As the vaccine rollout increases market confidence, we can start to expect some normalcy returning. With this new landscape, many people who lost their jobs during the shutdown will start looking for new positions. The post-COVID workforce may look a little different, however. That means that candidates need to do their homework before setting out on their job searches. So here are five key steps you’ll want to take.
Identify Your Job Skills
Highlighting your relevant job skills may seem like an obvious part of the hiring process, but there’s more to it than meets the eye. Making note of your skills and accomplishments is more than a list to dazzle future employers; it documents your impact and contributions. It’s a personal map that shows interviewers how far you’ve come, what tools you have readily available, and which direction is the best fit for you going forward.
It’s also a tool for you. When you see all that you have accomplished, you become more aware of the strengths you bring to the workplace. Let that be the flame that lights your way through the job-seeking process.
Perfect Your Resume
Your resume makes your first impression on a prospective employer. Creating a resume is a straightforward process that lists your work accomplishments. Still, it’s absolutely worth the effort to spend time crafting a unique, engaging, and succinct work history to snag that interview opportunity.
Using a resume builder can help you structure your document. Also, be sure to have someone check your work for typos. It’s hard to quantify how many applicants missed out on an opportunity because of brazen mistakes on their resumes, but you don’t have to be one of them! Finally, revise, edit, and then edit again. You may only have seconds to grab a reader’s attention.
Research the Job
Study the company, and then take it one step further by learning more about the position you’re applying for in particular. It can help you decide if the company or position is or isn’t a good fit for you. Have questions about how you might be encouraged to enhance the role. This research can also help you develop questions to ask during your interview about how you thrive in the new role.
In fact, the lack of interest or questions can be a dead giveaway about a candidate’s feelings toward the position. Trust me, employers want you to enjoy your new job. After all, the best outcome with an unhappy employee is them quitting. The worst is that they stick around and drag down the morale for an entire team!
Prepare for the Interview or Meeting
Unlike a resume, an interview is a more “on-the-spot” demonstration of personality and knowledge. How will you show your value and abilities with only a few questions? The difficulty with this step of the hiring process is that the self-promotion required by interviews makes some people feel uncomfortable.
Even so, when it comes to getting the job, hiring managers want people they can see themselves working with on a daily basis. That means it’s important to paint yourself in a flattering light while not seeming to be bragging. One great idea is to prepare some talking points that are applicable to a variety of questions. When talking about your past accomplishments, cite specific data and evidence. When you focus on the facts, you avoid the awkwardness of self-promotion and instead bring attention to the results you produce.
Negotiate the Offer
In the post-pandemic world, many businesses are operating in a very different way. Before accepting a job, make sure you are aware of any current “norms” that are subject to change or require additional support. For example, remote working might require you to provide systems and software to access the company’s information systems from home. Make sure you have the resources to complete the required tasks or have a plan to acquire them.
This is a negotiation, so be prepared for some give-and-take. Remember, while there’s no harm in making reasonable requests, conditions are still volatile for many employers. You may need to establish yourself in the role, and then renegotiate terms at a later date.
Many people have been struggling this year, emotionally and financially. It’s not always easy to remember your value during difficult times. But if you’re in the market for a job, take the time to critically assess your strengths and weaknesses. Then, you can market your strengths immediately, while you hone additional skills. Whether you feel very confident or a bit unsure, everyone benefits from being prepared before jumping into the job market.