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Seasonal Spending Drives Higher Seasonal Staffing in the 2018 Holiday Season

Seasonal Spending Drives Higher Seasonal Staffing in the 2018 Holiday Season

The holiday season is an exciting time for everyone! Whether you’re doing your shopping online or in store, we’re all getting ready to take part in one of retail’s biggest seasons of the year -- and the seasonal staff needed to power the holiday shopping push extends far beyond in-store associates.

Holiday shopping flows smoothly only when the supply chain involved is able to work efficiently, even with the increased demand. Warehouse jobs and delivery driver positions are increasingly seeing more seasonal demand year over year. So far, 2018 looks like its holiday spending is going to continue the ever-increasing upward trend established since the market crash of 2008.

Recently a number of logistics companies have begun to ramp up their seasonal hiring efforts. UPS is looking to add 100,000 seasonal logistics workers alone -- and in a strong economy with falling unemployment, anyone looking to compete with open seasonal job offerings around the retail and logistics industries is going to need to get smart about their hiring.

Upward Trending Spending

The trend for 2018 is clear: seasonal spending is on the rise, thanks to a growing economy, more jobs, and a continuing recovery trend a decade after the crash of 2008. The National Retail Federation has reported that 2018’s November and December retail sales are set to increase between 4.3 to 4.8 percent over 2017 levels.  

Growth in holiday spending is bolstered by the strong economy, as more Americans are able to get back to work and earn higher wages from minimum wage increases and strong business growth. As people earn more, they’re more confident in spending, which creates a sustainable economic loop.

In addition to higher consumer spending, how consumers spend during the holidays is starting to change. E-commerce’s share of the holiday shopping blitz is expected to grow by 16% this year, and that has implications for where seasonal staffing is going to be needed. Retail giant Macy’s is planning to allocate over a quarter of its annual holiday hiring -- 80,000 employees this year -- to fulfillment centers, a hiring trend seen all over the industry.

Staffing the Demand

Effectively meeting the ever-increasing holiday shopping demand will be complicated for logistics and retail companies. Higher wages and increasing job creation mean that the number of bodies to fill seasonal jobs is low, while the number of roles to fill is high; competition for skilled employees will be stiff.

In order to avoid staff shortages, companies should start hiring early -- which means catching up now if you haven’t already! The logistics jobs required to meet seasonal demand without a hiccup aren’t just entry-level warehouse employees, as important as they are; managing increased seasonal demand requires a whole host of skills. Companies looking to staff fulfillment centers will want to look for tech-savvy candidates to navigate complicated warehouses as early as possible.

In addition, warehouses this year will likely find that in order to attract the best seasonal talent, their seasonal wages will need to be set higher than in the past. Low unemployment means the job market is an employee’s market, not an employers, and wage competition will be fierce for employers.

Companies who haven’t started their seasonal hiring yet will find that a staffing partner can help fill seasonal shortages. DG Staffing specializes in placing the best talent into open logistics positions year-round and seasonally -- why not get in touch?