Plan for Holiday Temp Cover Now and Get Peace of Mind for Christmas!

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Posted by: QS Recruitment
Posted on: 11/11/2022

Bridging your holiday staffing needs is a big job requiring thorough planning and big-picture thinking.

A clear recruitment strategy executed without time pressure will allow you to hire temps with the skills, attributes and level of experience you need. Get this right and you will reward your business in countless ways.

We understand it can be easier said than done, especially when you’re sitting in front of a long to-do list that’s begging for your attention. That’s why we’ve prepared this handy list of tips to support your temp recruitment efforts.

Start With a Road Map

As with everything in business, thorough planning underpins success. The same applies to the temp recruitment process. Taking the time to map out how the Christmas period will impact each department will dictate how you address your staffing needs.

Considerations for your planning include:

  • Gain a clear understanding of each department’s predicted workload over the holiday period
  • Confirm all booked holidays and cross-reference them against the various departments; this will help you identify your staffing gaps
  • Once you have mapped out the gaps, decide where temporary support is required
  • Among your remaining staff, pinpoint any transferrable skills or opportunities for training to support interim knowledge gaps
  • Decide what support you need and for how long
  • Factor in the what-ifs and the unforeseen such as illness or possible resignations

This mapping process allows you to step back and absorb the big picture, identify pressure points and mitigate risks in advance.

Prepare Your Resources

The temp recruitment process requires sourcing candidates, evaluating applications, scheduling and conducting interviews, processing hiring paperwork and delivering onboarding. Again, without thorough planning, you could put unnecessary pressure on your already stretched in-house resources.

With the added stress of year’s end, there are many advantages to employing a recruitment company to search, vet, select and hire your seasonal temps. By handing this time-consuming process to the experts, you can preserve your internal resources for onboarding and training.

Manage the Paper Trail

When securing your Christmas temps, we urge you to take your time with the paperwork. All contracts should reflect the correct employment status – zero-hour and fixed-term contracts are ideal.

And don’t forget your Right to Work checks! Failure to do so could result in a costly fine downstream. A temp recruitment partner can support you with all screening and paperwork, and provide advice on the most appropriate hourly rate or salary range based on the role and candidate market.

Onboard with Care

Set your seasonal temps (and remaining staff) up for success with a detailed onboarding process. Ensure they are across all procedures, technology or anything specific to the way you do business. Where possible, run training alongside the team members they will be working with; this will allow for some early relationship-building instead of a cold start on the first day of the job.

A considered approach to onboarding will reward your business with competent and productive seasonal staff. Additionally, it will help welcome them to the team and encourage a sense of loyalty.

Have a Back Up Plan

We’ve already mentioned the what-ifs and how you must factor them in. At this time of the year, illness and weather events are likely, which unfortunately leads to unavoidable staff absence.

As part of your contingency plan, we suggest training your seasonal workers to cover multiple roles if you can. This will help relieve the pressure if the unforeseen occurs and allow your holiday team to absorb staff absence with little disruption.

Investing in more temp cover than you think you need is also a worthwhile consideration. It may seem counterintuitive, but it can save you from returning to a headache in January. If you have a list of odd jobs or non-critical tasks that need tending to, this could be an excellent opportunity to knock them on the head while ensuring your team has backup waiting in the wings.

If investing upfront doesn’t appeal, another option is to partner with an agency recruitment partner who can rescue you in an emergency. Make them aware you may need them at short notice, so they are able to prepare for an emergency call, rather than a request they are unable to fulfil.


Heading into the holiday season with an under-resourced team can have countless negative consequences ­ some of which can take time to recover. If you want to hit the ground running in the new year, our advice is to begin planning for your temporary staff requirements as soon as possible.

It’s not always practical for a company to carry out the process from start to finish. Fortunately, with the support of an expert temp agency, it doesn’t have to be a challenge.

Partnering with a specialist company like QS Recruitment – a leading temp recruitment agency operating in the Midlands and South Yorkshire – unlocks your access to an existing database of experienced and vetted workers who will carry your business through the festive period and into January in good shape.

If all you want for your Christmas this year is peace of mind, contact our team today. We promise to fulfil your wish. We’ll even gift-wrap it for you!

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