A common myth persists among job seekers this time of the year. Many people believe that employers don’t hire in December, so it doesn’t pay to look. That simply isn’t true. Here are four reasons why you should view the holidays as an opportunity to continue your job search:
1. Year-end Budgets Drive Hiring
Companies whose fiscal year ends in the fourth quarter are motivated to use their allocated head count or risk losing the opening. Even those companies that may not be hiring until January will use the end of the calendar year to source qualified candidates so they can hit the ground running as soon as their new budget cycle allows.
2. Great Time For Networking Naturally
With the pace of business slowing down from its usual frenetic pace and people feeling more generous, the holiday season is a great time to network without making it obvious that you are looking for a job. Holiday gathering and parties make it much easier to initiate conversations in a natural way and follow-up with people who can share their perspective on the industry, company or offer feedback on your job-search strategy.
3. Employers DO hire in December
In her recent article on job hunting during the holidays in the Huffington Post, career expert, Susan Joyce, discussed how employers typically hire more people in November and December than in January. And, she wasn’t referring to seasonal jobs.
Statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor for hiring in the last quarter of 2013 and January of 2014 proves the point:
4,529,000 hires – November 2013
4,578,000 hires – December 2013
4,535,000 hires – January 2014
4. Less Competition
Since many job candidates postpone their search until January, those qualified candidates who stay the course have a greater chance of getting hired because of less competition.
The truth of the matter is that people like to hire and work with people they like. Every holiday interaction offers the chance to put your best self in front of others. You never know what introductions or leads may come your way.