As a career coach, I've been seeing the same question come up over and over again: Can the coronavirus impact your ability to get a job?
The short answer is yes.
The coronavirus concern has been spreading like wildfire and it's causing some major issues for both employers, employees, and job seekers. Some companies are experiencing hiring freezes, alternative interviewing setups (i.e. video interviewing vs. face-to-face), and even layoffs as a result of this pandemic.
So, don't be surprised if you see hiring slow down over the next few months. In a time of such panic and uncertainty, some companies will shy away from adding to staff until things are back to normal.
As a job seeker, what do you do during a time like this? Do you temporarily pause your job search? Do you continue as if everything is normal?
Here are some tips for job hunting during this uncertain time.
1. Get Really Good At Virtual Interviewing
You'll likely have to do your first few interviews virtually, whether that means phone interviews, video interviews, or one-way interviews. So, be prepared because face-to-face interviews won't be as common for the next few months.
2. Focus On Your Personal Brand
Take this time to revamp your LinkedIn profile, resume, and cover letter strategy so it's easy for an employer to see your value quickly. Also, get SUPER clear on your professional specialty (or the "service" you provide as an employee).
Create a 2-3 sentence personal branding statement that clearly outlines what you do, how you do it and why, and what you're looking to do next. This will allow your brand to resonate with people in your network so they can pass along opportunities that are a great fit for you.
3. Start ACTUALLY Using LinkedIn
So many people are told they need to have a LinkedIn profile, but they don't actually use it once they sign up. LinkedIn is a great place to brand yourself for strategic opportunities. It can also act as a virtual Rolodex.
Reconnect with people who are already in your network, share content in your LinkedIn feed that support your professional specialty (this will help people remember what you do), and invite people who work at your target companies to connect.
All of these activities will allow you to build a foundation for your brand and network strategically (and intentionally).
Downturns will happen. Savvy job seekers know that they can still make things happen even when things are tough.
While hiring will be a little wonky for the next few months, you can still set yourself up for success as a job seeker by doing these activities. Just because companies aren't hiring now or have to layoff employees as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, doesn't mean they won't ever need to hire again. And, when they do, you want to be ready.
Stay healthy and productive, everyone!
If you've recently been laid off, fired, or furloughed, check out our FREE layoff checklist and masterclass to learn what you need to do in order to get back on your feet as soon as possible.
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