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BBB: Taking advantage of seasonal employment opportunities

Posted at 10:12 AM, Nov 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-05 13:33:25-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, TX — For many businesses, the expected holiday rush brings the need for a little extra help and, often, the answer is to hire temporary employees. This also allows con artists an opportunity to cash in on the lure of fast, easy money to trick consumers into new online job scams.

For those who are looking for additional work during the holidays, the Better Business Bureau suggests the following:

  • Be flexible. Full-time employees usually have first choice on preferred hours and shifts. As a seasonal employee, you can expect to work long, sometimes inconvenient hours, possibly including Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. If this is a second job in addition to your day job, be upfront and clear with your new employer about your available hours.
  • Work where you shop. Try to identify seasonal employment opportunities at businesses where you shop. You will already be familiar with the company and its products, and discounts available to employees can mean significant savings when shopping for gifts. Discounts can range from 20 to 40 percent for seasonal employees.
  • Put your best foot forward. Even if you are just picking up applications at stores in the mall, dress neatly and be prepared for an interview. This includes being familiar with the company’s brand and products. Retail job hunters need to focus on impressing potential employers with their customer service skills because they may be dealing with stressed-out shoppers, long check-out lines and holiday returns.

According to the BBB, there are also some things to keep in mind when it comes to avoiding employment scams:

  • Watch for immediate offers. If you receive a job offer that you are automatically “qualified” for with little background offered, be suspicious. Research the employer and read plenty of reviews before committing. Check to make sure there is a privacy policy before signing-up, otherwise your email address and personal information could be at risk.
  • Beware of fake checks and delays. If you accept a work-from-home position and a large check is mailed to buy “equipment” -- beware! Checks can look convincing, but they can bounce days or weeks after they have been deposited. In other cases, you must accumulate a large amount of earnings before they’ will send you a check. Criminals know very few people will stick with it long enough to see an actual check.
  • Never send money to strangers. There are thousands of internet money-making opportunities and some promise extra tools -- as soon as you hand over cash. Be suspicious if a company asks you to send money upfront for a background check or in an unusual way, like wire transfer or gift cards.

Report scams to https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/us.