E Career Strategy Library E Finding Your Best Job E How to Use Seasonal Jobs during the Pandemic

How to Use Seasonal Jobs during the Pandemic

Seasonal job and when to look for them

Seasonal jobs are temporary jobs that are available only for a short period of time during a particular season. The best seasonal employment opportunities typically arise with businesses that operate on a large scale in a particular season. For example, Christmas Markets set up every year require human resources on a temporary basis. 

Some examples of seasonal jobs are:

  • Retail Sales Associate
  • Summer Camp Counselor
  • Customer Service Representative
  • National Park Service Employee
  • Seasonal Recruiter
  • Personal Gift Shoppers
  • Outdoor Instructors
  • Chef
  • Waiting Staff

Why is a seasonal job helpful?

Some of the ways in which a seasonal job can be helpful are:

a) Full-time conversion possibility

One of the biggest advantages of a seasonal job could be the opportunity to convert it into a full-time job. Retail store owners and line managers use their performance management system to continually assess the performance of the employees hired on a temporary basis. If the circumstances permit, may even offer them a full-time role to the ones performing well.

b) Added experience in your resume

Short-term jobs may help you gain experience and skills that may help you land your next job. Almost all jobs help you develop professionally, especially in terms of enhancement of communication, interpersonal, and decision-making skills among others. These key skills and related experiences will help you stand out among other candidates

c) Covers for an employment gap

Although there are multiple ways to cover up an employment gap in your work history, a part-time position or a seasonal job may help you get real industry experience with an opportunity to work on operational tasks on a day-to-day basis in a team. It will help you enhance your industry knowledge, work in a professional environment, and develop professional relationships. All of this will be complemented with the advantage of adding experience to your resume and will mitigate the negative impacts of having a gap in your employment history.

Do you need a seasonal job?

Before diving into understanding the best ways to look for a seasonal job, let us first understand if you really need a seasonal job. Some of the things to check before looking and applying for seasonal jobs are:

a) Objective

It is absolutely necessary to understand your objectives. If your focus is a long-term job and you can afford to not work for some time while you are looking for the next opportunities, it would be safe for you to pass on a seasonal job. On the other hand, if you are cash-strapped and are looking for an immediate option, it would be a wise decision to take up a seasonal or a part-time opportunity for the time being and look for full-time jobs on the side. 

b) Personal Interest 

If you have a job that is yet to start in a couple of months and you want to keep yourself busy till then, a seasonal job may be a good opportunity. You will have a working schedule, some extra income, and flexible working hours. 

Meanwhile, if you are someone who has taken a break from work temporarily and aims to start looking for full-time opportunities after a while, a seasonal job may or may not work out for you. Having a seasonal job will naturally reduce the time you will have for other activities and can also lead to exhaustion. The positives could include an opportunity for you to have a friendly and social environment during work, an active schedule, and extra income. 

c) Seniority

Seasonal jobs are in most cases (but not always) more suitable for more junior candidates. While there may be exceptions in cases where someone wants to do it out of interest or if someone is in need, it is best to determine your personal circumstances and preferences before opting for a seasonal job.

How to look for a seasonal job?

Looking for a seasonal job is quite similar to looking for a full-time job. You need to have a plan, a structure, and a lot of motivation to work on the job search process. Let’s have a look at a few things that should be included in the job search strategy while looking for a seasonal role:

a) Update your resume and cover letter 

Whether you are looking for a part-time or a full-time job, all your documents should always be updated with your latest experience. The resume and cover letter should include the relevant key experiences and keywords that are listed as major requirements in the job description. Use the STAR framework to explain your professional experiences and make sure to use relevant examples in your cover letter, wherever required. 

b) Identify the right job search websites

Choosing the job search websites that specifically target part-time or seasonal jobs would help you save time and energy. Such websites not only post vacancies but also give a comprehensive picture of working as a seasonal worker, highlighting the benefits. Specifically targeting seasonal jobs, they also provide a wide range of categories to choose from, while also giving an insight into the success stories. Some of these websites are Coolworks, Seasonworkers, and Backdoorjobs.com. Another popular job search website is Indeed which might prove to be a useful tool while looking for a seasonal job globally.

c) Network your way through

Networking with your professional and personal network may prove to be a great resource while looking for a job. It will expose you to a number of opportunities that may not have been advertised publicly. A lot of retail stores advertise their seasonal opportunities by putting up fliers on the shop windows and doors. The customers or the passers-by may not be looking for such an opportunity but word of mouth may help it reach the right people. The essential part is keeping your network informed of the fact that you are open to such opportunities. 

d) Apply Early

As the name suggests, it can rightly be assumed that seasonal jobs are advertised for a short period before the commencement of the particular season. For example, summer jobs are advertised well in advance during the spring season i.e. in the months of March, April, and May. This does not mean that the actual season does not witness any advertising or hiring but the competition by the end is high and some employers choose to close the vacancy once they find the right fit for the role, so it is always wise to look and apply as early as possible.

Seasonal jobs can be a great opportunity for someone willing to invest time and energy in a short-term role. These jobs can help you bridge the gap between your existing skills and the required skills for a target job. The key to success is applying with the right documents, for the right opportunities, at the right time.

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