Job Search Tips: How to Land a Job Faster During This Holiday Season
November 26, 2018 by Nisha Raghavan, Talent Attraction and Employer Branding Specialist, American Heart Association
Are you looking for a job and thinking this holiday season is making your job search slow? Are you putting your job search on hold thinking the employers are not hiring? If you are, then you might be making a mistake.
There may be a few employers who are taking it slow because the decision makers might be on vacation or the interviewers might not be available. There are many employers who are looking to fill their open positions before the year ends. And holidays can be a temporary slow down in getting responses. Many employers have their budgeted and approved position for a year that won’t roll over to the next year and hiring managers are aggressively trying to fill those positions before the position expires. Some hiring managers want someone to start early January and want to finish all the hiring process before the year ends.
For example, with my current employer, I have paid time off from Christmas to the New year, the whole one week. But that doesn’t mean that we are taking it slow or not hiring during the holiday season. Our hiring managers are eagerly interviewing so someone can start at the beginning of the next year.
Don’t give up on your job search just because you are not getting responses from employers during this holiday season. Rather utilize this time to revamp your job search and use it to your advantage by following the below tips to land a job faster.
Job Search Tips to Land a Job Faster During This Holiday season
1. Use holiday season to your advantage
Some hiring managers will have fewer applicants for the job because the job seekers are taking it slow during their job search. That means you have less competition. So use it for your advantage and try to stand out by submitting a well draft cover letter on why you want to work with the organization and how you can relate your skills to the requirement that they listed in the job posting.
2. Revamp your resume and LinkedIn profile
Use this holiday time to revamp your resume and LinkedIn profile that best describe your skills and experience. Update your resume by highlighting your accomplishments in your current job. Remove anything irrelevant and add all the tools and technologies that you got your hands on in your current job. Think of taking a professional headshot if you haven’t one already. Update your LinkedIn headline with 2-3 keywords that best describe your core skills. Be sure to update your job seeking preference in privacy settings and let recruiters know that you are looking and be sure to update your career interests.
3. Research where you want to work
Don’t apply to all the jobs that you find online. Make sure you are putting a little effort into researching more about the employer before you submit your job application. Check out their website, careers site, newsrooms, blogs, social media, Glassdoor reviews anything that you can find online to understand if that company is going to be the right place for you. If the job posting listed the hiring managers/recruiters name then check out their LinkedIn profile to see if you can get some insights from them. To further research, try connecting with a current employee to understand the work culture and make a decision if you would want to work for that employer or not. Decide your location preferences, are you open to relocating or looking for a job in your metroplex. Then create a list/spreadsheet of targeted companies in your preferred location and start researching more about their work culture.
4. Create a targeted list of recruiters and hiring managers
Once you have a targeted list of employers you want to work with then the next step would be to find recruiters and hiring managers in that company. Use LinkedIn to find the recruiters in that company and try connecting with them. If you don’t have access to their email address then search the email format of that employer on Google. Try doing a boolean search using this format: "email ***@domain.com" that way you can figure out the common email format of employees in that company. For example, if their email pattern is ‘[email protected]’ then it is easy for you to figure out the email address. Or use free tools like Prophet, email hunter etc to track down the email address of the recruiters.
5. Send Holiday greetings to your targeted list
Send a holiday greeting to the targeted list of recruiters and hiring managers and be sure to use it to your advantage by adding a link to your LinkedIn profile in the body of the email. Don’t make this just about you. It’s about them as well. So have a well draft note to wish them on this holiday season and have them an opportunity to learn what you are looking for and how you can be a right fit for the organization. Help them help you by having this information that way they can better relate your profile to the open positions/future positions and get back to you.
6. Reconnect with old colleagues and friends
Holiday time can be the best time to reconnect with your old colleagues, friends, and recruiters at the previous companies you worked and want to get back again. Reconnect with them by sending holiday greetings, Thank you note that talks about why you are thankful to them on this Thanksgiving will help ignite those connections. Let them know that you are searching for a job. They already know your background and what you are capable of. Reconnecting with those friends and old colleagues will help you get some referrals.
7. Use holiday cards to promote your search
If you are planning to send the holiday cards to your friends and family, use it to promote your job search as well. Adding a note that talks about your job search will help your friends and family know that you are looking. I have seen visiting cards and holiday cards that have a brief overview of the job seekers profile printed on the back of the card.
8. Use social media to your advantage
Let your friends and network know that you are looking. Post an update on Facebook, LinkedIn or any of your preferred social media platform and let your friends know that you are in the job market. Share the link to your LinkedIn profile/Tweet the link to your LinkedIn profile. Post it multiple times a week to share your job search journey. That way your friends can know where you are in your job search and approach you with help when they know of something.
9. Go to family events, get-togethers & networking events
Attend those Thanksgiving get-togethers, happy hours and any networking events within your family and outside of the family. You will be surprised to see who knows who at a company that you are interested in working. Pass along your business cards and let them know that you are looking that way they can reach out to you when they know of anything within their network.
10. Be productive
It is holiday time! Time to relax and enjoy. But sure to spend some time to work on your job search. If you are already employed right now and looking for a job then this holiday time must be a blessing to get some free time to search for a job. Carve out some time dedicated to research on employers, search for jobs, find connections who you can refer, reconnect with your network etc. This will not only help you connect with the jobs that are open right now. But will help you get some referrals for the future jobs that will be open in the new year as well!
What are some job search tips that you would like to add to this list to revamp the job search during this holiday season?
For more recruiting and interview insights, join us in San Francisco this January 30 - February 1, 2019, at #SRSC where talent acquisition leaders connect to leverage emerging recruiting practices.
Nisha Raghavan is the Talent Attraction and Employer Branding Specialist at the American Heart Association. Prior to this, she worked in the telecommunications and media industry to help attract, engage and retain talent. She writes about her Global HR experiences at her blog Your HR Buddy!! Connect with her on LinkedIn and on Twitter at @TheHrbuddy