Whether you’re gearing up for the busy holiday season, preparing for a major project, or need to accommodate for a spike in business, hiring seasonal employees can offer tremendous benefits to your company. During the busiest times of the year, hiring temporary employees can help handle increased production, maintain excellent customer service, and ensure that your year-round staff doesn’t get burned out. But before you begin hiring seasonal employees, there are plenty of important factors you need to first consider, from regulation and legal issues, to recruitment and payroll. If you’ve been thinking about giving your team a boost, here is everything you need to know about hiring seasonal employees and how they can help your company:

Who Are Seasonal Employees and Who Hires Them?

A seasonal or temporary employee is someone who will be with the company for less than a year and who has a specific expiration date, according to the Department of Labor. These workers are increasingly making up more and more of the American workforce as the skills gap and a tough job market encourages both job-seekers and employers to consider the option.

If you’ve thought that hiring seasonal employees is just limited to the retail sector, you might be surprised to learn that temporary workers are hired across a wide range of industries and fields. From medical and legal services, to creative and IT companies, a myriad of businesses of all sizes are utilizing seasonal assistance to handle an increased workload. In fact, 42% of companies are planning to increase temporary hiring this year, according to Career Builder.

According to a recent study, seasonal employees are being utilized for positions ranging from human resource professionals, customer service representatives, to administrative assistants, bookkeepers and beyond. While they may be used in a variety of industries and departments, you may still wonder, is hiring seasonal employees is a cost-effective plan?

Do Seasonal Employees Actually Cost Less?

In most cases, it is much less expensive for a company to hire a seasonal employee than take on additional full-time staff. On the surface, you save on the typical costs of recruitment (job ads, job fairs, etc.), and the time spent combing through resumes to find qualified applicants that are worth the long-term investment. Temporary employees, not only save you time and money on recruitment, but they are also a great way to test out potential long-term employees for a trial period to see if they’re a good fit for your company, saving you additional money down the road.

Where Do You Find Seasonal Employees?

While some companies may hire seasonal employees directly or utilize job search sites, most companies find that using a staffing or outsourcing company offers a host of benefits. By utilizing another organization to hire your seasonal employees, you can not only save time and money on recruiting efforts, but you can also feel confident that you’ll be getting pre-screened and pre-trained employees who can effectively hit the ground running. You can also save yourself the trouble of having to handle additional payroll expenses and paperwork. And once you begin to develop a strong relationship with an office support company, they can help better address your specific hiring needs and business goals in the short and long term.

What Are the Legal Considerations?

Before you begin hiring seasonal employees, it’s important to learn about all of the legal considerations for temporary talent. Just as with full time employees, you’ll need to take into account all forms of labor laws, including discrimination, harassment, and workplace health and safety guidelines. You’ll also need to consider insurance, benefits, and taxes, background checks and more. In many cases, using a staffing company can help to expedite many of these aspects of seasonal hiring.

Clearly, there is a lot to consider before hiring seasonal employees, but the benefits of using this temporary workforce to help your business can be enormous. If you’re considering hiring seasonal employees, don’t delay, the sooner you begin the process, the better prepared your business will be for the holiday crush or an upcoming project.  Have you hired seasonal employees? Let us know your experiences in the comment section below.

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