Updated: May 22, 2020
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many Americans have lost their jobs or working hours. In fact, a study by the Pew Research Center shows that a third of Americans say someone in their household lost a job or took a pay cut as a result of COVID-19. Just take a look at this graph by the US Department of Labor shows that U.S. unemployment claims in the third week of March:
On the bright side, people get hired during layoffs and hires happen even when things slow down for companies. Keep in mind, many companies that are hiring have shifted to video interviewing and remote working for the time being. Now ask yourself, with so many individuals losing their jobs and applying to jobs, how can you stand out in this uncertain climate? Have you already started on your job search and it’s taking too long?
Here are some tips on how you can navigate through your job search during the pandemic:
Perfect Your Application Materials
Before perfecting your application materials such as your resume, online portfolio, and cover letter, start looking up ideas for your dream job. This will help you get a feel of the job and company you’re applying to so that you can improve your resume to be their perfect candidate. Just because your resume worked for a similar job a few years ago, it doesn’t mean it will work now. Standards for resumes are constantly changing. Your best option is to hire a professional resume writer that can create a new resume or edit your old one. Many job positions that people apply to nowadays use online applications. The less color and artistic flairs the better. Even your font matters when dealing with computers and the ATS software!
A career coach can provide you with key tips like these and many more for you to be prepared with the perfect application materials. We suggest you have everything ready so you can apply as soon as your dream employer posts that job you want. Even more so, being prepared will help you find employment during this difficult time to get you through, until that dream job opens up. For more targeted support, you can make a virtual appointment with one of our professional resume writers / career coaches.
Be Easy To Reach And Reliable
Once you apply you have to be ready to respond to every potential employer. Now that there’s not much to do, you should not have any excuse to not to answer the phone. A career coach can That being said, you’re going to have to get in the habit of answering calls from unknown numbers. Clear your voicemail inbox and record a professional voicemail. Test it out by having a family member or friend call you to make sure your voicemail isn’t full. Furthermore, be diligent about checking your missed calls and your emails (including spam folder). Once you’ve been selected for an interview, send an email to the hiring manager or employer to let them know you are looking forward to speaking with them on: date, time, and timezone. Anticipate what they might need and make it easier for them by attaching your resume and any other application materials such as a portfolio link. A career coach can actually help you rehearse your answers, come up with a cheat sheet for phone or telecom interviews and building a job-winning strategy!
Your professional resume worked! You’ve started getting interview calls so now start laying the groundwork for possibilities you might come across in each interview. Don’t underestimate the power of technology and video communication platforms nowadays. You might be meeting with an entire department since team interviews have become more prevalent in today’s job searching. The reason being, work has become more collaborative in today’s market. The thought process is, if you don’t fit in with the interview panel, will you fit in at work? Furthermore, you will be evaluated in your ability to problem-solve if you have any technical difficulties during the interview. Anticipate any issues you might run into by setting up at least 30 minutes prior to your interview. Come up with back-up solutions such as switching to a different browser or computer.
So many Americans are losing their jobs. Just imagine how overwhelmed employers and hiring managers are with all the applications they are receiving. This is precisely why your goal is to be, not only noticeable, but memorable among everyone else. Learn a skill that you’ve been interested in for some time so that you can add that to your professional resume, as well. Now, with all the time in our hands, is the precise moment to invest in ourselves. Ivy League schools are offering free courses that one usually has to pay for. You can also browse through many other free classes on Skillshare. Derive benefit from the time we have now that we are in self-quarantine. You can even try contributing from afar to help others using your professional skills. For example, if you’re an advertiser, start a Facebook community group or post about how to grow your online audience and brand awareness. Also, research the company and see how you can contribute from afar, as well. Chances are, you will be starting this job working from home until the COVID-19 pandemic slows down. The employer will really appreciate the time you took to do your research and problem-solve.
The key is to remain in control over what you can control. In this case, getting started on your job searching now and preparing all your application materials to perfection is a must. Don’t be troubled! We’re in self-quarantine too, so a career coach of ours can virtually meet with you to get you through these state of affairs. Our main goal is to make you stand out from the rest of the applicants, establish you as a reliable candidate and get you that job before social distancing ends.