Unsure about applying for jobs in the summer? Just go for it!
May 17, 2022
With summer vacations right around the corner, some of us might be thinking that it is time for a career switch, but isn’t the summer the wrong time to apply for a new job? January and February might be the best months to apply for a new job as hiring managers have received their new hiring budgets for the year. Plus, there is typically a backlog in hiring due to the holiday season at the end of the previous year. But don’t let that deter you from applying in the warmer months.
The job market indeed slows down as the temperature goes up, but few companies put a complete stop to hiring when the good weather arrives. And although it might seem counterintuitive, summer can be a great time to apply for a new job. Let’s look at seven reasons why.
1. You’ll stand out from the crowd
“It’s summer, so what’s the point in applying for jobs?” This is probably what your potential competitors are thinking. For most job seekers, summer seems like the perfect time to put their feet up and pause their search, thinking there’ll be no exciting opportunities out there. They are making a big mistake, especially now as the Great Resignation has created such a hiring boom in the US. On the last business day of March, job openings were at 11.5 million, the highest level since reporting began in December 2000. There are jobs out there for you, so don’t let the summer hiring slump tempt you into complacency; if you apply now, you might be able to stand out!
Summer applications: all pros, no cons
- Your résumé is far less likely to be lost in a sea of applications–– unlike those you sent out in January, which is one of the peak months for recruitment.
- You’ll be all set and ready to go for your new role in September, unlike your more relaxed and tanned competitors who’ll just be getting back to sending out applications.
2. Time is on your side
Recruiters do not go on vacation all summer and, they’re typically less busy than usual. Some are already preparing for the office to return to full capacity. Others, perhaps getting onto it a little late, are taking the opportunity to finalize outstanding job offers. There are fewer urgent files to close and fewer requests from clients. One thing there is more of is time. Recruiters will be better positioned to review applications and take the time to get to know candidates as individuals.
It’s also common for staff who are planning to leave their company, especially those with children, to take advantage of the approaching summer holidays to take the plunge and hand in their resignation or to seek voluntary redundancy. They then have the opportunity to take an extended summer break with their family, or take a breather before starting with a new company in the autumn. If you apply around this period, you may find that you are a perfect fit for the opening.
If you’re looking for a new role, but are still at your current job, your employers will likely be much more amenable to your booking some extra days off between August and September. Such time off will give you a good opportunity to look for that perfect job and do some deep preparation intensively for interviews.
3. A good time to be proactive
During the summer months, recruiters tend to receive fewer résumés, regardless of the economic situation. When you send them an spontaneous application, it won’t be one of a huge number of such inquiries. This means that there’s an increased chance that they will spot it and be interested in it, which is even more significant when you consider that recruiters generally spend just a few seconds reading a résumé. With recruiters able to allow themselves more time to evaluate talent, that also means more time they have to perhaps consider an atypical profile. Your résumé could be just what the recruiter wants.
Seriously consider sending out spontaneous or speculative job applications during the summer. While you won’t hear back from most of them and will probably end up applying again later if an opening comes up, being proactive is the key to success when looking for a job.
4. The atmosphere is more relaxed
Summer often feels like a time to kick back and relax, and this kind of atmosphere tends to interfere somewhat with the usual work environment. This can result in a less pressure-filled atmosphere when you’re talking to potential employers or attending interviews.
Beware, however, of playing it too cool with your potential employer. Always keep a professional attitude and be absolutely sure that you leave the right impression.
5. Your network is waiting for you
Summer can be a time when those after-work drinks go on later into the evening, lunches last somewhat longer than usual, and there are weekend work meet-ups and parties as well. Any of these can provide the perfect opportunity for you to spend some productive time with all those colleagues that you haven’t had time to chat with during the year. It may help you to reboot your network or to meet the influencers, movers, and shakers in your sector. You could even end up with a new professional mentor.
During such conversations, make sure to take the opportunity to slip in some details about your role and your ambitions, as well as your overall intentions with regard to your career. You never know; you may end up in an interview for an exciting new position. A good way to approach any situation like this is as a potential opportunity that’s just waiting to happen.
6. Make sure you are easily accessible
Don’t worry; none of this means that you don’t have the right to a well-deserved break. But escaping to the beach shouldn’t stop you from applying for jobs and remaining available for potential discussions with recruiters. If you’re looking for work, it is best to make sure it is easy to contact you for callbacks and interviews.
Depending on the length of your holiday and the needs of the company you’ve applied to, you have two options:
- Return from your holiday for a day or so in order to attend any interview you may have lined up. This sign of exceptional motivation is sure to impress your potential boss.
- Particularly in the current situation, you could also offer to attend a video interview. Securing that first face-to-face contact, maybe prior to a second interview once you return from holiday, is a great way to show your future boss that you know how to make yourself available remotely and that you are proficient with the associated technologies.
7. Stay switched on!
If you do choose to go on holiday while you’re looking for a job, don’t forget to take your most valuable allies: your smartphone, your laptop, and your tablet. It might be best to leave that digital detox for another time.
With those devices close to hand, you’ll be able to regularly check your email, industry websites, newsletters, alerts, and any new openings, as well as being properly set up to send out applications. Happy hunting!
*Updated May 17, 2022
Translated by Andrea Schwam
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