Why You Should Start Your Job Search During the Holidays
By Stacy Jackson | 2020
When you imagine celebrating the holiday season, you probably don’t daydream about the joys of looking for a job as part of the festive fun.
Sure, looking for work isn’t really up there with baking, decorating, and holiday gatherings. However, you may find that focusing on your job search during the holidays is better – and more productive – than you think it will be.
Below, we’ve outlined six reasons you should be fa-la-la-la focused on finding your new job.
6 Reasons You Should Start Your Job Search During the Holidays
1. Target employers are still hiring.
A lot of job seekers mistakenly assume that “nobody’s hiring during the holidays.” Maybe there is a slowdown, but there are still companies looking for new employees.
With recruiters and hiring managers taking time off during the season, you may find it more challenging to land an interview right away. But that doesn’t mean your resume isn’t getting noticed when you send it.
2. Hiring slowdowns can work to your advantage.
Let’s suppose you do notice a holiday slowdown when it comes to new opportunities in the job market. That’s no excuse to sit back and just sip on some eggnog. Update your list of holiday plans with these important job search tasks.
Spend some time on introspection. Take stock of your skills. Think about areas where you may need to do some work. Consider what makes you happy and what you want out of your career. Use what you discover about yourself as the foundation for your job search strategy.
Work on your personal brand. While you may notice a lack of active opportunities or fewer interviews, you can use that "free time" to update your LinkedIn profile, craft fantastic cover letters, work on your resume, and perfect your elevator pitch.
Develop and perfect your job hunt process. Set up Google Alerts to get news about the companies where you'd like to work. Enable LinkedIn Job Alerts for updates on job openings.
3. There are (usually) more networking opportunities.
Before we dig in here, let’s just get this bit out of the way: 2020 will be the exception to the rule. The pandemic and all the social distancing and coronavirus considerations that go with it will mean fewer holiday networking options.
In a typical, pandemic-free year, though, holiday festivities can provide you with more opportunities to network. Sure, some of these holiday parties may be more social than professional, but you never know whom you may meet at a social gathering. Have a few business cards on hand, and don’t forget to have your LinkedIn profile in order.
4. It’s a great time to rekindle contacts.
If you’ve lost touch with former colleagues or bosses, the holidays can be a terrific time of year to reach out to people in your network. Send a holiday card or drop a personal message to people through a LinkedIn InMail or email to reconnect.
Be thoughtful and genuinely interested in reconnecting with people during the holidays. Yes, you’re looking for support with your job hunting efforts, but some people will find it off-putting if it feels like you’re only using the season as an excuse for personal gain.
5. There will be a little less competition.
Since so many people do mistakenly believe that “nobody hires in November and December,” you’ll have the advantage of standing out in the candidate pool.
Stay organized and keep all your applications in one place
6. Holiday volunteer opportunities can broaden your job search network.
During November and December, many nonprofits need additional help. Consider doing some volunteer work. You’ll feel good helping others, and you’ll get to meet some like-minded people who may be able to help you find your next job.
Check out sites like VolunteerMatch.org where you can use keywords to help you find an opportunity that matches your skillset at organizations that interest and inspire you.
7. It’s the perfect time to ask for job-search related gifts.
If your family engages in gift exchanges during the holiday season, drop some hints about the types of presents you would like to receive that can help you during your job search.
Think about asking for items such as clothing and accessories to wear to job interviews, subscriptions to trade journals, or a membership to a professional organization.
Ready to Start Your Job Search During the Holidays?
We’ll admit that looking for a new career isn’t what most people have in mind when they dream about a magical holiday. However, a holiday job search that helps you land your dream job – well, that’s the best present you could give yourself.
Did we miss any other terrific reasons for starting a job search during the holiday season? We’d love to hear from you. Simply comment below, and we’ll be sure to respond.
Stacy Jackson, co-founder of Jackson Marketing, Inc., is a content marketing professional who helps businesses and individuals optimize their online presence. She’s an editor and writer, and a regular contributor to various marketing blogs. She also co-hosts The B2B Mix Show podcast with her sister Alanna.