They are gearing up for the holiday season in a year when hundreds of thousands of retail workers have quit

DES PERES, Mo. – The yellow, round-headed, brick-legged ‘minifigs’ are perfectly fun, but they’re not the people the West County Mall LEGO store needs right now. Instead, they work to strengthen their staff.

“I am very passionate about LEGO,” said Anthony Messerly, who hopes he’s the missing piece they were looking for.

“I kind of wanted to spread that joy and love for this toy company. And I hope I get the job, ”added Messerly.

That’s why he stopped by Friday afternoon at the West County Mall Career Fair, where LEGO was among more than a dozen of the mall’s most popular stores that came to recruit staff.

“Whatever pay range you’re looking for, whatever schedule you’re looking for, whatever discount you’re looking for on vacation, all of these opportunities are available,” said Sean Phillips, Marketing Manager at the shopping center.

This hiring surge comes at a critical time for stores: Along with the usual trend to increase headcount before the holidays, retail is particularly suffering from this “great labor shortage” or “the great resignation. », Which we have heard so much about. in 2021.

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The latest data shows that 4.3 million people left their jobs in August – this is a record – and 721,000 of them were retail employees. This means that those looking for a job have a lot of options.

“It’s an employee market,” said Matt Hill, Buckle’s longtime manager. He says they are going compete for the right candidates.

“I know in some companies there are signing bonuses that have been amazing and competitive, and other companies have product, vacation, and paid day discounts that we’ve never seen before. “said Hill.

While the mall itself was relatively busy on a weekday, Phillips says they see proof every day that people are ready to go out and shop. The job fair saw only a small number of applicants.

“As I talk to all of the store managers, you know, the main concern they have for the holidays is making sure they’re fully staffed,” Phillps said. “This year, now that everyone feels more comfortable going out and being a part of the holiday shopping experience, there’s no telling what it’s going to look like.”

Hill says their team, and anyone who wants to join, will help make this holiday shopping season a more “normal” season.

“We work on all supply chain issues, but suppliers are working hard behind the scenes to keep the shelves stocked. The employees work hard behind the scenes so you can see the shelves are stocked. We have a great staff there, and we’re looking to add, and we’re going to be vacation ready for you guys, ”he said.

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Messerly is hoping that the next time he’s at the mall, it will be as a LEGO employee.
“I really want to be a part of it. “

To browse and apply for jobs at West County Center, click here.

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