The writing is on the wall. The post COVID-19 economy is likely to be hit by recession resulting in a massive loss of jobs. So how will you navigate these uncertain times? Let’s find out.
COVID-19 has brought the world to its knees. Not only has it caused a health scare among millions of people sending countries across the world into a complete lockdown to contain the virus, but experts believe that it’s going to bring in its wake a recession that will last more than a few months. The pandemic has dealt a huge blow to the economy and more so to certain segments like the travel industry. Many companies that can’t afford to let their employees work from home will shut shop and retrench their workers. If what the analysts predict is indeed going to be true, then finding a job in a recession will be nothing short of a challenge. Taking the following steps can help you ready an action plan:
1. Be Selective:
While the job hunting process may make you feel like all your job applications are landing in a black hole with calls from recruiters nowhere in sight, remember to be selective about the jobs you apply for. In a recession, it’s prudent to apply for jobs only in companies that you actually want to work for. Most job seekers spread themselves too thin by blindly applying to companies. By being selective about the companies and jobs you are applying to, you will surely stand out from the rest of the mediocre applications.
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2. Choose Your Industry Wisely:
The reason behind your job loss could be that the industry that you were in earlier wasn’t doing well. At a time like this when jobs are hard to come by, look for industries/companies that have been doing well in spite of recession. Before applying to a company, take a look at its financials to gauge how well it’s doing. For instance, food delivery startups or those in the ed-tech space are doing well these days.
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3. Explore Options Outside Your Comfort Zone:
Tough times are all about making tough choices and sometimes this could mean stepping out of your comfort zone. This may not entail just switching companies or industries but even moving your entire life to a new geography. If you’re experienced in sales or business development, you could also consider moving into roles that will tap into your deep product knowledge expertise like product management.
4. Use A Multi-Channel Approach:
While scouting for job opportunities, don’t just look at job boards. Attend job fairs; while deciding if the job is right for you, reach out to the hiring manager to clarify any concerns that you may have with the job responsibilities. You could even reach out to your school and college alumni networks to stay in the know of interesting job opportunities. Keep an eye out on your LinkedIn feed to come across opportunities that your first degree and second degree connections might post about.
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5. Customise Your CV:
Once you’ve narrowed down the jobs and companies that you’d like to apply for, do not use the same CV for all the shortlisted jobs. Take a look at the job description of all the shortlisted roles, and tailor your CV to highlight skills and experience relevant for each role.
6. Invest In Relationships:
While job-hunting, one thing to bear in mind is that you have to look beyond just the mechanical process of job-hunting. Take out time to build relationships with people in your network and not just when you need to tap into them. When you’re on the look out for a job, connect opportunities with people in your network who maybe in need of them. Your network will pay you back in kind. Once you join a new job, keep the opportunity and relationships warm for a few months until you’ve settled into your new job.
While you’re keeping these pointers in mind in your job search, remember to also prepare yourself financially. It may take you a few months or even years to get a new job during recession, that’s why it’s crucial that you have an emergency fund in place. An emergency fund will help you pay your bills and allow you to maintain to some degree your existing lifestyle. Also, ensure you have a comprehensive Health Insurance policy for you and your family so that your savings don’t get wiped out during a medical emergency. Remember that your company-sponsored Health Insurance won’t hold good once you’ve exited the organisation.
Job search can be exhausting but the key is to not lose hope and keep trying. All the best!