It’s December. The fiscal year is wrapping up and the days are filled with finalizing budgets, sending and collecting outstanding invoices, and preparing tax documents. Holiday parties are on the calendar, and the office seems a bit quieter as the phones ring less often. It is a time to reflect on the coming year’s plans and improvements.
And it’s also a time to bring on staff for next year. For job seekers, the prevailing wisdom is that the holidays are a terrible time to look for work. There are too many distractions and people are unresponsive, or so they think. But this is not entirely accurate. We are human and naturally procrastinate, and sometimes the holidays are the best time if a manager plans well. Chances are an open position has been known for a long time but has not been filled.
Instead of delaying the hiring process, managers have good reason to search for, interview, and hire new employees during the holidays. If you are in need of a new employee in your organization, the holidays are a strategically wise time to invest in recruiting.
Review those resumes and make the calls
Fewer people in the office means fewer interruptions and fewer meetings. It’s a great time to finally get to those resumes you’ve collected for that position you’ve been neglecting. Let’s face it–no matter how important it may seem, most of us don’t like the hiring process: the time, the sometimes stilted conversations. It’s a big project, though, and the quieter office time is ideal for narrowing down the list of prospects.
In addition to focusing on staffing needs, the holidays offer a greater likelihood of prospects being available for interviews. If they are currently employed elsewhere, it is often easier for them to find time for an interview without disrupting their current work schedule. Since one of the challenges with hiring is matching up interview times, the ease of scheduling makes this time of year for setting up interviews.
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Be prepared for the new year’s financial goals
Maybe you’ve had an opening for a while and are finally getting around to it. Or perhaps the new budget is finally approved and you have the approval to expand your staff. The plan starts in January, so hiring now ensures greater success for the next year.
Hitting aggressive performance goals is a challenge, and if you are depending on an expansion of your staff to successfully meet your goals, this time of year is ideal for building your human assets. If you wait until the first quarter of the year to initiate hiring, you will lose nearly 25% of the new year’s productivity for that position. That is significant if the next budget considers what was spent previously. Use the budget wisely and fully with timely hiring at year-end.