Be smart during seasonal hiring season | Better Business Bureau

The holidays are just around the corner and businesses are already busy hiring for seasonal work. According to the National Retail Federation holiday sales increased three percent last year to $626.1 billion.

If you’re looking to cash in on the hiring surge keep the following in mind:

Overpayment for work. Watch out if your new employer wants you to deposit your paycheck and then transfer the leftover money. Your paycheck is likely fraudulent and will bounce, leaving you to cover the overdrawn funds.

Vague company descriptions. It’s a huge red flag if you can’t identify the company’s owner, headquarters or even product. Just because they listed an ad online doesn’t mean the business is legitimate. Pro tip: check with BBB to see if the employer has a good rating.

Check company websites. Last year BBB received reports of several “Target” and “Macy’s” seasonal hiring solicitations that led to phishing schemes. Be sure to check the company’s official website to verify if the job is official.

No interview. If you are offered a job without a formal interview or job application, it’s most likely a scam. Be wary of jobs that hire you on the spot or conduct interviews via online chat or instant messaging services.

In 2015 the NRF estimated retailers would hire between 700,000 and 750,000 new holiday positions. And some of those seasonal jobs turn into permanent positions.

Follow these tips for landing that holiday job:

Start early. If you hold off on job hunting until November, you’re already too late. Most employers are already conducting seasonal hiring interviews so it’s best to put in your application now.

Look at multiple industries. Retail typically does most of the holiday hiring, but shipping companies, restaurants and event facilities are also looking for extra help. Don’t limit yourself to just one industry during the holiday season.

Be flexible. If possible, be willing to work unpopular hours. Putting your time in now can eventually lead to full-time work with hours you prefer.

For more business tips and tricks visit Better Business Bureau serving the Northwest’s blog at bbbnorthwest.org.