Finding Work or a New Job During a Challenging Time
Whether it’s the current Pandemic, a recession, or a generally slow economy, times such as these make your new job search much more challenging. Although it may appear daunting, your positive approach and tenacity will be the key to your success in securing the right opportunity for you. Whether you are currently available and actively seeking work or whether you would like to make that next move onwards or upwards to a new position, below are some tips to consider in preparing yourself for the search.
Use Your Current Free Time / Down Time Wisely
If you are not working, sticking to a daily routine similar to your normal work schedule, getting up early and planning your day will help you stay focused and when you do return to work, the transition will be easier. You should be active in your search every single day from Monday to Friday during business hours. You should always be available to take any calls / reply to emails from potential employers/recruiters because if they do not catch you the first time round, you may not get a 2nd call. During any lockdowns in the current pandemic, it is an ideal time to upskill and add to your existing skillset. There are lots of free online courses which you can utilise along with free webinars relevant to your experience and the industries you are seeking work in. Don’t forget a potential employer may ask you how you have utilised your time during this period.
Prepare your CV
Ensure your CV is up to date, relevant to your current employment and grammatically perfect. Mistakes including grammar, inaccuracies, misleading and false information are common place on CVs and should be avoided at all costs. Your CV can be colourful, accurate and honest to portray the person you are and the experience you have to offer, misleading potential employers will not work. Check out the most up to date layouts for CVs if it has been some time since you have looked for work, but the most important point is to keep it simple and readable. Read and reread your CV to ensure there are no errors and ask for expert and or a 2nd opinion as to layout and the overall information and how it is perceived by another individual. If you are in a position to have your CV prepared by a professional, check their work before paying for their expertise, they can make mistakes also.
If you are using social media platforms such as LinkedIn to sell your skills and abilities, ensure your profile is very professional and portrays you in the best way possible. Use every tool available on these sites to give yourself the best level of exposure to potential employers. Add a professional headshot picture which shows you at your best, one taken by either a friend or colleague as selfies never really work as well in these situations. Research and review other people’s profiles, learn from them and try to adopt or utilise their techniques to enhance your own profile. Follow companies and organisations that you would like to work for or that are of interest to you.
Now that you have time, work on your interview techniques whether face to face, phone or virtual. Practice your techniques with friends and or family whom have knowledge of the interview process from either side of the table i.e. Interviewer / Interviewee. Record yourself in a mock interview and playback it back to see how you can improve your performance, you will be amazed how you can improve with this technique. There is plenty of advice available online and as the virtual online interview process is new to many people, this is an area each person needs to work on. You need to prepare yourself as well as, if not better than a normal face to face interview as preparation is the key to success.
Consider all Opportunities.
During challenging times such as the current Pandemic or during recessionary periods, adapting a more flexible attitude towards employment choices will be more beneficial to you in the short and long term. Firstly you will be earning money rather than not, secondly you will be keeping a consistent employment record on your CV/resume which always looks good to potential employers. If you are not working at present you can be as flexible as you please and consider a wide range of options either short or long term. While you are working you are also inadvertently networking, so why not go with a short term opportunity, it can open many doors to your future. If you are working and seeking a change, you could look at internal opportunities in a promotional or sideways move.
Who Can Help You
Contact former colleagues and bosses and tell all your friends and family you are looking for work, ask for referrals and if they know of any opportunities that you can apply or be considered for. There are always people who are willing to help and there are many Employers who will “ask around” for recommendations when they are hiring before advertising and or engaging a Recruiter. Stay connected with individuals who can potentially assist you. If you currently work for a large organisation, ask your current employers / Managers if there are opportunities / openings you can be considered for.
Take Care of Yourself
If you have more free time because you are not working, take some of that time for yourself, stay positive and focused, eat and sleep well and do some activities each day that you enjoy. Remember all the positive achievements from the past both professional and personal and the possibilities of lots of future successes. This could also be a great time for you to give some of your free time to help others who are in need and would greatly welcome your assistance no matter how small. Small acts of kindness can be very rewarding to you and also to those you are assisting and you may find they come back to you tenfold!
Good luck with your search!
To view our list of both remote and non-remote job vacancies please visit our Jobs Section.