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How to find a job during a pandemic
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How to find a job during a pandemic

Written by Anke De Bleecker on 15 April 2020 for Tech Graduates

If you’re approaching graduation or are on the lookout for a new challenge, the coronavirus pandemic may have got you wondering, “Should I even bother looking for a job with all of this going on?” Well, the good news is that while hiring in general may have slowed down, the tech sector remains rather robust.

In this blogpost, we’ll show you how to jumpstart your career in these uncertain times and give you our ultimate job-hunting tips for landing a job during a pandemic.

How to find a job during a pandemic

Adopt an abundance mindset

Don’t let fear cloud your judgment and make you believe that there aren’t jobs out there – there definitely are! The demand for talented tech grads and professionals is (and will remain) strong and you just need to focus on finding the right opportunities.

This type of positive thinking is known as adopting an ‘abundance mindset’. It’s all about choosing hope over fear, being optimistic and believing that your ideal tech role is out there just waiting to be discovered!

Quality over quantity

With more people than ever trapped at home and seeking refuge online. Some online dating sites have reported a 500 percent increase in their user rates over the past two weeks alone. So the demand for developers, analysts and other key IT workers has remained strong (and not only over at Tinder).

 

But just because job openings are popping up left right and center doesn’t mean that you should ‘scattershot’ your job applications and apply for as many jobs as possible. Be smart and use your time wisely. Find openings that align with your skills, qualifications and career goals and spend time crafting optimized applications. This strategy helps you put across the best version of yourself and increases the chances of landing a role that fit with your talents and ambition.

Make authentic connections

What happens when thousands of CEOs, CTOs, middle managers and hiring managers are forced to stay home? Career-oriented networking platforms like LinkedIn start popping off even more. Data shows that conversation activity on these sites has risen by 55 percent since the start of the pandemic. Now is the absolute best time to kickstart your job hunt by boosting your digital presence and leaning into online networking.

Reaching out and making authentic connections helps you tap into a goldmine of advice and job opportunities, while still respecting social distancing. Start by updating your profile or creating one if you haven’t done so already. Then look for professional groups to join and start messaging people, joining discussions and sharing relevant content. If you’re new to LinkedIn, it might be helpful to check out our LinkedIn starter’s guide.

LinkedIn starter’s guide for graduates - Social share image

Leverage opportunities

“In the midst of every crisis, lies great opportunity,” is what Albert Einstein once said. Whether or not that’s true, in a few crucial ways, the pandemic has made it easier than ever to find opportunities in the tech sector.

The health crisis for example has shone a spotlight on opportunities in desperate need of applicants. LinkedIn has made some of its recruitment tools free for essential services such as healthcare, supermarkets, warehousing, freight delivery, and nonprofits. It even has an ‘urgent jobs’ board that aligns candidates with opportunities.

Regularly using these tools and checking job boards will highlight a wealth of suitable tech roles that may fit your skills and career goals.

Be flexible (and prepared)

Many companies are grappling with uncertainty over what the pandemic will mean for businesses over the coming months. You may find that many firm’s hiring processes have slowed down and phone and video interviews have become the norm. However, if you’re willing to be flexible, you can turn this to your advantage.

Set up your voicemail with a professional greeting and prepare a quiet setting with a neutral background and good lighting for video interviews. Make sure your camera and audio settings are top-notch and you can easily be seen and heard. This way, you’ll have all your bases covered. No matter whether a company wants to invite you in, or interview you remotely via phone or video conferencing, you’ll be ready.

If you want to read some more tips on how to ace your virtual job interview, then this blogpost is definitely one for you!

How to prepare for a job interview through Skype - Social share image

Be persistent

One downside of the pandemic is that slower hiring processes may mean slower follow-ups to applications and sluggish interview callbacks. This is where being persistent can pay dividends.

Show employers that you’re keen and don’t be afraid to follow-up. If a particular company isn’t hiring now, check back in a month or two. Connect with HR managers working in companies you’re interested in via LinkedIn and use the platform to keep in touch with them. That way, if and when an opportunity arises, you’ll be one of the first candidates on their list.

Bolster your skills

Depending on your skills, qualifications and career goals, you may find that the pandemic lengthens your job hunt. Venture-backed startups, both large and small, are cutting headcount as the pandemic strains finances, meaning competition can be fierce. So, what can you do?

Well, if you have yet to graduate and have the time, why not boost your skills and qualifications? Dig deep into job descriptions, see what skills are required and work on acquiring them. Take an online certification or learn a new skill so that when the market does pick up again, you’ll be ready.

The pandemic actually makes this easier than ever – many companies have made their online tools temporarily free. Pluralsight, for instance, has made their 7,000+ expert-led video courses free all April so you can build in-demand tech skills without leaving your home!

Click here for a full list of training platform we, at Exellys, love to use.

5 learning platforms to sharpen your skills while staying at home - Social share image

Plan your next steps

We hope these tips come in handy and wish you good luck with your job hunt! Finding a job during a pandemic isn’t easy, but it is still possible if you stay positive and find ways to stand out. And by the way, the companies we work with are still hiring, so have a look at our job page or get in touch with us.

About Exellys

Exellys is a Tech Talent Incubator.

We match ambitious companies with the finest tech talent.

Are you ready to drive the innovations of tomorrow? Ready to make an impact and become a future-fit digital leader?

Whether you are a graduate or (young) professional, Exellys will unlock your full potential by guiding you to a challenging work environment that perfectly matches your personality, expectations and ambitions.

On top of that, you are enrolled in one of our very own training and coaching programs. This means that, while working as an Exellys consultant, we are helping you to bridge your ambition to excellence.

Through intensive training and coaching, you’ll gain the essential skills, competencies and knowledge necessary to become the highly effective professional you aim to be.

Become an Exellyst and get in touch with us today!