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Job Searching During COVID-19

The coronavirus pandemic has left over 36 million Americans without a job in the last two months - and that may still be shy of the real number. Stay-at-home orders, coupled with a decline of consumer spending, and mass layoffs and furloughs have been amongst the key factors contributing to the highest unemployment rate ever.

Those who have lost their job are devastated, and those who were mid-search are now unsure of how to proceed when so many companies are in a hiring freeze. As if seeking employment before the pandemic wasn’t frustrating enough, how should we navigate the job search process during these unprecedented times?

As companies adapt to fight the pandemic by moving to remote work, many applicants are left wondering whether or not they should continue sending out resumes. Many companies stopped hiring for the time being while many others are in a hiring surge. These companies have moved the interview process completely online and are still trying to fill vacant positions.
We understand your way of living may have changed with the pandemic and we know there may be distractions getting in the way of your job search, but now is not the time to let anything get in your way of landing that job.

We hope these tips will help you with your job search:

Don’t stop applying, ramp up your job search.

You should treat the job search process as a full-time position, especially during these trying times. Keep in mind some companies are in a hiring freeze and some others are in a hiring surge. Those who are not hiring yet may still be figuring out the logistics of transitioning into remote work, but companies will eventually start hiring. You may also consider taking contract work for the time being if you are in desperate need of a stable source of income.

The Networking landscape has changed… forever

Long gone are the days of coffee meetings and network events, the pandemic has made everyone reassess what is essential travel. Many businesses will adapt and move their business trips to online meetings. Many events will remain cancelled for the rest of the year, which is why you should adapt and find a new approach to networking. There are many professional online groups and communities you can join to stay connected with others in the same industry. Keep in mind others may be going through the same difficulties so try to find common values to make a connection.

Keep checking in with your recruiter

If you were in the middle of an interview process when the pandemic hit and have not heard back from the hiring manager, don’t be discouraged to reach out and follow up on your application. You will not be bothering the hiring team by following up on an application, on the other hand, you should follow up now more than ever. You are competing for that job and you want to stand out by showing you are passionate about it. Don’t forget to send thank you emails as well to those who have helped you in your job search whether it is a recruiter or a friend who referred you.

Take the time to continue to improve your skills

Some companies are going to run lean for some time until economic and market conditions improve and they can continue to expand. For this reason, some companies are going to hire less and need people who do more. If you were recently laid off because of the pandemic, now is the time to continue improving your skills. There are a plethora of online courses that are free right now to help professionals continue to improve their skills.

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As a final tip, if you are feeling stuck it is okay to call for help. Reach out to a friend, colleague or family member if you need support and words of encouragement in your job search. Chances are they will be willing to help you in your journey by cheering you on and maybe offering a tip or making a connection. You never what might come from asking for help.

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