Where the Summer Job Opportunities Are
According to a the Snagajob.com website, "only 6 percent of hiring managers say that they are going to hire more people for summer jobs this year." Essentially that means that this summer's job market is going be uber-competitive. Throw in the added stress of having to compete for work with students off of school for the summer, and it makes the hunt to secure a summer job, a job in and of itself.
As the temperatures heat up, so does the competition for seasonal employment, which begs the question: How do you find that hot summer job that is both fun and actually pays you to show up?
The blueberry girl
Gabriella Gomez will spend half of her time this summer dressed up like a giant blueberry. Why? Because for 12 weeks this summer, Gomez will be interning full-time at a lifestyle and consumer PR firm, Marketing Maven Public Relations.
Marketing Maven CEO Lindsey Carnett was a guest speaker for a public relations class at Cal Lutheran University. During her presentation, Carnett mentioned that she was looking for interns, and Gomez stepped to the plate, e-mailing the CEO right after class to ask for an interview. After a few weeks of working for Carnett, Gomez's hard work and persistence landed her a full-time job for the entire summer, making this blueberry girl anything but blue (See Six Tips for Turning a Temporary Gig Into Full-Time Work.)
Where the summer jobs are
Robin Ryan, author of '60 Seconds & You're Hired!' (Penguin, 2008), and a career-counseling ninja, assures that there are many jobs, both traditional and non-traditional ones, to be had this summer. These are her hot picks and recommendations.
1. Recreation Facility Jobs
"Anything involved with the outdoors and recreation facilities have to do seasonal help because they cater to a summer audience, " Ryan notes. Look into your local water parks, swimming pools, and amusement parks. These types of places hire everyone from parking attendants to concession-stand cashiers. Oftentimes older workers can secure supervisory roles at these establishments, commanding a higher wage. To score ones of these jobs, it's best to stress your reliability and your scheduling flexibility. Show that you can fill in on a moment's notice should a teenage employee choose to play hooky for a day. "Show that you are dependable."
-- Find Parks & Recreation Jobs
2. Ice Cream Shop Jobs
Ice cream shops work overtime during the hot summer months, staffing more people per shift and maintaining longer hours during their busiest time of year. Be the first to scoop up a job at one of these local sweet factories, because "no one thinks of these," reminds Ryan.
-- Find Ice Cream Shop Jobs
3. Domestic Jobs
According to Wingate, there are thousands of families across the United States looking for nannies, housekeepers, babysitters, tutors, pet sitters, drivers, elderly companions and other miscellaneous household help. There are families everywhere so the need for domestic help of some kind is always high.
Additionally, when schools are out during the summer months, many working parents need to make alternate arrangements for childcare. "If you have to be at work at 8AM, but camp does not start until 9AM, you need someone to drive your child there. That is critical work and very important to working parents," Ryansays.
Nannies and other domestic help can make $10-$15 per hour or more, says Wingate. Ryan adds that some families require help while on vacation, or maybe the parents want a weekend away while the kids stay home, and those summer gigs can pay as much as $150-$200 a day.
-- Find Child Care Jobs
4. Handyman Jobs
If you are handy in any way, and especially if you have some contracting knowledge, you can make great summer cash doing odd jobs, such as mending fences or moving furniture, for people in your neighborhood. Many handymen have a four-hour minimum and charge $150-200 for a half day's work -- that's not half bad.
If you are creative and like working with your hands or have a special skill, Ryan recommends starting your own local business, such as offering to wash or detail cars in your neighborhood, or offering to clean out people's garages and attics and then holding a garage sale for them to turn their old trinkets and trash into cash. According to Ryan, "for the car-washing business, all you need is elbow grease and a pail of water. You can offer to do it at the person's house and put a sign out front so that neighbors can see it when they drive by. Start with your own car if you have to get the business going."
-- Find Skilled Labor Jobs
There is one area to stay away from, cautions Ryan: multi-level marketing opportunities, "because you have to invest money in the products (vitamins, jewelry, makeup etc.) and hit your friends up to buy whatever you are peddling."
How to get a hot summer job
1. Network. Talk to friends and family members, and create a flyer about what services you are offering or what type of work you are seeking. Go door-to-door in your neighborhood and pass out your information.
2. Target your audience. If you want to be a nanny for the summer, talk to schools and parents in your area to spread the word that you are available for summer childcare. "Go to the places where these people who need you will be," Ryan says. "That's how you find the jobs."
3. Spread the word at your church. Churches are safe places to advertise your services because of the community spirit and sense of trustworthiness among the members.
So, get the word out about your availability, and you may just find that it's not too late to land one of these summer jobs.