When it’s Time to Start Your “Plan B” Job Search

When the pandemic hit, and lockdowns proliferated, companies began furloughs and layoffs. You lost your job. Since then you have been operating in job search mode, trying to find a position that will move you along in your career, work that fits the skills and talents you have acquired in your profession and that you find interesting and challenging.

Compton jobs

But it’s been several months with only a few nibbles. Will the situation improve? Who can say? As of early August there were more than 31 million people without a job. The future remains uncertain. It may be time to move from Plan A to Plan B in your job search.

Plan B is expanding the job search beyond those jobs and companies that you really want to a different type of position or even industry to give yourself more opportunity. Here is how to develop your Plan B.

  1. Define your optimal job

Your first task is to make a list of the characteristics that define your dream job. This will help to guide you as you expand your search.

Think about what the perfect job would be like for you – what would it pay, what kind of work-life balance would it offer, how stressful would it be, what would the company culture be like, what kind of flexibility would it offer?

Then think about your skills. List what hard skills you have, the kinds of abilities that are measurable, as well as the soft skills, things like communication skills, empathy, ability to work with others, problem solving.

Look at Plan B jobs with an eye for how they can help you eventually land a job that you really want. Look for connections between the two in terms of the types of skills they use. For example, if your ideal job is in advertising, you could also look for positions in related fields such as public relations or marketing, jobs that will enable you to gain skills that will help you to land a job in advertising.

You also should keep going after the Plan A jobs. Look at the job descriptions for different types of Plan A jobs to learn the kinds of skills these jobs require, so you can pick up these skills with Plan B jobs.

Also, see what type of training you can undergo to help gain the skills you need.

  1. Network

The importance of networking is common knowledge. It should be an integral part of your job search. Try to expand your network of contacts during your job search. The new people you reach out to may be able to give you insights into different industries, jobs you had not considered before, or companies you did not know about.

Talk to them about both your Plan A and Plan B goals. Ask for recommendations and advice or possible contacts at companies. Then work to expand your network by reaching out to these people online. When you talk to someone, always ask the person if there is anyone else you can talk to for information.

  1. Informational interviews

Informational interviews, as the name implies, are just for the purpose of gathering information. They are not job interviews. When you reach out to new contacts, ask them if they have a little time for an informational interview call or video talk. They may be able to give you worthwhile knowledge about companies and jobs.

Before you talk to a person, however, you should do some preparation. Learn as much as you can in advance about the person and their company, so you can ask intelligent questions. Draw up a list of questions beforehand as well to ensure you cover the topics you want.

  1. Consider temporary assignments

If you’ve yet to receive a job offer for the type of position you want in the industry you want and you’re getting worried about finances, consider working with a temporary staffing company such as Helpmates. Temporary work can help you keep some income coming in while you continue hustling for your Plan A position.

In fact, you may find that a temporary position with us becomes your Plan B: many temporary positions often do become regular, full-time opportunities.

Take a look at our current openings and application instructions. You also can register with the branch office nearest you.

 

Over 65 and Wondering if THIS is the Time to Retire? You’re Not Alone.

If you’re nearing retirement age, you’ve probably wondered: “Is THIS the time to cut the employment cord and retire?”

If so, you’re definitely not alone: even people who haven’t yet reached “full retirement age” (which is about age 66 now, depending on your year of birth) have been thinking of taking early retirement (if they’re at least age 62) or simply calling it quits if they can rely on a younger spouse’s income (or if they feel they’ve enough money saved).

Irvine jobs

The main reasons why your age cohort members are thinking this are two:

  • They’ve either been laid off and can’t find work and/or,
  • They’re worried about getting infected by the novel coronavirus and becoming severely ill with COVID-19 if they return to/continue working outside the home.

If you’re thinking of retiring now, some facts:

Additional news you really do need to know…

Let’s say you’re worried about catching the virus because people older than age 65 do tend to be at greater risk for a more pronounced COVID-19 illness. Let’s also say your employer closed its physical location(s) and you’ve been working at home for the last few months, or you’ve been furloughed and haven’t been working at all. But now your employer says its reopening and calls you back on-site. You decide to ask if you can stay at home due to the risk factor.

Unfortunately, your employer is under no obligation to accommodate you under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. (It does have a duty to accommodate you if you’re already covered under the ADA, however.) If you refuse to come in, your employer could let you go and because you “quit voluntarily” you’re probably not eligible for unemployment benefits. (There might be exceptions if your job site “is truly unsafe,” according to the link just provided.)

Of course, if you’ve already been working at home, you always can ask your employer if you can continue to do so.

Not an easy decision (and there’s an understatement)

Unfortunately, for many older workers the pandemic has changed their planned for (hoped for?) retirement schedule. Choosing to retire is not a decision to make quickly; it’s best to sit down (with your partner, if applicable) and crunch some numbers.

If you are an older worker and are looking for work, take a look at our temporary, contract-to-hire and direct-hire opportunities. If one or more appeal to you, either contact the Helpmates’ branch office nearest you or follow the listing’s application instructions.

Staying Motivated During Your Job Search While in a – Hello! – Freaking Pandemic!

We don’t have to tell you that it’s rough out there: about 31.8 million plus folks are out of work nationwide (as of early July).  In fact, Los Angeles County itself had an unemployment rate of 19.4 percent in June.

So it’s understandable that, if you’ve been looking for work for two or three months, that your job search motivation might be, shall we say, “lagging” a bit.

Yes, it’s rough, but if there’s one thing to focus on, it’s this:

Anaheim recruiters

You are a job seeker of one. There’s one of you; you need just one job. Don’t worry about ALL the other people applying to the jobs available. Instead, focus just on getting the job you need.

That said, even if you’ve been looking for work for weeks with no luck, even if you feel beaten down and just can’t bear to look at a job board ever again, let alone send in an application, you definitely can get your motivation back. Here’s how.

Set short-term goals

You’ve done tough things in your past. Perhaps you’ve:

  • Given birth/gone through labor
  • Run a marathon
  • Lost 50 pounds
  • Saved up money for a new laptop (rather than put it on a credit card)

What do those things have in common? They were relatively short-lived and you looked forward to a specific outcome when you finished them. You knew “the end” was coming.

Looking for work, on the other hand, has no set timeline. You don’t know when “the end” will come. You have a goal – get a new job – but it has no set endpoint that you can control.

So set short-term goals. Goals such as:

  • You will reach out to 15 people by Friday.
  • You will apply to 15 jobs by Friday. (This is a different goal than the one above because reaching out to people is different than applying for jobs. In addition, you will tweak your resume/cover letter to be specific to each position to which you’re applying.)
  • You will post at least one comment on the LinkedIn groups to which you belong by Friday.
  • And so on.

Give yourself rewards for meeting each goal.

And we do mean EACH goal! Looking for work is hard (as you well know). It’s definitely “not fun” (putting it lightly). You definitely should celebrate when you reach a goal. You truly deserve it!

Focus on processes, not results

Your goals shouldn’t be, “I’ll get a job by the end of September.” “I’ll get 2 interviews a week in August.” Why shouldn’t you make these types of goals? Because you have no control over whether the goal will “be met.” (For example, you have no control on whether a hiring manager will call you in for an interview.) Instead, focus on what you can control: the process. Send out X resumes a week. Reach out to X people per week. And so on. Work the process and the process will work for you.

Keep looking and you WILL land a job!

It’s amazing what consistently “working the process” does when it comes to just about anything (weight loss, exercise, learning a new skill, etc.). It’s the same with the job search, no matter what the “conditions” are surrounding your efforts, setting small, process-focused goals – and meeting them – will help you get your job-search mojo back and land you a job sooner than you may think.

Helpmates has several job opportunities available right now and many of them need people to start working immediately. Take a look at our current openings and follow the instructions for applying to the ones that interest you.

The Skills in Demand in a Post-COVID World

The Skills in Demand in a Post-COVID World

While the COVID-19 pandemic has changed pretty much everything in our world in these past three or four months, one thing that remains the same – in many ways – are the skills employers will be looking for now and for the foreseeable future.

One would think that since so much has changed, so would desired job skills. But that’s not really the case.  What’s more, most don’t even require learning new skills; you probably already possess one or more them. (And what a relief that is!)

A few in-demand skills include:

  • Creativity, out-of-the-box thinking, an innovative mind-set.

Fullerton jobs

No schooling needed for this in-demand skill! Companies that were able to adapt to the new business reality have survived with relative ease compared to their competitors.

For example, restaurants that saw the opportunity in take-out/delivery services now certainly have a leg up as the economy reopens than do their competitors who completely shuttered.

An even better example? Mercedes-AMG-HPP moved quickly from making automobiles to making ventilators.

If you’re the type of person who sees opportunity in a challenge, who likes solving problems in new ways, and if you can show this trait to employers, you’ll be a stand-out compared to other candidates.

  • Emotional intelligence.

Most of us are, well, not ourselves right now.  Anxiety. Worry about our own and loved ones’ health. Fear about finding a good job. SO MUCH STRESS!

Candidates who have the ability to “read” others’ emotions and deal with them in caring ways are always in demand, yet especially so now.

  • Leadership.

This actually is related to emotional intelligence in that the best leaders usually possess it in spades. And if ever employers needed workers with leadership mindsets, it’s now. And you don’t have to be in management to let your leadership skills shine. Instead, anyone who can inspire co-workers, lead teammates in a collaboration project, etc. is going to be highly desirable to employers.

  • Digital skills, including coding.

Digital skills have become even more critical during the pandemic as many people have started working remotely, on computers.

Coding, in fact, is a highly desirable skill set, one that pays very well (high five figures is common).

If you don’t yet have digital skills, you can get them via credentialing online certification programs, many of which are offered by California colleges and universities. UC Berkeley has an online extension program in coding, for example, open to anyone anywhere in the world. Some coding experience is helpful but not necessary.

Put your current leadership, emotional intelligence and creative thinking skills to work now by taking a look at Helpmates’ current job opportunities. If one or more of them look interesting to you, follow the posting’s application instructions or contact the Helpmates branch nearest you for more information.

Resume Rules for the 2020s

Technology has made work more complicated because it requires more sophisticated job skills. It’s also made looking for work more complicated because it takes longer to explain exactly what we accomplished and how.

Whittier jobs

Plus, many recruiters and HR professionals now use technology that screens resumes for certain keywords, keywords that are supposed to show a candidate has the needed experience and know-how to do the job.

Submitted resumes tend to head first to a company’s recruitment database, allowing recruiters to find several candidates with the exact skills they’re looking for in mere seconds.

And, with the pandemic making it even harder to look for work, now what?

Here’s what:

Resume Rules for the 2020s

  • Focus!

Your resume needs to be as focused as possible on the particular job to which you’re applying. Does that mean you’ll need to change up the resume for every job? Yes!

Don’t worry, you won’t need to do a complete re-write; but you do need to re-work it so that you clearly showcase the skills and background you possess that the job description requests.

  • Create a resume that speaks to both the computer algorithm’s and the recruiters/hiring manager’s needs.

How to do so? Make the resume’s first page all about the position’s needs, such as skills and education/experience background. Doing so will help it rank higher in the recruiter’s search results because the keywords that describe your job skills and education, etc., often are the same keywords the company’s computer looks for.

You also should have a descriptive phrase at the beginning of that first page that “tells a story” about how you can do the job.

Doing so helps draw the recruiter in and helps make the argument that your resume is one to look at, thus encouraging the recruiter to read your resume carefully.

  • The “resumes should be one-page only, unless you have a LOT of experience” rule really no longer applies.

Not that you should pack everything into your resume. No. But if you have a lot of experience that’s applicable to the job opening and you can stay focused on showcasing how that experience and skills applies to this job (and you edit that experience tightly), a two- or even three-page resume should be fine.

Here’s why: leaving out relevant keywords and information could mean the database algorithm misses your resume and you’ll thus have less of a chance of it being read and – most importantly – “selling” whoever reads it on your skills.

Don’t worry: recruiters are happy to read “long” resumes…so long as they provide value.

Bottom line: the key to resume success in 2020 is to include appropriate keywords AND making it easy for a recruiter/hiring manager to see how you’ll provide value and help the company solve the problems the position is supposed to solve.

Most people don’t know how to do this. But you now do. So move ahead: create a resume that does that and you’ll have a leg up on other people applying for the same position!

Helpmates always is looking for great people to work on assignment with our clients. Take a look at our current opportunities and, if one or more look interesting, follow the listing’s instructions to apply.

 

Using Your Layoff to Change Careers

If you’re among the 40 million-plus people in the U.S. who have been laid off or furloughed by your employer, you may be thinking that if ever there was a good time to change careers, this might be it.

Cerritos careers

And you could be right.

Could be, because deciding to change careers is such a big, life-altering move that it’s definitely not something you should undertake impulsively. This is especially so if the main reason you’re making the switch is because of the trauma of your job loss.

However, if you’ve been deeply unhappy with your career choice for months or years, this time could be the push you’ve needed to take a new plunge.

Career-change strategies during a pandemic

If you’ve looked deeply into your reasons for wanting a change and have decided to go for it, here’s a step-by-step plan to help you successfully transform your life.

  1. If you haven’t yet decided what career you want to pursue, do some soul-searching.

What do you dislike about your current career? We don’t mean about your current (past) job, but the career itself. For example, perhaps you don’t like your co-workers. You will have unlikeable co-workers wherever you work so you need to take a deep dive into why you don’t like them: perhaps the career tends to attract people with whom you just don’t click. This is unlikely, but it’s good to do a gut-check.

What aspects of the career drive you bonkers? Perhaps it’s one that requires long hours and you want to have more time for your personal life? Perhaps it doesn’t pay much and you’re tired of a “ramen noodle” lifestyle.

  1. Will you need to learn new skills to pursue the new career you choose?

For example, perhaps you love practicing law, but you don’t like corporate law and you’d rather work in a human rights organization. (Note: this type of career change will be easier than most because the skills you use in both are the same.)

But if you’re moving from say, human resources to healthcare, you’re going to need to learn new skills (unless you wish to look for HR work in a healthcare setting).

  1. How will your current skills help the new profession?

Remember, employers hire people to solve problems. To make the change you’re going to need to convince a hiring manager that the skills you’ve used in your previous career will transfer easily – and provide value – to your new career.

As an easy example: let’s say you’re a journalist looking to move into marketing. Your writing skills should be relatively easy to transfer to marketing. Still, journalistic writing is different than marketing writing and you may want to put together some marketing writing samples to showcase your skills.

Another example: you’ve worked as a restaurant manager for several years and you’re hoping to move to non-profit advocacy. Come up with examples of how your management skills could help a non-profit. Could you use those skills in volunteer management, for example?

  1. Start networking with people in the new industry.

And now that the pandemic has made in-person networking almost impossible, the place to start networking is on LinkedIn.

A great way to start your networking/job search is to identify companies in the new career at which you’d like to work. Check a business’ company page (and website) and see if you can identify people who might be in a position to hire someone with your skills.

If these people are second connections, you can ask for a connection (mention the person who connects you). Once a connection is accepted, you can then message the person about your interest in changing careers and if they’d be willing to speak with you about opportunities. (Note: we’re not advising at this point that you send a resume unasked or ask if you can send it. Wait until asked yourself.)

When people do agree to chat with you – and at least a few will – ask for information about the career, what they love and hate about it, etc. And then ask them if there is anyone else they could recommend you speak with.

(They may ask for your resume; if so, send it. However – and once again – don’t ask if you can send it).

Continuing doing this and over time you will have people asking for your resume, telling you about job openings, even telling you they would like to interview you for an opening.

  1. Understand that you may need to take a step down the career ladder as well as a pay cut.

Unless your skills transfer perfectly to the new career, you may have to take a position one or two levels “below” your role in your previous career, as well as a pay cut (due to the “lesser” position).

Aim to look at this as the price you pay for a happier work life (and possibly personal life). As you prove yourself in the new career, the promotions and pay raises will come along.

If your job/career has been upended due to the economic downturn caused by COVID-19, Helpmates has many temporary, temp-to-hire and even direct-hire opportunities available right now. Take a look at our current openings and, if one or more appear to be a good fit, follow directions for applying.

 

Landing Your First Job Out of College – During a Pandemic!

Talk about rotten luck! To be a newly minted college graduate in 2020 means you’re headed to job market unlike anything you, your parents and possibly even your grandparents have ever seen before. Many people are likening the current job market worldwide to that of the Depression in the 1930s, in which one out of four people in the U.S. were out of work. In fact, Forbes in April reported that already 23 percent of the U.S. workforce was out of work.

We truly are sorry that you’re graduating into THIS!

La Mirada careers

But….something to keep in mind as you move forward: you are one person. You need just one job. Don’t focus on what you can’t control: how many other people are looking for work, competing with you. Instead, focus on getting you – your singular self – that one job.

Yes, it will be a lot harder this year than it was for your friends who graduated last year. Nothing can be done about that (that’s something you can’t control).

Remember: focus on what you can control…

…your attitude and your actions.

Looking for work now means it should take up most of your time and efforts. Yes, enjoy summer as much as you can, but you really should take up this old-timey mantra: “looking for work IS my job” until you land one.

That means concentrated effort of at least four or five hours a day.

Most of your job search will take place online

There’s no need to worry right now about attending career fairs or networking events in person. Job search sites, asking friends and family for leads and LinkedIn are the three “tools” you’ll use predominately in your search as we all deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and it’s “stay at home as much as possible” guidelines.

A big caveat: Do NOT simply find jobs on job boards and apply there. That really isn’t a job search: it’s merely “hitting send.”

Instead, by far the best thing you can do right now is start connecting and networking on LinkedIn. There’s a ton of great advice about how to do so strategically. Here’s a how-to we really like. (Bonus: it’s written for college grads.)

You not only can apply to jobs on the platform but you should/must start reaching out and engaging with your contacts there.

The right way to engage on LinkedIn

Take a look at your LinkedIn feed: you’ll see that many people link to articles and such. But you’ll also see that they comment on the articles. They also comment on their connection’s updates.

Most importantly, the most successful LinkedIn users tend to post updates on their own profiles that provide value to others. They offer a well-thought-out opinion about something. They provide advice about their industry. In other words, they give to get.

Don’t be shy

You may feel that you have little to offer. You may think you don’t have enough experience to provide information that’s of any value.

You are wrong.

Everyone has something of value to add. Everyone. Whether it’s an inbound marketing tip you learned as a digital marketing major, or your thoughts on an article that predicts when the recession may lift (based on your studies as an economics major), post it.

Regular posting and commenting helps people your connections see your expertise up close. Recruiters also will see your comments and take note.

Speaking of recruiters….

Feel free to follow – and ask for connections with – those who recruit in the industry in which you’re job hunting. Reach out and ask for a connection. Ask if you can send them your resume (don’t do so until you’re an actual connection).

Continue to engage professionally with your connections. Continue to offer value in all interactions, as well as in your updates and comments on other people’s updates.

One last LinkedIn tip: just as we advised re job boards, above, don’t simply apply to openings you see posted on LinkedIn and call it a job search. Instead, most of your time on the platform should be spent asking for connections, posting your own updates and commenting on the updates of others.

Times are tough out there for many job seekers. Here at Helpmates we’d love to help you find your first post-college job. Check out our current opportunities and apply to those that appeal to you. You also can contact the branch office nearest you to register with us.

The Ways Your Job Search Will Change Due to the Coronavirus Crisis

February – even early March – seems SO far away, doesn’t it?

And when it comes to looking for a job? Shaking hands. Heading to networking events or conferences. Heading to a potential employer’s location for a job interview. No more!

Now – and for possibly several weeks or months – your job search will need to be conducted almost completely online.

Brea jobs

Here are the different ways the job hunt has changed now – and probably for several months – due to the coronavirus crisis.

  • You already know you’re going to be interviewing online for the foreseeable future. Yet job fairs also probably will be held online.

Here’s a short peek at how this may look, as provided by a job fair held in Wuhan, China earlier this year.

  • As the “stay-at-home” edicts are staying put, many employers are putting hiring on hold.

Many still are hiring, especially grocery stores, delivery companies, etc. But many others have decided on a wait-and-see process.

  • Temporary positions are growing, but not just at temporary staffing firms.

Many large companies such as Amazon, CVS, Domino’s/Pizza Hut, Instacart, Walmart, and even GE Healthcare are looking for thousands of temporary workers. Good news? Many of these positions could become permanent.

  • Networking has gone completely online.

If you haven’t updated your LinkedIn profile in a while, it’s time. You also should clean up your Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, TikTok, SnapChat, and Facebook channels. If you’re new to networking on these social channels, here are some tips on how to ace your efforts on LinkedIn specifically and social channels generally.

  • While companies ARE hiring, it’s going to take longer to land interviews…and jobs.

How we wish this weren’t the case, but it is. With millions of people applying for unemployment benefits as of early April and thousands of businesses closed, this outcome is inevitable.

  • Negotiating salary and benefits may be more difficult, meaning you may not get what you want.

The huge numbers of closed businesses and people laid off means the tide has turned – for now, at least – toward employers. It’s no longer a candidate’s market: it’s an employer’s market.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask for more in either salary or benefits when offered a position, it just means you should be aware that you may not get more.

In other words, this isn’t the time to be really picky. This may be hard to hear after months of companies being desperate for workers and offering all sorts of perks and hiring bonuses. But forewarned is forearmed.

Bottom line: you have your work cut out for you as you search for….work. This in no way means you won’t find any. It means instead that if you need to find a job, you should do little else right now than look for one.

How can we help you find work?

The Job Search Has Changed: Now and for the Foreseeable Future

If you’re in the midst of a job search, you’ve no doubt learned that all interviews now are being conducted via video.

Fullerton jobs

While this will remain the status quo for the foreseeable future, we also believe video interviewing will remain a large part of the job search process even after the pandemic wanes and social distancing/stay-at-home restrictions begin to lessen.

What’s more – and this truly is unfortunate – as tens of thousands of employees have been let go in recent weeks from Southern California employers, job seekers are going to be competing with a considerable amount of other people looking for work.

Many people – used to having recruiters beat down the door to get to them during the recent (as in February!) war-for-talent era – have never looked for work during a recession and the “new normal” definitely will take some getting used to. (Not to mention the considerable extra work it will take to land a job.)

Times are tough, but so are you

Yes, the above is quite a saccharine ditty. But what’s your alternative? Falling into a puddle of woe for months? Yes, have a terrific wailing wallow for a few days, but the longer you stay there the harder it will be to get up.

You must get tough! And soon!

How the job search has changed and how you – tough guy – can make it work for you

You will need to stand out more than ever now

Because you’ll be competing with so many others for jobs, you need to sit with yourself and figure out how you’re better than other candidates. Are you the sales person with a fantastic close rate? Are you the distribution selector with the fastest selection rate? Are you the customer service rep with the above-average customer satisfaction rating? Have you won an award for the project you completed?

You need to place that fact at the very top of your resume! (And make sure you can back it up with actual statistics or data.)

You must show intense interest in the job. Intense!

You don’t want to grovel or plead. That’s not what we mean. Instead:

  • Research a ton about the company so that you can say something like “I heard you were planning on purchasing such and such. Has that been put on hold now?”
  • Show true excitement when you talk about the opportunity. (Especially how your particular skills will help the employer reach its goals.)

 

You need to understand that responses from employers will take a lot longer. And they may not be as “nice” to you.

Whether you’re waiting to hear from them about an interview, or waiting to hear if you got the job, hiring managers and recruiters are overwhelmed right now. In addition, the “power” now lies in their hands, not yours. No more “war for talent” for the foreseeable future (unless you have skills that remain in great demand, such as in healthcare).

And with this power, unfortunately, comes some unpleasant behaviors: ghosting, rudeness, etc. Just be prepared for it – it usually doesn’t happen – and never “give as good as you got” yourself.

How can we – the really nice – recruiters at Helpmates help you find work?

Looking for Work While Following “Safer at Home” Guidelines

Life sure feels and definitely looks different here in Southern California than it did just two weeks ago. Many of us started working from home just a few days ago and, as the days passed, more and more of us lost our jobs. And others among us soon may lose ours, as a recession already is here.

There IS hope; Jobs ARE available!

Right now (the last week of March) not only are some companies such as Amazon (to handle the increased need for workers in their distribution centers), Walmart (people are shopping for more food for at-home meals) and Domino’s Pizza (it needs more delivery drivers as people practice social distancing) actually hiring thousands of workers, many employers of all types are still hiring.

The vast majority of these jobs are either those that can be performed remotely, or are for what are deemed “critical” jobs that can’t be performed at home.

Anaheim careers

Job Hunting during “Safer at Home”

The City of Los Angeles’ emergency order is called “Safer at Home, Stay at Home,” yet no matter whether you live in LA, Orange County or anywhere in the Golden State, you’re no doubt hunkering down at home now because many employers’ brick and mortar locations are closed to the public.

Rest assured, employers want to hire people as much as you want to be hired. Businesses still up and running are exceptionally focused on ensuring their operations remain steady. Yet with employers still hiring but not being able to meet candidates in the office, at job fairs, etc. what does that mean for you, the job hunter?

Virtual job hunting and interviewing!

And while that may “seem” really new and, well, odd, it’s not really, because you will – and should – continue emailing with recruiters or hiring managers who have reached out to you, just as you did before. (Tip: While we know you’ll no doubt really, really, really, really want to, we recommend that you don’t email or call a company to make sure it received your application. Contact an employer only after its reached out to you.)

  • If you’re just starting your job search, the rules still apply: if possible reach out directly to a hiring manager when you see a job opening and send your resume directly to their email address. (Make sure you’ve sent your application in online, as well – most companies require this today.)
  • If you were scheduled to come in for an interview before the stay-at-home orders took place and if you haven’t heard from the recruiter or hiring manager, it’s perfectly OK to email and ask if the interview is still on (the employer may have put things on hold for a bit). If the employer does want to postpone, ask them when it would be good time for you to check in again and place the date as a reminder on your calendar.
  • If you don’t have video conferencing on your own computer, laptop or smartphone, don’t worry: most recruiters do on their end and will send you a link you can use to have the interview via video.
  • Make sure your clothing and grooming looks job-interview appropriate for the video interview (at least from the waist up). Set up your computer in a spot that’s quiet and ask family members to be quiet themselves while you’re online.

Finally, don’t worry if you don’t have a laptop or computer at home: we can interview you via video on your smartphone!

Also, because our Helpmates offices are closed right now, we’re interviewing everyone via video: even people who will be working at an employer’s physical location.

We’ll all get through this together

Employers still need you. If you’re looking for work, take a look at our current opportunities and follow application instructions for those that appeal to you and for which you are qualified.

We look forward to hearing from you. Stay well.

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