This season, holiday hiring will be roughly equal — or maybe slightly less — than it was last year (with about 750,000 jobs added in the final three months of the year), according to an analysis by outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas. Much of the hiring will take place this month, they say, and many of the holiday jobs will be with big-box retailers: For example, Target is hiring 70,000 people and Kohl's plans to bring in 52,000.
Knowing Where to Look
Such jobs do exist if you know where to look, says Nicole Williams, founder of New York-based career firm Works. Indeed, Idealist.org (a site that offers jobs with nonprofits), flexible-jobs site FlexJobs.com and CareerBuilder.com all say they have jobs fitting this description. There are also ways to create such opportunities, Williams says, by thinking about what people need most during the holiday season.
That said, these jobs are out there and now is the best time to look for one. Here are six jobs that have a do-gooder bent — and pay a wage.
Typically, they're looking for someone with HR or project management experience and with good people skills, she says. Sample job titles for these gigs include: community programs assistant, staffing coordinator, volunteer coordinator and human resources associate.
You can expect to get paid about $10 to $15 an hour, but pay varies widely.
Put that all together and graphic designers who can create invitations and cards — for organizations and for families — will be in demand again, says Williams.
Expect to get paid anywhere from about $10 per hour (for those with less experience) to more than $200 for a project, she says.
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Organizations typically look for people with sales and marketing experience to do these jobs, says Fell. Sample job titles for these gigs include development assistant and fundraiser. You can expect to get paid about $10 an hour plus commission, but pay varies widely.
With all the donations pouring in, someone needs to manage processing and recording them and sending out thank-you notes. That's why some nonprofits hire part-time clerical workers or people to work in their processing centers this time of year, says Fell.
Typically, these firms look for people who have solid Excel and Word experience and good organization skills, she says. Sample job titles for these gigs include: Christmas assistant, clerical associate, processing center associate and special projects assistant. (Nonprofits also often need accountants on a seasonal basis at year-end.)
You can expect to get paid between about $10 and $15 an hour.
Holiday Personal Assistant
While on its face this job doesn't seem to have a do-gooder bent, you can choose to help out older people who might not be able to drive, or homebound or disabled individuals who need help doing such things as shopping, baking, addressing envelopes and getting rides to events.
To find this kind of position, Williams says, tap into your social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn and put up fliers in neighborhood gathering spots, like churches and coffee shops, to let people know about your services.
You can expect to get paid between about $10 and $25 an hour, depending on what you do, says Williams.
You can expect to get paid minimum wage, though pay varies widely.
Catey Hill is a reporter for MarketWatch.com covering personal finance and travel.
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