Year end is always a tiresome and difficult time. Everyone has the holidays in mind, so work slows down across most industries. Why is that?
Most common reasons:
- Most companies have worked out their budget for the last bit of the year so any new employees would have to be essential ones;
- If a company hires in the new year, there would be fewer financial costs as most employees get/ want raises/ bonuses around this time of year;
- The new employee would have to be trained in company procedures and as well as any other ins and outs – they could forget most of these during the holidays and will need to be retrained thus it takes them longer to be a productive employee;
- Most owners and managers don’t want to struggle with new employees along with any and all the end of year tasks they have;
- Most industries are slowing down so there might not be enough work to keep the new employee(s) busy, they are not making the company any revenue but still require a salary;
- The industry might just be very slow during that time of year, in other industries like retail and restaurants it gets busier, so more opportunities arise.
What can you do as an employer?
- Refine and get any documentation for the position in order like the Job descriptions, Policies and Procedures, training documents etc.;
- Work out what the qualities you are looking for in an employee in that position are as well as the level of expertise you are looking for;
- Work out the salary range you are willing to pay and make sure it is within competitive standards (you can’t pay someone with 5 years’ experience the same as someone with 1 year);
- Be specific with the job description, if you want someone with experience, make sure your job requirements are not for an entry level position;
- If you have any candidates in mind, research them (their social media platforms) and follow up on references to make sure they might be a good fit for the company (do not contact their current work without their permission however);
- Network with any potential candidates you might be considering for the position.
What not to do?
- Don’t advertise jobs that are not real, they only drive real potential employees away as they will start believing your company is not legitimately looking for someone, which will drive more away – it messes with your employer and company brand;
- Don’t use the generic job descriptions, they should only be used as a base idea of what to add, make it personal so you give potential employees a clearer understanding of whether they are suited or not (eg. don’t post a job with generic reception work if it is for a medical receptionist, the duties and knowledge needed are quite different);
- Don’t leave the ads up if the position has been filled, it wastes more of your and interested candidates time for nothing in return.
What can you do as a potential employee?
- Apply for positions you are interested in but expect to wait long before hearing anything back;
- Research potential companies you would like to work at;
- Network with people at the companies you are interested in;
- Research the industry you are interested in to stay updated with any changes;
- Expand your knowledge within your field and industry, there are many free and paid short courses that can refresh your memory or teach you new things;
- Be patient, the right job will come when it should.
What not to do?
- Don’t apply for jobs you don’t really want;
- Don’t just scan the ads and apply but rather read carefully through the ads and job requirements to make sure you are suitable for the position; you won’t hear back, and it will only add to your own frustration. You might also miss some important details in just scanning so don’t mess up your own chance;
- With the state of our unemployment rate we cannot afford to lose a job without having another one lined up so make sure you can stick out until the new job is yours before handing in your notice.
Recruitment cycles change for different industries, but it should not discourage you from trying. It might just give you a heads up that you might wait a bit longer before getting a response.