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 Plan Ahead…Start Your Search Now!

By Joe Stein

 
It is hard to avoid the signs. They are all around us. I am not talking about the flashing electronic signs that seem to have sprouted everywhere, but instead the sign that your job search should be on. And when I state it should be on, I don’t mean in the fall, but rather right now.
 
If you are someone who needs statistics, how about this? In May, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that job vacancies have hit a 14-year high.    According to their study, employers advertised 5.4 million openings that month (and no, WNYJOBS.com did not have all of these ads, it only seemed like it since there are so many pages of openings each week in the paper). 
 
Still need more proof? This same Bureau of Labor Statistics also announced that the level of worker voluntary “quits” has reached its highest rate since 2008. What does this mean? People are quitting their jobs for better ones! So why then are you sitting this phenomenon out…because it is summer?
 
Yes, I know the excuses are plentiful. They range from there is so much to do in WNY during the summer, all the way to no one hires this time of year. While I can’t dispute the nice weather and the number of activities, I can tell you that employers do hire in the summer. The process may take a little longer, due to people on vacation, but openings are being filled.
 
Starting your search now makes sense for a number of reasons.
 
·         #1 – Openings are High! – As stated above, the vacancies are there. If you are currently employed, take advantage of the situation and look to see what is out there. There are pages of new positions being advertised in WNYJOBS.com every week.
 
·         #2 – Others are Waiting - If you are unemployed, jump in now and get a head start while some of your competition may mistakenly decide to “take the summer off”. This will give you first crack at some of these positions, while also allowing you to avoid any “stigma” associated with taking the summer off from a job search. If you are currently unemployed, most Hiring Managers are not going to want to hear (in the fall) how you took a few months off to relax (especially while they were working!)
 
·         #3 – Getting Hired Takes Time! – If you are seeking anything more than an entry-level position, the process will probably take you several weeks to months of time. This will lead you right into the Fall time period. If you wait until September, then you are probably looking at not starting your new job until early winter. Most likely that was not what you had in mind by delaying your search.
 
·         #4 How Long Does It Really Take? – Now you can easily make your job search a full-time job and if you are unemployed, it should be. This, however, still would leave you plenty of time for enjoying the sun. If you are currently employed, just be disciplined about your job search time. Schedule a few times a week, an hour or two, to go over postings and submit for those of interest. By limiting yourself in this way, you can continue to move forward your job search while, at the same time, not consuming your entire summer.
 
·         #5 – Summer is Great Networking Time – Outside of the December holiday season, there is no better time to network, especially face-to-face. You are running into people you know constantly over the summer at events, reunions, etc. Let folks who may be able to help you know that you are on the market (or would be for the right position). The leads you generate now may pay real dividends in a couple of months. 
 
·         #6 – No Summer Off-Season Anymore – Many years ago the summer was a down period for job openings. Manufacturing was the predominant industry in the area and many facilities went into a shutdown mode for a portion of the season. While vacations are still heavier during the summer, there really is no difference in philosophy towards filling positions compared to another time of the year.
 
The Summer season is so beautiful in Western New York that it is very tempting to put other responsibilities aside and focus on enjoying it. This can be exactly the wrong thing to do when it pertains to your job search. This time of year not only can be perfect for finding that job you have been seeking, but also may place you in the perfect position for the fall.
 
As always, best of luck in your job search!