How to Find a New Job During the Holidays
December 21, 2015

How to Find a New Job During the Holidays

by Brian de Haaff

Your New Year’s resolution: find a new job that you love. Once the holidays are over, you plan to jump right on that goal, sprucing up your resume, updating your LinkedIn profile, and reaching out to all of your contacts.

You would actually prefer to start the job hunt right now, but you assume that the holidays are a terrible time to start this search.

After all, companies are slammed with end-of-year planning, and they will most likely close up shop for a few days to allow for holiday celebrations. You fear that your resume will get lost in the shuffle of family parties and last-minute shopping.

And even if your resume initially piques a hiring manager’s interest, you worry that you will be forgotten and your effort will be wasted. Better to just wait until the dust settles, right?

That can be a mistake.

You should get a jump on your job search right now — because the holidays are an excellent time to find a new job.

Just because the holidays are right around the corner does not mean that hiring managers stop thinking about possible candidates. They are always on the lookout for talent, and cannot automatically shut off that “hunting” instinct during the holidays. In fact, just last year, our team at Aha! interviewed and hired a new employee between Christmas and New Years Day.

Here is why the holiday season may be your best bet for landing that perfect new job:

Managers have less going on

The year is wrapping up for companies and new projects have not yet begun. That means managers have more free time on their hands to reach out to possible candidates, schedule lunch meetings, and conduct interviews. You may have a better chance of catching them at this time of year than any other.

Companies want a jump start

Many companies have established their operating plans for the coming year, and are poised to set everything in motion when business resumes. And hiring managers know how many people they will add to their team. So, they are eager to get going to make sure they hit their own 2016 goals.

Recruiters will take notice

Many job seekers put their search on hold until after the holidays, assuming that companies are not actively hiring right now. Use that misconception to your advantage: fewer applicants means that you have a better chance of standing out to a recruiter or hiring manager. If you apply now, you can set yourself apart. Recruiters will still be checking their email between the holidays because they simply cannot stand to be out of the loop.

You will be a pleasant surprise

You can make a memorable impression on a hiring manager by simply making an appearance at the perfect time. By sending your resume right now, you can present a possible solution to their hiring problem and give them hope of a strong start to the new year. Plus, knowing that a strong candidate is already waiting in the wings will help them relax and enjoy their holidays.

Do not wait for the post-holiday lull to begin your all-important job search. That’s what everyone else will do. By then, you will have missed a great window of opportunity.

Instead, take a few hours out of your own holiday busyness to identify companies that are hiring and that you would love to work for. Tailor your cover letter for each hiring manager, and follow up next week just to make sure your resume did not get overlooked.

By starting your job hunt right now, you can put yourself in a great position to make good on that New Year’s resolution.

Do you think the holidays are a good time to look for a new job?

Brian de Haaff

Brian de Haaff

Brian seeks business and wilderness adventure. He is the co-founder and CEO of Aha! — the world’s #1 product development software — and the author of the bestseller Lovability and The Startup Adventure newsletter. Brian writes and speaks about product and company growth and the journey of pursuing a meaningful life.

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