The Gift That Keeps Giving All Year: Why the Holidays Are a Perfect Time to Recruit Talent

In December 2021, the current unemployment rate hovered around 4.2%. The Great Resignation is not helping companies either as many people are looking for a change. 
Many candidates capitalize on the holiday break to get ready for their New Year resolutions. This is only one reason recruiters, hiring managers, human resources, and companies should capitalize on this time to recruit talent. 
Keep reading to discover some of the main reasons why the holiday season is the perfect time for recruiters to find top talent. 
New Year Resolution/Goals
The best candidates are constantly assessing their journey and career goals, deciding where they want to go next. The end of the year is a time for reflection and preparing for the next chapter. 
This is why many job seekers will start assessing how their year went and if they want to transition into a new job to reach their goals. The most proactive candidates won’t wait until the start of the new year to search for open jobs; they’ll start looking before the year is over. 
This is great for employers looking for qualities like focus, commitment, and motivation in an employee. Looking for a job before the start of the new year shows that that candidate is a professional and will do whatever they need to achieve their goals. 
Even if appropriate candidates aren’t actively looking, now is the perfect time to turn a passive candidate into an active job seeker. Many people reflect on their year, and they may realize that they aren’t satisfied with their current job. 
The end of the year is the perfect opportunity to catch their attention and recruit them for your company. 
Another passive candidate you might be able to recruit is those who have been unemployed and aren’t motivated to find a new job. These candidates might find the motivation to find a new job when everyone else is making plans and setting goals. 
Preparation for Next Year’s Demand for Top Talent
If you want to get ahead of the game in Q1, you need to prepare and plan in quarter four. That means recruiting the right talent over the holidays. 
Since most companies stop their hiring efforts until after the start of the new year, you’ll be ahead of the competition! All your new employees will be able to hit the ground running at the beginning of the new year, while your competitors are still struggling to recruit qualified candidates.
Hiring employees in Q4 may also benefit them and the company. Since the holiday season tends to be slower, this will give your new employee a chance to learn about the company and their role in the larger picture. 
When employees are hired in Q1 (for comparison), this usually tends to be a busier time, and it can feel overwhelming for the new hires. If they don’t have the proper onboarding and training, they may not perform to their potential.
Access to Fresh Graduates
In early December, many college students graduate. With many of them fresh out of school, they’re looking for new places to start working as soon as possible.
College graduates are perfect employees to hire and train to be long-lasting employees. They usually look for job opportunities to apply all the new skills they just learned while also learning new skills.
They’re also great hires who can bring a new perspective to your company. 
Candidates Have Time to Search and Interview
With some companies giving employees a break from work for the holidays, many candidates will use that time to start searching for a new job and scheduling job interviews.
If a candidate is determined, they’ll work through the holidays to find their dream job. And with the Great Resignation, many people are taking advantage of the candidates’ job market and looking. 
Plus, with many people having time off, it’s much easier to schedule interviews. Their availability will be more flexible since they won’t have to work with their current schedule. 
If you wait to start the interview process until after the holidays, you could be missing out on some great and motivated candidates.
Less Competition
Some companies can’t hire at the end of the year because they don’t have anything left over in their budget at the end of the year. This will force companies to limit how many people they recruit or interview. In fact, one survey says that only 43% of companies say that they plan to make a permanent hire in Q4.
However, if you still have some money left over, now is the perfect time to beat out some of the competition and reach out to those great candidates searching. Plus, with how competitive the market is, you should take advantage of any opportunity to win top talent. 
Most staffing or recruitment agencies also don’t work as much during this time. This is why it’s the perfect month for you to reach out to these candidates and hire them before the start of the new year. 
Not Everyone Celebrates the Holidays
If you’re a company that is entirely remote or has offices worldwide, keep in mind that not everyone celebrates the holiday season. You should never assume that candidates won’t be interested in a new job opportunity because they may be celebrating a holiday.
The world is diverse with all kinds of beliefs, religions, and cultures. For example, Christmas is just an ordinary business day in some countries, and most schools and businesses will still be operating. 
Even if you’re hiring in the United States, the country has so many diverse candidates that you never know who will be looking for new jobs. You can take advantage of this and reach out to candidates when most companies aren’t!
Flexible Start Dates
When HR professionals hire in December or around the holidays, you can negotiate a flexible start date. Most people you interview will probably expect to start after the holidays or at the beginning of the new year.
If you’re recruiting for a position that isn’t open yet, you won’t have to rush to ensure there is no overlap. You can easily plan to have one person leave before the holidays and then have the new candidate pick up right where they left off. 
Now you don’t have to pay two salaries for the same position, and you also don’t have to lose any time in between.
It’s also easier to schedule interviews. Usually, there are fewer conferences, business travel, or meetings that talent acquisition specialists, hiring managers, or recruiters have to attend in December. This means that they’re free to interview candidates.
Candidates find it easier to schedule interviews during the holidays too. If they currently have a job, they don’t have to make up some excuse for their employer to jump on an interview call. The candidate will have more time to schedule an interview, and you can move the recruiting process along faster than average.