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FRESH FRIDAYS: The January job hunt – should I jump on the bandwagon?

As we see in another New Year, we traditionally also see a massive spike in job applicants as people look to start the year off the way they mean to go on. Putting the right (proactive!) foot forward and changing jobs can often be seen as a way to galvanise those lifestyle changes in the hope of fulfilling all of those shiny New Year resolutions.

But where’s the proof?

This general belief is backed up by the stats - and over the last 3 years London has seen a surge in frenetic job hunting activity at the beginning of each New Year. A recent study by the Institute of Leadership & Management shows that 37% of workers are planning to leave their current jobs in 2015 – a dramatic increase from 19% in 2014.

The grass is always greener…

This trend does of course make sense. In the cold rainy aftermath of the festive season and the often bemoaned “bump down to earth”, it’s not surprising that there’s a somewhat natural inclination to look for that ‘greener grass’ at this time of year. Applying to jobs in earnest is a powerful catalyst for changing how the New Year may pan out.

But should we always believe the stats?

This job-hunting spike is not always as substantial as the stats may suggest and unlike the world of gym membership, companies hunting for new talent need to be aware not to rely on the January influx of candidates too heavily.  There’s also a good deal of job tourism that goes on at this time of year, in the form of whimsical “what if” job hunting, which is more of a means to pass a weary, drizzly lunch break than make a big move. So although the New Year often means that job hunting is back on the radar of many people, it’s in no way a saturated market.

That said - it’s worth keeping in mind that it’s a candidate led market, top talent is at a premium and candidates have more and more options available. Savvy businesses appreciate the need to fight for the best candidates and to sell themselves to their prospective new employees - those that don’t fall behind in terms of desirability. This is in general good news for the market as a whole and FreshMinds’ offices have been extremely busy - kicking off this year with more client and candidate activity than ever before.

Even looking past the usual January rush, 2015 looks to be shaping up very positively for the prospective job hunter. More and more exciting roles mean that a veritable smorgasbord of opportunities is opening up for the right top tier candidates meaning that 2015 look’s to be a brilliant year for moving roles.