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What exactly does the COVID-19 Pandemic mean for your job search? Many companies in Cayman (and globally) are going through changes at the moment trying to and adjust to this ‘new normal’ in the age of COVID-19. It’s valid to wonder if you should continue to send out resumes or just assume that no one is hiring for the foreseeable future (which isn’t necessarily the case).

Sure, a company may not be hiring right this moment as they have to figure out a few things with business continuity, but this too shall pass. Once the economy starts to see an upturn, it is likely there will be a demand for talent again and you will want to be at the forefront of hiring manager/recruiter’s minds and move straight into their ‘yes’ pile. The people who continue to relationship-build will be in a much better position when companies do start hiring again.

1. Leverage online networks

Seek out like-minded professionals online! If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile now is the time to get it up and running and start making meaningful connections; don’t be afraid to join professional groups as well and connect with other like-minded individuals where you can join in on conversations and make yourself visible in the community.

If you need help setting up your profile for success, read our blogs here to help kickstart your online networking journey.

2. Stay in touch (virtually, of course)

Maybe you recently had a promising interview, but now the company has moved to remote work and things have gone a little quiet since the chaos of COVID-19 ensued. Sending a follow-up email is absolutely fine, but the key here is to be understanding that right now may not be the right time for them to hire. Show them the kind of thoughtful employee you would be in the future.

As an example – try something like: “I’m looking forward to learning more when it makes sense for your organization.” This works because it is genuine, you aren’t putting any undeserved pressure on them, but are still ensuring you show your continued interest.

As always, make sure you’re speaking with your Nova recruiter as well and staying in touch with our team so that we can make sure clients know that candidates are still as keen as ever.

3. Stay top of mind

HR and hiring managers have a lot on their plates at the moment dealing with the fallout from COVID-19 and their inboxes are filled with influxes of requests from staff and also just general chat from their teams now that they have transitioned to virtual working, so don’t risk your email drowning in a sea of other emails: take connection a step further.

It may seem a little awkward at first as you don’t “know” some of these connections you’ve just made, but try and build on the relationships a little more. Have they posted something on Linkedin? Have a read of what they posted, and if you have valuable insight to offer comment/like/share their post and strike up a conversation with them. The key here is not to bombard someone for the sake of it; be genuine and add value to the conversation by showcasing your expertise.

4. What do you really want?

It is a common mistake that we see here at Nova, where a job seeker sees an open position and dives straight into applying without really considering if it is something they would genuinely be interested in or have the right skills for. Sure, right now it might feel a little bit like anything would be better than nothing but think long-term and make a bigger picture plan for your career.

Take advantage of the extra time on your hands at the moment and really think about what you want with your career moving forward. Start to think about the kind of role you are interested in that matches up with your skillset and expertise. Then, start thinking about the kinds of companies that exist in Cayman that have those roles and have a culture that you would like to join.

Once you have your list of roles and companies in front of you, start looking into making connections with employees and employers that match. This is a crucial step in a career action plan not just during an economic downturn but a best practice for all time.

5. Strengthen your skills

You probably have more time on your hands at the moment than you have had for a very long time thanks to COVID-19. Use that time for something useful, rather than just watching TikTok videos and playing video games (trust me, we’ve all been there in the last 2 weeks).

Nova offers online training with a large selection of training options, whether it is software skills, practical work know-how like delivering presentations or understanding Excel, you’ll find what you need so that you can shine in your career. If you are interested in learning more about our online training options, please reach out to the Nova Team at info@nova.ky.

Now more than ever it’s important to focus on what you can control—improving your skills and reaching out to your network. Put the foundation down for strong, meaningful connections so that when the storm settles, you’re ready to hit the ground running with your best foot forward.

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