As a job seeker, the common wisdom you’ll hear about the end of the year is that hiring tends to slow down. After all, with so many people taking time off, it can be difficult to schedule interviews or onboard new hires.
And while it may be tempting to dial back your job hunt in response to the perceived holiday slowdown, you’d actually be wise to do just the opposite.
The idea that hiring comes to some sort of standstill over the final months of the year is simply false. Last year, U.S. companies added an average of 239,000 jobs each month in Q4. Certainly, some companies may take their foot off the gas in the last few months of the year, but recruiting teams who are on top of their game often use Q4 to meet quotas or get a jumpstart on their numbers for the next year.
If anything, the holidays are actually the perfect time to put even more effort into your job hunt, especially if you’re looking to start off the new year on the right foot.
Recruiting teams get new budgets and hiring headcounts.
At Edvo, we don’t usually see a hiring slowdown with our employer partners during the holiday season. That’s because many teams are completing retrospectives of the past twelve months and setting their budgets for the coming year. Come January 1st, recruiting teams may have a massive headcount they need to fulfill, and experienced recruiters don’t wait until they get the final numbers to start looking for candidates. They know what’s coming in January, and they use November and December to get a jump on their quotas for next year.
It’s quite possible that the hiring process itself will be a little different during the holidays. With so many people on vacation or visiting family, scheduling interviews becomes a little trickier. But that doesn’t mean recruiters have stopped looking for candidates.
Holiday events are great networking opportunities to attend during your job search.
The end of the year is one of the best times to do some networking and meet people in person. There are always company-sponsored events like holiday parties, but many companies also hold networking events that take advantage of the holiday season to get people together.
You’ll notice people are genuinely happier around this time of year and they tend to be more relaxed and open to conversation and meeting new people.
Whether you’re chatting in a group setting or find yourself talking to someone one-on-one, you’re giving yourself a much better chance of making the right connection than you are by applying to a bunch of job listings online.
You’ll have more time to prioritize your job search.
The most difficult part of any job search is the homework—the research and organization of the various companies you want to apply to.
This is especially true for candidates who are employed but are looking for a new job. It often feels like the search itself is a second job, sucking up free time and wearing them down. That’s why the holiday season is the ideal time to focus on finding a new role. A lull at work, combined with some time off, can provide you with the energy you need to focus on researching companies and reaching out to people in your field.
If you’re feeling unmotivated, consider the fact that it takes companies on average 36 days to find someone to fill a role. So if you double down on your efforts over the holidays, you’ll be ready to interview and hit the ground running come January.
The beginning of the year can be a great time to start a new job.
A new year doesn’t just mean a fresh start for individuals looking to improve in certain areas of their life. It’s also an opportunity for companies to hit the reset button, experiment with new initiatives, and take on new projects—which makes it the perfect time to join a company as a new hire.
In essence, you’re piggybacking on that sense of excitement and opportunity, and you may find that it’s not just a feeling in the air. There may be very real opportunities for you to quickly fit in with the team as new projects kickoff.
So don’t give in to the temptation to hit the brakes while you’re on the job hunt this holiday season. By staying focused on researching, networking, and applying to companies, not only do you give yourself a better chance of getting hired, but you may join the company at the perfect time.