How to More Successfully Offboard Seasonal Employees and Help Encourage Them to Return

How can you turn offboarding into a more positive experience and help encourage seasonal workers to return the next time you need them?

The winter holidays are the busiest time of the year for many organizations managing a seasonal workforce -- retailers, warehouses, delivery operations, hospitality, customer service providers, and many more. However, according to a recent survey, over 25% of the respondents said they were planning to work a seasonal job to help offset inflation costs, so your candidate pool may be greater this year than ever before. 

Hiring seasonal workers can be a monumental task and managing hourly workers during a pressure-filled time is often a challenge. However, the holiday season always comes to an end. And, after you’ve successfully hired and managed, how can you turn offboarding into a more positive experience and help encourage seasonal workers to return the next time you need them, or in many cases, keep them as a loyal customer?


Offboarding is not just saying goodbye

Seasonal employees arrive with the expectation that their tenure with your organization will be short-lived. If all goes well, they’ve had a productive time on the job, added to their work experience, and enjoyed their time with your organization. But, at the end of the season, it’s often time to say goodbye. 

Here are some tips for helping create a smoother transition for your departing seasonal employees: 

  • Perform exit interviews
    Despite the fact that they may only have been on the job a short time, every piece of employee feedback you can gather is valuable. Conducting an exit interview is a great way to let workers know their insights are constructive and valued.

  • Offer a letter of recommendation
    Send seasonal employees off to their next job on a positive note and write a letter of recommendation. Offering a LinkedIn profile recommendation can also be helpful for those that have had a difficult time finding long-term work due to short-term employment.

  • Utilize a digital offboarding packet
    Better manage and collect necessary offboarding paperwork through a single digital packet so seasonal workers can complete everything quicker and more efficiently before moving on. Gathering up-to-date contact information can help ensure the employee can be reached to discuss future opportunities.

  • Offer reemployment services
    Showing a vested interest in helping seasonal workers find their next role goes a long way in building trust and a positive company image. Consider offering reemployment services such as resume assistance, mock interviews, and more to help seasonal workers land their next gig. 


Leave the door open for seasonal workers to return

No matter how great they are at their jobs, it’s impossible to transition every seasonal worker to full-time status. However, the door can be left open for them to come back during the next round of seasonal hiring. 

Consider sending brief quarterly email check-ins and even a birthday card to the best seasonal workers. Let them know their hard work was appreciated and they’ll be welcomed back, if they’d like, when the seasonal hiring begins again. When seasonal workers feel like they are still part of the team, they may be more likely to come back. 

Offer new seasonal positions to former seasonal employees before the general public. Giving this exclusive “first right of refusal” not only shows previous employees their work was valued, but lets them know they’re part of a select group chosen to be the first to know about the opportunities. 

Offering additional perks, such as employee discounts for products or services and flexible hours, can also help retain seasonal workers across multiple years. 

Bringing back seasonal workers year after year can be beneficial, not only to employees, but to the business as well. Repeat seasonal employees may require less training and can often become more productive quicker.

Seasonal workers are essential to a successful busy period. Managing everything that comes with these times can be a challenge, but the work continues as things begin to slow down. If you provide a safe and positive employment experience for seasonal workers and go the extra mile to let them know they’re welcomed back,  expanding the workforce for the next busy season may not be as much of a challenge. 


Learn more about how Equifax Workforce Solutions can help successfully offboard seasonal employees. 

The information provided is intended as general guidance and is not intended to convey any tax, benefits, or legal advice. For information pertaining to your company and its specific facts and needs, please consult your own tax advisor or legal counsel. Links to sources may be to third party sites. We have no control over and assume no responsibility for the content, privacy policies or practices of any third party sites or services.