Holiday Job Market Myths: Debunked

by Wes Lieser

As we approach the holiday season, I’d like to take this opportunity to proactively address the most common question I expect to hear (especially from passive job seekers): “What’s the job market like this time of year?”

This is a serious question for passive candidates, and it’s easy to understand why. If someone just started to consider new opportunities, why would they waste their time looking for a new job during a time when no one seems to be hiring?

It’s a similar situation if you’re a company looking to hire new talent. Why spend the time thumbing through resumes and scheduling interviews if you think you could potentially find more talented candidates after the holidays?

To sum it up, let’s talk about the two biggest myths about the holiday job market:

Job seekers
“No companies are hiring right now so I’ll wait until after the holidays to start looking.”

Companies looking to hire
“Most people will start looking after the holidays so we’ll find better candidates then.”

It’s the ultimate standoff.

Now I’m not trying to misrepresent the situation. Generally speaking, December hiring can be at a lower point in many industries.

However, consider the following thought process of an opportunist.

Job seekers
If there are fewer job seekers looking for new opportunities around the holidays, then there is less competition for those same roles.

RESULT: Instead of the top companies splitting hairs between 3-4 equally qualified candidates after the start of the New Year, being proactive now could put you ahead of the rest of the field.

Companies looking to hire:
If fewer companies are in hiring mode around the holidays, then there is less competition for qualified candidates.

RESULT: Instead of top candidates juggling anywhere from 2-4 offers after the start of the New Year, being proactive while other companies are waiting might be the advantage you need to land top talent.

The idea that you cannot find a great job, or an excellent candidate, around the holidays is nothing more than a myth.  It’s just a matter of whether or not you seize the opportunity.

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