As most of you have probably heard, we are in the midst of a period that has been termed the “great resignation”. Employees are leaving their current jobs voluntarily for other positions. This is reflected in record low unemployment filings across the country over the last several months. In other words, people are generally employed (who want to be in the workforce) and are moving voluntarily from one position to another.
This is creating a situation where job seekers are having to create a schedule that allows them to engage in job search activities while working their current position. This can be a challenge during any time of the year, but, in particular, a Western New York summer. While it is certainly easier if you are running a more passive job search (posting resume, speaking to third party recruiters) than an active one (networking, searching leads, directly applying), either can be a time consuming and stressful activity.
There are ways, however, to improve your balance of time allowing you the ability to work, job search, and enjoy summer. Below are some tips to consider when determining how to best balance your requirements. Remember, these are specifically for those employed, but looking. Of course, if you are unemployed, you should be doing everything possible to find a new job.
• Determine Your Commitment Up Front: How much time are you able to realistically devote to your job search this summer. By doing a full review of the various time variables that you have this season, you can determine what you can devote to your search. This will allow you to avoid the stress of not meeting internal expectations that you have placed on yourself that are not actually realistic.
• Decide Active or Passive: This will often be answered for you when you have determined your time hours commitment to the search. A more limited allotment of hours will also force you to conduct a “passive” search. The more hours you plan to allocate, then the more active you can be.
• Create a Schedule: A schedule will allow you to visually see what you are committed to and does it look OK. My suggestion is you start by plotting your work commitments first and then add in any personal obligations, whether it be family or purely for leisure. You can then see what you have for your search and adjust as needed. By keeping to a schedule that you created, you will find yourself less stressed and more focused on all aspects of your life. Don’t be afraid though to have a little personal flexibility, as fun things come up to do all the time in Western New York.
• Try To Be Flexible: This may be the toughest of the tips, as the common theme is around structure and planning. However, during the summer scheduling for interviews, tours, etc. can be a little chaotic due to vacations or summer short staffing. You may need to flex a little to accommodate Hiring Managers and their own summer scheduling needs. Be patient and don’t let time delays get to you, as they are naturally occurring during this time of year.
• Don’t Let Yourself Become Too Casual: Summer sometimes means a more casual appearance and over demeanor. Job searching does not really recognize the specifics of summer in the area. You will follow the normal practice(s) of a job search unless specifically told otherwise by the Hiring Manager.
• Be Careful If Working Remote: Remote workers have to be careful not to have time devoted to work creep onto the side of your job search. When you are in the office, you generally have the watchful eyes of others, but the temptation can be great when working remote to use some of that worktime on your search. You don’t want your work product to diminish while job seeking, as it is a good practice to always leave in good standing. You also have to be careful not to use company provided equipment, by mistake, when job searching at home. If you are on the company’s network, then they may know what you are doing. Most employers take a dim view of someone job searching during work hours using company equipment.
While it may be a challenge, balancing your employment and conducting a summer job search is doable. In fact, doing this will often pay you back by giving you a competitive advantage in landing the position you are seeking. This is because many job seekers either don’t do a summer job search well or end up backing out of the labor market all together until the fall season. By pushing forward with your search, you are taking advantage of the situation. Employers don’t take the summer off, so neither should you.
As always, the best of luck in your job search.
The following has been prepared for the general information of WNYJobs readers. It is not meant to provide advice with respect to any specific legal or policy matter and should not be acted upon without verification by the reader.
Joe Stein WNY Human Resources Professional
Feel free to contact Joe Stein regarding questions or comments at: Joe Stein