Inside: How to keep your job search on track when everyone is hunkering down and keeping their distance. Use these five strategies to keep moving your remote job search forward.
Let’s face it. No one wants to shake your hand right now.
No matter how much hand sanitizer you’re using, or how much Happy Birthday hand washing you’re doing, social distancing is the name of the game.
This is in no way to make light of coronavirus. This thing is for real and schools, companies, and communities are doing what they need to do to keep their most vulnerable constituents healthy. Which is smart.
But I do think it’s important to talk about how we can keep moving forward with other areas of our lives too, while being safe and conscientious of others.
One of those areas of life – your job search.
While this outbreak and the precautions companies are taking may slow you down a bit, it doesn’t mean you need to slam on the brakes. Instead, I have a list of five things you can do to keep your job search moving.
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5 Remote Job Search Strategies & Tips You Need Right Now
1. Keep Networking
Just because you’re probably not going to grab a coffee with a stranger in the next few weeks doesn’t mean you have to stop talking to people!
Sit down for 10 minutes and think about what you would like to learn more about in your job search. Would it be helpful to learn about a new industry? Want to know how someone built a career in a particular functional area? Jot down your thoughts and then start thinking about who could help you learn those things.
Start with your personal network and ask for introductions. Don’t be afraid of the cold email either! I’ve answered plenty of cold emails that have turned into new business partnerships, clients, and great connections.
Be smart about who you are reaching out to and when though. Certain companies are getting slammed right now. And if you’re reaching out to fellow working parents with kids at home? Maybe draft your email and then hit send in a couple of weeks.
Don’t know how to approach those networking conversations? Check out these tips on networking for introverts.
2. Do Your Research
Some industries are going to be more negatively impacted than others during the coronavirus outbreak and the aftermath.
For example, hospitality and travel are having a rough go.
Technology companies that are providing companies tools to make remote work more efficient? Well, they are doing just fine.
You may have a certain industry in mind for your job search, but think outside the box. What about that industry is most appealing to you? Could you find those themes in a different company or industry?
As you research what is going on in the market, expand your target list of companies to those that will likely not be pressing pause on their hiring. Consider which companies may actually need more help now and in the future as the world of work evolves.
3. Look for Remote Jobs
For some companies, switching over to remote work is a little tricky because they weren’t set up to do it. But for others, it’s been part of their culture for a while!
Those companies that are designed for remote work aren’t going to miss a beat with their hiring processes. In addition, there will be more companies testing out remote work out of necessity and, I predict, finding that remote work can be super effective! This could lead to more remote job opportunities in the future.
Where can you find those remote job opportunities?
Check out FlexJobs for a wide range of flexible and remote jobs.
4. Get Your Resume in Shape
Sure, some companies will be taking a beat on their hiring processes, but that doesn’t mean no one will be posting jobs or forging ahead with interviews. So use this time to make sure your resume is in good shape and ready for applications.
If you need some help with your resume, check out this article on the resume sections you need and how to structure your content, and then this article on your professional profile. You can also get a jumpstart by using my resume/cover letter/interview thank you note job application templates.
You should also use this time to make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date. Do you have an About section? Have you converted your URL to be https://www.linkedin.com/in/yourname instead of https://www.linkedin.com/in/yourname1234d74ir7?
These are just a couple of quick fixes that move your remote job search forward by making your profile more professional and searchable.
5. Practice Remote Interviewing
Remote interviewing isn’t new. I’ve interviewed candidates over Zoom well before the coronavirus and there will be plenty after this is over!
Video interviews are gaining popularity though because the technology has improved and conducting interviews remotely, at least for first-round interviews, can save a ton of time and resources.
So if you can expect to be doing some video interviewing, make sure you’re ready. Sign up for a free Zoom account so if someone says “can you do an interview over Zoom?” you don’t respond “huh?”
Then find a good spot in your home for both light and sound. You’ll want a nice spot where the interviewer can both hear and see you easily, and where you’re comfortable and look professional. Sitting on your bed is probably out.
I have found we don’t have the best lighting for video calls at certain times of day in my house. For one coaching appointment, I sat down to do a video call at my dining room table and realized that the afternoon sun was glaring right into my face so I had to do a quick shuffle into another room. If you have a lighting issue, you can solve for that with a ring lights which will give you that nice YouTube makeup tutorial lighting while you’re on the video call.
Are you feeling inspired to keep moving with your remote job search? Good!
Get on back out there, from the comfort of your home, and keep looking for that dream job.
And because if I don’t say it I’ll feel irresponsible, go wash your hands.