Work & Purpose

Smart Ways to Job Search During the Holiday Season

You need to take a different approach than other times, says this career pro

Winter is not the most ideal time to land a job. However, that does not mean finding a job around the holidays is impossible. It simply means you must take a different approach, using the quirks and changes of the season to your advantage. Check out these five tips for job searching during the holidays:

1. Create a Job Search Schedule

The most important part of the holiday job search is to keep up the momentum. Don’t let the natural slowing of hiring or holiday festivities slow you down.

Hold yourself accountable by scheduling your job search. For the best results, set aside time every day (even if it’s only 30 minutes) to search job boards, send applications or network. Get into a habit so you can keep holiday laziness at bay.

Many job seekers take a break during the holidays. Rather than following in their footsteps, let yourself benefit from their lack of motivation.

2. Make the Lack of Job Applicants an Advantage for You

Many job seekers take a break during the holidays. Rather than following in their footsteps, let yourself benefit from their lack of motivation.

Yes, employers’ hiring budgets are low in the fourth quarter. But the number of applicants shrinks this time of year, too. If fewer people are applying for jobs, you have a much better shot of getting hired before the new year.

3. Reconnect With Your Contacts

The holidays are a great excuse to kick networking into high gear. Send a cheery holiday email wishing your former colleagues or classmates happy holidays. If you feel comfortable, mention that you are on the hunt for a new job and ask your contacts to keep you in mind.

If you don’t feel comfortable with that approach, sending regards will at least start a conversation, which is the perfect jumping off point to ask for their help.

4. Make Your Free Time Productive

If you’re looking for a job and currently employed, this time of year will likely open up some free time due to the holidays. Rather than using all the extra weekday hours to sit back and relax, make your days off productive by using them to look for jobs. It might not seem like a fun idea now, but you’ll be glad you did when your job search comes to an end sooner than expected.

5. Get Ahead of the New Year’s Job Seekers

Some employers will start posting jobs to job boards and on company websites before the holidays, even though they know hiring won’t begin until 2017. So get ahead of the job seekers who won’t see those postings until after the holidays to give yourself a better shot.

Hiring managers may schedule an early interview with you if your resumé gets their attention.

The holidays are a time for cheer and positivity. Let that positivity carry over into your job search. Losing interest in your hunt over the holidays will just make it harder to pick thing up again come January.

Stay on track and you just might land your dream job during the holidays.

By James Hu
James Hu is the founder and CEO of Jobscan, a tool that compares your resume against any job description for keywords and match rate.

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