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Should You Bother Job Searching During the Holiday Season?

Topics: Career Advice
job searching during the holiday season
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If you’ve been looking for a new job, you might be tempted to press pause on your search during the holiday season. After all, what are the odds that a hiring manager will even bother to read your resume during this hectic time of year?

Maybe better than you think.

“If a job is available, whether it’s the holiday season or not, it has to be filled,” said John Robak, COO and executive vice president for Greeley and Hansen, in an interview with The Ladders. “We’re a professional services firm, and, at the end of the day, we’re about selling billable hours. If there’s a job vacancy, we’re still interviewing people.”

Robak told The Ladders that he’d even interviewed candidates on Christmas Eve!

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And while not all employers are as dedicated as that, there are plenty of reasons to keep up your active job search during the holidays.

1. Less Competition

One of the common arguments against job searching at this time of year is that budgets are frozen. That’s true at some companies … but not at every company. And, you might find yourself with less competition for those open jobs, as many other job seekers take a break.

“The best advice for job seekers is this: Don’t give up during the holiday season,” wrote M.A. Smith at TopResume. “While the supply of full-time permanent job openings may decrease during the holiday season, the number of active job seekers in the job market also decreases.”

2. The Importance of Momentum

It’s harder to get started than to keep going. Even if you don’t land a job during December, keeping up your job search will mean that you can hit the ground running in January. Pause your job search now, and you’ll have to get your head back in the game when you resume looking.

The only danger with continuing your search now is disillusionment if hiring managers don’t respond. So, lower your expectations — for now. Think of holiday job searching as part of your long-term strategy, not something you’re expecting to pay off immediately, and you’ll keep your energy going without risking disappointment.

3. Holiday Networking

“You couldn’t pick a better time of year for networking,” wrote Alison Doyle at The Balance Careers. “There are many social and business holiday functions during November and December when you can connect with people who can help your job search.”

If you’re someone who hates the word “networking,” but loves parties, you’ll be relieved to know that your holiday merrymaking can serve double-duty as a chance to connect. Just keep your celebrating work-appropriate.

Don’t overlook potential connections. You never know who will lead you to your next job. So, tell your nosy uncle or aunt all about your job search. They might know someone who knows someone who needs a candidate just like you.

4. Take Care of Job-Search Housekeeping

Not feeling the holiday job search? That’s OK. There’s a lot you can do to get closer to your dream job without sending out endless resumes and applications.

Start by tidying up a bit. Update your resume and LinkedIn profile. Comb your social media to make sure it’s safe for work and reflects your personal brand. Get your portfolio together. Reach out to contacts and make coffee dates for the new year.

Job searching isn’t just about clicking “send” or “apply.” It’s about polishing your public profile and strengthening relationships. Spend these last few days of the year getting your house in order. Come January, you’ll be ready to impress.

Tell Us What You Think

Have you been hired during the holiday season? We want to hear from you. Share your story in the comments or join the conversation on Twitter.

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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