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Target and UPS hiring more than 230,000 workers for holidays

Summer just ended, but seasonal hiring is already at hand, with Target and UPS detailing plans to add a combined 230,000 workers for the upcoming holiday season.

Target on Tuesday said it would add more than 130,000 temporary seasonal workers across the country, including twice the number of jobs devoted to fulfilling online orders. Its minimum pay starts at $13 an hour nationwide, but the Minneapolis-based retailer has said it would pay a minimum hourly wage of $15 by the end of 2020.

About 125,000 of the seasonal positions will be in its 1,800 stores; another 8,000 jobs will be at distribution and fulfillment centers, according to Target, which also said it would offer current employees more hours. 

Target's hiring plans mark an increase from last year, when it hired 120,000 people to work in its stores and another 7,500 for its distribution and fulfillment centers. More than 40% of those workers remained with the company after the holidays, Target said.

UPS plans to hire about 100,000 full- and part-time package handlers and drivers to help with an expected increase in shipping, starting in November and continuing through January, the Atlanta-based shipper said.

Danelle McCusker, head of U.S. human resources, said UPS paid an average of $10.10 per hour for seasonal workers last year. This year, under a new labor contract, pay rates will range from $14 an hour up to, for truck drivers, $30 an hour, she told a local CBS affiliate. 

"Some markets are a bit more competitive, and we will adjust" wages higher and even offer bonuses of $100 to $250, McCusker said, citing San Diego as an example.

Like Target, UPS said its holiday hires often turn into permanent positions, with nearly one-third of its current U.S. workforce starting in a seasonal position.

Retailers expected to shutter 12,000 stores this year

Kohl's in mid-July said it was already hiring for seasonal positions across 500 stores, and in August would add holiday positions to all of its stores, distribution and e-commerce fulfillment centers.

Amazon this week said it would hire 30,000 workers at job fairs in six cities next week, but those hirings are unrelated to increased seasonal hiring ahead of the holiday shopping season.

Retailers at large have been hard hit in recent years, as shown in bankruptcies, store liquidations and layoffs. Yet some, including Target, are managing to thrive. Target last month reporting a strong second quarter, with sales up 3.4% from the same three-month period a year earlier. The robust results included a 34% hike in online sales.

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