Preparing to enter the job market during COVID-19 brings about a great deal of uncertainty for the future of industries everywhere. From a recent graduate starting your career to a seasoned employed that may have experienced furlough or being laid off—many people are trying to learn how to adapt to this evolving new normal all while still being able to enter the job market.
Should you continue to send out your resume during this time? Is it appropriate to reach out to recruiters and hiring managers during this time? Should you just assume companies aren’t looking to hire new employees during this time? These are all questions that you will have to face as you make the decision to continue to network and apply for jobs.
Here are five questions to ask yourself to help you navigate as you actively search for jobs to enter the market during the pandemic and economic slowdown.
Entering the Job Market During COVID-19
Is my current job search urgent?
Establishing whether or not your current job search is urgent is extremely crucial during this time period. If you are in the position to be able to put your current job search on hold, then you may want to consider that option. During this time, it can be challenging to get the attention of recruiters and hiring managers. Several industries have been hit hard by the pandemic and others are still hiring. If you’re currently employed, consider looking at the businesses that are hiring—even if it is a short-term or “in the meantime” gig.
Am I comfortable networking online?
Due to lots of things being moved to a digital space, you will have to structure a new way to network. Utilizing platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook to find like-minded professionals and virtual events is important. These social platforms offer its users various options to network with the right people in your said industry.
Am I using this time to reflect?
Many job seekers often times jump at the first chance they get into their job search without thoroughly considering the next steps. This is the perfect time to take advantage of the slow job market by figuring out where you want to work and the type of work you want to do. Create an excel spreadsheet that helps you keep this data organized, and make sure you are constantly updating it each time you apply to a job.
Am I using this time to boost my skills?
Now is one of the best times to work on boosting your skills. Start by reading job descriptions required skills and experience you are applying to. From there, analyze whether or not you have that skill, and if you’re lacking it—brush up on it to make yourself an even better candidate in the job market. There are lots of certification courses on LinkedIn as well as several free online courses offered by Harvard.
Have I prepared myself for remote work?
When entering the job market during this time, you want to make sure you’re comfortable and prepared to work remotely. This means getting acquainted with virtual interviews, remote networking, phone interviews, conference calls, social cues and several other factors that require you to work remotely. Making sure you establish a professional presence on social media and other remote networking groups is also something to take into consideration as you are looking for opportunities and meeting other professionals.
During the economic slowdown, focusing on what you can control such as boosting your skills, networking and preparing for remote work helps you lay the groundwork when it comes to entering the job market during COVID-19. If you found these five questions helpful in aiding you along your journey, share with us in the comments below and make sure to tell a friend to tell a friend!