While some might dismiss seasonal jobs as unserious pursuits, there’s no denying that these temporary roles can offer interesting opportunities for both professional and personal development – regardless of your age and circumstances.
If you've ever waved off the idea of experimenting with a seasonal job as part of your next career steps, it might be time to take another look.
Why you might consider a seasonal job
- To try out a new field or industry: It’s a relatively low-pressure way to test the waters and see if a new setting is a good career fit for you before you dive in. After all, there’s nothing worse than investing lots of time and effort into role you’ll end up hating.
- As a stepping stone into permanent work: A seasonal job can help you bridge the gap and build your confidence if you’ve been out of the workforce for some time. For example, if it’s your first job after studies, you’ve had long-term care responsibilities, or you’ve taken a career break.
- To boost your CV: You’ll pick up new and transferable skills to take to your next role, even if that role is completely unrelated. And while it’s not guaranteed, your temporary role could act as a foot in the door for a permanent opportunity later.
- To expand your network: Seasonal jobs attract people from different walks of life and ages, so you’ll have the opportunity to meet lots of new people – and you never know where your new connections may lead!
- For extra cash: For those with a flexible schedule, the opportunity to pick up extra shifts or take on additional projects can be a real boost. With the average growth in weekly pay close to record highs (as of August 2023), now is a better time than any to increase your earnings.
What kinds of seasonal jobs are there?
Seasonal jobs aren’t just limited to the stereotypical glut of tourism and hospitality roles. You can also find gigs in fields like retail, health, beauty, and even in large corporations. Here are a few examples:
Retail and shopping
Whether you have a passion for fashion, or you’re a secret shopaholic, there are plenty of retail seasonal jobs to choose from in both big-name chain shops and local boutiques.
You could find yourself working as a sales associate, cashier, or customer services representative – whichever role you choose, you’ll have the chance to work in a fast-paced environment and gain valuable customer service skills.
With the rise of online shopping and food delivery services, there's a high demand for seasonal drivers to bring both treats and essentials to people's doorsteps.
It can be quite a flexible job for those who like being out and about, and you can often use your own vehicle instead of having to invest in a borrowing scheme.
Warehouse and logistics
If you prefer a more behind-the-scenes role, there are plenty of warehouse opportunities or in helping smaller shops replenish their shelves. Many companies need extra hands to handle the sales rush in the lead up to the festive period – whether for sorting packages or managing hectic stock rooms.
As carers take well-deserved time off during the holidays, there's an increased need for temporary staff to support patients with their daily living activities or assist with respite services.
A temporary care job can be a flexible and fulfilling way to make a difference in people's lives, all while gaining valuable experience in the healthcare field.
Beauty and pampering
With parties and events happening left, right and centre during the festive season, many seek out skilled hands to help them look their best. Whether your talents are in hairstyling, makeup application, or nail artistry, there are opportunities to showcase your flair for style and help others feel fabulous.
Where can you find seasonal jobs?
Job boards like New Job Today are a great place to start. Just filter your search by “contract” or “temporary” to find the right role for you.
Asking around locally can also lead you to some hidden gems. Talk to people in your community, friends and family, and see what connections they might have. You could even try asking your local businesses directly, as they may have unadvertised opportunities on the horizon.
Timing is also key when it comes to finding seasonal work. It's best to start looking a few months before the season kicks off – for example, around October onwards for the Christmas and New Year period. Of course, some places hire later, or on a rolling basis, so keep that in mind too.
A seasonal job might not be the most glamorous or long-term option, but it can provide valuable experiences, a chance to learn new skills, and a break from the daily grind.
Melody Sadé Abeni
So, next time you see a job opportunity for a seasonal position, don't dismiss it right away. It may well lead you to unexpected opportunities and connections…