Job Searching in the Time of Coronavirus

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Ah, the job search! Is it just me or has it gotten a bit more complicated lately? As one of the many people who have been actively looking for a job recently—you better believe I’ve been watching the Coronavirus with my eyes wide open, but the past few weeks have left me scratching my head and grappling for more information. Just when I think I’ve got a handle on it; new information comes to light that makes me take a closer look. Whatever you may think on the subject, the Coronavirus is having a gigantic impact on industry and society at large—and that, my friends, is nothing to be scoffed at. With Coronavirus being the dynamic situation that it is, it’s hard to know how to go about applying for jobs at all. Read on for the latest information!

  • The President has declared Coronavirus a National Emergency. Broadway is closed. Schools are closed. I’ve gotten an email from every company I’ve ever purchased something from going on and on about it. If they’re all taking it seriously, so should you. The economy has effectively come to a pause, and believe you me, that’s something that will be on the interviewer’s mind when they speak to you. My advice would be to handle the subject with care. It may be affecting the company more than you realize. Then again, don’t go into your interviews as if the sky is falling either!
  • Most people who get the virus will not be in grave danger. The measures that are being taken now—like social distancing and self-quarantine—are for the purpose of slowing down the rate at which people catch it. This is called “flattening the curve,” and the main objective of this is to ensure that hospitals don’t get overwhelmed with patients. As best as you can, participate in preventing the spread of the virus; hand-washing, staying home, not shaking hands in interviews, and being mindful of people who are at-risk that you may see on a regular basis. And if there’s a lot of room on the subway, don’t sit next to the only other person on there!
  • Already have an interview? Rescheduling may be in your future! Many companies will also resort to different ways of interviewing too. If offered a phone or video interview instead, I suggest you take them up on it.  If your interview is not cancelled, you must calculate the risk for yourself. If you have an interview in a busy metropolis and live with your grandparents for example, that’s definitely a situation where you should stop and think twice.
  • If you can’t get an interview, there is plenty you can do to prepare for finding a job at home. Brush up on your telephone/video interview skills, take online courses to help further your career, and don’t forget to read lots of helpful articles on the topic of job searching! Also, if you don’t hear back, save the jobs you’re really excited by and reapply later. In the midst of the madness, things fall through the cracks, and your persistence can only be a bonus. Also, in this day and age, working from home isn’t such a wild proposition! Take a look into jobs that are remote—it gives you the opportunity to work from literally anywhere. If that’s the case, you could be hired tomorrow!

In closing, you need to do what’s right for you and don’t be surprised if the opportunity arises for a phone or video interview, I’d take it in a heartbeat.  Remember, there’s a lot we know, and a lot we don’t know. Stressing extra about all of this will lower your immune system. The show must go on, and so must job seekers seeking jobs. Luckily, exploring new job opportunities these days can be done from the safety of your own home.

Be well and stay safe!

* Disclaimer this article is not offering medical or legal advice.

This article was written by Jennifer McDowell.

Jennifer McDowell is founder and Editor-at-Large of the website www.deskofjdogood.com, where she interviews authors, artists and entrepreneurs. She enjoys coffee, swimming, and all things Jane Austen!

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