Summer’s upon us—that laid-back time of the year when schools close, offices empty out and people head to the beaches.
So it’s also a great time to suspend your job search, right?
Not according to Winter, Wyman, a Boston-based staffing firm. Winter, Wyman recently put out a list of job hunting tips that challenge the long-standing myth about scaling back your job search efforts during the summer.
That myth ranks up there with the one that says a resume should only be one page, Patty Coffey, a partner at Winter, Wyman, tells eFinancialCareers.
Although the pace is much slower during the summer, Coffey says it could still be a great season to land a job.
Here are five reasons why you should keep job hunting in the summer:
1. Summer is a slower season for some industries.
The slow pace of the season actually frees up more time for some companies to interview candidates in the summer. This is particularly true for accounting firms, which are busiest in the winter and early spring.
2. The hiring continues.
Companies still have human resources needs during the slowest period of the year. Workers quit or get fired; companies review their budgets and strategic plans calling for additional staffing get launched.
“The number of jobs just doesn’t nosedive in June. If there are people out there who believe in the summer myth, you shouldn’t be one of them because you should be out there looking and that would mean less competition for you,” says Coffey.
“Even if they know they want you, it takes several weeks to get you on board,” Penny Locey, a vice president at Keystone Associates, a Boston-based career management company, tells eFinancialCareers. “If you want to be employed in September or October, you’d better be networking in June or July if you hope to get hired then.”
3. Contract-to-hire positions are abundant.
Many companies hire contract workers during the summer months as fill-ins for regular employees who take long leaves of absence. Sometimes these opportunities turn into permanent jobs.
4. Getting out of the office is much easier.
If you do have a job, summer is also a great time to look. It’s easier to get vacation days approved and your bosses and co-workers are less likely to suspect you’re job hunting when you take a day or two here and there—or even a whole week.
“A lot of times in the summer, people take more time off and people don’t question it as much,” says Coffey. “It tends to raise less eyebrows.”
5. Unexpected networking opportunities can pop up.
Networking is a critical part of your job search. And it’s much easier to meet people during the summer. Take advantage of golf outings, barbecues, block parties and neighborhood get-togethers to broaden your professional network.
“It’s a great time for networking because individuals who are working tend to be more generous of spirit in the summer and often more willing and able to network with you,” says Locey. “Have a networking card available on you. It should have your name, some kind of title and two or three things that would help someone remember you.”