We make job-seeking during uncertain times easier with seven surprisingly simple steps.
As if looking for employment wasn’t enough of a challenge, a global pandemic certainly doesn’t help.
To date, the Government of Canada received 18.3 million applications for the CERB (Canadian Emergency Response Benefit) and although businesses and the economy are opening up, that number isn’t going down.
Whether you’re unemployed due to Covid-19 or looking for a new career during economic uncertainty, the coronavirus has impacted and changed the employment landscape. The Art of Resume’s following seven strategies not only work, they’ll help you find work, too!
Tell everyone you’re job-seeking
We were going to title this, Work in the Time of Coronavirus, a nod to Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s epic novel Love in the Time of Cholera, but hey, we couldn’t guarantee our blog could live up to a great literary work. However, like its protagonist who went to dramatic lengths to declare his undying love, you need to shout from the proverbial rooftops you’re looking for work. Leverage all your social networks-- online and close circles-- and now that we’re able to get haircuts, don’t stop short mentioning it to your stylist and others who connect with various people. To avoid a spoiler alert, let’s just say the character’s persistence paid off, so take note, which brings us to number two:
Follow-up with potential employers. Then do it again.
“The squeaky wheel gets the grease” is an old idiom but translates well to these modern times. The post-coronavirus job market is more saturated than before as people who were laid off due to Covid-19 seek employment. Be ‘squeaky’-- do the standard follow-up with an employer within 24 hours, but don’t be afraid to persist. We think a weekly or bi-weekly check-in is appropriate but use your discretion based on how HR replies to your follow-up. (For example, if they say this position is no longer available, a simple “please keep me in mind for the future” is a fair closing remark, and you can always circle back in a few months.)
Use a customized resume.
We believe a spiffy resume template makes employers sit up and take note, but there is more to it than just the aesthetic. Ensure your resume is error-free, honest and grammatically correct. A resume that stands out in a good way is a candidate that stands out in a good way.
Short employment gaps are more than ok.
If you were laid off due to Covid-19, you don’t need to mention this on your resume. If your work history ended around or after the pandemic lockdown began, understanding employers may fill in the gaps or ask at the interview stage. That said, don’t be afraid to acknowledge periods of unemployment in your cover letter and address it in the job interview. (Yes, you will get an interview. We believe in you!)
Show them how you are prepared for the new normal.
As a collective, we are doing what we can to slow down coronavirus spread and speed up economic recovery. Remember that employers are also uncertain during these times, so make them feel comfortable with you as their choice. In your cover letter, state how your plan to operate for this new time. Will you be required to work remotely? Mention you are prepared to work from home and are equipped to do so. In short, update your resume by showing how updated you are.
New Times, new opportunities.
There are now jobs we didn’t even know existed (who even heard of a ‘screener’ or ‘contact tracer’ a few months ago?) Look at other job postings that catch your fancy that you wouldn’t have thought have previously. Now is the perfect time to turn your hobby (that you’ve had plenty of time to perfect during lockdown) into a career. This changing world brings the benefit of change for you.
We know it’s easier said than done, but consider this. On a macro-level, we are showing how resilient we are as a society, on a micro-level, don’t forget you are resilient, too. These days, we hear the word “positive” and “coronavirus” and cringe from fear that we’re discussing test results. A positive outlook, on the other hand, is what will help you get through this and adapt to the new normal we speak of. The Art of Resume is here to help make the uncertainty of job-seeking during economic downturn easier on you, with professional resume template services, professional writing, and specialist advice.