Right now times are very uncertain, very stressful and even a bit frightening. The COVID-19 outbreak has not only caused a health crisis but an economic crisis, as well. In a matter of days, millions of people found themselves suddenly out of work. Millions more are weeks or even days away from losing their jobs, and millions more still are left uncertain about whether their companies will last through this crisis.
While the numbers are bleak and you are probably anxious, there is good news. Companies all across the country are hiring right now and many companies still have long-term plans to hire throughout the year. That means that the best thing for you to do right now is to continue your job search, despite your anxiety. Follow these tips to keep your job search on track through COVID-19.
Remember, This is Temporary
While no one can say for sure how long all of this will last, the one thing they can say for certain is that this is all temporary. It will end one day and the economy will open back up. It will be the people who kept their nose to the grindstone and kept looking throughout the downtimes who will rise up the fastest and go the farthest when things get back to something resembling normalcy.
Search Every Day
If you have already lost your job or you are in danger of losing your job, make sure you are doing search-related activities for a few hours every single day. You don’t have to do them for eight hours a day which can be daunting, but you should do a few hours, at least. Then, spend time decompressing with your family, taking a walk outside and looking for silver linings where you can find them.
Be Smart, Be Safe
Many employers are making use of video chats for interviews, but some are still holding in-person interviews. If you do go to an employer, make sure to stay 3-6 feet away from other people, do not shake hands, try to avoid touching metal or glass surfaces, wash your hands and use hand sanitizer.
Now is not the time to screen calls. If an employer can’t reach you, they will move on to someone else. Make sure to check your email multiple times a day and respond to any potential employer’s outreach in less than 24 hours. Keep your phone on you at all times and answer any calls from unknown numbers.
Even being a few seconds late to a phone or video interview can cost you a job right now. Make sure that you have the date and time correct and test links to video chats at least an hour before the meeting so you can notify the employer if there is a problem. Finally, just as you would arrive early to an interview, sign in or dial in at least 10 minutes early – unless you are instructed otherwise.
Insist on Quiet
If you have a family sharing one space, it can be difficult to find quiet for an interview. Luckily, everyone is in the same boat and employers will certainly understand if a baby cries or a child comes bursting in the room during an interview, but try to find a quiet place to hold the interview so that you can concentrate and put your best foot forward. Send your family on a walk or bike ride, or if you can’t find quiet, sit in your car.
Use Your Downtime Wisely
If you have lost your job, it’s important to keep busy. Being in isolation in addition to being unemployed can be a recipe for depression. Just as you block off time every day to search for jobs, block off time to learn a new skill or hone an existing one. There are myriad free resources online and many formerly-paid programs are being offered for free to help people struggling with the economic impact of COVID-19. Learning something new will not only pass the time in a constructive way, but it will also help you enhance your resume.
Be Visible On Social Media
Social distancing is a great excuse to forego in-person networking for social networking. So get visible on LinkedIn by participating in groups and getting in touch with contacts you haven’t spoken with in a while. This is also a great time to make professional Facebook and Twitter profiles to share industry-related posts and information.
Work With A Staffing Firm
A job search can be incredibly overwhelming at any time, let alone in these uncertain and stressful times. Working with a staffing firm can help ease your stress while also increasing the chances of finding a good job.