As many of us crave our lives pre-pandemic and things to go back to normal, we’re inundated with hearing that nothing will be the same again we must all prepare for the new normal.

How do we prepare for this new normal when our personal and professional lives are affected in ways we never thought we’d need to prepare for.

The big question now is how do job seekers, recruiters and organizations navigate and win during these times.

Jobseeking during COVID-19

Jobseeking during a pandemic is new territory, those looking for a job and those looking to hire are trying to figure out the best way forward.

Many of us are looking for new jobs for various reasons, whether it be due to retrenchments, salary cuts (your lifestyle is not surviving on your new payslip) or it’s finally time to venture out (the pandemic made you realize that there’s no better time than now to be brave).

Plan, Plan and Plan

One of the luxuries the pandemic has given us is more time. The time you would have spent in traffic or chatting to colleagues over a coffee before kickstarting the day can now be used to research which organizations are actively hiring.

It’s not all doom and gloom in the recruitment space, thank goodness! Organizations still need to fill positions, maybe more than ever now to help them be innovative and grow, and you may be what they are missing with all that experience and skillset.

Knowing which organizations are hiring, what they do and their positing in the industry is information you would have sourced for before an interview, now you’re doing all that work well in advance. 

A survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) states 31% of healthcare organizations are hiring and 16% to be immediate placements. 

It’s not only the healthcare industry that’s looking to fill positions, food, delivery and digital organizations are amongst some sectors that are likely to be hiring. Having your CV up to date and ready to be sent out the minute you see a vacancy that ticks all your boxes. 

Planning gives you a massive advantage because you’re doing all the things you would usually be doing when you’re pressed for time or after hours. Now you can do all the labour before the interview and be well prepared. 

How To Look For A Job During Quarantine | Forbes

Update your LinkedIn to be remote work-friendly

Majority of South Africans and a significant portion of the world is working from home, showing that your productive and not challenged by working at home is critical during this time. 

Now it’s one thing to be able to work from home but are you familiar with the technologies that have become a staple for the virtual office? Highlighting that ZoomMicrosoft Teams and Google Docs are all platforms you are familiar with may seem small, but it will score you points. 

Being able to manage people remotely and deliver your work without micromanagement is essential since remote working is not going anywhere. In fact, many companies are considering making it a full-time option for employees; the days of traditional offices may be numbered. 

“Workers who work remotely report better work and life balance increased productivity and focus, and even a reduction in stress levels. Businesses benefit from remote work, too. Having fewer workers in offices cuts costs, and making remote work available to employees makes a company a more desirable place to work. What’s more, if remote working is the norm, there’s also a larger pool of potential employees from which to choose as there’s no need to stick to geographical confines.” Ronald E Riggio PhD Psychology Today

Use social media for more than collecting memes

Recruiters are known to browse social media platforms to headhunt and find the perfect candidate, and also to get their names out there, so people know and associate them with remarkable recruitment. 

The article, The impact of social media on recruitment: Are you LinkedIn? From the University of Stellenbosch Business School mentions “Indeed, 93% of recruiters use social media to support their recruiting efforts. It was found that 50% of recruiters use social media in paid-for job advertising while 37% advertise vacancies via tweets or alerts or use free job advertising via targeted social media platforms like Facebook.”

The importance of social media for your job search | Digital Information World

If recruiters are not relying on their old ways to find candidates, why would you stick to the old way of jobhunting? Be where the recruiters are, familiarize yourself with the platforms and engage with their posts to make yourself noticeable. 

The great thing about social media is it’s the gift that keeps giving. There are hashtags specifically dedicated to helping those who are looking for work and amplify vacancies. Here are some of those hashtags that have been going for years. 

  • #JobSeekersSA
  • #JobTwitter
  • #JobAdviceSA 
  • #JobSeekersWednesday
  • #RecruitmentTips

Recruiting during the uncertainty of COVID-19

Like every industry, recruitment had to adapt to the effects of COVID-19 on its sector and come up with ways to recruit efficiently. 

Recruiters are not only relying on skype and Zoom interviews to find the best they’re also using AI to match them with the best fit for the position they are looking to fill. This helps the recruiters with finding the candidate with the best capabilities and experience get shortlisted and eventually get a virtual interview. 

Three ways AI is being used in recruitment

Artificial intelligence is not a new phenomenon; the phenomenon is how we’re using it today. The recruitment space has welcomed AI in their environment to bring some much needed reform.

“76% recruiters believe that AI’s impact on recruiting will be at least somewhat significant.” LinkedIn

Candidate rediscovery

Instead of spending money on getting a new pull of candidates and selling them the dream reach AI helps reach out to candidates that already know about you and have shown interest before.

Remote worker sourcing

More and more companies and people are opting for remote work. The ideal candidate may be someone who is a remote worker don’t miss out on them, easily source them as well

Diversity hiring

Diversity within an organization is imperative, and it’s not the easiest of task hiring a diverse team. AI makes pre-employment evaluations help with sourcing different individual whose skills and personality will be a fit for the company.

When they’re not getting assistance from AI machines recruiters are making use of social media to post their vacancies and connect with potential candidates. We mentioned before that 93% of recruiters use social media to support their recruiting efforts.

Social media is an important key to recruitment during the pandemic; it bridges the gap of complete stranger to a potential candidate. 

While some things have changed others stay the same, this applies to the recruitment process as well. Once the candidate is found, interviews(virtual for now) and background screening are the next steps. 

It’s essential to be legally compliant during COVID-19, this means sending consent to candidates before performing any background check on them just because it’s lockdown it doesn’t mean take shortcuts. Digital and SMS consent are an excellent and safe way to reach out to the candidate for consent. 

While we’re anticipating the new normal and navigating the pandemic times what we’re sure of the world is not at a complete standstill when it comes to recruitment and jobseeking. Being innovative and using digital solutions to help you achieve your end-goal. 

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