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Tips for Jobseekers During and Beyond a Pandemic

Updated: Aug 30, 2022

During a time of uncertainty like today, companies are expressing their struggles to survive, parts of our social circle are sharing their retrenchment concerns, and media outlets are providing predictions/statistics that are (to say the least) anxiety-inducing. Job hunting has never been more competitive and taxing. This week, we are talking about some tips for jobseekers during and beyond this pandemic.

Stand Out

Proactiveness has always been a key to becoming a successful candidate. With the dramatic changes in our social and business conduct, just sending a resume and cover letter or making a phone call is not cutting through. Candidates must be more proactive and put in more effort to connect and build rapport. Try to include a unique portfolio that encompasses relevant details that your recruiters/interviewers may need. For example, a short professional video of yourself to introduce/past projects and experiences. It takes more effort, but if done well, it will help you to stand out!

Be Agile & Flexible

Adaptability is a critical quality to possess, especially in the ever-changing business landscape caused by the pandemic. The existing employees are perhaps being spread thin and competition among job seekers is intensifying, candidates who cannot be understanding & adaptable are less likely to get an offer.

With the current situation, remember that salaries may not be as competitive as they have been in recent years, so tread carefully when approaching compensation/benefits discussions.

Be Clear about Yourself, Your Goal, & Aspirations

Before you hit that apply button, try to reflect on your strength/opportunity, and plan out your career goal as well as aspirations. Stick to your goals and aspirations when you are screening through the openings in the current market. Apply to only those jobs where you fully understand the role’s requirements and feel you’re uniquely positioned to stand out as a strong candidate. Nothing is more promising than driven candidates who are taking steps towards their personal goals!

Prepare, Prepare, & Prepare!

Virtual or not, interviews remain a filtering tool for companies in their hiring process. Take about thirty minutes of quiet time before the interview and refresh your knowledge about the company, industry, and relevant development/changes. Most importantly, take some time to be still with yourself, it will allow you to be certain with your answers throughout the interview. Trust us, interviewers will know if you are just trying to say what you think they want to hear.

Also be early to ensure a good level of visual, audio, and connection. We encourage you to do a test run of the virtual room on your device(s).

Do Not Wait

Some companies are rolling out pay cut and retrenchment policies, that might be the theme of conversations that you remember having recently. However, there are quite a lot of companies who are still (maybe slowly but still) actively hiring! Check out some of the industries that are still hiring in Malaysia. For those who are not employed/actively looking, be proactive to pick up your phone and call your recruiters/HR personnel, and spread the word that you are actively looking out.

This article is inspired by Joseph Liu's article on Forbes.

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