According to a new report, the U.S. added more jobs than expected in November, leaving a historically low unemployment rate of 3.5%.
There’s still a relatively high percentage of people who are not employed but also not looking for a job, and job and wage growth have slowed overall in 2019.
But the trends are turning more positive, and job hunters have reason to be optimistic.
This December is a good time to plan next year’s financial goals, and also to hunt for a new job that will enable those goals.
It’s a good time of year for seasonal and temporary jobs. Retailers aren’t the only ones who hire seasonal workers. It’s a good time to look for consulting and contract work with nonprofits running year end fundraising campaigns, businesses compiling year end reports or meeting final training requirements and clients looking to wrap projects up by the end of the year. Consulting opportunities are a good way to make some extra holiday cash, but also have the potential to turn into full-time jobs or recommendations.
Networking opportunities abound. Take advantage of those business, association and community holiday parties to build and solidify your network. Holiday parties are a great time to make acquaintances that could open up mutual opportunities. They’re not a good time for a hard sell or pitch, but rather sharing a festive mood and making genuine connections.
December openings are often more time sensitive. Recruiters are in a rush to fill this year’s openings. Budgets need to be spent. Year-end goals need to be met. End-of-the-year pressure means job openings listed in December are likely more urgent and important than those at other times of the year, making them more promising to job hunters.
Businesses are making 2020 plans. Managers everywhere are thinking about their goals for the next year, planning new projects and figuring out what they’ll need to be successful. Often, that means they’re looking to add new or different skills to their teams through hiring. They want to hit the ground running in January.
You’ll have less competition. Many job hunters take a (much-needed and well-deserved) break from applying around the holidays. It’s a busy season but that opens the door to landing your resume on the top of the stack. Rather than waiting to sit down and polish your resume in January, put the time in this month to set yourself up for success, either with a new job on January 1 or a polished resume and researched plan to being applying in earnest.