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What Does the Coronavirus Pandemic Mean for Your Job Search?

As the coronavirus pandemic has impacted so many businesses in various sectors, it’s natural to feel as though now might not be the best time to be applying for jobs.

Whilst many companies are encouraging work from home, we’re still seeing thousands of people being made redundant or furloughed, meaning there’s thousands of people job hunting.

Although the odds may seem against you, don’t feel disheartened. It’s vital that you continue to job search, expand your network, and join a recruitment agency to increase your opportunities of securing a job interview.

Even though businesses may have been forced to halt their recruitment search for now, in most cases this is only temporary; they will be hiring again in the future.

If you continue to network and develop your skills during this down period, you’ll be in a much better position to find a job than those who haven’t.

Work from home full-time is still a relatively new prospect for many companies, especially small businesses. Hiring managers are adjusting their recruitment methods to work remotely in an effective and meaningful way.

This may take some time to perfect but we’re already seeing companies making great transitions to remote working across the UK, ensuring all social distancing guidelines are being adhered to.

How to make the most of time away from work

If you’ve been furloughed or sadly lost your job, you’ll likely find you have a lot of spare time on your hands. Whilst this is certainly a stressful and upsetting time, there are ways to turn this negative into a positive and make the most of your time away from work during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Perhaps there’s some training you can undertake which will increase your chances of finding a job in your specific sector, or maybe this is a good opportunity to train for a completely new sector you’re interested in. There are countless amounts of online courses (mostly free courses), certifications, and even voluntary work that you could take part in, all of which will give you the best opportunity of securing a job interview.

Tips for job searching through the Covid-19 pandemic

We strongly advise continuing your job search during the coronavirus pandemic. If you don’t, you’ll get left behind when the time comes to begin applying for jobs again. We have some useful tips to help you through the job-hunting process during these challenging times.

1.      Stay in touch and maintain a positive attitude

If you’ve spent the time preparing and actually attending a job interview (virtually) but haven’t heard back from the employer in some time, it’s important to not let this slide. Unless a response time was specified to you, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t send a follow up email or make a quick phone call to gain feedback on your interview. Whether this feedback is positive or negative, it’s all vital to improve your job interview skills and increase your chances of finding a new job.

Of course, during this follow up contact, you don’t want to come across as demanding or desperate. Show a thoughtful attitude, there could be a very good reason why they haven’t come back to you yet. Another great way to subtly remind the hiring manager that you’re still awaiting feedback is to connect with them on LinkedIn. You might not even have to message them, just liking or commenting on one of their posts could be enough to demonstrate that you’re still actively interested.

2.      Familiarise yourself with networking online

As you won’t be able to rely on meetings or events face to face for a while, now is the perfect time to find a new networking strategy. Professional groups on both LinkedIn and Facebook are a great place to start as they offer good search facilities across a vast range of industries. In fact, most social media platforms can be used to your advantage when applying for jobs. You can connect with other people who are job hunting, with professionals in your industry and potentially with hiring managers. Join in the conversations and make yourself visible, they could then think of you when the time comes to recruit.

3.      Spend some important time reflecting

Whilst this a stressful time and taking the first job you’re offered may be very tempting, it’s important to take some time to reflect and make sure you’re making the right decision for you. Take advantage of this extra time to really clarify what your career goals are, which companies’ values do you relate to and what do you need to do to get there?

4.      Develop your skills and boost qualifications

Now is the perfect time to utilise free online courses to develop your skills and even earn additional qualifications which could help with your job hunting. If there’s a particular job or even a particular company you’d like to work for, look at their job descriptions or company goals and see what you can do to align yourself with these. If there’s a particular skill they look for, search for an online course to provide evidence for this skill.

5.      Gather insights into businesses

How companies have responded to the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic gives us a unique insight into their leadership methods. It’s useful to take note of how a company you might be interested in working for, has treated their employees throughout this period. You could even set up Google alerts for businesses of interest to stay updated with their journey. This will allow you to demonstrate a deep understanding of values and goals should you get invited to interview.

6.      Consider how urgent your job search is

Though all of this is great advice for searching for a job in the coronavirus pandemic, you might want to consider the option of putting your job search on hold. If you’re currently employed but not happy in your role, now might not be the most effective time to change jobs. It may be more secure to find a way to make your current job more enjoyable or more rewarding.

Lauren | Tue 22nd Dec 2020

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Amanda Wright Rec to Rec - Recruitment Specialists for the Recruitment Industry, specialising in recruitment to recruitment. © 2021 Amandawright rec to rec recruitment consultants