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Target to hire 100,000 seasonal workers for 2021 holiday season

The Minnesota retailer has seen its business surge during the pandemic.

Target has announced that it will be hiring 100,000 seasonal workers ahead of the 2021 holiday season.

The Minneapolis-based retailer made the announcement Thursday, which comes after a 2020 in which the pandemic caused it to implement major changes to its holiday operations.

The company acknowledges that those changes have become permanent fixtures of its business, having seen Drive Up and Order Pickup customers surge as customers avoided shop floors to mitigate their virus risk.

Target says it's tripled the number of workers in its Drive Up and Order Pickup sections over the past two years, and has been giving backup training to other workers to give them the option to pick up extra shifts in these sections.

Seasonal hires have been told they will be given the option to take on their preferred schedules, as well as the chance to work extra hours if they're interested. It notes that its hourly workers are now working 15% more hours than they were a year ago because of their efforts to offer "preferred" schedules.

Because of this, Target is hiring fewer seasonal workers than it usually would ahead of the holidays – for example it's down on the 130,000 it hired in 2019.

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The seasonal spree comes at a time when many businesses are struggling to hire staff, with the onset of the pandemic sparking what has been described as a "great reassessment" of careers and work/life balance.

Over the past 18 months, Target has increased its minimum wage to $15-an-hour, and has provided a series of bonuses to staff who have worked during the pandemic.

Melissa Kremer, Target's chief HR officer, said: "Our strategy is only possible because of Target’s incredible team. We have worked to provide our team members with more consistent schedules, which means more consistent paychecks and a more consistent way to manage their life.

"Additionally, we are offering more hours to team members who want them and continuing our important investment in training and development."

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