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'Employees Have The Advantage'; Companies Offering Big Incentives As They Struggle To Fill Seasonal Jobs

EDGEWATER, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- If you're looking for a job, now is a great time. Many companies are dealing with worker shortages as the busy holiday season gets underway.

Some businesses are so desperate to hire, they're offering extra perks, CBS2's Christina Fan reported Monday.

At K9 Resorts in Fanwood, New Jersey, all Casey Koe wants for Christmas are some seasonal workers. The holidays are the busiest time for the luxury pet hotel and the company is short by about 5-10 workers.

"It's been a little rough since we reopened from COVID," said Koe. "Really anyone would be great right now. Unfortunately, the applications have slowed quite a bit. We've been trying to push out extra funds into our hiring. But we're hoping someone comes and joins the team."

There were 10.4 million job openings at the end of August.

Some employers are so desperate for help, many have rolled out big hiring incentives. Walgreens raised its minimum hourly wage to $15. Amazon is offering sign-on bonuses up to $3,000. Target is offering tuition assistance for select undergraduate degrees. UPS is promising to hire quickly - in 30 minutes or less.

"Right now, employees have the advantage," said Carl Gould, an entrepreneur and founder of 7 Stage Advisors. "If I'm an employee, what I would do is, I would negotiate. If they call you up and say 'Here's what we're offering,' feel free to tell them what you need."

Ron Shovlin with Shovlin Mattress said listening to his workers' concerns has been the key to retaining most of his workforce. What small businesses can't offer in salary, they can offer in flexibility.

"If they've got things to do as far as family events, taking kids to school events, definitely go take care of it. Come back and we can make up the time later," Shovlin said.

Retail experts said the labor shortage will surely impact holiday shopping - this is not the year to shop for sales. Buy what you can when you see it and place orders sooner rather than later.

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