To Every Thing, There is a Season; To Joblessness, Could There be Four?

I'd like to be able to attribute my dearth of job interviews to the "summer slowdown." But then what fanciful reasons will I have in the fall, winter and spring?

“Companies don’t hire during the summer.” That’s what somebody told me, with great sympathy, the other day. I felt deflated. As if my job search isn’t going poorly enough, all I can look forward to now are several additional months of – nothing?

But is this even true? People often say this, and maybe it once was true, but is it still, today? I mean, it’s not as though companies have been furiously hiring up until now. (Rolling my eyes.)  At least, it doesn’t appear that way to me.  So I decided to do a little bit of research to see what I could find.

I pulled up a couple of articles on the topic: “Job Search Myth: There Are No Jobs in the Summer Months” and “The Myth of the Summer Hiring Slowdown.” (Do their titles give their conclusions away?) Yes, both articles say that it’s not true that hiring slows down or stops during the summer.

On the contrary, both suggest there are advantages for the summertime jobseeker.  These include:

  • Because it’s usually a slower time of year for many companies, hiring managers have more time to actually read your resume. The hiring process may be more leisurely and less rushed during the relatively quiet summer months.
  • If other jobseekers believe the summer-hiring-hiatus myth, then you’ll have less competition during the next several months.
  • There may be more temporary or contract positions available because of extended leaves of absence over the summer. Sometimes these can lead to full-time jobs.
  • Pleasant summer weather puts people – including potential employers – in a good mood and can make them more favorably disposed to you.
  • In some fields, like accounting or education, hiring can increase during the summer in preparation for the start of the busy season or the school year.

So I think we’ve dispelled the myth that nobody hires during the summer. It’s too bad, though; in a way, I was kind of hoping this one was true. If it was, and if nobody calls me for interviews this summer, then I’d have been able to blame the time of year.

In fact, I really like the idea of seasonal excuses for my unsuccessful (to date – I'm still hopeful) job search.

Besides the current Summer Slowdown, maybe my future explanations for a lack of job offers could include the inevitable Fall Furlough, the unavoidable Winter Whiteout, and the inescapable Spring Slump hiring periods. 

Who’s with me – shall we start a few new myths?

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Erica Martell May 29, 2012 at 02:43 PM
Hang in there Fran. I'm with ya. I think we should each set goals to be employed by end of summer.
Fran Hopkins May 29, 2012 at 04:07 PM
Hi Erica! Setting a goal with an endpoint might be more helpful, in terms of focus, than a vague target of finding a job "sometime" or even "ASAP." Good suggestion!


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