The first working Monday of the year is considered to be the busiest, with around a million people looking for a new job in the first week alone, according to Reed. But it’s not just employees searching – companies also get ready for the new influx of prospective CVs from new talent landing on their desks in January.

Research from job search platforms, such as Indeed, Reed and Monster, all agree that the search for new roles significantly increases in January. December is traditionally the time when people reflect upon their work life, whether they’re happy with their employer, as well as the impact of their work on their family life.

Once you’ve made the decision to move to, hopefully, a better and more fulfilling role, there is the potential that the job hunt itself can become all consuming, taking up a large amount of time and potentially rendering your search less effective. So, how do you prevent this happening? How do you make sure that your job search doesn’t become a full-time job?

Review your CV and job application letter

Before you start applying for jobs, take some time to review and update your CV. Your CV needs to include the basics, such as your personal details, education, training and work experience, employment history and references. It’s also good practice to add any achievements, such as any other languages you may speak, your interests outside of work, and an objective statement that summarises your key abilities and where you wish your career path to go. Also consider your job application letter and have a standard version prepared, but be prepared to adjust this according to the role you’re applying for.

Register your CV on job sites

There are a multitude of job platforms to choose from and you could register with as many as you like, but employers will often use more than one job site and you could be inundated with repetitive jobs. Take some time to research the job sites that are more applicable to the roles you’re looking for.

Once you’ve decided which job sites you’re going to use, reduce the time-consuming effort of continually looking for jobs by registering your CV on the job site. This allows potential employers to find your CV and approach you, saving you a lot of time and effort in searching for your next role.

Utilise social media platforms

Employers are advertising jobs on social media platforms far more, some choosing them over traditional job sites and recruitment agencies. For example, LinkedIn, the business-to-business social media site, has a dedicated recruitment section. As most people spend time on social media platforms on a daily basis, incorporate your job search into your normal daily social media activity. You can also set up a LinkedIn job alert so the platform will notify you when a job that matches your requirements is posted.

However, before you set up the alert, update your social media profiles to ensure they’re professional.

Networking

One of the best ways to hear about potential jobs is through family and friends, particularly if they work for a company you’re interested in working for. They’re more likely to hear of potential new roles before they’re posted on job sites or social media platforms.

Target companies

Are there any companies out there that you particularly want to work for? Most people who are looking for new roles within the accountancy and IT sectors have a list of companies that they’d really like to be a part of, that they believe can offer them their desired career opportunities. Whether your requirements are job satisfaction, employee benefits, company ethics or something else, list the companies that you’re interested in and target them directly. Find out the name of their head of HR – it always creates a good first impression if you’ve taken the time to do your research – and compose a prospective letter to send them with your CV.

Schedule your time

Get organised and schedule set times of the day, or evening, to review your job notifications or search for jobs. By setting aside specific times to focus on your job search, you will not only save time but also reduce the impact of job searching on your existing work and family life. Take advantage of ‘windows of opportunity’ to job search, such as commuting to and from work, during lunch breaks, or maybe get up an hour earlier in the morning and dedicate some time then to looking for a new job.

Resist the urge to apply for every role

It’s very tempting to apply for a role even if it doesn’t totally match what you’re looking for, but don’t. Only apply for jobs that are applicable to your skill set, and that you’re really interested in. In contrary to the past, searching for your next job is not a numbers game. Applying for specific, focused roles with a well-constructed CV and application letter will be far more effective.

For many, the first step in looking for a new job is searching online and, as we hit January, there are plenty of great job opportunities available. At Atkinson Moss, we consistently work to listen to our clients and candidates, adapting to ever-changing needs, and will continue to do so in 2020.