The Students’ Guide to Getting a Christmas Temp Job
It’s finally December – Christmas decorations are up, university is finishing for Christmas, and you’re enjoying loads of festive activities! The only problem is, money is starting to run a bit short…
Getting a job over the Christmas break is a great way to make a bit of money and enhance your CV with some valuable skills. Many companies offer temporary Christmas jobs over December and January, particularly in the hospitality and retail sectors, where they have to keep up with the demand for Christmas parties and present buying.
Companies also know that this is the time when students will be returning home for their university Christmas break, so there are often many jobs available to students who want to find temporary work over the festive period.
Read on as we answer your questions about earning some extra cash over Christmas…
Why should I get a Christmas temp job?
Temporary Christmas jobs are a great way to gain work experience, skills, and money, while working in a way that’s flexible for you. There’s no notice period, no long-term commitment, and you might get to try something completely new – like working as an elf! You may even get a full-time job offered to you if you really impress your employer (and they have job openings).
Working for a company that you might want to work for in the future can look good in your subsequent job application, as it shows you are committed to the brand.
What jobs are available over the Christmas period?
The retail and hospitality industries have some of their busiest periods over Christmas and are therefore constantly looking for temp workers. There are a variety of different roles available in both sectors, so you’ll be able to find the one that’s right for you.
Supermarkets are particularly busy, with most large supermarkets offering seasonal jobs with the same discounts and benefits as full time roles. Pubs, bars and restaurants are looking for temporary workers, and many are willing to offer full training. Call center jobs and delivery jobs are also amongst those available for students looking for work over Christmas.
There are also festive roles available such as working as a store elf or as Santa, a Christmas market winter assistant, postal assistant (sorting through Christmas post) or even as a Christmas gift wrapper!
How do I find Christmas temp jobs?
“Spread your job search as wide as possible” says the National Careers Service website, “there are plenty of places to look”. They recommend job websites, such as Glassdoor, Indeed, The Job Crowd and Milkround to help make your Christmas job search a lot simpler.
They advise using recruitment agencies that specialize in temporary work contracts: “agencies can be useful to help you find jobs that aren't advertised to individuals online or in the press.” You can apply for these agencies online through websites such as Agency Central.
When should I start applying for these jobs?
The sooner you apply the better. Some Christmas jobs open as early as October, but most open in November, and many advertise in December – so you still have time to apply!
What is the application process like?
Again, this depends on the type of job you’re looking for. Most will ask for an initial online application, where you’ll be asked to submit basic information, your CV and possibly a cover letter. You may be then asked to complete some online tests if you are applying to a larger company – find out how to prepare for online psychometric tests here. Successful applicants will then be invited to attend a either a group interview, or individual interview.
To prepare for your interview, find out how to answer the most common job interview questions here.
What skills do I need for these jobs?
The skills you’ll need will, of course, depend on the job you’re applying for. “Start by making a list of the key characteristics needed for the role you’re applying to,” the founder of Interview Expert Academy, Jonathan Burston, tells the Guardian. “Then match the key characteristics of the role to your skills by showing how you have that relevant experience.”
This experience can be paid or unpaid, or even academic or from a hobby. Matching your skills and experience to those requested on the advert shows that you can pay attention to detail, and that you can apply your skills to those in the job description. For example, health and beauty store, Superdrug say they are looking for “a positive mindset, people who can support their team to get things done and enjoy getting involved.” Here you could talk about a time when you supported a team (for example in a group project or in a part time job) and give examples of when you were involved (perhaps in a university society.)
Remember, the company is only hiring you on a temporary basis, so they want to know that you are reliable, can complete any given task and provide excellent customer service at all times.
Read these handy tips on how to make your job application stand out.
When will I be working?
Most Christmas temp jobs will expect you to work at least one out of Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, so make sure you are available to work on those days if required.
How often and when companies expect you to work will, once again, depend on the company, and you’ll usually be able to select a more flexible contract if you wish. For example, UK retailer Next says they have “a range of contracts available, from now until January 2020, or for as little as 2 days over [the January] sale” so you really can suit your workload to your availability.
本文首发于 2019 December ， 更新于 2020 January 。