Looking for a job is like its own full-time job. Whether you’re a recent graduate or a jaded 9-to-5er, job hunting sucks.
You might think the best time to look for a new job is after that last “f—k this place” day when nothing went right. Turns out, there might be a right day or even right time of day to reach out to hiring managers.
Look for a job at the end of the year.
While the rest of the hireables are buying gifts, baking for a cookie swap or heading to a friend’s place for some egg nog, you have the perfect opportunity to stand out.
For starters, there are fewer job seekers swimming in your pond, so you have a higher chance of becoming the big fish. And recruiters are getting hit up by fewer applicants so this is a great time of year to network your booty off, according to The Muse.
Companies also post a lot of jobs toward the end of the year. Since December is midway through the fiscal year, companies can typically estimate their budget surplus for the next six months. More money means more new hires.
The trick is to wait until the end of December, so you have a jump on everyone getting back to their desks after the new year starts, according to Career Sidekick.
"January usually starts slowly as people come back from holiday vacations but by the second week of the month, things are running smoothly. Once that happens, hiring pick[s] up pretty fast and lots of interviews start to happen," Biron Clark explained on Career Sidekick. "This is the time of year when the greatest number of decision-makers are in the office together, so you can get a 'Yes' much faster and start that new job you want!"
Don’t sleep on the spring or fall months, though. March, April and May can have momentum from the new year hires, but summer is the worst time to apply as decision-makers are often using PTO.
"Hiring happens in waves. Summer was slow, so the early fall speeds up. Especially as hiring managers return from vacation," Clark noted. "More interviews happen, and there’s less downtime and waiting. The hiring process is smoother overall and you can get from start to finish faster."
The day (and hour) matters when looking for a job.
Studies have shown that Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are the best days to apply for a job, according to LinkedIn; Monday to Hump Day are also the most popular days for job postings.
Previous data from Bright.com, now part of LinkedIn, found that out of more than half a million job submissions, one out of every three who applied on a Monday had more success.
Smart Recruiters suggests applying on Tuesdays between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Catching up on a mountain of email on a Monday morning can be brutal, so there’s a chance that whoever is looking at your CV will be less frazzled on Tuesdays.
"Tuesday seems to be the magic day for hiring success," Jason Buss explained on Smart Recruiter's blog. "As a job candidate, take the weekend to get your ducks in a row, update your resume, get your references lined up, and watch the job boards for new postings during the beginning of the week, specifically on Tuesdays. Then you’ll be ready to apply as soon as a new posting goes live."
Saturdays are the dead worst days when looking for a job, but if you have a few spare hours, it's a good day to work on a killer resume.
What time you email your resume matters, too. Most jobs are posted around 11 a.m., according to Smart Recruiters, and most applications come in around noon, but that early bird adage rings true.
Since you want to be faster than your competitor, the best time to send in your resume is first thing on Monday morning, so your application is on the top of the pile when the hiring manager checks his or her inbox.
"If you send your email at 4 p.m. or 5 p.m., as they’re getting ready to leave, there’s a good chance they’ll put it off and possibly forget about it. Or that they’ll be too busy to look," Clark explained.
Or maybe forget everything we just said about looking for a job.
What we’re saying is, after ensuring your cover letter has personality and your resume is polished, the most important factor is confidence. If you don’t apply for a job, you have a 100 percent chance of not getting hired.
According to LinkedIn’s July 2017 Workforce Report, this year has been a strong year for new hires and it hasn’t slowed down yet this summer.
“Hiring across the U.S. was 12.1 percent higher in June than in June 2016,” according to the job search site. “Hiring has been so hot, in fact, that May and June were the biggest months for hiring since the summer of 2015.”