Many businesses take advantage of the abundant summer labor force—college kids, high school kids, teachers, etc.—to shore up their seasonal staffing needs for a few busy and critical months. From adding extra manpower during the peak busy season to easing the pressure created by scheduled summer vacations for permanent employees, a summer staffing plan can help you create a smooth and successful season.
With the season in full swing and your summer employees up to speed, now may be a good time to check in on how things are going. To kickstart the process, here are three questions to help you focus:
1. How is your business benefitting from your seasonal staffing plan?
2. How are your permanent employees benefitting?
3. How are your summer employees benefitting from working for you?
With a long stretch of summer still to go, checking in now can give you time to make adjustments and see the summer through to success.
How Is Your Business Benefiting From Your Seasonal Staffing Plan?
When you made the decision to increase your staff for the summer season, you probably had specific ideas and goals in mind for how that would benefit your business. But now that we're in the thick of summer, it's easy to lose track of what you were hoping to gain and just hang on for the ride. However, gauging the business benefits of your additional staff right now can help give you real time insights to help you plan better for Summer 2018.
As you step back and observe your plan in action, start your evaluation by answering questions like these:
- Is your business accomplishing more of what matters with the extra staff?
- Are your operations running more smoothly?
- Are you more profitable?
You want the most bang for your buck out of your seasonal staffing plan. You can help give it every chance at success by carving out time to answer questions like these. Adjusting and refining as the summer progresses can help keep everyone and everything on the right track to get there.
How Are Your Permanent Employees Benefiting?
Your permanent employees are critical to the long-term success of your business, so you want to make sure they stay happy. If you involved them in designing your summer staffing plans, that's great! They thought through what they wanted to get done with the extra help and made their own plan. If they weren't involved and got the extra help as a surprise, they may still be figuring how to adapt to working with additional people around.
Either way, you may want to schedule conversations with any permanent team members who are supervising and/or working with seasonal staff. Get their feedback on how they think it's going. Are they accomplishing what they'd hoped to accomplish? Is having extra help actually making a difference for them? Do they need some guidance on how to best use them or work with them?
Looking at your seasonal staffing plan through the eyes of your permanent employees can give you valuable perspective on how the plan is impacting your business. Plus, you can enlist their help with making necessary mid-season improvements and adjustments, which may help them feel more invested in making sure the plan is a success.
How Are Your Summer Employees Benefiting From Working for You?
People have different reasons for joining the summer labor force. Some just want to earn a little extra money, some are between jobs and some are looking to add experience to their resume. No matter their reason, make a point of getting to know your summer employees and understanding what they hope to gain from their time with you.
Aside from being seen as a "good boss," you want things to go well for your summer staff for several important reasons. First, they can create a great talent pool for filling future permanent positions. Knowing them now can help you choose whom to hire later. Second, temporary staff is still staff. They will talk about your business and what it's like to work for you; make sure they have good things to say. Third, because they aren't entrenched in "how things are done," they may see your business with fresh eyes. Talking with them can give you insights you may not be able to get anywhere else.
Understanding the experiences of your temporary staff is easy to put off, but doing so can be part of a successful summer season. Don't miss the opportunity to gather these valuable insights now. Once summer is gone, you won't have another chance.
You've invested time and money in your summer staffing plan and you've still got plenty of summer to go. Getting started on your mid-point check-in can give you the information you need to correct and improve so you can experience the success you're hoping for, both this summer, and in summers to come.
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