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The misconception that hiring pauses during the holidays deters many job seekers from applying, but many hiring personnel still actively look to fill roles. Many positions start in early January (hint: see Career Edge internship postings), so mid- to late December isn’t the worst time to apply because there are significantly fewer applicants. Some companies even schedule start dates in late December so their new employees can acclimate to the organization before the new year. If you’re still searching for the right fit, don’t let the winter break discourage you, and follow these strategies:


Meet, mingle, and surround yourself with as many people as possible. Friends or family members may know of an opportunity for you, or someone else who does. Make yourself memorable with a strong, positive, and friendly first impression for those you meet at gatherings, parties, and volunteer engagements. Be friendly and don’t be pushy. You could become the first person they reach out to when they hear of an opportunity, so remember to connect on LinkedIn or exchange contact information. Don’t be pushy. Most people are eager to help during the holiday season, but being pushy and overly aggressive won’t encourage others to help you.


Set objectives, not goals. If you want to start working in January, your new year resolution of ‘applying to more jobs’ isn’t sufficient. Pick a realistic number of how many job postings you’ll apply to each day. Ensure your objective is low enough so you’ll have time to still enjoy the holidays, but ensure your objective is high enough so you’ll feel accomplished.


If you don’t have a specific company you want to work for, check out some recently published lists. Many publications release lists at the end of the year like Canada’s Top 100 Employers (2018) that detail the best places to work. Targeting and restricting your job search to only positions at award-winning companies could result in greater satisfaction and a longer tenure than applying to every open position.


Be ready. Update all your application materials. Your resume and cover letter should only have up-to-date and correct information, especially your contact details (you’d be surprised how many people forget this) Update your website and portfolio pieces, and consider taking a new LinkedIn picture. Connect with your references. Take advantage of Boxing Day by purchasing new interview attire. Be ready.

Check out Career Edge’s job posting board. There are still many roles accepting applications during the holidays with start dates in early January. With so fewer applicants, your chances improve, and the best gift you receive this holiday season could be worth the wait!