Updated: Feb 9, 2021
Finding a new job is never easy, but finding jobs during COVID-19 has proven harder than ever for many discouraged job hunters. Marketplace has observed that in November 2020, only about half of the 22 million American jobs lost to the pandemic had been recovered. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 10 million Americans were looking for work in November 2020, up almost 5 million from February of the same year.
With more people looking for work and fewer jobs available, how can job searchers optimize their chances of finding a job during the pandemic?
1. Enhance your resume
With fewer jobs hiring during Covid, it’s more important than ever to make your resume as appealing as possible. Ensure your resume stands out from other applicants by highlighting your career trajectory and skills in an attractive and organized format. Fast Company notes that a study commissioned by TopResume “found that the most successful resumes achieve three critical goals: present a compelling career narrative, create visual balance, and illustrate a candidate’s value.”
2. Be prepared for remote interviews
Jobs hiring during COVID often ask applicants to take part in online interviews. Remote interviews require a different type of preparation from in-person interviews. Enterprisers Project reminds job hunters to look straight at the webcam when attempting to make eye contact; pick a professional background for your Zoom interview; and remember to wear suitable attire from top to bottom, just in case the online interviewer asks you to stand up!
3. Look outside your field towards industries that are hiring
Since jobs are in short supply, you may want to consider seeking jobs outside your area of expertise, even if just for a short time. Consider looking for work through remote and in-person jobs that are hiring during the pandemic.
According to Indeed, some of the most available jobs during COVID-19 include customer service representatives, warehouse distribution, grocery inventory and stocking and food delivery. By taking jobs unrelated to your original skill set, you may actually gain new and valuable skills you will be able to add to your resume.
4. Use a new direct-to-hire platform
A new hiring platform called GeekBidz invites candidates to rank their skills and then matches them right away with a position that best fits their skills for an on-the-job evaluation. This platform bypasses the traditional resume and interview process and ensures you will be matched with a job that fits your skills, so you won’t experience the stress of preparing for a Zoom interview, padding your resume, or looking outside your area of expertise. If you’re wondering how to find a job during COVID, why not try out this new job searching option?
5. Don’t forget informational interviews and networking
PBS notes, “Only a tiny fraction of jobs are found online (and some posted jobs may already have been filled).” Minimize your time on job search websites like Indeed or Monster.com and instead spend most of your time on networking and information interviews. Social media is a great way to network during COVID. Remember to keep your profile up-to-date on social networking sites, especially job networking sites like LinkedIn, and ‘like’ content from people in the same field or share content with your connections from time to time. The University of Washington reminds job seekers, “Even sharing the occasional helpful article or funny link can be enough to keep you top-of-mind with your network.”
Despite the diminished number of jobs during COVID-19, by spending a little extra
time presenting yourself as compellingly as possible and remembering
all the alternatives to the traditional job search, you can feel more confident that you
will stand out from the rest of the candidates and eventually be hired.