It’s a common misconception that you shouldn’t start or even continue your job search during the holiday season… in fact, someone in our Magnetize Your Federal Résumé program recently stated: “I didn’t think Federal Government interviews or hires during the holidays, so I paused my job search.”
I can tell you with complete confidence that this simply is not true! We’ve had numerous clients get hired during the holiday season! And efforts made during the holiday season paid off shortly after for other clients.
Thinking of pausing your private sector or Federal job search?
If you are thinking of pausing your job search because you believe no one is hiring, I highly encourage you to keep applying…keep searching…keep showing up for yourself and your efforts will pay off.
In reality, if you wait or pause your job search, you’ll only delay your job offer!
People are still working in December. In fact, it might be a ‘slow’ time in some areas. Large projects might be delayed until after the new year…And sometimes this frees up time to do things that haven’t been the priority. Many organizations WANT to hire so they can hit the ground running in the new year!
If you see a position for which you qualify, and maybe even your dream job, would you pass it up just because it’s the holidays?
Probably not. I’ll bet you’d make time to apply to it.
That just happened for one of our clients. She saw a Senior Executive position announced on USAJOBS.gov and the deadline was November 30. This would mean working before, during, and after Thanksgiving to write the executive resume, executive core qualifications, and mandatory technical qualifications and have it polished and submitted ahead of time.
Sure, we both would have rather not worked over the holiday, but the payoff will be awesome! She now has a master and targeted executive résumé and narratives that represent her leadership, expertise, and skills. And, Federal Government needs leaders who are dedicated to public service and willing to put in the extra effort.
MAGNETIC TIP: Employers don’t stop hiring during the holidays. If an agency or company needs to fill a position, they are going to keep working to find you 😉… They typically aren’t going to wait until the new year, just for the sake of waiting… so don’t pause your job search!
To move this point forward, here are 4 simple facts about job searching during the holidays that debunk this common myth…
FACT 1: Federal Agencies and Private Sector Companies are hiring…now more than ever!
As previously mentioned, if an agency or company has a vacancy that they need to fill, and the right candidate applies, they’re not going to NOT interview that person, just because of the holiday season! If a company has a need, they are going to want to take care of that need as fast as they possibly can. Leaving that vacancy open and postponing the hiring process would just leave a gap in their system. A job that’s not being done. And doing so would obviously negatively impact or disrupt their processes and their bottom line.
Federal Government is hiring! In fact, just today this article states that federal agencies are getting new resources from OPM to surge federal hiring.
As we currently find ourselves amidst the holiday season, you can check out the over 10,000 jobs currently active and open on usajobs.gov and there are more on other agency websites, such as the FBI. However, the best place to job search AND be FOUND, is on USAJOBS.gov.
FACT 2: You’ll have less competition for open opportunities.
While we highly recommend continuing your job search during the holidays, not everybody is going to take this advice and some people simply may not have the time. There will inevitably be other job seekers who have decided to take some time off. This means it’s a great time to dust off, update, and polish your resume, look for roles, connect with hiring managers or recruiters…or even people who work at the agency or company.
This could absolutely work to your benefit! Being active in your search while others are not can increase your odds of getting called back for an interview—possibly even one you might not have received with more competition during a busier time of year. 😉
FACT 3: You will likely have more chances to network and socialize—on purpose.
There is pretty much no better time to network! Business and social functions are abundant during the holiday season, giving you the chance to connect with new contacts who may be able to help you with your job search, or make a new, key introduction that may further your search. This is also the season that people feel like doing good deeds and have spirits of giving. And helping YOU just might be that good deed!
In fact, in our recent monthly call with our members, someone attended who we hadn’t heard from in a while. He let us know he was looking for extra work. He mentioned it briefly, but had he not, none of us would have known and there were many people on the call who were throwing out ideas and supporting each other.
On top of that, if you’ve lost touch with some of your key networking contacts—former colleagues, past bosses, or customers—now is the perfect time to get back in touch! You have the perfect excuse to reach out, catch up, and wish them a happy holiday season.
While we don’t necessarily advise asking for favors when you haven’t spoken to a contact in a while, but it will be a great opportunity to reconnect and stay in contact, even once the holiday season has passed.
In preparation of such networking activities, make sure your cover letter, résumé, and LinkedIn profile are updated and written to attract who you’d like to work for (magnetize), and doing what you love. And make sure your elevator pitch is practiced, polished, and on-point!
FACT 4: Some organizations will be finalizing budgets for the next year.
Many private sector companies start creating their next year’s budgets around October and will be finalizing them through the end of the year. As part of this process, they’ll create estimates for projected revenue and expenses… which includes preparing to hire new employees, as they budget for vacant or new positions. This means getting in front of the right people during the holiday season could help them account for you joining the team once they hire you. Because, who WOULDN’T want to hire you? 😉
However, this isn’t necessarily true for the Federal Government. Their fiscal year runs October 1-September 30, but they definitely hire year-round.
Are you still on the fence about pursuing your federal job or private sector job search during the holidays?
So, if you’re on the fence about starting or continuing your job search this holiday season, now is the best time to get off that fence! I hope you’re motivated now to get working on your marketing—cover letter, résumé, LinkedIn profile, and contacting your references. Then get out there and start networking instead of starting or continuing your job search in the new year, you could actually be in process of STARTING that new job!
What questions do you have about job searching during the holidays? Will you please comment here, below, and let me know?
What other myths do you feel hold you back?
And if you’re looking to get hired or promoted in the Federal Government, you won’t want to miss our LAST LIVESTREAM of the year!! Join us on Wednesday or Thursday this week where you’ll discover:
- The #1 strategy your federal resume needs so you can finally get past the gatekeepers.
- All 3 of the biggest mistakes that keep you from landing interviews and jobs.
- The top 3 secrets as to why our clients get hired faster over their competition.
- How to navigate the federal hiring process.
PLUS! You’ll receive the instant bonus Double Your Interview Opportunities just for registering for the livestream (even if you can’t attend)! But if you attend, we have many MORE bonuses!