COVID-19, also known as Coronavirus, has profoundly affected companies and professionals all around the globe. As the pandemic continues and as different industries implement certain measures to help the country fight the outbreak, some actions have threatened the sustainability of businesses and jobs, affecting the long-term livelihoods of millions.
In light of everything going on during this pandemic, keeping your career on track can be challenging. Not only are employed professionals vulnerable, but job seekers are also due to the negative impact on the hiring activities of many companies. While this is a difficult time for many people, job seekers can still make progress in their career pursuits.
If you are a job-hunter, here are some tips you can use to keep your job search moving forward during COVID-19:
1.Work on your self-marketing materials: resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile
This is a prime opportunity to use the extra time you have to work on your marketing materials. These materials are on the front line, marketing you to your potential employer. With the masses of online applicants and employers having limited time on their hands to fill positions, ensuring your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile stand out can help you catch the eye of the hiring manager.
Within a few seconds of getting hold of your resume, the hiring manager should see that you are the perfect candidate for the job.
- Resume: Include your key skills and work experiences matching the job description and showcase how you are the best person for the position. A resume is a summary, so only include information relevant to building your case.
- Cover letter: Show you are a great cultural fit for the position and why you want to work there. What can you contribute?
- LinkedIn profile: Be sure your LinkedIn profile is updated and optimized. Now is a crucial time for every job seeker and professional to be on LinkedIn. Not only can you be found by recruiters, but employers also use your profile as a way to screen you as a candidate.
2. Practice your video interviewing skills
Everything is turning to a remote and virtual environment to avoid human contact. Hiring managers and employers are using video interviews to screen candidates. You have to be able to sell yourself through a video interview effectively. To nail your video interview, you have to rehearse beforehand! Don't wait until you get called in for a video interview to start practicing. You can do this by:
- Recording yourself to feel more confident in front of a camera
- Speaking directly to the camera; observing your gestures and how you communicate
- Replaying the recording back to yourself to pinpoint areas of improvement
We don't know how long everything will be virtual. Now is the right time to strengthen your video interviewing skills and ensure you're able to convey your candidacy through video.
3. Build your network
Professional networks and connections are essential within your job search. LinkedIn is a great place to start. Now is an excellent opportunity for you to get on LinkedIn and grow your network, connect with people from your dream companies or ideal employers, and foster existing relationships and professional networks you have.
Want the inside scoop? Some employers don't post their job openings on boards like LinkedIn or Indeed. Some let their professional connections know they're hiring. You can use these networks to tap into the hidden job market. If you are building and growing your professional relationships and connecting with people from your ideal companies, you're able to find out information that is not readily available to all job seekers.
If you are a job seeker or if you have recently been laid off as a result of COVID-19, here are the things you should do to get you moving:
1.Take a moment to breathe, reflect on what has happened, and process your emotions
The current situation is overwhelming. Additionally, getting laid off in the midst of it can add to your stress. The first thing you have in mind is to find a way to bounce back, but before you start applying for jobs, it is crucial to recoup. Take the time to process what has happened and deal with your emotions. You want to enter your job search with a clear mind, confident, and ready.
2. Seek unemployment insurance or benefits early
You'll be financially affected by your current career status, and you want to make sure your finances are in check. Before you start applying for jobs, ensure everything is in order and, if needed, seek unemployment insurance or benefit
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3. Apply for jobs that are in demand
Apply for jobs that are in demand right now to get back into employment status quickly. There are many companies hiring and specific jobs that are in high demand. Remember, the more dated a job posting is, the less likely the employer is still hiring or has not already filled the position. If you search online for jobs that are actually in demand right now, you have a better chance of landing employment as soon as possible.
4. Look for remote or contractual work opportunities
There are platforms like Upwork, Fiverr and Freelancer for contractual jobs online. If you have a skill that can be done remotely or virtually, use it and apply for jobs that are contractually based and allow you to take on small projects to keep your income flowing.
Remember: the most important thing you can do right now is not give up. The people who will come out on the other side of COVID-19 successfully are those who don't neglect this time. Use it as an opportunity to learn, grow, and make the most of the circumstance, no matter how difficult it is. Stay positive, keep your mind in the right place and take small steps each day to advance your career. In hindsight, you will be so glad you did.