Are you furiously searching those job websites and emailing off applications ten to the dozen? Then you’re far from alone.
One of the biggest job websites, Monster.com, reported that nine out of ten of its busiest days were in January last year, with the biggest overall being January 27, when the site saw a 75% rise in applications over and above the average.
So why is January so busy with job seekers? Is it just because employers advertise more jobs at the beginning of the year, or is something else going on? Well, it’s actually a bit of both.
Employers definitely do advertise more jobs in January than throughout the rest of the year. This is partly because they are coming back after the festive break and putting out feelers for new staff, and partly because it is the time of year when firms often set budgets, decide on staff needs and produce new targets which may require additional staff.
Workers, too, use the beginning of a new year to think about their aspirations and career plans afresh, using the Christmas holidays – when they’re usually away from work for at least a few days, and often a week or more – to rethink what they want from life. So applying for and finding a new job often turns into one of those new year resolutions.
But if everyone is applying for jobs at the same time, how can you stand out? Are there any ways you can ensure your CV is given more than a cursory glance before being tossed aside?
The first piece of advice is to act as soon as you see the job advertised. Waiting to apply may cost you the job itself if so many people are applying. Employers often have a cut-off point, refusing to even look at applications if they get too many.
The second thing to do is to assess your CV, to make sure it is eye-catching (but not fussy – no silly fonts or colours, please) as well as relevant, specific to the job you are applying for and not too short or too long. Two sides of A4 is usually enough.
Thirdly, only apply for jobs which are relevant to your skills and experience. At this busy time of the year, it is particularly pointless to send in hundreds of applications for jobs you will never get an interview for. It will be a waste of time for both you and the recruiters involved.
So stick to what you’re qualified to do, get someone professional to cast an eye over your CV and make sure you apply promptly. Good luck.
Join Over 40,000 Recruiters. Get our latest articles weekly, all FREE – SEND ME ARTICLES
Recruiters love this COMPLETE set of Accredited Recruitment & HR Training – View Training Brochure