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What's the best times to apply for jobs?
Identifying and following hiring seasons can make your job search more efficient. Many companies hire more at the beginning of the fiscal year or seasonally, according to the industry. If you're looking for a new role, learning more about the best time to apply for jobs can help you enhance your application process.
In this article, we'll discuss why it's important to apply for jobs at the right time, show you the best times to apply for jobs and give you tips on how to make your application stand out.
Why it's important to apply for jobs at the right time
Understanding the best time to apply for jobs can help you increase your employment opportunities. When hiring managers pursue new staff, they may prioritize reviewing applications and scheduling interviews. If you have an open schedule during hiring season, it can make you more available for interviews.
During the busy hiring season, you may expect more timely responses to inform you of your applicant status. This can help you plan your application and interviewing process.
Best time to apply for jobs by the season
Since managers and interviewers often have busy schedules, they may prioritize hiring new candidates during certain seasons. The following are the best times to apply for jobs according to the seasons.
Late Winter (January and February)
Since the holidays are typically over by January and February, employees are transitioning back to their regular work routines. This gives them more time to set new goals for their quarter and for the year, which can include hiring goals.
Department managers may present hiring needs to supervisors at the end or beginning of the year, which they may approve in January. With a new hiring budget approved, managers may immediately begin searching for candidates in January or February, so it's an ideal time to apply for jobs.
Spring (March, April and May)
Recent or upcoming graduates searching for positions after college may have a strong chance of finding one during the spring. Many managers search for candidates, especially entry-level employees, to join their teams.
Spring is also a great time to apply for jobs, as employees often use their vacation days in the summer or wintertime. Applying in the springtime can work better with their schedules, allowing you to meet with interviewers and move through the interview process quickly.
Fall (September and October)
Fall is often the final occurrence of the year for increased hiring. Managers returning from break may reevaluate their goals and decide they need an additional team member before the holiday season begins in November and December. September and October give managers more time to interview candidates and hire them before the final months of the year become busy.
Worst times to apply for jobs
When looking for the best time to apply for jobs, it's also helpful to know when not to apply. These are the seasons that may not be ideal for job applications:
Summer (July and August)
Many people, including hiring teams, like to take time off during the summer for vacations and travel. The warmer summer months are a great time to rest, but they may not be the best time for applying to new roles, as businesses may not be pursuing new staff.
This may not apply to all industries. For example, schools and other educational institutions that start operations in August and September may still be pursuing candidates to fill roles during July and August.
There are many holidays in the winter, and most of them are concentrated in December. December may also be the end of the fiscal year for many companies, which can make it less than ideal for hiring new personnel.
Many organizations are more likely to hire in January or February when they return from vacation time. There are still some seasonal organizations that may hire in early December, like gift wrapping services or delivery services.
Tips for applying to jobs at the right time
Applying for positions at the right time of year can be challenging for some candidates. Here are tips on how to pick the right time and make your application stand out.
Consider recent changes
As startup companies become more prevalent and hiring teams use more innovative methods, hiring seasons may not be as common as they once were. It's best to do specific research about the hiring patterns and trends in your industry before making a plan to apply.
Spend slower seasons updating your resume and portfolio
If you're applying for positions and are hearing from fewer employers, you can use this time to update your resume or portfolio. While you continue applying for positions, work on your resume and add any formatting or style changes you believe may improve it.
Build your skills and qualifications during your downtime
During the moments when employers are hiring fewer candidates, you can work to improve your skills and qualifications. Take online courses, attend workshops or join associations to boost your skills and add more impressive qualifications to your resume.
Learn more about recruitment cycles from hiring managers
The best way to learn a company's hiring cycle or hiring process is by contacting them directly. You can view their website or follow the company on social media.
Sending a professional email allows you to learn when to have your resume and other information ready in time for their hiring season. Contacting the hiring manager is also an effective way to practice your networking skills to express an interest in their position.
Apply for a position as soon as possible
In addition to the best seasons to apply for a role, there are also times of day you can apply that may increase your chances of hiring managers noticing you and considering you for the position. Since managers have other tasks they're responsible for completing, they may try to review resumes in an efficient and timely manner. They often review applications at the beginning of the week, on a Monday or Tuesday, in the morning.
Use strategies to separate yourself
When crafting your resume, focus on the unique and relevant traits you can offer in the role. If you're applying to creative roles, consider incorporating a creative element in your application profile. For example, if you're applying for a role as a video editor, you may create a video resume showing your video editing skills, as this may help you separate yourself from the other candidates.
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Also published on Indeed.com
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