Job market growth persisted in 2017, marking a fifth consecutive year of substantial employment increases in the long road back from the deep economic recession of the late 2000s. Forecasts for 2018 suggest continued hiring prospects, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics JOLTS projections listing openings approaching 6 million at the end of 2017.
The Society of Human Resource Managers (SHRM) also call for a slight downtick in unemployment, with employers having more in salary budget -- which can translate to either greater wages for existing jobs, or more revenue to hire more staff.
If you are resolved to finding a new job in 2018, consider a few of these points when beginning your search.
- Educate Yourself on Industry Trends for the Year
The arrival of a new year brings with it forecasts and projections for industry trends. Stay up-to-date through trade publications and other news services to know the direction your desired field might be following in 2018. This can include new technological advancements or expected skills.
- Study Salary Trends
With projections like that of SHRM pointing to increases in salary budget, you could be able to command more during the search process than in recent years. However, knowing the standards in your current or desired field is ideal. Yours might be an industry in which wages have stagnated.
If not, you might cost yourself an opportunity by asking for too little.
- Don't Get The Winter Blues
Do not get discouraged if you do not see abundant listings in the winter months. Historical trends show marginal hiring gains in the first portion of the year, but employment gains steam typically around March and April. This trend is commensurate with the quarter system. The first coincides with one of the slower times for consumer spending on the calendar, and an employer's standing at the end of this period provides a glimpse into the year to come.
Stay diligent in looking for openings, however. Hiring in the springtime is often a process that begins with listings posted in the winter.