Why Your IT Department Should Consider Hiring in December

Person on laptop after deciding that hiring in december will be beneficial for their business

You might be wondering whether hiring in December for your IT department is worth it, or if you should hold off until the new year. With the understanding that recruiting slows in December due to businesses quietening down for Christmas, many professionals in a position to hire choose to rule out recruiting until the new year.

In reality, you should view hiring in December as a golden opportunity. Take the right steps in December and give your business a significant advantage for the year ahead.

As a recruiter with over 12 years of experience, I have facilitated many key hires in December for companies who choose to take advantage of the season and secure professionals.

Here are 8 of my top reasons why hiring in December is a brilliant decision to make!

Lack of competition

It is true – many companies do tone down their recruiting in December. They move recruitment down their list of priorities, even though there are lots of professionals looking for roles.

With 77% of employers reporting finding it difficult to hire, December gives you the perfect opportunity to get in front of your competition and secure the best talent from right under their noses! This period doesn’t last long though. January 2023 saw job adverts increase by 24.5% in the first week of January. So, my advice is to hire in December before the new year rush.

Increased attention from recruitment agencies

With your competition deprioritising hiring in December, you have the opportunity to receive further support from the recruitment agencies you usually partner with. They will likely have fewer vacancies on the go. Consequently, there will likely be more hours available to dedicate to helping you find your perfect hire.

More time available for interviews

With team members taking annual leave and new projects not kicking off until the new year, you might find you have more time to dedicate to other priorities, like internal recruitment. Hiring during busy times of the year might be a necessity, but it can result in a lengthy recruitment process that can leave candidates feeling disengaged and choosing to work for one of your competitors instead. In fact, in a recent report, around 60% of job seekers stated that they were unimpressed by drawn-out recruitment processes.

Hiring in December and other slower work months can make your recruitment process quicker and more efficient. Your hiring managers can dedicate more time to the process, whether that’s reviewing CVs, speaking with recruitment agencies, conducting interviews, or making hiring decisions.

Additionally, from a candidate’s point of view, December can be an easier time of the year to take annual leave or move things around to attend interviews with you!

Leftover budget

With many IT departments receiving renewed budgets in January or April each year, I have found it common for companies to invest in talent over this period. You might find that your department is coming in under budget. Although this is certainly not a bad problem to have, you might worry about underspending and risking receiving a smaller budget in the following year. Therefore, you might choose to use this leftover budget to secure a permanent hire who will help kick-start your new year, or secure some short-term niche specialists to support your projects.

Many companies using IT contractors choose to get ‘more hands on deck’ in November and December to fast-track projects to get them over the line before the end of the year.

Team bonding

With the run down to Christmas, December normally gives more opportunities for new starters to get involved in work socials and parties. This can make it an ideal time to onboard new hires, as they’ll have more opportunities than normal to meet their coworkers and get comfortable with their peers. Team events can show the best of your business, with increased potential for employee engagement.

Furthermore, with projects toning down in December, you might find people in your team have more time to dedicate to helping new starters integrate. Feeling part of the team is vital to retention and employee satisfaction.

Many workers don’t stop for Christmas

Whilst some professionals may postpone looking for and starting a new role until January to ensure they get a proper break to spend time with friends and family, this won’t be relevant to everyone. I’ve known many IT professionals who are happy to work over the Christmas period for a variety of reasons. Furthermore, for many IT contractors, if their contracts end in November/ December, they will be back on the wagon looking for their next role.

Additionally, if the project you need your contractor or employee for starts in January, you run the risk of slowing the project by delaying hiring. Just because you don’t want a new team member until the new year, doesn’t mean that you can’t recruit for, interview, and secure an individual ready to start in the new year.

New graduates entering the market

In December, there is often an influx of graduates eager to start work. Most postgraduate degrees run for 52 weeks of the year, graduating in the first few weeks of December. Hiring in December, during a time of lower competition, will mean you will get better access to the new graduate talent entering the workplace.

Emergencies

Issues arise at all times of the year. Emergencies can’t be delayed just because it is Christmas. Just before Christmas one year, one of my colleague’s customers needed urgent support after suffering a cyber attack at one of their sites. Within the same day, they were able to find and secure a contractor, ready to start immediately to fix the issue. This can happen on any day of the year, so it is a good idea to be prepared that you might need to hire IT contractors in December.

 

If you are considering hiring in December, click here to contact our consultants. If you do have any emergencies over the Christmas period and need help securing an IT professional, we will be contactable and available to help.

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