Career & Money

4 Quick Must-Do Summer Activities To Boost Your Job Search

While summer is often a time of fun, vacations, and rest for many hiring managers and recruiters, it's still the perfect time to prep for the fall rush that's the usual season for filling positions. It's smart to squeeze in a bit of time to boost your job search in the coming months, especially if you're employed but want to advance, transition careers, or level up for advancement.

Along with recruiters and HR leaders, many professionals experience the slowest quarter of the year across industries. Now is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of the free time you have by trying these quick must-do summer activities to increase your chances of meeting your goal of getting a new gig. You can even fold in a bit of business with pleasure:

1. Apply to one or two jobs a week to work or volunteer away from home for the summer (or into the fall if you can swing it.)

If you've hit a wall in your job search and you have the means and time to do it, why not expand your search to work in a dream location outside the city limits? Options like house- and pet-sitting are often ideal in the summer seasons when families are taking time off to travel. And in several other countries, the minimum paid time off for a summer holiday can be several weeks into months.

Some vacation rental owners hire managers for their properties and offer on-site housing with pay. Others have virtual assistants handling listings, scheduling, and home management duties, so there's that option as well.

If you have the education, experience, passion, or training, apply for remote or international jobs in hospitality, content creation, digital marketing, entertainment, or education, as those are prime for international jobs. And if your job search budget or current financial state allows, volunteering in a nearby community, county, state, or even abroad can boost your resume, help you further develop your skills, serve as a great lead-in to a career change, and present the perfect opportunity to network for paid gigs.

2. Deliberately add networking into the fun-in-the-sun plans you already have.

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Any opportunity to be in a room full of amazing people is a no-brainer chance to network, no matter where you are. And it's not the usual type of networking (so avoid the "Hey, nice to meet you. What do you do?" or "Hey, I don't even know you, but here's my resume" method.) Networking can happen at an outdoor festival, a concert after-party, or during an outing with your local running group.

If you've already planned to attend a brunch, meetup, church picnic, or pool party where there will potentially be groups of powerful, educated, go-getter folk, why not meet new people and follow up with them afterward to build a relationshipand expand your network?

Venture outside of the friends you came with or go alone. Take a look at the panelists, speakers, performers, or the party guest list and see where there might be icebreakers or talking points for casual conversation.

If the event is being hosted by an organization or person who has a social presence, look into the likes and comments on posts marketing their events, meetups, or parties and connect with others who are attending ahead of time. Whether friendship or a new job comes out of all of this is up to God and you. You were planning to go and enjoy it anyway. A win is a win.

3. Get an advantage by taking 30 minutes a week to still contact recruiters and hiring managers while others are partying, resting, or pausing on the job search.

For some recruiters and companies, summer is indeed not a slow season for hiring, and they're always looking to fill positions. It's also a time, according to experts, when the belief that nobody's really hiring in the summer might work to your advantage if you do the opposite.

Reach out via LinkedIn, continue being strategic about applying online to the jobs you want, and take time to tweak your resume, social presence, professional websites, and cover letter so that you stay ready.

Schedule 30-minute coffee or virtual chats with professionals in your network who might work at companies you want to work for, and whom you have a real connection with.

Set a timer and alert on your calendar for 30 minutes a week, minimum, for this activity so that you'll not only be able to hold yourself accountable and be strategic, but you won't burn yourself out in the search. Be sure to balance actually enjoying outside versus isolating in a plight to frantically apply for any and every job out there.

4. Upgrade your online search by using specific key words, especially for seasonal, part-time, or freelance work.

If you've been generally searching, you've updated your LinkedIn preferences, and you've already had your information logged in several companies' recruitment systems, lean into a basic search engine optimization (SEO) keyword concept. This is especially helpful if you're looking for part-time, contract, or freelance work for a side gig or extra cash. Using specific keywords is important because it can play a major role in the success (or failure) of your online job search, especially in the summer months.

Using specific keywords for summer employment can also set you apart and make your job search a bit more efficient since many employers are now using AI technology to post job descriptions and sift through candidates.

When you simply add in words like "summer," "seasonal," or "summer job," you might see a more streamlined list of options where the positions need to be filled more quickly than a more general search related to your industry, title, salary, or duties. Add these sorts of specific keywords to our outreach communications, email subject lines or other related content related to your online job search.

You can still have fun this summer while looking for a new job as long as you think smart, keep an open mind, and incorporate your goals into your usual plans for the season.

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