By Perminus Wainaina
At the beginning of this year, Emmanuel, a finance professional with over 4 years of experience had decided that changing jobs would be the best option for him. He felt that he needed to grow professionally.
In March, when the pandemic hit, his employer was affected, and consequently, as an employee, he had to take a 50% pay cut. This pushed Emmanuel to start applying for other jobs. In May, he was sent on indefinite unpaid leave.
To date, none of his applications have been successful. He approached me frustrated and wanted to know what he could do differently.
With the current job market being at an all-time low and many professionals facing layoffs and salary cuts, can your job search be successful?
Truth is, although hiring has significantly slowed down in the past few months, there are still companies that are hiring!
With the supply of jobs lesser than the demand, the situation has created stiff competition for professionals to stand out and ultimately secure a job.
Whether you are looking for a job or looking for a promotion in your career during this time, it is important that you align yourself in a way that makes you stand out from the rest of the competition.
Regardless of the profession you are in, here are guaranteed techniques you can start using to stay ahead of the competition.
1. Have a focused job search strategy
Focus on applying for jobs that are relevant to your experience.
One of the most common mistakes job seekers make is applying for each job they come across without checking whether it is relevant. This will only take up more of your time and give you fewer results.
Take time and narrow down your job search to specific companies actively hiring now, and whether you possess the skills required. This way, you will be able to focus on the things that will help you get better results.
2. Revamp your CV
Use this time to revamp your CV with a fresh approach, where you give more focus on highlighting your skills and accomplishments.
What will ultimately make you stand out from the rest, is how you highlight your growth as a learner and a performer.
Talk about your short-term achievements related to projects done in previous organizations. You can also highlight transferable skills much needed in any employee during these times.
Show how you can be an asset to the company and are flexible to adapt to different work requirements.
Also, always remember to customize your CV for each job application. Go through the job description carefully and understand what the employer is looking out for in a candidate.
If unsure of whether your CV contains what is expected, you can get a free CV review from CV writing professionals.
3. Take online courses
Learning new skills adds value to your CV.
Employers always prefer job seekers who are keen to learn new things and can fit into different job roles.
If you find it difficult to decide which course you should go for, there is a simple way to do so.
Go through the job descriptions by your preferred roles and see what skills and qualities they are looking out for in their candidates.
This will give you a clear idea about what skills are in-demand and enable you to choose the course accordingly.
4. Prepare for virtual interviews
Amidst the ongoing crisis, more and more companies are conducting virtual interviews to hire candidates.
This is the time for you to understand how to ace your virtual interview. Dressing appropriately is still important like you do for a face-to-face interview. Keep your background clutter-free and check the internet connectivity to avoid any issues.
To help you prepare for the interview, you can consult an interview coach too.
No one can confirm when the job market will be back in its shape and how many new job opportunities will arise in the coming months. Therefore, it is important to keep your job search on and in the right direction.
Keep looking through available job vacancies and apply for those you qualify for.
All the best!N.B: Would you like us to consider you for a job opening? Boost your job search. Upload Your CV Here. It's FREE