December is a great month to start thinking about kick-starting your job search ready for the New Year. Most people assume December is too quiet a month to progress with their job search but there is plenty you can do to set yourself apart from the competition and take full advantage of the festive spirit!
New Year resolutions – what did you want to achieve in 2016? Take the time to re-evaluate your career. Are you moving the right direction? If the answer is no, think about what you need to do to ensure you achieve your goals in 2017. Why are you looking for a new job, do you just need a new challenge or take on more responsibilities? Do you need further training? Do you lack certain skills? How will you overcome this? Be proactive and set yourself Specific Measureable Achievable Realistic Timely goals and put them on your 2017 planner so you know what you need to do and by when. Tick them off when you have and reward yourself each time you achieve each goal.
What better way to take advantage of the holiday spirit than by networking? Networking doesn’t have to mean breakfast meetings and business lunches, anyone who you come into contact with may help you in securing an exciting job opportunity. Friends and family may have connections you never knew about so attend those family get-togethers and accept Christmas invites to any functions that will put you in touch with professionals –you never know who or what it could lead to.
Dust off your CV and update it– If you haven’t updated your CV for years – do it now! Who knows what 2017 may bring so when you see a fantastic opportunity with a short deadline, you can use your time to tailor it to meet the exact requirements rather than rushing to put one together. After all of the networking you have done in December, make sure you take the time to follow up by connecting on LinkedIn or sending an email and keeping in touch! If they your CV you will be immediately have a strong copy including relevant achievements to send on.
Get back in touch with recruitment agencies and send on your updated CV. If they have been working with you over the last few months, make them feel appreciated and send them a Christmas card or wish them a happy New Year if you are wishing to reconnect. Building relationships is crucial if you want agencies to work with you in your job search. There may be less jobs to fill over this period so they may have more time to speak with you and consider you for upcoming vacancies in the New Year.
Research your future employer – now is the time to think about the organisations you have always dreamed of working for – who are they and how do they recruit? Follow them on LinkedIn and Twitter so you are first to hear about potential recruitment opportunities. Can you send them a copy of your CV with a tailored cover letter telling them how you could make a difference to their company in 2017? Have it ready to send in January when the focus is less on Christmas and more on business.
Update and improve your LinkedIn profile. Has your LinkedIn account laid dormant over the past year? If so, now is the time to update your profile, join more relevant groups and make a New Year’s resolution to yourself to become more active in the discussion – not only will you be seen as an expert, but those looking for new talent in 2017 will be drawn to your profile so make sure your achievements and successes are evident.
Ask for LinkedIn recommendations now whilst everyone’s feeling festive. Recommendations are a great way to showcase your credibility and profile to potential future employers. Also update your skills to ensure that you use key words relevant to your areas of expertise which should result in more exposure as your profile appears in more searches.
Look at what LinkedIn recommends for you. Most people don’t make full use of LinkedIn suggestions, so look at those jobs of interest, groups to join, companies to follow and build up your network. Connect with more people but remember to keep the connections relevant and useful.
Most importantly set time aside to refresh and recharge your batteries – 2017 could be an exciting new year for you and your career!
Renovo is one of the UK’s leading providers of outplacement and career transition support. We work with both organisations and individuals to support all their career transition requirements. If you would like to understand how Renovo can help you please call 0800 612 2011 or email firstname.lastname@example.org