Snagajob’s Holiday Hiring Survey Shows that Despite Tightening Labor Market, Employers are Hesitant to Raise Wages

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Employers are starting to fill seasonal jobs now, tracking to hire similar numbers to last year

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Our national surveys offer a glimpse into the current state of the hourly hiring industry and provide key insights that will help us better serve hourly workers and those that employ them

Employers are gearing up for the busy holiday season and looking to fill the majority of their seasonal positions by October, according to the eighth-annual Holiday Hiring Survey released today by Snagajob, America’s #1 spot for hourly work. With more than 1,000 U.S. employers surveyed, the findings highlight a variety of new trends for the 2015 holiday hiring season including:

  • Eighty-two percent of hiring managers plan to hire seasonal workers this holiday season
  • Seventy-three percent of employers expect to have seasonal positions filled by end of October
  • Average expected pay rate for holiday employees is $15.37, down from $17.50 in 2014
  • Sixty-seven percent of seasonal hires will be "rehires," meaning they worked the same seasonal job in 2014

“Our national surveys offer a glimpse into the current state of the hourly hiring industry and provide key insights that will help us better serve hourly workers and those that employ them,” said Peter Harrison, CEO at Snagajob. “For example, we learned that the average hourly employer spends over 30 percent of their day focused on hiring related activities. By leveraging today’s mobile technology, we think an hourly job should take minutes, not days or weeks to fill.”

With average wages across retail ($9.68), restaurant ($9.33) and hospitality ($10.97) down nearly 5 percent from 2014, Snagajob’s survey revealed that while employers are in need of workers, they are not yet ready to raise wages to attract them.

"To compete in this tough labor market, employers are having to make hard decisions around raising wages to attract talent,” said Harrison. “Our survey results around wages suggest that they are not quite ready to commit to this. In fact, many employers are instead highlighting their company culture and opportunity for growth within the organization as selling points to attract workers."

The survey also revealed a slight downtick in available hours for seasonal workers, down from 25 hours per week in 2014, to 23 hours per week in 2015. Harrison says this could be the result of the steadily improving economy.

“As the economy continues to improve, employers are able to keep more workers on staff. The net result of this trend is that there are fewer shifts for seasonal workers that are hired. So while seekers this season may have an easier time finding employment, they may not have as much luck getting the hours they want.”

According to the survey, which can be viewed in its entirety on, here are several insights that could help job seekers land a seasonal job:

Employers are searching for workers online
In today’s digital age it may come as no surprise, but as far as 65 percent of employers are concerned, posting their jobs online is the number one way to find hourly workers. Job seekers can download Snagajob’s free mobile app, that has more than 1 million job openings, to start their job search today.

Feel free to follow up
Don’t just call it good with the application. Eighty-five percent of hiring managers find it impressive when applicants follow up on their applications, and chances are that following up will help job applicants stand out from the rest of the pack.

Stay positive
A positive attitude is one of the most important characteristics employers look for in a seasonal employee (38 percent), followed by schedule flexibility (24 percent), commitment to work the entire holiday season (19 percent) and previous industry experience (19 percent).

Work beyond the holidays
Seasonal positions can lead to continued employment beyond the holidays. On average, companies expecting to hire seasonal workers plan to keep 68 percent of those workers on staff after the holidays.

Snagajob conducts surveys with hourly employers twice a year, summer and holiday, to better understand its audience and stay up-to-date on growing trends in the hiring process. For more information, visit

About Snagajob
Snagajob, America’s #1 spot for hourly work, is the only company solely committed to providing recruitment and hiring solutions to the hourly industry. With more than 60 million registered job seekers and a leading hourly-focused talent management system, Snagajob has been serving hourly workers and those who employ them since 2000. With offices in Richmond, Va., and the Washington, D.C. metro, Snagajob has been named to Fortune Magazine’s Great Place to Work® list for each of the past seven years. To find out more, visit or

Survey Methodology
The Snagajob Holiday Hiring Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research among 1,001 U.S. adults responsible for hiring seasonal and hourly employees, with a minimum of 100 interviews in each of the following industries: Retail, Restaurant, Hospitality, between Aug. 24 and Sept. 3, 2015, using an email invitation and an online survey.

Results of any sample are subject to sampling variation. The magnitude of the variation is measurable and is affected by the number of interviews and the level of the percentages expressing the results. For the interviews conducted in this particular study, the chances are 95 in 100 that a survey result does not vary, plus or minus, by more than 3.1 percentage points from the result that would be obtained in interviews had been conducted with all persons in the universe represented by the sample.

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