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#RecruitmentFocus: 5 tips to keeping your job search alive during the holiday season

When it comes to searching for employment, many job seekers believe that the holidays are a bad time for this since most businesses slow or shut down over this period.
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However, besides the fact that employers look to hire when they need employees, which could be any time of the year, a slow down during the holiday season might even give employers more time to look into their hiring needs and strategies. If the majority of job seekers are taking a break from their job hunting activities, it may mean less competition for those who are unrelenting.

Here are tips and insights into how and why to keep your job search alive during the holiday season:

1. Work on your CV and cover letter - Tweaking your CV can make all the difference in your job search, especially if you are tailoring it specifically for the job that you are applying for.

Make sure you are listing your skills and experience in the best possible way for the job you are applying for, and that your cover letter contains information that is important and relevant to the role you are looking to fulfill.

Also look at the format of your CV. Many employers are now looking for more creativity than just the traditional Word document – put some thought into how you can deliver impact and be remembered amongst a list of candidates.

2. Employers are looking for temporary staff – The holiday period can be a good time to gain work experience through internships and temporary contracts as employers look to use skeleton staff or temporary staff while other staff is off.

Take advantage of this as work experience is both valuable for your job search and for improving your skills set.

3. Create a schedule – Creating a job-search schedule can be useful during the holiday period, as it is easy to be distracted at this time of year. A schedule will help you to make sure you are working on your job search each day, which will give you a better chance of finding employment.

4. Network – The holidays are a great time to reconnect with your contacts, send holiday emails and messages, attend holiday functions and let them know you are in the market for a job. This may also keep you top-of-mind should any jobs become available come January. Don’t underestimate the power of networking – both in personal and via social networks like LinkedIn.

5. Develop your skills – Use the holiday season to improve on your skills set – through online courses, training or any other available courses in your area. Not only is this positive for your personal career development, but will show dedication and commitment to your potential employers.
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About the author

Lyndy van Den Barselaar, MD, ManpowerGroup South Africa