Job Hunting Over Christmas - Top 10 Tips!

A common misconception is that the job market comes to a grinding halt over Christmas. And yes, some industries do slow down, but many keep advertising and continue hiring. 

For some employers, the quiet period over the holidays can present an opportunity to dedicate time to recruiting, while others are trying to fill a newly created role in time for the new year.  Some companies even take a break but already plan to recruit in the new year.  This may mean that the job ads are posted and will be reviewed when staff return from their break.  Although, having an impressive resume and relevant industry experience is essential, this could be your golden ticket to moving up the list and beating other candidates in the application process, simply because there is less competition!

Here are the top 10 tips for why you should continue job hunting over Christmas!

1. Jobs are Still Being Advertised - Companies are still hiring! Check the major websites and job boards your local social media posts and you will notice thousands of jobs employers are looking to fill. Many companies need staff into the new year and may use this period to advertise and get the ball rolling.

2. There is Less Competition! - Some people will claim they desperately need a job, yet they will put it all on the backburner over the Christmas / New Year period due to the common misconception that the job hunt will be fruitless.  Or it could be that they are simply on holidays and travelling.  That equates to less competition for you! This is the perfect time to submit those applications and get to the top of the list!

3. More Networking Opportunities - You couldn’t pick a better time of year for networking. There are many social and business networking functions throughout the end-of-year celebrations where you can connect with people who could be key to your job search. It’s possible to meet the prospective boss of your dream job. Have an elevator pitch ready about you and your career goals! Create a business card to hand out to your contacts, as an alternative to a full resume. You never know where a conversation could lead and having contact details on hand could be crucial.

4. Make the Follow Up Call - Emails are the most expected and accepted way to follow up on a job application. But how about picking up the phone?  Or if you have the contact details of a prospective employer, send them a text.  You might have a better chance of reaching the Hiring Manager over the quiet period! But don’t be annoying! Our recommendation is to call or email about one week after your follow up email.

5. Be Patient - When following up, know that although things may have progressed well during the interview, not enough people in the hierarchy will be around to complete the process. In a holiday job search, the process often continues into the new year, therefore don’t take a stall in the process as a failed opportunity. Wait and see.

6. Get a New Wardrobe: Take advantage of boxing day sales and end-of-year discounts. If you have a new job lined up, you can shop for a brand-new wardrobe to start your new position in style. If you’re still job hunting it can also be a great time to nab some new outfits for interviews!

7. Don’t Treat Your Job Hunt Like a Holiday - If you have submitted an application or have a job interview over the Christmas / New Year period, don’t drop the ball on your the quality of your resume and your wardrobe. You get one opportunity to make a first impression, so step it up a notch. Be sure to put on your professional face both on paper and in person!  

8. Invest in Yourself! If you find the job opportunities are not there and you are not making much progress, use this time to invest in yourself. Complete a short training course, attend a seminar, a workshop or community course. This is great material to add to your resume. It keeps your mind active and adds to your knowledge base. It also shows a potential employer that you keep moving forward regardless of the time of year and circumstances.

9. You May Still Get Holidays: Let’s assume for a moment that you’re successful and nab a new position before Christmas. The company may have an annual shutdown period or may not have the key staff available to provide you with the required training. Start dates can also be negotiable, due to notice periods required with your current employer. Your brand-new job could be lined up and ready to start in the new year. And you may still enjoy some time off with your family! So don't hold back thinking you might be stuck with starting a new position at a time of year when you cannot commit.  You may have options!  

10. Ready, Set, New Year! If you get hired sooner than expected, you will have extra money to spend over Christmas. Better yet, peace of mind knowing you have a job lined up for the new year is a great feeling! And no more job hunting required! Time to breathe.