10 Tips to Have You in a New Career by Halloween

During this busy time of the year, not only will your holiday plan affect your job search, but the employers’ schedules may be in disarray. The benefit of completing your job search in advance of the holiday season isn’t solely your peace of mind. If you can secure a job before the holidays, you’ll have the opportunity to meet your co-workers in a slightly more festive atmosphere while participating in the office Secret Santa and sipping hot cocoa at the company holiday party. If you begin your role before the new year, you can enter 2016 on a positive note.

It is common for employees to go on vacation at the end of the year. If the hiring manager for your position has chosen to take a year-end trip to Aruba, this could significantly delay your job search. Complete these tasks in your job search before Halloween to partake in the holiday cheer worry-free.

  1. Make a list and check it twice. The holiday season isn’t yet upon us, but now is the time to write down your goals for your job search. Obviously, your ultimate goal is to secure employment, but creating a timeline that outlines manageable steps to achieve your objectives will ensure you don’t feel overwhelmed.
  1. Research positions now. The person who plans his Halloween costume weeks in advance generally wins the costume contest. This is because he gives forethought to brainstorm ideas, allows himself ample time to plan and is prepared with steps to execute. Being more prepared during your job search helps the process move smoothly, and you can successfully secure a position before the holidays to avoid the obstacle of a distracted hiring manager. Browse Simply Hired and save the positions that pique your interest. While job search platforms like Simply Hired help facilitate your path to employment, research takes time and having a list of roles for which you plan to apply is beneficial.
  1. Finalize your documents. Some applications require work samples or a supplemental paragraph describing why you want to work at the company or why you are qualified for the role. Along with preparing your resume and cover letters, write out even shorter documents before.This way you can bake cookies instead of scrambling to complete last-minute paragraphs.  
  1. Focus on the job search now. You are not the only one consumed by festive cheer around the holidays. The employees at the companies where you applied are also certainly busy with family, holiday parties and grabbing their last minute gifts. Avoid a delay until after the holidays. Don’t let your dream role slip through the cracks.
  1. Take a class or training course related to your intended career path. The more relevant skills you can cultivate, the more impressed employers will be, and you’ll stand out among the top candidates. You can begin your holiday season with an accomplishment that is beneficial to your future and jump start your New Year’s resolution.
  1. Apply. Completing the application process before Halloween will allow you to experience the holidays stress-free. At this point you can feel the sense of accomplishment knowing you’ve done the best to present yourself as the ideal candidate rather than rushing through the process and feeling burdened during the holidays. Although it is to your benefit to continue applying for positions even after Halloween until you secure a role, you can feel more lighthearted about the process knowing many of your applications are already in the hands of recruiters and hiring managers.
  1. Prepare for the interview. The interview process can be both exciting and challenging, and your ability to present yourself in a positive light is paramount. With the upcoming holiday season, plan some seasonal conversation lines you can use to make a great first impression. Also remember that for some people, the holiday season can trigger stressors. Certain hiring managers may be under a time crunch to meet a hiring quota, use their remaining budget or even have worries about cooking dinner for their 20 visiting relatives, so ensure you read the situation and individual when discussing the holidays. Take time to revisit your interviewing skills and prepare to ace the face to face meeting.
  1. Ask the right holiday-related follow-up questions. The employer’s holiday plan might affect your job search. Take the time to brainstorm the right questions. Ask the hiring manager how the holiday season will alter the company hours and decision-making process. Will the company be shut down for a week to allow employees to celebrate the holiday? Will this delay the decision-making process? Should you expect a decision about the role before or after the new year? Furthermore, if you have your own celebratory vacation plans or intend to log off the computer over the holidays, prepare an “out of office” reply for your personal email. You don’t want to seem like you are ignoring a company or have a lack of interest about a role. Even if your brain and computer are on “shut down” mode over the holidays, internal decision-making and company processes could still be in full force.
  1. Draft your thank you note template now. Remember that recruiters and the employees may be experiencing the typical holiday stressors and distraction, like their Great Aunt Betsy’s visit. They’re people, too. In your thank you notes, acknowledge that this is a busy time of year and give a little extra thanks for their valuable time. You’ll impress with your consideration for others and show that team members would enjoy working with you. After all, both your skill and likeability impact hiring decisions.
  1. Stop worrying. It is a waste of your time. Even the most logical people can be overcome by anxiety, but turning doubt into productive motivation is the best option to make use of your time. Once you’ve sent off your application and have checked off the steps to reach your goal, take time to enjoy your holiday season. You’ve done all you can.

The best gift to yourself for the holidays is the satisfaction of having completed these important steps in the job search process so you can focus your efforts on family, festivities and cooking your famous pumpkin pie.