Here Comes the Sun: Why Summer is Prime Time to Job Search
July 26, 2022
Summer – a season that has a magical, unreal quality to it. There’s something about this time of year that seems to make all of our problems melt away. Summertime feels like one giant national holiday; the one time each year that the sun returns for its annual headlining act, brightening up the dull UK skies.
It’s an intoxicating season filled with sunshine and social events. Work slows down to a grinding halt: rushed meal-deal lunches at your desk are turned in for sun-soaked picnics in the park with colleagues; instead of working overtime, you clock-off on Fridays at lunch for a pint or two in a beer garden; rather than wistfully wishing away the day whilst chained to your office desk, you’re cramming your calendar full to the brim with dreamy holidays abroad.
It’s easy to see how summer makes it easy to forget your problems. Granted, you may be unhappy with your job. But your discontentment becomes a faint memory when the sun is beating down and your diary is chock-a-block with distractions. As much as you may hate your current role, it’s easy to ignore any glaring problems and paper over the cracks whilst summer reigns.
You decide to put your job search on hold, waiting for the same work-related issues to inevitably rear their ugly head again. You think to yourself: just leave it until autumn, summer isn’t the time to look for a new job anyway.
But is this really true? Is the summer job market an arid desert void of prospects? Or is it a treasure trove of hidden opportunity? Read on to find out about the underestimated benefits to continuing your job search into the summer months.
Avoiding High Season
The worst part of any summer holiday, by a country mile, is having to wake up at 6am every morning, armed with a beach towel, and joining a swarm of other tourists in their mad rush towards the hotel pool, in a bid to claim your plot on a sun lounger for the day.
Well, this is one of the worst parts of a job search, too. The feeling of being one amongst many, all desperately pursuing the same goal. But when it’s high season at the resort, there aren’t enough loungers for everyone. Likewise, when hiring is at it’s peak, there’s far more competition for the roles that are out there. And thus, the greater the chance you’ll be left empty-handed.
It’s true that most companies follow a particular recruiting cycle, and the first quarter of the year is particularly fruitful for job seekers because companies have new budgets for hiring. However that doesn’t mean that hiring comes to a standstill in the summer months. It’s not like hiring managers pack up their desks and call it a day until September 1st. The recruitment cycle may have its ebbs and flows, but it never sleeps.
Get ahead of the competition by getting into your job search in the summertime. Don’t buy into the age-old myth that no companies hire during the summer months; there are opportunities out there, you may just have to work a little harder to find them. And no doubt, employers will admire your tenacity and commitment if you spend your summer hunting for the role that is right for you.
The fewer competitors you have to contend with, the better. Although there may be more opportunities at other times of the year during peak hiring months, there are far more people pursuing those opportunities, putting you at a disadvantage from the get-go. The job market becomes oversaturated with an influx of talented candidates, so don’t let yourself fall to the back of the queue.
Hiring managers are less busy
Don’t let yourself be put off by the prospect of a slow summer hiring process. True, summer isn’t a peak season for hiring, and this might slow things down. But this is both a blessing and a curse.
Granted, you’ll probably have to contend with a few out-of-office emails from hiring managers, or wait a while between different interview stages. This is part and parcel of a summer job search; people are away from their desks more often, so this is likely to affect your job search. However, whilst it can be frustrating to be left in the lurch during the hiring process, you have to remain vigilant. Take the initiative to gently nudge any hiring managers you may be expecting communication from, or ask your recruiter to maintain that sense of urgency.
However, hiring managers taking their time to reply in the summer months isn’t necessarily the worst thing. One of the great things about applying for a new job in summer is being able to avoid the mad rush that comes with a peak season job search. If the communication is slower, it gives you a chance to breathe, prepare, and gather your thoughts; you won’t become all-consumed in the stressful whirlwind of high season job hunting. This is actually beneficial for your mental health, and means that you can engage in a job search whilst still enjoying the slow serenity of the summertime.
Hiring managers are significantly less busy during summer. Sure, they may take the opportunity to make use of their holiday days, but they don’t shut down completely. Because they’re not drowning in a sea of resumes and applications, they’ll have more time to promptly review your CV, taking more time to read it. You may even hear back from them quicker, as they’ll have less applications to sift through. Your CV won’t be left in a growing pile gathering dust for weeks (or months!) on end.
More time on your hands
Summertime affords you a golden ticket when it comes to taking time off work for interviews and networking. Whether it’s your Friday afternoon early finish or your vacation days, you have a supply of free time so that you can juggle your commitments without taking too much time off work. There’s no need to fall back on the universal excuse that’s been used since time immemorial: a dentist appointment. The novelty of this excuse wears off pretty quickly, and you’re sure to raise a few eyebrows when you take time off for your sixth follow-up appointment…
Work usually slows down in the summer months, so if you do decide to job search, you’ll most likely find the experience less stressful. You won’t be juggling a full work schedule with the added pressure of interviews and networking. You can take more time off without your absence being too strongly felt, meaning you don’t have to become enmeshed in a snare of lies and excuses.
And when it comes to networking, the great thing about summer is that everyone else most likely has more time on their hands, too. When the sun is shining, it’s a mood booster. People are often keener to meet in summer, whether that be for a walk in the park or a post-work drink in the sunshine. It’s prime time for networking; there’s nothing quite like the buzz in the air at summertime. People come out of their shells and metamorphosise into social butterflies. Seize this opportunity to network to broaden your horizons and remain in the loop about career opportunities.
July 13, 2022