Should I Still Job Search During the Holidays?
‘Twas the night before your job search, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, except your computer mouse. The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, and companies are still hiring, so do not despair. The resumes weren’t generic but tailored instead, while visions of your dream job danced in your head.
And you in your blazer, and I in my slacks, we had just settled in after our Zoom meeting chat.
When in your email inbox there arose such a clatter, you sprang to the keyboard to see what was the matter. Away to the unread message you flew like a flash, clicked open, and read to see the next task.
The message on the screen, shining like new-fallen snow, gave a priority over all inbox messages below. When what to your wondering eyes should appear, but an offer letter and eight tiny reindeer…
Okay, I joke, but let’s actually talk about job searching during the holidays. It’s a common myth that companies are not hiring during the holiday season, so grab some cocoa while we explore the realities of job searching this time of year.
Hiring Doesn’t Slow Down
Companies hire when they need people; it is not dictated by the season. For example, Hire Heroes USA hired several people this month alone. If those individuals hadn’t continued job searching until after the holidays, those positions would have gone to someone else.
Trust me, I get it. I’d rather be drinking hot chocolate and watching movies than tailoring my resume and making connections on LinkedIn, too. However, the job market doesn’t call an audible and say, “Let’s worry about it in January,” so neither should you! Some companies actually increase hiring efforts because the new budget is set, and they want the positions filled by the new year.
Because this is a common myth, do you know what that means for you? Less competition! So apply, apply, apply! Don’t forget to tailor your resume to the position you are applying for. That means including what is most relevant to the job, eliminating what’s not, and filling up your resume with experience, qualifications, and keywords that relate to the job description. Tailoring your resume makes it easier for the hiring manager to see that you’re a great fit for the role.
‘Tis the Season
Take advantage of this giving time of year and continue to network. Career networking involves using personal, professional, academic, and family contacts to assist with your job search, career goals, or even to learn about a field of interest. Some contacts in your network might have more time to do that informational interview you asked for, so don’t be shy. Spend time engaging with the company’s social media to familiarize yourself with their culture and the employees who work there. Even if you are not ready to hit submit on applications, use this downtime to update your resume and LinkedIn profile so when that dream job comes along you are prepared.
This could also be a great time of year to get volunteer experience on your resume. Volunteer work can be an important asset to your job search. It can be used to fill employment gaps, gain experience in a new industry, and network with people you wouldn’t have otherwise met. Who knows, your next job lead could come from a fellow volunteer at the local holiday food drive or operation cookie drop.
Depending on your job search needs, seasonal work might be a great fit. Think about all the deliveries, waste management, customer service, and IT professionals who fulfill our holiday needs. Temp agencies are an area to consider because of the uptick in filling in for employees out on long vacations. These industries could be a great way for you to earn a paycheck, fill a resume gap, and even lead to full-time employment.
Keep Moving Forward
Remember it is important to stay active in your job search, no matter the time of year. We all know how easy it is to say, “I’m going to start doing everything on January 1st that I’ve put off for the last two months.” Save yourself some trouble, and stick with it!
So in other words, happy job searching to all, and to all a good write (your tailored resume, that is). For more job seeking assistance register with Hire Heroes USA at www.hireheroesusa.org. If you’re already signed-up make sure to view the resources in your MyTrak portal.
Kyla Hensley is a Process and Training Manager at Hire Heroes USA. If you would like more information or need assistance getting in contact with your Transition Specialist, log into your MyTrak or get registered to be assigned to a Transition Specialist at no cost to you.