It might be one of the more successful American imports, but Black Friday, which has taken off enormously here in the past few years, can lead to recruitment headaches for the logistics sector.
Black Friday, which began as the habit of embarking on a major shopping spree on the day after Thanksgiving in the States. If the Thursday was a day of family celebration, the Friday was all about spending – and the stores reacted with sales and cut-price offers.
Gradually it expanded out into at least a couple of days either side of Black Friday, if not a full week, and gave birth to Cyber Monday.
What all this means is that recruitment agencies need to be on the ball with their Black Friday preparation, working with their retail (particularly online), transport and logistics clients get ready for the onslaught, having the staff in place where and when they are most needed to keep goods moving at a speed customers expect. That might be picking and packing, stock control, additional drivers – and recruitment agencies that have clients in waste management and courier services will also need to check whether they are likely to be impacted.
Planning is essential and clients who have a good relationship with their recruitment providers will benefit from guidance, starting early and looking back at the experience of previous years to get the strategy right.
It’s almost inevitable that temporary workers will be needed to fulfil the Black Friday logistics and transport requirements. A huge increase in demand means that wages can often become unrealistic, so the support of a recruitment agency to help ensure clients avoid the hugely inflated rates that come with last-minute panic in the recruitment of Black Friday employees can be avoided.
Negotiating rates through an agency is not only likely to lead to a reasonable agreed rate, but is also a lot less stressful for the employer.
Working partnerships between employer and recruitment agency will typically:
As Black Friday approaches, the recruitment agency should work closely with clients to onboard and assess temporary workers so they are up to speed by the time Black Friday arrives.
Careful planning can help prepare for the Christmas rush, too, helping identify efficient workers who can be invited to stay on through the busy festive sales period – and possibly beyond.
The important thing for the logistics and retail sectors is that they are well prepared and have a strong structure in place to ensure that they can provide a service that meets the needs of their clients or customers.
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