Most of us, at one point or another, will become unemployed and this year COVID-19 has cost millions of people worldwide to lose their jobs. In Ireland, while writing this article the unemployment rate had soared from just under 6% to just over 26%.
It’s often reported that it’s harder to find a job when unemployed but try not to slip into a rut of self-doubt or panic.
I specialise in recruiting HR professionals and after speaking with many HR candidates, I understand many are feeling like they’re going around in circles and getting nowhere.
Instead of getting frustrated and sending your CV to every company and for every role please step back and think about your approach.
Adjusting your outlook and approach can give you a fresh boost and hopefully land you your dream job.
In this blog, I’ll advise you on how you can stay motivated in such an uncertain time, what actions you will need to take and how best to job hunt when unemployed.
5 ways to get a job while unemployed
1. Try a recruitment agency
If you struggle to sell yourself on a CV or in job interviews you should chat to a recruiter. In essence, that’s what recruiters are paid to do.
Agencies actively search for a suitable role on your behalf and can find you a job quicker, as a good recruiter will have strong relationships with many clients who may be your future employer. If you have a good relationship with a recruiter they can represent you effectively and often influence employers by selling your profile.
Agencies also advise on how to improve your CV, tips on interview skills and can suggest job openings you might not have considered. You will gain tips and tricks you can carry away with you for the rest of your employment life.
2. Go beyond job listings
Sick and tired of sending your CV to every job advertised on job boards and hearing nothing back and then seeing it reposted repeatedly? Go beyond them.
I am not saying to completely abandon job listings. Keep an eye on them, but if you see a good few positions going at a great company but no roles advertised suit you, send them a CV and cover letter anyway.
Sell yourself. You may be pleasantly surprised with the result.
3. Have a strong LinkedIn profile
Employers and recruiters often compare CVS’s to LinkedIn profiles. If you don’t have a good online presence your application may be discarded.
The main reason this would happen is the employer may think you aren’t up to speed with technology or you are hiding something.
Also, by keeping an up to date LinkedIn profile you may be spotted by recruiters and the jobs will come to you. Make sure to set your profile to “open to opportunities” and use suitable keywords in your profile. Recruiters often use this to search for suitable job seekers. LinkedIn is also a great way to build your network by posting relevant content and getting involved in discussions.
4. Employers don’t like CV gaps- so fill them!
Unfortunately, gaps don’t look great on a CV, but at the moment they’re harder to avoid. So be constructive with your time. Learn something new, volunteer with your preferred charity or attend online events (at the moment there’s plenty of free online events.)
We should all be constantly improving ourselves, employed or unemployed. Technology is constantly changing, so we need to move with this change and learn new skills.
During this pandemic, many online courses have been heavily discounted or made free (check out this list of free digital marketing courses.) There is no excuse not to, especially with all the extra time we have.
5. Network online
Networking online will help you develop your skill set, stay on top of the latest trends, meet potential employers and gain access to resources that will help with your career growth.
If you are unemployed as a result of COVID-19 why not get in touch with people you used to know in the past. Use LinkedIn and Facebook/Instagram to find people you know.
I am not saying your network members will be people who will or can even hire you. But they may know people who can hire you now or soon. Get out there and make it know you’re open to job offers.
If you follow these 5 ways in overcoming unemployment and stay motivated, keep working hard and applying for jobs, you will be working in your dream job soon.