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What are seasonal job seekers looking for?

(BPT) - UPS, like many other companies, is hiring thousands - in this case, more than 100,000 employees - to help with the holiday season.

To inform what's driving potential applicants in the U.S., UPS commissioned the 2021 Peak Hiring Survey.

Findings from the survey identified three key themes:

  1. COVID-19 changed the attributes and offerings applicants seek in employment, and this is especially true among millennials.
  2. Applicants are looking for more than a seasonal job; they're looking for a job with long-term potential.
  3. Offering flexible schedules can be a game changer for applicants with multiple offers in hand.

What applicants seek in employment is changing

With hiring needs at an all-time high nationwide, applicants are now considering what matters most to them when accepting a position, seasonal or otherwise. And this is especially true among millennials.

The UPS Peak Season survey found four in five millennials say the pandemic changed what they're looking for in an employer, and nearly 90% said they're more open to the types of jobs they'd accept, compared to the year before. This can be a good thing for employers, attracting talent who may have never considered work as a driver or warehouse worker, for example, if they have the right incentives and benefit packages in place.

Can seasonal turn into permanent?

While applicants have many options when it comes to seasonal work, one thing is clear - they see value in a seasonal position that brings the potential for a permanent role. According to the survey, nearly three in four respondents acknowledged wanting a seasonal position that could turn into a permanent position. Moreover, the potential for a seasonal job to lead to full-time employment would lead more than a quarter of respondents to choose the job over another offer.

'While we know wages can be a major factor, and UPS offers competitive wages across the country, this survey helped confirm a differentiator for UPS - the ability to transition from seasonal to permanent employment,' said Matt Lavery, director of HR for UPS.

At UPS, 138,000 employees, including many senior executives, started in seasonal positions and moved to permanent roles. That's nearly a third of UPS's entire U.S. workforce.

'It's a unique claim we can stake,' Matt said. 'It's something we're really proud of.'

During times of uncertainty, flexibility is key

The pandemic has shown flexibility is a critical attribute. According to the UPS Peak Season Survey, flexible hours ranked as the most important attribute of a seasonal position, followed by a quick application process, and then benefits. Women, more than men, identified the importance of flexible hours, with nearly one in two noting that a schedule that works with their lifestyle is the most important quality of a seasonal job.

UPS announced in early September it would hire more than 100,000 seasonal workers this holiday season. The company continues to hire tractor trailer drivers, package car drivers, driver helpers, package handlers and other warehouse positions, as well as personal vehicle drivers. Permanent UPS jobs - including part-time jobs - come with competitive pay and excellent benefits, including healthcare and retirement. And at many UPS locations, seasonal hires can earn up to $1,300 in tuition assistance through its Earn and Learn program.

If interested in applying for a job with UPS, visit


TRUE Global Intelligence, FleishmanHillard's in-house research practice, conducted an online survey with 1,000 U.S. workers aged 18-55 who currently hold, have held in the past, or would consider accepting a seasonal or temporary job. The survey was fielded from Aug. 27 to Sept. 1, 2021, and the sponsor of the study was not revealed to participants.

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