We are now officially in the 2020 holiday season and it will most likely be like none that we have ever had before. Much to the chagrin of Job Seekers, the holiday season usually results in the slowing down of positions being filled. The primary reason for the brakes being tapped on filling positions is the mass PTO taken by Hiring Managers that generally occurs from now until the end of the year.

The presence of COVID-19, however, may make this a much different and more active job search season. No one really knows, but with the current COVID-19 restrictions in place, it seems likely that fewer people will be taking off than what usually occurs.

What this means for you is that your job search should continue full speed ahead during the holiday season. As tempting as it may be to pull back on your search and enjoy the holiday season, you must focus on the momentum of your search. Besides, if you make significant progress in your job search now (or better yet even accept a position). then you are much more likely to enjoy the holiday time you do take to celebrate.

If you do find yourself with some downtime during your job search, then fill the time (as much as you can) with related activities that will benefit you in seeking a new position. The following are some ideas that you should consider doing over the next couple of months.

  • Follow your normal routine. Hide the calendar and go through all of your job sites daily as you usually would do. There may be fewer postings to go over, but there also will be many job seekers mistakenly taking the holiday time off. Their ill-timed “vacation” will highly improve your positioning within the requisition, making the odds more in your favor. Also, keep in mind that the companies that are advertising right now (rather than waiting for 2021 to begin) tend to be highly motivated to fill their positions quickly.
  • Take some time to go over your Cover Letter template and Resume. There are several reasons you will want to go over these documents. There may be a need to update with new accomplishments or achievements since your last review. You may also tweak some of the narrative with the benefit of a fresher set of eyes (both yours and ask a family member and/or friend to read). All of this preparatory work is done with the mindset that it will help you catch the eye of the reader and earn a phone call.
  • Become more active over your work-related social media. Use any newly found time to jump on your favorite sites to post how you are seeking new employment (if you are currently in a situation to make this information public). You can also become more active in “liking” and “commenting” on other posts. Finally, build up your connections by reaching out to former colleagues and schoolmates. Further engage those who have the opportunity to assist you in finding new employment and expand your job search network.
  • It will probably be difficult to do much holiday event networking this year due to COVID-19. If you do find yourself on a Skype or Zoom video conference with a group of people, mention your current work position and ask for any job opening leads that anyone may be aware.
  • Invest some time in any applicable professional resources and get (or stay) up-to-date. Most professions have a variety of e-mail newsletters, webinars, or other information opportunities available to you at little or no cost. Instead of instinctively hitting the delete button and getting the satisfaction of weeding out your inbox, look and see if any of them have some value for you in your continuous education.
  • Stay ready in case you are asked at the last minute to come in. Be sure to stay freshly groomed and available with limited notice if the prospective employer decides they would like to squeeze you in.

The holiday season can be a challenging time of year due to the balancing of your job search, work (if employed), normal personal life, COVID-19, and the holidays. It is important that you maintain your job search as a priority, even if activities slow down from prospective employers. Spend the newly found time working on some other aspects of your search, in order to be ready when things rev up again.

As always, best of luck in your job search.

The following has been prepared for the general information of RochesterJobs readers. It is not meant to provide advice with respect to any specific legal or policy matter and should not be acted upon without verification by the reader.

Joe Stein
WNY Human Resources Professional

Feel free to contact Joe Stein regarding questions or comments at:
Joe Stein


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