DiceTV: Why You Should Keep Job Hunting Through the Holidays

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-hBhHqUQag?rel=0&hd=1&w=560&h=346]

The Script

I was laid off last winter and have been looking for a new job ever since. People tell me it’s pointless to look for IT jobs during the holidays, because most companies slow down. Should I take a break from my search to re-energize, and then start fresh in 2010? Signed, Wondering.

Well, Wondering, the short answer is – “No.” Want to know why? I’m Cat Miller, and this is DiceTV.

Yes, a lot of job seekers ease up on their searches this time of year. They think companies are focusing less on business and more on spending time with family and friends, and putting off new spending until the new year. Don’t fall into that kind of thinking.

First off, taking time away from your job search isn’t going to help you recharge or make you more enthusiastic after the holidays. So if you want to take a break, ease up one or two days a week. That way, you’ll avoid burnout without losing your momentum.

Besides, job hunting is competitive. There will be other candidates who slow down during the holidays. If you keep at it, you’re giving yourself an advantage, and that’s important right now. Even if a firm is waiting until the beginning of the new year to add personnel, that doesn’t mean it has stopped evaluating candidates.

Remember that some companies – like retailers – see big spikes in business during the holidays, and need IT support. Think about focusing on these types of companies more than you might during other times of the year. They may have project positions open, and hiring managers may view them as extended auditions for full-time roles in 2010.

In other sectors, although they’re less busy, hiring managers may be using their time to review resumes or call in people for interviews.

Waiting for the new year to relaunch your job search can sound good, especially if you’ve spent most of this year looking. But if you wait, you’ll lose momentum, your contacts will go stale, and you’ll end up in the middle of the pack.

So, no: Don’t wait for January to step up your search and networking. You’re more likely to enjoy the holidays if you have some promising leads percolating.

If you have a question for me, send it to feedback@dice.com.  That’s feedback@dice.com, and put “Ask Cat” in the subject line.

I’m Cat Miller, this has been DiceTV, and we now return you to your regular desktop.

7 Responses to “DiceTV: Why You Should Keep Job Hunting Through the Holidays”

  1. Here’s an e-mail Cat received in relation to this video:

    Hello Cat,
    I just watched your piece on NOT easing up on the job search during the holidays and totally agree. I thought this would be a good time to use the holidays as a follow tool and want to get your opinion. I want to send a Happy Holidays email (just text, not ecard) to the many companies or managers I have spoke to, exchanged emails with, and interviewed with as a follow up reminder that I am still interested in them. BUT, the question is do I mention the job or that I am still interested in working for them OR just keep it friendly and warm with a happy holiday greeting?
    Thanks for your advice.
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


  2. So true…In fact, the time between Thanksgiving and New Year is one of the BEST for job seekers. I wrote about this recently in my blog at http://johnhadley.jhacareers.com. When I made the same point at a networking group I moderate, one attendee stated that it may be good for networking, but no one makes offers now. Actually, 1 of my clients received a job offer this week, and another received an informal offer – he was told that if he wants it, it’s his. John West Hadley, Career Search Counselor,
    “Land The Job & Pay You Deserve”, Get 100’s of Career Tips at http://www.JHACareers.com