Every year, January is touted as the perfect time to start job searching. It’s a month synonymous with new beginnings, setting new goals, and making change. But is January actually the best time to look for a new job? Let’s explore what you should consider when planning a career move in the new year.
Don’t rush into anything
It can be tempting to jump on any opportunity that comes your way at the beginning of the year. Keep in mind, though, that it’s important not to rush into anything that doesn’t perfectly fit your needs and career goals. Always take the time to evaluate every job opportunity, identify how it can build on your strengths, and research what the company culture is like. Make sure that any job opening you apply for aligns with your values and requirements—especially if you plan on taking a long-term role. This might mean that you find your perfect job a month or two later in the year, but it’s worth waiting that little bit longer to ensure the role is the right fit for your needs and aspirations.
Flexibility is important
A critical aspect of your job search is ensuring the new role fits your lifestyle and desired working schedule. This means that you should look for a role that can offer the flexibility you want – be that remote or hybrid working, job sharing, or one of the many other types of flexible working arrangements available. Take your time during your job search to assess which aspect of flexibility matters most to you, and search accordingly.
Make a plan and prepare
But what if you’re absolutely sure that you’d like to start looking for a new role in January? That’s great, but it’s essential to make sure you’re doing it in a smart and strategic way. Competition for the best roles is fierce, so you must create a plan of action to help guide your search:
- Before even applying for a role or attending any interviews or meetings with hirers or recruiters, take time to understand your own value and what achievements you bring to the table.
- Write a strong CV and cover letter that clearly communicates your value. You can read our advice on how to craft a standout CV here.
- Update your LinkedIn profile and establish your online presence.
- Identify target companies you would be interested in working for and research them.
- Establish a relationship with a trusted recruitment partner who can help you on your career journey.
It can be tempting to hire someone just because it’s January and you want “fresh blood onboard.” However, this isn’t advisable, particularly since hiring can be costly and time-consuming. Therefore, it’s essential to evaluate whether the start of the year is really the right time to make a hire for your organisation. Try answering the following:
- Does hiring for this particular role fit in with our overall business plan and our specific plans for Q1?
- Will this open position help us achieve our target growth this year?
- Do we have the capacity in our annual budget to make this hire?
By evaluating your hiring needs, you’re more likely to make an informed decision that can save you money and time in the long run.
Plan for success
January may seem like the ideal time to recruit or start a new role, and for some it is, but both candidates and employers should approach it strategically and without haste. For candidates, don’t rush into applying for or accepting positions that don’t match your goals or needs; instead, take some time to assess what kind of career move would be best for you, and the flexibility you want to have in your new role, before you start your search in earnest. Meanwhile, employers shouldn’t just hire someone because it’s a new year – you should make sure they fit into your business plans first and foremost!
With these considerations in mind, I hope everyone has an enjoyable and prosperous start to 2023 – and if you decide next year that you’d like to switch careers or hire flexible talent for your organisation (whenever that may be), feel free to get in touch.
If you haven’t done so already, please subscribe and comment below to let me know your thoughts – do you agree with the mantra ‘new year, new job’?