What applicants need to know about Summer and seasonal hiring

Orla Hodnett
Orla Hodnett

Summer can be a quiet season for recruiters, but that does not mean you cannot find the perfect temporary role or get your foot in the door as a graduate. Here is what you need to know to land great summer jobs.

While Summer is typically regarded to be a quiet time of the year for recruiters, it may be the right time to strike. Many organisations will be seeking seasonal or temporary workers at this time of year, as well as internships, which all have the potential to turn into full-time roles. Indeed, 28% of companies intend to keep seasonal workers on in full-time roles.

Summer recruiting has more potential than might first meet the eye. A little bit of patience is required and you need to be ready to make your move when the time is right, but it could be an opportunity to set yourself apart from the competition. Here are a few ways you can stand out to recruiters during the summer months:

Updating and refining your CV

You want to make an excellent first impression, no matter what time of the year, so having a stellar CV, that you can personalize for each application, ready to go makes the whole process a lot easier. The quiet summer months, where there might be a little bit of time between responses, might be the perfect time.

Researching the roles you are interested in and identifying the key skill-sets and knowledge required will help you clearly state your suitability for a role in any application. It also gives you time to research what companies are hiring.

It’s Summer: get in the talent pool

As it is a quieter time of year, recruiters are more likely to have a little free time. By sending in a prospective CV and talking about your career interests, recruiters will likely keep you in mind: if you get in contact now, there might be a role for you later.

Building a good rapport with an organisation and understanding what they are looking for in a candidate will give you a good chance when a suitable role comes up. Again, you just need a little patience.

Internship programme
If you are a college student or graduate looking for experience, this could be a great opportunity!


By April or May, many graduates will be ready to start applying for jobs and many companies will be recruiting interns. If you are a college student or graduate looking for experience, this could be a great opportunity. 60% of interns turn into full time hires, so they offer a fantastic opportunity to graduates and companies.

Recruiters get that students won’t be looking until shortly before summer and they understand that the role is temporary, so many roles crop up at this time of year. If companies have a requirement for a short-term role, internships are often their first port of call.

60% of interns turn into full time hires

 Managing communications with recruiters

Like most industries, recruiters will likely take a break during the summer months, as will recruiting managers. Getting a response might require a little patience, but it is not unusual.

Gentle persistence is key here. If you have not heard from them for a couple of weeks, an email is fine. If you are not receiving swift responses, that is pretty predictable for this time of year due to the overall slowdown. The recruiter you are in contact with may not be in the office, or the hiring manager who needs to make a decision might not be there to make it.   

Managing holidays and plans around application and interview process

Summer isn’t just a quiet time for recruiters: applicants and candidates are likely to be on holiday during the Summer months. This introduces some challenges when trying to schedule phone interviews or on-site interviews.

The main thing here is to be upfront in any follow-up communication that you will be on vacation. For phone interviews or Skype interviews, you might be able to make the time during your break, but it is down to the organisation.

Use this opportunity to set yourself apart from the competition.

An opportunity for unique candidates

When recruiting is at its peak during the Autumn and Winter, recruiters work with their goal in mind. This tunnel vision means that they act quickly and may pick the most obvious candidates to shortlist.

When things are a little quieter, a recruiter can pay more attention to each application that they receive. If your path to your career is a little different or you have a little less experience, the Summer months might be a great time to get in contact with organisations you are interested in.

Companies often experience a peak in business during the Summer months and will take on additional staff

Seasonal work and temporary contracts

The Summer months typically see a big jump in the number of temporary contracts and seasonal jobs advertised online. Companies often experience a peak in business during the Summer months and will take on additional staff.

Summer jobs can be a great way of getting your foot in the door at an organisation. Like internships, they have the potential to turn into a full-time role if it is a good fit for you and the organisation.

Job applications received in Summer vs. Winter

The seasonal changes of the recruiting industry are quite significant. Nearly double the hires will be made in Q4 as are made in Q2 or Q3. Recruiters take on a totally different strategy in the new year and in the autumn than in the Summer months.

With the number of graduates and students looking for internships or full-time roles, companies do receive a lot of prospective applications, graduate programme applications, and internship applications throughout the summer.

Final thoughts

Despite the perception that no one is in the office in the Summer months and applications get left unread, it may actually be the right time to make your move. A company won’t let talent pass them by, no matter what time of the year it is. 

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