Last year, retailers added more than three-quarters of a million workers nationwide to handle the surge in shoppers between October 1 and New Year’s Eve. It was the fourth year in a row that stores increased their holiday hiring, and the most seasonal workers added since the year 2000.
John Challenger is CEO of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray, and Christmas.
“It looks as though retail hiring will come in over 700,000 jobs. That would be down from last year’s twelve-year high, but still a very positive number. The economy certainly hasn’t slid back in the last year, it’s just not growing very quickly.”
Among the early hiring announcements, Target says it plans to hire an extra 70,000 workers to handle holiday traffic. That’s down 20% from last year. The company says the decline reflects more permanent employees putting in for extra holiday hours rather than any expected drop in sales.