December job search, what recruiters really think about hiring.

December job search
She isn’t letting the holidays stop her

December is the month where we hear a consistent theme from job seekers.  During the holidays, we hear of plans to take a break from two activities that require absolute discipline: diets and the job search. 

We won’t give you advice on your diet, but our advice on the job front is to continue the December job search.

Our advice during the month of December is to not only keep searching for a job. Take your search up a notch!

Don’t believe the hype when you hear “No one is hiring in December.” As hiring managers ourselves, we know that we are absolutely hiring. The positions that were open in November are still open in December. These open positions don’t shut down for the holidays.

Positions are still up for grabs. If you want to win, you have to play.

If anything, there is just less competition because of all of the non-believers. A company’s hiring process may slow down a little because folks are taking a few days off, but the hiring process doesn’t stop. It’s not as if the entire department or any one person is taking the entire month of December off. If a hiring process was going to take 3-4 weeks, it might take 4-5 weeks. At the end of the day, butts still need to be put into seats. 

A few reasons why you should continue with a December job search   

  • All hiring managers want to enter the year with a full staff. Managers and VP’s want to enter the new year with momentum. Nothing brings more excitement to a department then additional headcount, new personalities, and teams that feel like they have much needed help. 
  • There are positions coming up in January that we would love to make some headway on in December. Budget for the new year may not be available at the end of the December, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a start date of January 1.  
  • Even if we do not have any openings in December, I know that I will have positions to fill in January. I may even have an idea of what is coming up in February.  If I work for a larger company, I may have an idea of what positions are opening up 3-4 months out. 
  • The candidate may not have a start date until February, but if I can start conversations with a candidate in December for a February close, I won’t pass up the opportunity. The bottom line here is that I always want to get candidates engaged and excited about ACMEPublishing.

Unemployment rate determines urgency

Unemployment is at an all-time low of 3.7% in the United States. Each month we hit a new all-time low and beat the prior month’s predictions. Hiring slows down noticeably in December when unemployment is high. Companies can’t afford to stop hiring when unemployment is at an all-time low and the competition for talent is high. This is why the December job search should not slow down.

A job as a seasonal or temporary worker is a great foot in the door

Some poo-poo seasonal or temporary work and others may feel it comes with a stigma.  If anything has a stigma, it is pride and insecurity of not taking temporary work.  Let us be the first to say that there are a lot of folks who prefer “contractor” work and love the freedom of being able to experience different companies, meet new people and not be committed to a company long-term.  Personally, I look at it as a foot in the door and personally know of a lot of companies that convert contractors to full-time employees. 

Announce your intentions

The mistake I see many temporary workers make is that they fail to take the initiative.  If you are working part-time or as a temporary employee through an agency, let the HR department or the hiring manager know that you are interested in long-term employment.  They may not have an immediate opening, but they may have one coming up or know of another opening in a different department. 

Don’t announce your intentions on day 1

Just don’t let your intentions be known on your first day.  That just looks desperate and dysfunctional.  Establish yourself first as a solid employee and make sure you like the place. Explain why you like the company and what about the job. Just explaining to your manager “If an opening were to come up, I would be interested” isn’t going to cut it.  It would fall short in an interview, and it will die on the vine here as well.  Think about it.  If you know you have an opening come up and you see a great temporary worker in front of you, wouldn’t you want to just hire them instead of going through the process of interviewing, hiring and training someone new?

So, if you are thinking about putting your job search on hold, think again.  The openings and there is less pressure because a lot of candidates take the easy way out. 

Key Takeaway: Don’t believe the hype when it comes to the December job search.

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