4 ways to stay in the job search during the holidays

The holidays are upon us, and with that comes a (well-deserved) sense of entitlement to a time of peace, tranquility, and family. While things may look quite different this year than many others in the past, we know that with a little work-life balance — and a little portfolio attention — your holidays will be merry and bright.

Many of you have been on the job hunt recently, which is fantastic since autumn holds the final hiring spree of the year for many companies. We see an increased number of new jobs go to post during this time of year, a trend that is mirrored in the early spring months as well, with the rollout of the year’s newly approved or updated budget. Take advantage of this hiring frenzy – and the many benefits that go along with holiday applications – with a few key ideas. After all, incorporating just a couple of ideas can make your holiday relaxation time feel productive and yield some amazing results.

1. Create or refresh your portfolio

For those of you who have not ventured into the digital portfolio world yet, it might be time to do so. Being able to demonstrate your own digital skills can’t hurt, plus being able to share information about projects, companies, and additional work opportunities you’ve had in the past will help you to stand out in the hiring process. Making it interactive can be super fun, and these ideas should help you to create the perfect digital resume or Executive Portfolio. This facet of your job search might be a little more time-consuming than the rest but will pay off massively when you can use it to show hiring managers what a dedicated candidate you are.

Getting another set of eyes could be key to your productivity this holiday season, especially with so many writers and hiring managers working in a different capacity or environment than this time last year. Consider hiring someone to do a professional portfolio review for you, so that your rose-colored glasses don’t get in the way of the impression you’re actually making on a potential employer.

2. Network over holiday events

While most of our holiday events are going digital this year, there will still be plenty of opportunities to gather in a digital space and celebrate our blessings. If you do not have a particular holiday situation that will allow you to interact with other job-seekers, business owners, and mentors, you aren’t alone. Meandering around sites like Meetup.com, searching for a location or interest-specific Facebook Groups in the Facebook search function, and catching up with an old friend over the phone are all perfect circumstances to look for advice and inspiration in new and interesting spaces.

If you do have access to an opportunity where you can speak with someone in your field or who is employed at your ideal company, the holidays are a time to enjoy yourselves and bond over shared experiences. Nurture these relationships, casually let them know you are looking for work after establishing rapport, and who knows where your talent could take you?

3. Update your social media accounts (appropriately)

The hiring manager at that new firm you just applied to might not be too keen on drunken selfies all over your Facebook page. But, if you share holiday memories on your social media – or other wholesome or inspirational content, of course – they will have digital content by which to assess your abilities as a public-facing persona. (Or – for people in lines of work that involve marketing or digital content – by which to assess your content creation skills.)

4. Subscribe to a few of your favorite professional resources

Every day, our inboxes are bombarded with emails. Some of them are appreciated, acknowledged, read even, however finding a couple of industry experts or dream companies that provide continuing education and free resources can be a fun and easy way to keep your head (kind of) in the game during the holidays. Make sure that the content you’re subscribing to and for is relevant to your career goals, and delete a few subscriptions in your inbox while you’re at it. You’ll feel better.