across different sites, make sure you take up the opportunity.

It’s important not to badger your manager, but letting know that you enjoy working there and would like the opportunity to stay/come back won’t do any harm.

And finally...


Don’t Forget it’s Christmas!

The majority of people love Christmas, and despite its stresses, working around this time of year can be really fun and rewarding – so make sure you find some time to enjoy it as well :)

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