Recruiting has seasons. If you don't believe that you haven't been around long enough to understand the pattern. The salmon run between late August and the first week or two in November. Squirrel season starts the second week in November and lasts until the second week in January. The salmon start running again the second week in January until about tax time in April. At least that is the way it has always been in my part of the world.
I find the winter squirrel season to be the time when everybody turns squirrel for at least six weeks. Open reqs are put on hold due to budget meetings or some hiring manager deciding (even if they have been interviewing for a month) that if they haven't hired by now maybe they can just wait until after the first of the year. The ones that are ongoing suddenly turn into logistic nightmares because the candidate is leaving next Wed for Nova Socia or the hiring manager is taking the last week of vacation to include turkey day. Or the CEO just said, what the heck, let's freeze hiring until after the holidays and see what happens.
I start to hear screams from hiring managers that they have to get someone hired NOW because they need them on board by Dec. Sure we can do that, no problem. Everybody in the world who has a job, is looking for another one is going to interview this week, give notice next week and be ready to start by the second week in Dec. I think not. Start dates will be delayed due to trips planned/paid for Christmas, year end bonus that will paid the last week of the month, being the awards presenter at the Christmas party, year end financials or tax projections have to be completed before they can leave. I have had candidates tell me they can't give notice for at least 10 days because their boss was on a cruise and wouldn't be back until after the first week in Dec.
At very least an acceptance this week is somewhat likely not to give notice until after turkey day to be sure they aren't walked out the door or they don't want to ruin the holiday for the boss. If a move is involved i haven't had much success with candidates being willing to move a family between Thanksgiving and Christmas. If a candidate is unemployed it's a great week for offers, then even then they don't want to start until after turkey day.
I wonder if this year will be different due to so many companies operating lean and mean during the recession, now wanting to hire as things start to pick up.
I am not feeling any vibes as to a press to hire. Talking about it, yes, taking any steps to move forward, no. Perhaps it will happen late if the tax cuts are extended.
I got my squirrel license this morning, dusting off my squirrel gun and starting to aim for December acceptance and start date after the first of the year on new recruits. Hope springs that the squirrels i shoot in the next few weeks still have enough hair left on them by Jan. to start storing nuts in a new tree in Jan. don't get a raise, hefty Christmas bonus in the form of a buyback or a promotion announced that will change their minds. As to interviews going on now. I am in full court press to close and get a Dec. start date. In my world it's four days until odds are that it doesn't get billed until Jan.
In fact i close my office between Dec. 20 and Jan. 2 . After years of rescheduling and frustration with the sound and fury of holiday attempts to hire, i like to wait until the squirrels are a little tired of running around in circles so they sit still long enough to get a good shot. Not to mention all the fruits and nuts who have not looked for a job for two years then decide the week before Christmas that they really do need to find something to do. Holidays are just a great time for all the career drunks and druggies to get sappy and call a recruiter. Color me out of that loop.
What do you see happening in the next six weeks? Is this year different?