There is no denying that 2020 is going to be a year to remember because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It has had a huge impact on the job market and millions of people worldwide have lost their jobs. Since employment rates are expected to remain at record lows for many years to come, competition for jobs will probably be the fiercest anyone has ever seen.
What makes it worse is that to protect against a second wave of infections, and in the absence of a vaccine, we may soon need to resume lockdowns. So, how to find a job during lockdown is a question that many of us are asking.
Well, that is exactly what we are going to be looking at today. Whether you have lost your job or were already searching before the pandemic, there is a lot to learn and think about. The good news is that, by changing your mindset and approaching your search in a strategic way, you can drastically improve your chances of success. COVID-19 has really shaken up the job market but there is still hope and opportunity out there.
Simply Googling “how to find a job” is just going to result in information overload. So, to help make the road ahead easier we have compiled some tips to help you get started. Approaching your job hunt is going to be a little different these days but let’s look at everything you need to know when it comes to finding a job.
Focus on Short-Term Employment
Normally when asking yourself how you find a job, the rule is to think in the long term. You’re not likely to just walk into your dream job, it will take time to get there. But now during the pandemic, it’s important to think about the short-term as well.
That doesn’t mean you have to forget about your long-term goals, but they shouldn’t be your focus right now. Many industries like hospitality, construction, and travel are having no choice but to let people go in order to stay afloat.
So, instead of thinking about how you can get back into these industries or reach your main goal think about how your skills can help you find short term work in another industry. For example, if you previously worked in the construction industry in some capacity then you already have good teamwork, communication, and problem-solving skills. If you’d like a few more examples, be sure to read our article 14 Side Jobs to Help You Make Extra Income.
These are easily transferrable to other industries like retail, logistics, and manufacturing so, you should be excited to hear that companies like Amazon are urgently working to hire over one hundred thousand new employees across the world. Think about what skills you utilised and developed in your earlier role/s and then consider how they can benefit other industries this will give you a great starting point to help when it comes to looking for your next job.
Look for Opportunities in the Right Places
Many people who are asking themselves how they find a job during lockdown will be struggling to narrow down their search. It could seem like there are no jobs going anywhere but while larger locations will always have the advantage you will find jobs available in most cases if you focus on certain industries.
While it’s true COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on many industries, some have also needed to employ more people to keep running at optimal efficiency. For example, many supermarkets and nursing facilities have had to hire more people in order to ensure they can meet the larger demands they need to meet because of the pandemic.
Warehouses, as well as online retailers like Amazon, have also employed more people. So, there are opportunities out there that can help you get back to work. Many of these roles are temporary or fixed-term contracts but they can still be a tremendous help in the short-term when it comes to looking for work.
When it comes to looking at how do you find a job during COVID-19 you should take a more creative approach to your search. Knowing where to look is half of the battle. If you pay attention to the right trends, you’d notice that there has been a rise in freelance work and you might be able to use skills from your earlier job/s to help you find work.
For example, if you were a receptionist, assistant, or office manager, you can easily offer your skills on a remote or part-time basis. There are many freelance websites where you can get set up, but you can also use networking to help promote your skills to others as well.
If you have a hobby or an interesting talent, think about ways you might turn it into a short-term business. Perhaps you could offer lessons or earn money by posting videos on YouTube.
Beef up Your Skills
Building your skills is one of the best tips we can give you about how to get a job during a pandemic. While you’re at home, take online classes and get new certifications. Volunteer for interesting jobs even if they can’t pay you at first. You could gain useful experience that may help you get a better job, or you might even impress them enough to keep and start paying you.
Take online classes to brush up on existing skills or learn new skills that can be applied in industries that are hiring right now. This will help you speak about tangible capabilities that are relevant and useful for the skills being called for in the next job you pursue. You won’t struggle to find free online resources to help boost your skills.
Networking is More Important than Ever!
Speaking of networking it is now more important than ever when it comes to finding a job during COVID-19. Networking has always been important as it can help you find opportunities and increase your chances of getting an interview.
But now with many industries having fewer positions available a good word from someone can make a substantial difference when it comes to landing an interview. Networking will also help alert you when positions are available, and you may even be able to land some freelance work as well.
While networking is something many people struggle with it doesn’t have to be difficult. So, don’t overcomplicate things and remember networking is usually give and take. Start easily by reaching out to friends, family, old colleagues, and past employers with whom you have a good relationship. So, don’t just expect help or to be recommended think about how you can help others as well.
Look Great Online
Having a great resume is an absolute for any job that needs one. Make sure yours is error-free, fully updated, and customized for each job for which you send an application. Since you’re reading this far down the article, you’re looking for job opportunities that feel more like you were at the right place at the right time than you had the best resume of the bunch.
One way to increase the chances of this happening to you is to look amazing online. Start by reviewing your social media pages. Clean out things that an employer shouldn’t see. Check your privacy settings. Many employers will check your social media before hiring you, so make sure that you look hireable online.
If you keep a professional profile on platforms like LinkedIn or Umwuga, be sure to update your capabilities to add all the new and improved skills that you have gained while at home. Focus on developing and showcasing your brand to give employers a sense of who you are, what you’re great at doing, and what it would be like working with you.
Be Ready for an Odd Interview / Employment Process
If you do land an interview, then prepare for things to be different from the normal routine you might be used to. There is no set standard every organisation is doing things in their own unique way, but many are adopting a virtual interview process.
This doesn’t mean you should be lax though because many of the same rules apply. You should dress well for the interview, be in a well-lit room, and make sure your tech works before the call starts.
If you’re doing an over the phone interview instead then we recommend following the same advice even dressing up smart. Yes, you can’t be seen by dressing smartly will put you in the right mindset for the interview and help you feel more confident when talking.
While you might be nervous, the person interviewing you might be swamped, anxious, or similarly struggling at home. Show some empathy and ask how they are or whether their families and friends are safe. If you are one of several interviews, they are carrying out that day, your act of humanity and kindness might be the positive impression that sticks out in their mind.
How to Pay the Bills for Now?
We’ve been counting down our tips and advice to help you when you’re looking to find a job. But it’s important not to focus solely on getting your next job because it will take some time even with the best planning.
Therefore, before you do any job searching you should also seek out financial support. Many countries have set-up support schemes to help people who are unemployed to use the UK (United Kingdom) as an example you would need to apply for financial support through Universal Credit.
You can apply for this directly online and many other countries have similar support schemes in place to help people stay afloat. So, before searching for a job make sure you apply for financial support.
How Can We Help?
So, how do you find a job during COVID-19? This isn’t an easy question to answer but we hope our tips and advice have been some help to you to at least get you started with your search. At Umwuga we are a worker-first social network.
You can display your skills, experience, and reputation using Umwuga to help yourself stand out from the crowd and find your next job. Employers can also use Umwuga to help make hiring new employers much easier.
There are no fees or commissions with Umwuga it’s all about helping you find your next role! Our mission is to help people turn their talents into a new career and now more than ever our services could be a great help to you.