In general, it’s a good idea to have most of your year-end hiring done before entering the holiday season. We’ve outlined the reasons for this in the past, ranging from the fact that most applicants simply aren’t looking during this time, to the realities of meeting end of year budgets.
Still, there are some occasions where you just have no choice – a crucial position is left vacant and you need to find someone to fill it as soon as possible. In those instances, embarking on an end of year hiring expedition is a necessity, but understanding the pros and cons can help to make your hiring process run that much more smoothly.
Pro: Interview Availability
Currently employed applicants tend to have an easier time slipping out of the office for an interview during the holiday season. Between holiday parties and absentee co-workers, as well as a slow-down in the typical work load, they are simply less likely to be missed. And the good news is, your hiring managers likely also have more time on their hands to do the interviewing.
Con: Less Active Searchers
Unfortunately, there also tend to be far fewer applicants during the holiday season. Most employees are feeling content with where they are and just aren’t looking. Plus, they aren’t eager to walk away from those anticipated holiday bonuses.
Pro: Opportunities to Promote From Within
A reduced applicant field can be a great motivator for employers to look at their current employees when trying to fill a crucial opening. Training a current employee up means having someone on board who already knows and understands your corporate culture and motivations. It also means improving employee morale by showing them that you value your current workforce. Any holes down the line that are created by moving employees up can typically wait until after the holidays to be filled.
Con: The Reluctance of Outside Applicants to Move
When it comes to upper management positions, you may have needed to recruit outside the state in the past to find the caliber of employee you were looking for. Unfortunately, around the holidays, you are going to have a harder time convincing those potential employees to move. Even the best offers won’t normally entice people to pick up their lives until spring rolls around.
Pro: The Hiring Process is Less Rushed
One bonus to a holiday hiring season is the ability it provides to take your time with the hiring process. Applicants aren’t usually on the same time crunch they may be during other times of the year, and they understand that decisions may be delayed. This gives you a chance to truly consider your options.
Con: Applicants May Not Be Willing to Start Until the New Year
While you may not be enjoying a slower hiring process, keep in mind that your applicants may actually be enjoying it – and not planning on starting anywhere new until after the New Year as a result. If you need someone to start as soon as possible, make that clear during your interview process.