Summer is the season of barbecues, beach days, and temporary and seasonal employment. Whether it's students looking for a part-time job to make some cash before heading back to school in the fall, teachers who want to add to their income for a few months or just someone looking to gain a little experience in a different position, the warmer weather and temporary staff members go practically hand-in-hand.
Along with the longer days and warmer weather, summer brings some unique seasonal challenges that all employers should consider. Here are a few things to be prepared for.
Many companies, especially in retail and customer service sectors, experience an influx of students and other temporary hires beating down their doors for a summer job. The extra labor can be a great way to maximize your company's productivity, but make sure you understand all relevant factors before making any hiring decisions. For example. classifying your temporary, seasonal or contract employees correctly is essential for avoiding potential legal or tax-related headaches later. Also note that just because an employee is temporary, meaning you don't have to provide him or her with health care benefits, compliance with discrimination- and accommodation-related legislation is still required, so brush up on your Americans with Disabilities Act and Civil Rights Act knowledge.
If there's one thing people love during the summer, it's taking vacations. As a manager, be prepared to handle the myriad overlapping requests for time off that are sure to come in the next few months. Review your company's vacation or paid time off policy with your staff, including important things like what the approval process is for vacation requests, and how long in advance workers must request time off. Paid time off is a part of HR services that is receiving a lot of scrutiny and revision across the country, so take the time to dive into your own policy to determine things like when employees become eligible, and whether your company allows unused days to rollover into the next year.
As the temperature rises, you may notice staff members taking more liberties with the company dress code. It's understandable that you may have to make accommodations for wardrobe in the summer, especially in areas of the country that are particularly affected by hot weather. Just make sure your employees know the foundations of the dress code policy, and that the accommodations you make still fall within the bounds of professionalism you've set for your business.