January is in full swing and the phone interviews and conference chats are reaching a crescendo. Up next on the hiring calendar will be those highly sought-after on-campus interviews. Certainly all of the postings for tenure-track positions have been made by this time, right?
Wrong: here’s good news for job seekers. Budget planning is more complicated now than ever, meaning that decisions to post positions are being made more frequently in the spring semester as final budget figures come in. What’s more, the current stock-market stability is allowing senior faculty members who have been postponing retirements to reconsider their decisions. I have a strong hunch that this year will be very good for spring-only searches.
The bottom line is that more good jobs will be posted in the coming weeks. For applicants, be ready to pounce on the plums, as spring postings lead to very quick searches, often in four to six weeks posting-to-hire. My very first tenure-track position came from an unexpected opening that resulted in a lightning-quick search. I was ready to pounce on it when I heard about it and was rewarded with a great job in a wonderful department.
It’s been a brutal couple of years; hopefully we are about to turn a corner. Does anyone else out there see more last-minute positions coming up this spring?