The last few months have seen huge changes in the way that we behave and act. While this has been challenging, here in Ireland we are starting to see the reward for adapting to these changes as we gradually get back to some semblance of normality. We still have a long way to go though, and there are still many challenges to overcome.
Thousands of people have returned to employment since the start of this month but the unemployment rate is still around 26%. This makes the jobs market more competitive than it has been for years. So while more people search for work how do you make sure you stand out from the crowd. The recruitment process has changed in the last few months to facilitate Social Distancing and other guidelines.
Where to Look
Challenges bring opportunities and some businesses have seen demand increase and new opportunities arise. This has led to the creation of new positions. Knowing who is taking on new projects is key to knowing where to apply to. Using a recruitment agency will help you here as they will know what Business is keeping busy in these changing times.
You could use this time as an opportunity to prepare for entering the job market. Take time to look at your CV and how you could improve it. With more job applicants than ever, it is vital that you have a CV that sells you as the best person for the job. If you are unsure about this it might be worth seeking help. The same goes for your LinkedIn profile. Make sure your profile is up to date and gives as much depth as your CV would. If you haven’t joined LinkedIn yet than now is the time to set up your account.
One of the main changes is the interview process. When you went to interviews, you probably got dressed up went to the interview, and shook hands with your interviewer. Now, most interviews are being held online. Those Zoom Quizzes you have been doing the past few months might just help you to get your next job. If you are invited to interview on a video conferencing platform make sure you are familiar with the platform. Knowing what you’re doing is going to be key to being on time and also make you feel more relaxed and confident going into your interview. If you haven’t been using any of these platforms maybe it’s time to organise a video call with some friends.
Online Video interviews can also feel less formal but that doesn’t mean you should not dress to impress. Making the effort to dress up is going to help you stand out better than those who don’t. Also, make sure to turn on your video. Showing your face will help to keep you in the interviewer's mind.
Some interviews are still being held face to face. If you are invited to one of these it is important to adhere to new guidelines. Some premises will require you to complete a risk assessment form prior to arriving for your interview. Employers are looking for someone who will adhere to new Social Distancing and hygiene norms. There will be no handshakes and you will have to sanitize on entering the premises. You may also have to wear a face mask for your interview. While it may add to the stress of the experience it is important you follow these new guidelines.
Standing Out From the Crowd
Patience is also more important than ever. There is a delay to the hiring process now as employers must take into account all risks associated with bringing new people into their business and how best to keep you and current staff safe. It is important you do not get frustrated by this as it may send the wrong message to your prospective employer. While being patient and adhering to guidelines may sound like common sense the will send the message to your future employer that you are responsible and that you have adapted to the new normal.
While patience is important you must also be proactive in your search. Make sure to only apply for positions for which you meet the requirements and are interested in. This will show that you have taken the time to read up on the job. If you haven’t heard anything after a week - follow up. When doing this make sure you know what position you have applied for and that you have read the job ad. This makes you look more proactive than other applicants and will help you stand out from the crowd.