DICK’S Sporting’s (DKS) Vacation Hiring Plan Exhibits Promise – September 14, 2021

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DICK’S Sporting Goods Inc. (DKS quick offerDKS Free Report) started making a difference early this Christmas season with the announcement of its fourth annual National Signing Day, due on September 15, 2021. The company expects a bang for the holiday season in 2021 and plans to hire the largest number of employees in the company’s history this year. It is planned to hire 10,000 seasonal workers during the event, which will be the highest in its history. The hiring will be 1,000 more than 9,000 employees hired during last year’s event, while up to 8,000 seasonal employees were hired in 2019.

With the additional hires, the company appreciates meeting the need for additional staff and services in stores and distribution centers to improve the customer experience. The incremental staff will likely be used to fill positions for fulfillment services such as contactless roadside pickup and shipping from the store to keep customers and employees safe through a secure contactless shopping experience. The new hires will also fill positions for staff that will be needed inside and outside the branches during the Christmas season.

The company expects to hire up to 250 people to meet seasonal staffing needs in all five distribution centers across the country.

Season tenants not only receive attractive payment and an optional DailyPay, they also benefit from other conditions such as up to 25% discount on shop goods. Employees are also given the opportunity to gain experience working with the best sports and outdoor brands.

Holiday rush triggers seasonal attitudes

The holiday season is a crucial time for retailers as it is a significant part of annual revenues and profits. Retailers try to attract customers with early store openings, huge discounts, and promotional strategies. However, the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 variant outbreak in some regions and the ongoing problems with the supply chain could have an impact on this year’s Christmas party.

Retailers want to get an edge this year by planning early and closing the staffing gaps that are required in both stores and distribution centers. Aside from DICK’S Sporting, several retailers are upgrading their games for the holiday season with seasonal hires that will enhance the customer’s shopping experience. Retailers are increasingly focusing on strengthening supply chains to avoid disruption due to the prevailing problems in ports.

We find that supermarket giant Walmart (WMT quick offerWMT Free Report) announced plans to deploy 20,000 employees in more than 250 Walmart and Sam’s Club distribution centers, fulfillment centers and transportation offices earlier this month. The remaining stock dealer Ollie’s bargain (OLLI Quick QuoteOLLI Free Report) announced plans to hire more than 3,000 employees before the holiday shopping season. Department store dealer Kohls Corp. (KSS quick offerKSS Free Report) announced that it expects to hire 90,000 seasonal workers to meet robust demand in stores and support compliance requirements at its distribution centers and e-commerce fulfillment centers.

Christmas trends in 2021

Supply chain and logistics challenges, as well as the surge in freight rates, are likely to be widespread before the Christmas season, causing inventory shortages in time for vacation deals. This is a major concern for most retailers. According to analysts, consumers are likely to experience lower discounts, longer shipping days and limited inventory in stores caused by headwinds in the supply chain and labor shortage during the December 2021 holiday season. Stocking up on gift items early before the peak holiday deals is another trend that is likely to dominate consumers this year due to the uncertainties surrounding the COVID-19 outbreaks in some parts of the world.

However, analysts again expect Christmas shopping this year to be overshadowed by robust online buying trends that have gained momentum during the 2020 pandemic-induced environment. The pandemic has resulted in digital platforms becoming a one-stop destination for many during last year’s Christmas party. Analysts expect these trends to continue in 2021.

Some companies have recently spoken out in favor of significantly higher consumer spending this Christmas time compared to last year. According to a report by CNBC, Bain & Company estimates retail sales will increase 7% year over year to $ 800 billion in November and December 2021. A Deloitte report predicts a 7-9% increase in retail sales for holidays, suggesting growth of 5.8% in 2020.

The Mastercard SpendingPulse report expects retail sales to increase 7.4% over the year-ago period and 11.1% over the 2019 holiday season during the 2021 holiday season. The robust trends during the Christmas season should be supported by the rebound in store shopping and strong consumer demand.

Wrap up

Back to DICK’S Sporting: The seasonal hiring plans reflect the focus on improving the customer experience for the holiday season. The company stands ready to benefit from continued strong customer demand across all categories and improved omni-channel capabilities. As part of its long-term plan, the company intends to make significant investments in e-commerce, technology, payroll, team sports and private labels.

Overall, the stocks of the Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold) company are up 37% over the past three months, while the industry is down 13.5%.

Image source: Zacks Investment Research

You can see the full list of current Zacks # 1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.