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When Is the Best Time of Year to Apply for a Job?

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It’s the New Year and we’re back on our career grind! 

Some pertinent topics for this time of year are knowing when to apply to a job, and when companies will actually take the time out to fish through applications and conduct interviews. 

The best way to determine this is to put yourself in the employer’s shoes, think of their culture, and figure out which times of the year they will take the most vacations within the company. Here’s a few surefire months when you know the interview process will be delayed. 

When Not to Apply

Holidays – December and Early January 

Virtually every company slows down at this time of year, especially in the tech sector. Most managers will likely take vacation around the holidays and in-turn, no one will be around to conduct interviews. It’s still ok to apply, but you won’t start getting the ball rolling until the week after New Years. 

In my own experience, there’s been instances where I was able to interview during the time between Christmas and New Years, but it’s rare. 

However, there are some companies that conduct business as usual during these weeks including government run agencies and media organizations that need to provide the public with news 24/7. 

Summer – Late July and Early August 

Summer is another prime vacation time for employers since it’s likely that they’ll book trips for this time of year since their children are off from school. 

Applying is fine, but often you’ll have to wait until September to get your foot in the door for an interview. There are exceptions, and in every company, you have people who don’t take vacations and will be open to interviewing in the summer. 

A Company’s Busy Season 

If you know the type of industry you’re in, then you know should know what time of year is their busy season. If you’re an accountant, then you can figure that applying for a job during tax season might be worthless. 

If you want to work for a major sports organization, applying to them around championship season like the World Series for the MLB or Super Bowl for the NFL could prove fruitless. It’s better to apply during the off-season when more preparation work is being done. 

Good Times to Apply 

January – June

Oftentimes when a New Year kicks off companies are ready to hire and usually its all hands on deck so the managers will be in the office to conduct interviews. For some reason April also seems to be a busy time of year for interviews. It’s probably because companies tend to kick off different initiatives in the beginning of the Spring that will carry them into the Summer. 

September – Mid-November 

At most companies it’s business as usual during these months so applying and interviewing should be pretty status quo. New projects often begin around September and parents are able to fully focus on work with their kids going back to school so I strongly recommend that particular month for people. 

A Few Months Before a Busy Season 

If you know a company is going to be in desperate need of people in the coming months, then you should start applying immediately. Don’t wait until that busy season starts. They’ll need all the help they can get and will also require some time to start training you. Don’t wait until right before the busy season, and especially don’t wait until after it starts. 

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