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Applying to Jobs? Don't Wait Until the Weekend

Applying to Jobs? Don't Wait Until the Weekend
Credit: MihaPater/Shutterstock

Can you really increase your odds of getting hired by applying to a job on a certain day of the week? It may sound like a superstition, but there may be something to it: A new study from hiring platform SmartRecruiters found that the most job posting, application and hiring activity happens between Monday and Wednesday.

According to SmartRecruiters' data from more than 270,000 North American jobs, most applicants send in their résumés at the beginning of the work week. Tuesday in particular seems to be the "perfect" day for hiring success — 18.5 percent of candidates apply to jobs on Tuesday, followed by 18 percent each on Monday and Wednesday. This roughly correlates to the most popular days that companies post jobs: Tuesday (20 percent), Wednesday (19.5 percent) and Monday (18.5 percent). Tuesday is also the most popular day of the week for companies to make hiring decisions, with 21.5 percent of candidates being hired on this day.

In terms of timing, SmartRecruiters found that jobs are most frequently posted at 11 a.m. and applied to at about 2 p.m. Taken together, these findings mean that candidates are reacting quickly when they spot a good opportunity. In fact, most applicants will see and apply to a position just days after it hits the job boards, the study found. [The Best Free Job Search Apps]

"Nearly 60 percent of applicants apply within the first week of the job being posted," said Jerome Ternynck, CEO and founder of SmartRecruiters. "From a candidate perspective, the data sets up who the competition is. From a hiring manager perspective, it lets them know what to expect from the posting and how to plan to accommodate the demand for a specific position."

So, what does it mean for job seekers? Don't wait: If you see a job go up on Monday, have your résumé ready to go the next day. Because the majority of candidates apply early in the week, waiting until Friday or the weekend means your application is more likely to get buried beneath the influx of equally qualified applicants who jumped first.

"Candidates [who apply] for jobs when they first open will have a greater chance of getting noticed and getting in on the first wave of interviews," Jason Buss, recruiting innovation officer for SmartRecruiters, wrote in a blog post on the data. "The longer a job posting has been open, the more competition applicants will face."

Ternynck noted that the best thing candidates can do is know what they're looking for in an employer ahead of time, so they can act as soon as an appropriate opportunity opens up.

"Do your research ... [so]you can also utilize your network to advance yourself," Ternynck told Business News Daily. "Focus on the company as a whole and the potential connections you have to the business. Be sure to know what members of your network work there or have connections that you can leverage to gain insight into the company, the culture and specific leaders that you'll potentially work with and, more importantly, [who could] be your evangelist."

Nicole Fallon

Nicole received her Bachelor's degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University. She began freelancing for Business News Daily in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. Nicole served as the site's managing editor until January 2018, and briefly ran Business.com's copy and production team. Follow her on Twitter.