This time of year, it can be tempting to slow things down. Who wants to start something new when you’re busy with holiday parties, gift shopping and feasting on decadent food? However, if you are thinking of looking for a new job next year, the best time to make a game plan is now. With the right strategy in place, you’ll find a great new career in the New Year.

Make Your Wish List (And Check It Twice)

Instead of adding items to your Amazon Wish List, take some time to create a wish list for your next job. Think about the job title(s) you want to go after and the types of companies you’d like to target.  Conduct thorough research to create a profile for your ideal position. This will keep you from haphazardly applying to every posting you see come January.

Once you’ve got your wish list created, set yourself up to be an organized searcher. Invest in a calendar, either paper or digital, to write down your goals for each week and track the companies you’ve applied to, the networking events you’ll attend, your interviews and your follow-up.

Work Your Network

Browsing online listings and hoping your ideal job will find you puts you on the fast track to Frustration City. Take this time to reach out to the connections in your network. You can reach out via email and LinkedIn, but if you want to make a splash, send your connections a holiday greeting card. Differentiate yourself by purchasing “Happy New Year” cards and sending them after Christmas so your note doesn’t get lost in piles of other holiday cards.

Use the weeks before January to investigate networking events in the coming weeks. Most organizations host holiday parties and fundraisers, and they are a great place to meet new people. While searching events, visit your target companies’ websites to see if they are hosting any holiday open houses. This is a great way to do a little bit of “recon” work and learn about the culture, hear about upcoming openings and mingle with employees.

Improve Your Chances Of Finding Your Ideal Job

Job searches can be long and drawn out processes that lead to frustration. They can also lead to situations where you make the wrong choice when you receive an offer. Fortunately, there is a way to accelerate your search and increase the odds that you’ll end up with your ideal job.

A professional recruiter works diligently to make strong matches between their client companies and the candidates they work with. They get to know you, your skills and your goals so that they can recommend you for jobs you will like at companies you’d actually want to work for. They also regularly recruit for jobs that have not been posted to the public, which makes you a job-search insider.

If you truly want to accelerate your job search in 2017, don’t wait for January. Reach out to the expert recruiters at Systems Personnel today.

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