AT&T once again hiring retail temps for June

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In what is becoming an identifiable pattern, AT&T is once again on the prowl for temp workers to bolster its ranks for a 'mystery' campaign during the early summer.

A call has been put out through the Kelly Services temp agency that will see workers join AT&T's wireless division as greeters for a project known only as "Summer Project Pro."

While scarce on details of what the position entails, the request is a near-mirror of the cellular provider's efforts for the iPhone launch last year and hints that the company expects a repeat sales rush for a next-generation product this year.

In June of 2007, AT&T hired short-term workers for what ultimately amounted to crowd control. The new hires steered customers quickly through retail stores to ensure that all buyers, iPhone or otherwise, were well-treated regardless of the added store traffic.

Like the earlier plan, the latest recruiting drive also provides a familiar two-month work span for successful candidates. Work would begin on June 16th and end almost exactly three months later, on August 16th.

However, veterans of the 2007 campaign note that this doesn't necessarily point to the release of a new iPhone at the very start of that period. Temporary workers hired last year needed about a week of training before they began work in earnest, those experienced with past efforts say.

If so, the hiring campaign will swell the numbers of AT&T store staff and put enforcers on the ground during the last week of June — or during the same approximate timeframe as the iPhone's first birthday.