Business

Gain an edge by hiring in the holiday season

It might not be an obvious first choice, but December is a smart time to hire.

The final month of the year offers valuable opportunities to recruit high-quality professionals and hit the new year running.

Even as Singapore leads the Asia-Pacific nations in talent competitiveness according to the IMD World Talent Ranking 2018, businesses are increasingly recognising the importance of staying ahead of regional competition by attracting a top-tier pool of highly-skilled professionals.

Here are five reasons why hiring in December can give businesses a competitive edge next year.

Stay ahead of the competition

Many companies are looking forward to taking a break, and as a result, recruitment will be down their list of priorities.

However, there will still be a steady supply of talent who are on the job-hunting trail at this point in time. This means if businesses make the effort to fill vacancies in December, they would be more likely to get the cream of the crop before their competitors do.

The other major advantage is that they would be able to head into the new year with the headcount they need to get the business off to a running start.

Increased visibility of job postings

Given that many companies slow down their hiring activities during December, resulting in fewer job postings, the existing vacancies during this time are much more visible to candidates.

With more candidates aware of openings, businesses would have a better fighting chance in securing the most suitable talent for the role.

Scheduling interviews could be easier

December is traditionally packed with networking events, and this can make it easier for candidates to attend interviews without raising the suspicion of their current employer and dealing with restrictions of work. With a company's own end-of-year celebrations coming up, this can also be a good time for it to introduce new employees to its team culture and integrate them within the team.

Make use of social media

With workloads becoming lighter over this festive season, many people will be spending more time on social media websites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.

This creates a great opportunity for businesses to leverage these social platforms to promote their companies, current hiring requirements and also profile candidates.

Furthermore, the ability of websites such as LinkedIn and Facebook to deliver targeted content to users who are most likely to be receptive to it could be a key way of assisting businesses in searching and sorting for the best candidates.

Take advantage of New Year's resolutions

The flip of the calendar is a prime time for professionals to re-evaluate their career plans and make New Year's resolutions focused on change. This could be a good window for businesses to market this to potential candidates in December - having a new role lined up for the next year would mean one less item to clear from their to-do list.

December is the time of year when many people not only think about the holidays, but also start reflecting on the future trajectory of their career before the start of a new year.

If businesses have the time or budget to spare, this is a great time to reach out to high-quality candidates looking to pursue new job opportunities.

The writer is the managing director at Robert Half Singapore.

BUSINESS & FINANCE