It wouldn't be a bad job. Surrounded by makeup and perfume all day but one of New Zealand's biggest retailers can't seem to get anyone to do it.
As the unemployment rate reaches a 10-year high, with the number of unemployed people now standing at 168,000, Farmers is struggling to fill 30 jobs manning its beauty and fragrance counters.
The human resources department has been reduced to running recruitment evenings in Hamilton and Auckland to inform candidates about a career in the beauty industry and to identify the qualities that make sales professionals.
"We're interested in hearing from new beauty graduates, seasoned industry professionals and sales professionals looking for a change in industry," says Sheila Naidoo, head of HR for Farmers. According to recent statistics from the Department of Labour, there should be an overload of retail workers in the job market, said Ms Naidoo.
"Even if they don't have beauty industry experience, if they have a passion for beauty products and a desire to work with prestigious brands, we can train them," she said.
Lorraine Reay, Clinique counter manager at Farmers, Hamilton city store, prides herself on being able to connect with people.
"Being a counter manager is a bit like being a successful real estate agent. You have to think of yourself as being self-employed, even though you work for Farmers."
Ms Naidoo said Farmers was looking for staff like Ms Reay who had come to Farmers with previous experience in hospitality.
Ms Naidoo said Farmers was willing to look beyond an applicant's immediate work experience to fill the positions.
She said while beauty may be considered more of a female industry several men were doing well at Farmers.
David Marris, fragrance sales professional, celebrated his sixth anniversary at Farmers Hamilton store this month.
Asked what type of person is suited to a career in fragrance or cosmetics, Mr Marris said: "A focus on customer service is essential . . . and of course a love for the product certainly helps."
Ms Naidoo said the recruitment drive would start at the new Farmers store opening at The Base, in Te Rapa, Hamilton on May 4.
Vacancies galore: Lorraine Feay, of Clinique, and David Marris, of Fragrance in a Farmers store where their products are sold. However, Farmers is struggling to get good employees for its beauty departments.
Picture: KATRINA BIELESKI