If you’ve never considered seasonal work as a stop-gap measure between full-time opportunities, now might be the perfect time. Seasonal work allows you to focus on your job search while providing a much-needed source of income and experience. The retail industry is a safe bet for seasonal work this time of year as sellers typically boost their workforces significantly in preparation for the holidays.
There are also plenty of professional, well-paying options beyond the sales floor this time of year if you do a little digging. Behind the frontlines, a whole host of marketing professionals, social media specialists, recruiters, customer service personnel, IT support and others will need some extra help in order to keep operations running smoothly this holiday season. Try adding keywords like “seasonal” and “temporary” to your current search queries to see what comes up. You can also check out LinkedIn groups to uncover some of the “hidden” jobs out there.
Job seekers could see lasting benefits from pursuing seasonal work, even if those positions aren’t directly related to their desired industries. Many job skills are relevant across disciplines and it can be a great way to get your foot in the door. Treat your job as if it’s a permanent career and think of ways to make yourself indispensable. If you can exceed expectations in your seasonal job, you’re setting yourself up for serious consideration when a long-term, more stable position opens up.
The number one benefit of accepting seasonal employment? Networking. The pay may be lacking and the benefits non-existent, so make sure to use your time wisely. Maintain a positive, flexible attitude and go out of your way to build good relationships with your supervisors and coworkers. Seek out any opportunity to get to know upper management and leadership, even if they work outside your department. If you’re not retained as a full-time employee, the connections you make while you’re there could open doors for you via future endorsements and referrals.
Seasonal Work and Your Professional Profile
As far as listing your seasonal or temp job on your resume and LinkedIn profile, proceed with caution. It’s generally a good idea to include a temp job only if it’s related to your industry. You may also want to include it if you make strong connections at the company that could pay off down the road. Since you’re likely still searching for a permanent job openly, it’s best to keep your LinkedIn profile and headline optimized for the industry you are targeting. Make it clear you are still open to a long-term opportunity while actively refining your skills.
If you can’t find a good seasonal position in your area, you might consider putting your skills to good use through volunteer work. Start by checking with your child’s school or the local library for tutoring and other needs. Many libraries offer volunteer-led training courses to promote digital literacy in local communities, especially in rural areas where broadband access is lacking. You can check also check out a site like VolunteerMatch, which will help you find a charity with needs that match your skill set. A volunteer position, much like a seasonal one, can be leveraged to open doors to new opportunities in the future, and unlike some irrelevant seasonal jobs, volunteer work is always a great addition to your LinkedIn profile.
****For this post, Campus to Career thanks Chris Williams! ****
About the author: Chris Williams is a freelance marketing strategist and writer who loves covering issues related to non-traditional students and career transition.