2022 Seasonal Hourly Workforce Report:
Automation and Employee Empowerment Can Reduce Stress This Holiday Season

November 1, 2022

by Kristin Brennan

Seasonal workers

The approach of the holiday season always triggers higher stress levels. This year, however, anxiety among hourly employees and their managers is hitting new highs. Legion recently commissioned a survey of more than 1,000 hourly employees and 500 managers in North America who planned to work this holiday season. We published the results in this report, “2022 Seasonal Hourly Workforce Report.”

Managers and Hourly Employees are Feeling the Strain

Almost 90% of managers reported being as stressed or more stressed about the upcoming holiday season as they were last year. The biggest sources of stress are concerns over staff shortages (69%), economic uncertainty (49%), and fewer people spending money/lower customer traffic (45%).

Manual processes add to the stress, as 60% of managers still use manual processes to create and maintain schedules. That makes it more difficult to match employee preferences with the needs of the business (70%) and ensure the creation of fair and equitable schedules (59%)

Hourly employees are concerned about economic pressures such as inflation and the rising cost of gas. However, 40% of seasonal employees said their biggest concern for the holiday season was trying to manage work and family. Hourly seasonal employees expect to work overtime and anticipate missing out on personal events. And they aren’t confident their employers will have enough staff this holiday season and be able to schedule effectively the people they do have.

Hourly Employees Hold the Power – They Want Schedule Flexibility

According to the National Retail Federation, the retail industry alone hires approximately 500,000 temporary workers for the holiday season. The widespread need to fill positions has created a shift in power between hourly employees and their employers. With so many open positions, seasonal workers can be more selective in choosing their seasonal employment opportunities. Hourly employees seek positions that allow them to manage their own schedules, prioritize family events, and avoid burnout. So retailers, restaurants, and hospitality businesses must evolve to attract and retain employees while simultaneously improving their managers’ lives.

Hourly employees are opting for gig-like flexibility because it gives them more control over their schedules and allows them to create a better work/life balance. In fact, 62% of hourly workers said having a schedule that meets their preferences is the most important thing about a seasonal employment opportunity. Further, nearly half would take a different job if the schedule better matched their preferences.

The importance of instant access to earned wages is rising, especially among younger hourly employees. For example, a survey conducted in June of 2021 showed that only 2% of hourly employees said they would quit their jobs because they couldn’t get paid early. That stat rose to 37% of seasonal employees surveyed saying they would take a new job if they offered instant access to wages.

Intelligent Automation and Hourly Employee Empowerment Can Reduce Stress

Hourly seasonal employment must be modernized to attract employees and evolve to ease managers’ burdens. Legion workforce management enables intelligent automation of demand forecasting, schedule optimization, time and attendance and it empowers hourly employees with gig-like flexibility, instant access to earned wages, and modern communication tools. Legion WFM maximizes labor efficiency and employee engagement simultaneously, and it enables businesses to thrive this holiday season and into the new year.

Read the complete survey report to get all of the details. And contact us to talk about how Legion can help you transform labor operations and deliver a better employee experience through intelligent automation powered by Legion WFM.