Americans who are looking for a job over the holidays may be in luck: Retailers are ramping up seasonal hiring this year.
They're potentially hiring in greater volume this holiday season, hinting that they expect a busy shopping season, according to new research from Indeed.com. Employers typically start posting jobs in September, although this year they began right after Labor Day. Holiday job postings typically peak in early November, said Indeed economist Daniel Culbertson.
The ramp-up in hiring may be seem surprising given the troubles in the brick-and-mortar retail sector. Yet consumers haven't stopped shopping but are simply shifting their preferences to online merchants such as Amazon (AMZN) and snubbing department stores such as Sears (SHLD). Surprisingly, a few of the retailers hiring the most this holiday season aren't traditional holiday shopping destinations.
"The main takeaway is that retailers of all types are gearing up for a strong holiday season," Culbertson said in an email.
Amazon is among the top 30 retailers hiring holiday workers, but it doesn't make the top seven.
"While Amazon is certainly hiring a great deal of seasonal workers, it's likely that many of those roles are for warehouse workers with similar roles," Culbertson said. "Amazon's appearance low on this list could be due to the use of one job posting to fill many similar positions, e.g., warehouse fulfillment associate."
So how much do these jobs pay? Expect to earn between $11 to $14 an hour, Indeed said. Senior retail sales associates earn an average of $13.37 an hour, while retail assistant managers take home about $11.44 an hour, the researchers found.
Read on to learn about the top seven retailers hiring this holiday season.
The home improvement store might not come to mind when talking about holiday shopping, but homeowners turn to Lowe's (LOW) for lights and decorations. Last holiday season, the retailer reported same-store revenues (sales at stores open a year or more) jumped 5.1 percent, thanks to homeowners remodeling and making improvements.
Lowe's is hiring seasonal employees across the country, ranging from lawn and garden workers in South Carolina to paint associates in New Jersey.
Even though it's ramping up hiring, Target said in October that it would pause the "Christmas creep" by easing up on holiday promotions and giving more recognition to Thanksgiving.
5. Toys 'R' Us
Toys are a staple at the holidays, but Toys "R" Us is heading into the season with some coal in its stocking. The retailer filed for bankruptcy in September after battling Amazon and other rivals, as well as being weighed down by $6.6 billion in debt from its leveraged buyout.
Nevertheless, the toy store can't sit on the sidelines during the holidays, which is why it's beefing up its workforce in November and December. Jobs range from roles in its distribution centers to store positions.
4. Best Buy
The tech-focused big-box store ranks No. 4 for holiday hiring, with electronics continuing to be a big draw for families.
PetSmart (PETM), which came in as No. 3 on the list, was a surprise to Indeed's Culbertson.
"PetSmart isn't a retailer I would have predicted to be on this list," he said. "But apparently the demand for pet goods and services [PetSmart also boards animals] is great enough for PetSmart to make a holiday hiring push."
The retailer has seasonal openings in locations ranging from Missouri to New Hampshire.
The department store has said it plans to hire about 80,000 seasonal workers at its Macy's and Bloomingdale's stores, which include not only in-store workers but employees at its online operations.
1. AT&T/Spring Mobile
AT&T (T) and reseller Spring Mobile are the surprise No. 1 on Indeed's list. While Indeed's data doesn't indicate whether the jobs are related to consumer interest in Apple's (AAPL) new iPhones, the positions are mostly for in-store retail work.