HENDERSON (FOX5) -- Teenagers have always competed with more experienced candidates for work, but this year the pandemic is making it even more difficult to find a summer job.
“I applied for Savers, Target and Walmart. Savers I ended up getting the interview but they just never got back to me,” said 17-year-old Christopher Donaker.
Though he was never given a reason why, Donaker said he suspects the competition for jobs is greater since people who lost their job during the pandemic are applying for the same jobs as he is.
“It’s definitely harder. More adults are applying here and other places trying to get a job and for us kids, it’s definitely hard but we are trying,” said Donaker.
Cowabunga Bay owner Shane Huish said he just hired 300 people as his water park gets ready to open on Saturday.
Huish said 90 percent of applicants are teenagers.
“We used to do everything face to face at the park, but this year we have gone to online applications, online interviews, also online training and orientation,” said Huish.
At Galleria Mall, several store managers said the hiring process has moved online and that can present challenges when it comes to getting a clear picture of candidate.
Huish said he is in the same predicament.
“We do zoom interviews. It’s really not as fun and personable as the way we used to do it. Because we like to meet the kids, get to know them. Talk to them,” said Huish.
For teenagers and others looking to get themselves ahead of the pack, employers say having a good attitude, being energetic and making yourself available to work at all hours will help your chances of getting hired.
“We need our applicants to be outgoing and friendly. We are a seasonal business so we need them to have a schedule where they can work weekends and holidays,” said Huish.
Sometimes, teenagers can actually be a better match than their older counterparts.
“They also don’t come with a lot of baggage. This is their first job, so we are able to teach them and train them how to do things. Like I said there is not a lot of baggage from past jobs,” said Huish.