It’s a myth that employers bring hiring to a screeching halt, solely because the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s holidays are approaching.
Sadly, job seekers who are desperate for jobs, but believe the myth, stop job searching as the holiday season approaches, a time when they typically need money the most.
It’s true that hiring often slows or virtually stops at many companies in the days immediately surrounding Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day; but, that’s just as often because so many key workers, including those involved in the hiring process, take vacation over those holidays.
Outside of that, you can bet that if employers need workers to keep their bottom lines intact, then they won’t slow or stop hiring just because the holiday season is approaching.
In reality, December is often a good time to job search. That’s partly because hiring managers who have budgeted for, but have not finished annual hiring, scramble to hire in December to get the same or more money in their budgets for the new year. (In the corporate environment, it’s “use it or lose it” regarding a budget.)
Meanwhile, hiring managers who already have approved budgets in hand for the new year are often anxious to hire new employees in December, so that their departments are fully staffed at the start of business in the new year. Additionally, it’s not unusual for some employees to quit their jobs November-December to spend more time with their families over the holidays, leaving their positions open for management to fill ASAP.
Some employers increase hiring around the holiday season, to handle the extra business that the season brings. For example, retailers and shipping companies typically add temporary employees to work the holidays, some of whom become permanent employees in the new year. In 2011, retailers are forecasted to hire as many workers as they did last year (627,600) for holiday jobs, give or take a few.
If you desperately need a job, then don’t give up your job search just because you’ve “heard” that employers bring hiring to a screeching halt when the holiday season is approaching; it’s simply not true. Ignoring the myth might even increase your chances, if your direct competitors stopped job searching November-December because they believed the myth.
Employers might be slower than usual to respond to your job applications or resume submissions because of vacationing key employees, such as hiring managers, interviewers and HR personnel; but, they will eventually get back to you if they’re interested in your qualifications.
Note: Job searching is taking longer, not because of the approaching holiday season, but because economic conditions continue to drive layoffs and a high unemployment rate. Still, don’t give up your job search; instead, try to beat your stiff competition by making sure that your resume shines and then by preparing well for interviews. Good luck!