Get The Best Out Of Your January Job Search
Is a January job search at the top of your new year’s resolution list?
Many IT professionals start the year by assessing their current skillset and thinking about how they can gain valuable new work experiences in the new year. For a number of IT professionals, identifying a new permanent or contract IT job in a new company is their no.1 priority!
So, if you’re hoping the phrase ‘new year new job’ rings true for you this year, continue reading to find out my key strategies to get the best out of your January job search.
Is a January job search a good idea?
Firstly, a new year job search is an ideal time to start applying for new roles. Why? Because many companies will still have a full budget allowance for hires! As the year goes on, the IT hiring manager’s budget might get tighter, or money may be redirected to different departments or projects. With a larger budget available to the hiring manager, you are more likely to have the scope for negotiating a higher salary.
Furthermore, whilst looking for a job in January, you will find that there are more vacancies available. This is due to companies refreshing their hiring strategies for the new year and having new projects that they need to resource for. For IT contractors, January offers the opportunity to identify contracts for new projects which could see them set up well for the rest of the year.
Remember, for companies, a new year is a new start too. They will be more motivated to drive their recruitment strategy during this month, in order to fulfil their plans for the year ahead!
Looking for a new job in January? Figure out what your goals are
Before undertaking a new job search, assess the direction you are looking to move your IT career in.
In true ‘new year new job’ spirit, there will be some people who want practical changes to their role – a higher salary, a better office location, more flexible hours – the list goes on. However, there are also individuals who go through a new year job search because they are looking to hone their experiences in order to take the next step in their career. This might include looking for a role to expand their skillset, or give them experience in an alternative sector, or gain a more technically demanding or managerial set of duties. Knowing what you want your next move to be, will give you a better idea of how you might get there and what you need to look for.
Update your LinkedIn and CV to optimise your IT job search
Before your first initial IT job search, check that your LinkedIn and CV are both up to date. You may be surprised but I have seen people start applying for a new job without updating their CV to include their current role. Recruiters are not mind readers!
By updating your LinkedIn in line with your CV, you ensure that any recruiter or employer who is initially impressed by your CV has the opportunity to look through your LinkedIn profile and see your experience, skillset, and personality in more detail before offering an interview. Creating an attractive LinkedIn profile and keeping it updated, is an important aspect of job hunting.
LinkedIn is a fantastic source for looking for a job in January. If you aren’t keen on publicly announcing you’re looking for work through the ‘Open to Work’ feature or via a post to your network, there are still some great uses for the platform. For instance, potential employers can view your profile to get a better sense of who you are beyond your CV. Furthermore, by adding keywords relevant to your skills on your profile, it is more likely that you will come up to employers or recruiters searching for a certain skillset.
However, if you’re happy to post that you are ‘open to work’ and are going through a new year job search, this is where previously building up your list of connections can be particularly handy. Perhaps someone in your network knows of an opportunity that will suit your skillset, or they repost your announcement, and someone in their network is looking for someone with your type of experience.
While updating your LinkedIn and CV alone may not find you work, it can be a great tool in your arsenal and open up opportunities you might not know of.
Get in touch with an IT recruitment agency
I know – this is probably the suggestion you will be expecting to hear from us, an IT recruitment agency. However, we can help you with your new year new job goals!
We have our fingers on the pulse of current market trends to give you a complete view of what employers are looking for and expecting. If you have specific requirements, such as remote working or flexible hours, our team will be able to advise on employers who are willing to offer these sorts of benefits and can negotiate the terms if needed.
If you are looking for a job in January, you will find that recruiters tend to have a higher supply of jobs in this month. Partly due to recruitment processes being paused over the Christmas period, but also because more companies actively look to hire in January to fill roles for new projects for the year ahead.
Find companies that match your values and the environment you’re looking for
Don’t get caught up in the new year new job approach so much so that you rush to accept the first job you are offered. Take your time to research companies that match your values. Before you apply for a role, check out the company’s social media, their website and see if this is a company you would like to work for.
As part of your new year job search, consider what your goals are and why are you leaving your current or most recent role. Are you looking for a company that can offer you more suitable benefits, or better career progression?
The recruitment process can be long and stressful, you don’t want to find yourself in a position where you must repeat the process again in 6 or 12 months because the company isn’t a good fit.
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