Benchmark Search Employment Insights – December 2023

With a new year around the bend, a lot of people are getting ready to launch a search for a new job. As a recruiter for 18+ years, I always expect things to get busy in January. But now’s the time to start thinking ahead. In this month’s newsletter, how to start thinking about your plans, goals, and career strategies for the year ahead.

November Jobs Report Highlights

The latest November jobs report provides crucial insights into the economic landscape. National unemployment declined to 3.7%, reflecting a 0.2% improvement from the previous month. The unemployment rate for recent college graduates remained steady at 2.1.

Throughout November, the job market exhibited resilience, witnessing the addition of 199,000 new jobs. Key sectors driving this growth included healthcare, leisure and hospitality, and manufacturing, each making significant contributions to the overall positive trend.

While the unemployment rate remains higher than the year’s low of 3.4% in April, it remains comparatively low. This underscores the persistent challenge in sourcing talent, given the relatively small percentage of the population actively seeking employment, especially among those with college degrees. Consequently, organizations are increasingly focusing on passive talent – individuals already employed but open to new job opportunities.


Treasury Operations Senior Associate, Private Equity (in-office) – $200k

Controller, Oil and Gas (hybrid) – $190k

Director of Finance and Accounting, healthcare (hybrid)- $175k

Senior Manager, AP, Private Equity (in-office) -$175k – FTW

Senior Accounting Manager, Professional Services (in office) – $150k

Senior Financial Analyst, Technology (Hybrid) – $100k

Senior Accounting Analyst (Fin/Acct Hybrid), Energy (hybrid) – $95k

Treasury Analyst, Healthcare (Hybrid) – $85k

Credit Analyst, Boutique Bank (in office) – $65-75kk

TAX – Market Pay

Senior Tax Associate, Wealth Management (remote)

Tax Accountant II, CPA Firm (Hybrid) – FTW

Exp Tax Accountant, Professional Services – Plano

Finding a new job before you leave the old one

One of the hardest juggling acts — and one of the reasons people stay in jobs they don’t like for way too long — is the conundrum of trying to find time to prep and look for a new job while you’re still at your old one.

“Just redo your resume!” they tell you. But when?

One piece of advice I can offer: Carve out a half hour in your calendar every day to work on your job search. Then, fill it up with things like:

   → Reworking your resume
   → Updating your LinkedIn profile
   → Reaching out to other professionals
   → Practicing your Zoom skills

Maybe you do this over coffee in the morning, or you sacrifice an hour of Netflix at night. The point is to discipline yourself around time, every day, to work on your goal of finding a new job.

Tips for changing industries mid-career

Thinking of changing not just jobs but industries? I have 3 high-level pieces of advice for you.

  •  Connect the dots in your skills. A lot of professional skills are quite transferable, particularly when it comes to soft skills like leadership, communication and the ability to project manage. Going into any potential application or interview process, be able to explain how the skills you’ve gained so far in your career apply to this new field.
  • Do your research. A healthy amount of skepticism will accompany your efforts to change industries. Knowledge is power here, and the more you know about the industry you are entering, the more confidence you can project. 
  • Be able to explain why you are making this shift.  People will invariably ask, and you want to be able to provide a solid answer that just rolls off your tongue.

With the right approach, changing industries mid-career should be not only realistic but rewarding.

If you want a new job in 2024, the time to start is now

While the turn of a new year might seem like the ideal time to start looking for a job, there’s an argument to be made for getting a head start on your job search.

For one thing, a lot of companies have year-end money left in their budgets they’re eager to spend on a new hire, so this could be your chance to get quickly inducted into the organization of your dreams.

For another, December is indeed typically a slower time for hiring, so there are fewer candidates competing for viable roles.

As a recruiter, I work with people looking for new and better jobs, and I’m here to chat when you’re ready to launch a bold, creative, curious new job search in 2024.

A heartfelt thank you to everyone who joined us at the Celebration and Appreciation event! Your presence was truly appreciated. To those who couldn’t attend, you were missed! We look forward to serving you in the coming years.  Have a great holiday season!