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What Retail Jobs Are Available during the Holiday Season?

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In these struggling economic times, finding a job with good pay can be a tough task, but there is hope for you. During the holiday season retail companies look for additional employees to help handle the holiday rush. Obviously people spend more during the holiday season and employers need those who can either work part–time or full–time for a short–term period.

Depending on which type of goods the companies sell will determine if you are hired or not to an extent. Companies who sell automobiles tend to see their sales increase with special holiday savings, but extra salesman are rarely needed. Retail stores which sell a variety of goods such as electronics, clothes, shoes, food, holiday lights, and decorations need the additional part-time employees for stocking, shipping, and checking at the cash register. While keeping the job past the holiday season is not guaranteed, there could be exceptions to those who excel in their retail job. Most retail jobs offer on-the-job training and you will learn more as you continue.

Advancement may be possible if one shows good customer relations and has a proficient work ethic. In very large companies advancement could take years, as you establish yourself as trustworthy and as a valuable addition to the company. In small companies there could be a glass ceiling where people who already own the retail stores handle the majority of the managerial responsibilities. Those who do advance in retail may train others about the products and teach them how to move the merchandise.



Typically there is no formal education in retail jobs and only a high school or GED is needed. Specialty retail jobs such as car salesmen will require knowledge of automobiles, parts, new technologies, and all the basic information. Ideally those who are selling retail products have to be able to deal with and answer costumer questions in detail on a daily basis and must be very persuasive and patient. While Internet shopping is extremely popular, retail sales personnel are still needed to ensure quality, satisfaction, and general costumer service. One of the keys to being hired is to apply frequently and often. Be prepared to be passed over; that does not mean you should give up. Also, being flexible and working in less-than-suitable conditions should not discourage you. Retail jobs can be stressful when dealing with costumers, but it is a part of the job.

New companies that are on the rise will also look for employees to fill their retail stores. If their goods are specialized and require a specific knowledge; things such as electronic equipment, jewelry, automobiles, and home goods such as washer/dryers additional training will be needed. While new company start-ups are few and far between in this stage of the struggling economic times, they are out there for individuals who are willing to promote products and are enthusiastic about selling.

The retail job forecast is expected to grow despite the poor economic times. The growth of the population should increase the number of products purchased, so the need for more retail employees will rise. Retail stores who sell items in large quantities will also need employees to stock shelves, work inventory, and check, since many customers will buy in bulk to save money and thus increase business. In large retail companies employment can be a revolving door, with many people changing jobs frequently looking for better pay and benefits. Retail jobs in larger cities might pay better than smaller stores and cities, but the competition will be tough. Planning ahead is critical in struggling economic times. If you do have a retail job and it is on a temporary basis, search other jobs when the holiday season is over.

While new technologies seemingly sprout up by the day, the employment outlook for retail positions in the tech occupation is not expected to increase. New tech goods are usually high priced, and people who are financially strapped will refrain from purchasing expensive tech items. Such items are not a necessity but more of a privilege. When the economic front is doing well, consumers will purchase that next HD TV and surround system from retail stores.

Salaries can range in retail jobs depending on location, economic climate, and goods sold. Automobile salesmen earn an average of $18 per hour plus addition commissions on sales, while clothing store employees earn around $8 per hour. Clothing store retail employees might make less then automobile salesmen, but the work could be more consistent. People will not make the big purchase such as a new car so salesmen will not be in demand. While high-end luxury items can provide you with a more stable economy, the risk is greater for unemployment when the economy takes a down turn.

On the average, retail averages 4.5 million employees nationwide and that number is expected to increase to just over 5 million in the next decade. No retail job is 100 percent recession-proof, and all are subject to hiring freezes and layoffs. The best chance for employment lies with companies who offer many types of goods rather than high-end products. Competition will be fierce among those in the same boat as you, so apply to as many retail stores as possible. Costumers usually spend on basic necessities in struggling economic times rather than big-ticket items. The most retailers hire people on a part-time basis, so be prepared and willing to find another full-time job after the holiday season. Any work experience is valuable work experience.
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