Retailers hiring more workers to head off busy holiday season - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

Retailers hiring more workers to head off busy holiday season

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JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) – ‘Tis the season to get a job, as many retailers have begun looking for people to work through the holidays.

The seasonal hiring push has already started so that stores can step up their workforce ahead of the busy holiday season, which the National Retail Federation estimates will account for anywhere from 20 to 40 percent of a retailer's annual sales.

The NRF also expects retailers to hire between 720,000 and 780,000 seasonal workers this holiday season.

Most of the big box stores in Jonesboro are looking to hire seasonal help, but anyone that's interested needs to act quickly to try and land some of these jobs.

This holiday season, many people will go to Best Buy to check off at least a few items on their loved one's wish list, but more than anything what the store itself wants right now are a few new employees.

"We think about the holidays year-round," Jody Simpson, the sales support supervisor at Best Buy, said. "We want to serve our customers as best we can. Our normal staffing does not cover the amount of customers we have, so we have to really extra staff our warehouse, our sales floor, everything."

Simpson says her store began hiring seasonal workers last month, and she hopes to bring on a few more qualified people in the next few weeks.

"We don't want somebody that doesn't necessarily want to help people," she said. "That's the biggest priority. We can teach electronics and technology, but we need people that like other people."

Best Buy is just one of the local stores that have posted ‘help wanted' signs lately. This holiday season, Target plans to hire about 70,000 seasonal employees, while Wal-Mart will bring on an additional 55,000. Kohl's intends to hire an estimated 53,000 new workers, and JC Penney will add another 35,000.

Some of these stores may try to keep their best seasonal workers even after the holiday decorations are taken down. Last year, the NRF estimates that Target offered year-round positions to more than a third of their seasonal workers. Simpson says Best Buy usually plans to keep on some, too,

"We always have open positions in the store year-round," she said. "If we find some really great candidates during our seasonal times, we keep them on. We keep the good people. There's no way we're getting rid of them."

Simpson hopes to have the Best Buy store in Jonesboro fully staffed by the first week of November, so she encourages anyone interested in applying to turn in their applications online as soon as possible.

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