As we continue to make our way through this pandemic and economic crisis (talk about double whammy), it becomes even more important than ever to have a regular check in with where ‘you’re at’ and to ensure that you’re doing all you can to help keep things moving in the right direction for you.
The scary thing is that many people are finding themselves back on the job market for the first time in many years, in some cases even up to a decade, and that can be a frightening thing. It’s a bit like returning to dating after being in a long term relationship, you’re aware that a lot has changed and how you do things now can be different from what you used to do back then.
That can be confronting and can have an impact on your mental wellness and on your relationships with those close to you. Most people don’t like change at the best of times and even more so when it is thrust upon them during times of even greater uncertainty.
Even recruitment has changed significantly over the past few years. In the past, there was talk about a box of cards with names on it and they would phone. During my time in recruitment, it has been all about databases and sifting through CV’s. In more recent times, it has been more about ‘being found’ and having the right sales tools that attract the right people to you.
It certainly has taken on a more ‘networking’ edge, which is part of the reason why we set up our regular virtual meet ups so that people can have a ‘tribe’ to check in with each week and to do something proactive with this current forced downtime.
Here are some of my tips to help you during this time and to ensure that you’re sticking to the plan.
Make sure people can find you
If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, invest some time in getting one up and running. Just like your CV, make sure that you have in your profile how you measured success within your role and what achievements you had during your time there. Make sure you use lots of searchable keywords in your profile. Make sure you put a bit of ‘who you are’ in there too; it is your profile after all so inject a bit of your personality in there and be authentic.
Side note, you might benefit from watching a replay of our recent virtual meetup presentation on transforming your CV by Em Pescott.
Do you know where you’re going to?
What kind of roles do you have in mind next? Is it a step up or a step sideways? What skills are missing for you at the moment that you would need in order to achieve that? What upskilling can you do right now to help close those gaps? Do you know anyone in those roles who might be able to ask advice on how to land in those roles? The more you do to close the gap between where you are now and where you want to go, the easier it will be when those opportunities start to come up again.
When there is an economic downturn, you need to consider the different avenues you might take to apply for roles. You can obviously apply for jobs directly through job boards and through LinkedIn, you can align yourself with a recruiter to explore if they can get you in front of the right decision makers within organisations, and you can network to establish new relationships as well. Many organisations are going to have in house HR and recruiters as well, and while there is inevitably going to be a freeze on recruitment with many businesses now, it really is about exploring what opportunities might exist as we get closer to the other side of this pandemic.
Keep tabs on where you’re at
The one challenge with this is that you’re going to want to keep track of all the jobs you’ve applied for or businesses that you’re been in touch with. Keep track of all the details; if there has been a response and on what date. The last thing you want to do is appear vague about opportunities if a company should be in touch and having this resource on hand is going to help determine if you’re already in front of certain companies or not. This will particularly matter if you’re dealing with recruiters and in house recruitment teams.
Be open to being coached
If you struggle with putting together a CV or how to interview or any of those aspects of job hunting that might make you feel uncomfortable, be open to being coached. There are several job coaches out there and their time could help take a CV that isn’t doing you favours into something that has people knocking on your door. Even chatting with one of your friendly Creative Recruiter’s team may help in this regard.
As I mentioned earlier, networking is a great way for you to be able to meet new people and to offer some insight into your experience, wisdom and knowledge. At Creative Recruiters, we host a regular weekly Virtual MeetUp that has a different topic each week. Most recently, we’ve looked at topics as diverse as mental and physical health through maintaining creativity in isolation, your personal brand style guide and transforming your CV. If you’ve missed any of these, you can find them listed on our blog or on our Youtube page, and you’re more than welcome to join future meetups by registering your interest here. You may also be interested in our Facebook Group that has been set up specifically for these Virtual Meetups.
Coming up next, we’re offering ‘The Naked Recruiter’ where we’ll be answering any questions that you might have about how recruiters do their jobs. Wondering how they determine who gets shortlisted and who doesn’t? What is this thing called ‘floating’? How does a recruiter actually make their money? What you can do to help increase your chances of a recruiter taking notice of you? Come along with your questions or if they’re ones that you don’t want to ask in person, feel free to email me on firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll answer them for you.