Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Why you can’t afford to take a holiday vacation from your job search

JOB SEARCH: Keeping up with your search over the
holidays, whether or not your classes are in session
The holidays are fast-approaching and it can be tempting to push off your job search in favor of parties, punch, and presents. But continuing your search during the holiday season can keep you ahead of those who put their job hunt on hiatus.

By getting your resume into the hands of employers over the break, you can ensure it’s in their inboxes the moment they return in January, a time when many employers have budgets to hire new employees. Here are four ways to keep your job search on track this holiday season.
  • ABN (Always be networking). The holidays are a great time to get in touch with contacts you’ve made. Try emailing with a seasonal greeting to kick off the conversation and then segue into current and future business opportunities. It can be as easy as “Hi Susan. I hope you and your family are having a happy holiday season! How are you doing? By the way, I’m still job searching should you know of any open positions or if you’d like to review my resume. Is there a time we could chat? Hope all is well!”
  • Beef up your resume and LinkedIn profile. This is a great one to do over the school break between Christmas and New Years. Make sure your resume is up to date with all important information about your current and past positions, education, and special skills. If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile yet, create one. If you already have one, be sure to include any new skills that you’ve added or any new courses that you’ve taken. Then go through and connect with any peers, colleagues, classmates, professors, and employers you know but haven’t gotten a chance to connect with yet.
  • Learn new job-hunting strategies. Another great way to use a little bit of downtime is to keep up on the resources available to you. Read past Peirce Connections blog posts on networking, LinkedIn, career development, and job searching. Visit the Career Development Services page on the Peirce website as well as the portal for additional resources. There’s also a quick, short read by Liz Lynch called “Smart Networking: Attract a Following In Person and Online,” that talks about in-person and online networking -- perfect for any job seeker to brush up on their networking skills over the holidays.
  • Up your community involvement. If you’re job searching, the holidays are a great time to bolster your resume with volunteer work and temporary positions. If you’re looking to volunteer, see if you can make that experience relevant to your chosen career path. For instance, if you’re majoring in business administration, volunteer to organize the Christmas tree lighting in your town or do the books for a local food drive. If you’re interested in a temporary position, see if a staffing agency can put you in touch with the right job openings in your industry. See where your help is needed, and then be sure to add that experience to your resume.
How do you plan to use the holiday season to strengthen your job search? Let us know in a comment below.