It’s the busiest time of the year for job searches. This is how to get ahead of the competition.

The holiday decorations from your cubicle are tucked into the bottom of your junk drawer and fond memories from a whirlwind month of December have begun to fade; you’re back into a work routine.

Conference call invites begin to bombard in your inbox; you’re reduced to eating lunch at your desk; you’re hating on your commute again. The same pit-in-the-stomach feeling that beckoned you to look for a new job before Thanksgiving—then temporarily subsided amid the holiday chaos—has re-emerged.

Oh, and your paycheck? Well, it’ll be brining you less joy this year. A recent study by the Hay Group division of Korn Ferry revealed that global employees’ real wage increase will average a measly 1.5%, down from 2017’s prediction of 2.3% and 2016’s prediction of 2.5%.

There’s no ignoring it now. It’s like someone yelling on speakerphone, and there are no more distractions to put it on mute: You’ve got to find a better job. Not only will it lift your spirits, switching jobs is also one of the quickest ways to get a larger paycheck.

The good news is that the jobs are out there: More than 77,000 jobs were posted on Monster in the last month. The bad news is that you’ve got some competition: January marks the busiest job search month of the entire year.

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