Holiday Call Center Hiring Already Underway
It may be the beginning of October but Nebraska businesses announced the process of hiring holiday help is already underway. The holiday season is undoubtedly the busiest time of year, especially for call centers, so it is imperative to have all the ducks in a row.
Peak holiday season is two months away but online retailer Omaha Steaks’ inbound call center had a record breaking year during the 2016 holiday season. Meeting the increased demand also required a hiring increase of 30 percent for 2017, opening 3,500 positions, 2,900 of which will be inbound representatives. As part of the expansion, the company is opening a 250-seat call center in Bellevue Southroads Mall to accommodate the hires.
There are incentives for returning seasonal hires, $100 bonus per year that caps at $500. “Once you get up to the point that they pay a $500 bonus, it’s kind of hard to turn that down,” shared 76-year-old Emilie Sullivan, who has worked for Omaha for 20 years. Another added bonus is a year-long discount with the company.
Hiring fairs are being held every week, Monday to Thursday, until November 21. Omaha offers flexibility with employees working an average of 15-20 hours per week.
Other companies have decided to downsize and work with what they have. Nebraska Furniture Mart hired 100 people in 2016, but plans to downsize to 55-60 seasonal hires. Oriental Trading is hiring 400 fewer seasonal hires in 2017 versus 2016.
For call centers, it is vital to have the proper volume of agents staffed and scheduled to handle all customer concerns and inquiries. Order volumes peak during the holidays, so businesses can be certain that questions and complaints will also increase. Time is of the essence as is efficiency; agents need to be trained so that the season goes smoothly with minimal, if any turnover.
Is your business ready for the holiday rush?
Edited by Erik Linask