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End of Year Hurdles in the Job Market

As the year comes to a close, there are common misconceptions surrounding the hiring and job seeking. While the holiday season approaches, the active job market still continues to thrive.

End of Year Hurdles in the Job Market

Navigating the End of the Year Job Market: A Synopsis for both Hiring Managers and Job Seekers

As the year comes to a close, there are common misconceptions surrounding both hiring and job seeking. While the holiday season approaches, the active job market still continues to thrive. Job seekers persist in their search, while hiring managers remain active and hiring. It is important to debunk the false notion that the job market freezes during this time.

In this week's blog post, we will provide valuable tips and tricks for both hiring managers and job seekers, helping them make the most of this perceived "slow" time. We will delve into the key challenges faced by both parties and offer solutions to overcome them. Even if you are a job seeker, the insights shared in the hiring manager section will be relevant, as it is crucial to understand their perspective. Similarly, hiring managers can benefit from the job searching section, gaining valuable insights into the job seeker's experience.

Overcoming Hiring Challenges at the End of the Year

  1. Budget Constraints: When the year comes to a close, companies often have fixed headcount and budget tied to their fiscal calendar, which typically resets at the end of the year. Sometimes headcount can carry over from year to year, but not always. This can motivate hiring managers to fill positions before the end of the year and not risk losing their budget and headcount the following year. Contrary to popular belief, many companies actively seek candidates until the final weeks of the year.
  2. Time Management: The year-end rush involves juggling hiring with essential tasks like end-of-year reviews and planning for the upcoming year. Additionally, scheduling meetings becomes a challenge when key decision-makers are out of the office. This is particularly daunting for hiring managers facing the prospect of losing headcount or budget for a role at the turn of the year.


  • Alignment and Transparency: Ensure internal hiring teams are clear on expectations and the hiring process. Be transparent with candidates about the goal of filling the position by year-end. Communicate openly with candidates early on in the process. Climate People’s Founder, Brendan, was recently featured in an article on the importance of intentional hiring processes for securing top technical talent. This articles insights can be applied here!
  • Streamlined Process: Establish a streamlined approach with predefined expectations and qualifications. By aligning the team's vision for the ideal candidate, you can reduce the need for sign-offs at every stage of the process. This efficiency not only saves time, but also enhances diversity and improves the experience for job seekers.
  • End-of-Year Advantage: Hiring at the end of the year gives you a competitive edge in securing top candidates before the influx of hiring in the new year. Capitalize on this opportunity by making compelling offers to candidates you have identified as exceptional before you’re faced with greater competition for that talent in the new year.
  • Climate Competition: Hiring managers in climate are consistently seeking exceptional candidates. However, competition is particularly fierce as smaller companies find it challenging to rival larger and more established organizations in terms of salary and benefits. This underscores the importance of maintaining a proactive hiring process, even during the year-end.

Overcoming Year-End Challenges for Job Seekers

  1. Perceived Slow Down: Many candidates believe they have to pause their job search towards the end of the year under the assumption that "companies aren't hiring." However, that's not always the case, as mentioned earlier. While some companies may slow their hiring processes, there are still organizations actively hiring. Don't stop your job search! There’s less competition for these jobs at the end of year, which means you have a higher chances of landing the role. In the new year there will be more jobs available, but it will also be flooded with more people looking for a change. Additionally, many hiring managers have a year-end budget to fulfill, resulting in increased hiring opportunities for you!
  2. Wanting Your Bonus: If you’re currently employed, end-of-year bonuses can be an incentive to stay at your job. Job seekers often want to postpone their job search until they receive their year-end bonus. However, bonuses granted in December or January may not hit your bank account until February or even March next year. If you're in this situation, be cautious about starting the interviewing process, as the new company will likely prefer a candidate who can start sooner. Evaluate if you're willing to forgo the bonus for the right job. Inquire about start dates to ensure alignment, or the company may proceed with another candidate. If the opportunity aligns with your long-term career goals, consider passing on that one-time bonus payment for long-term value, if your personal situation allows you to.


  • Be Open: Maintain flexibility throughout the process and communicate openly with the hiring manager from the start.
  • Ask Questions: Seek to understand the hiring manager’s expectation around start date during the interview process to avoid any misalignments.
  • Think of Your Overall Career Trajectory: It's crucial to consider your long-term career aspirations and view short-term incentives as just that – temporary rewards.
  • Keep Searching: Whatever you do, don't pause your job search during the holiday season. Keep your job search active!
  • Keep Your Head Up: While job searches can be taxing, both emotionally and physically, remember to take necessary breaks without completely disengaging from the process.
  • Decreased Competition: By optimizing your search strategy and staying active during the busiest time of the year, you'll enhance your chances of finding the right opportunity in a new industry like climate, even amidst the holiday chaos.

Enduring the year-end job market hurdles can be a daunting task for both hiring managers and job seekers. However, with strategic planning, open communication, and perseverance, these challenges can be turned into opportunities. For hiring managers, filling positions before the year ends can give a competitive edge, while job seekers can capitalize on the reduced competition during this period. It's essential to keep in mind that the job market doesn't freeze during the holidays. So, whether you're a job seeker or a hiring manager, don't let the end of the year slow you down. Instead, use this time to your advantage, and you may find yourself starting the New Year on a high note.

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