These are challenging times, and job searches and video interviews during COVID-19 may require adjusting your expectations. However, periods of sheltering in place and self-distancing can still be productive and even help expand your comfort level with being on camera! We’ve assembled this list to guide you through uncharted waters and serve as a reminder that as the coronavirus pandemic approaches peak levels here in the United States, there are reasons to remain hopeful and focused.
The Job Search
First and foremost, is your résumé in good shape? Now may be the time to consider one of two courses of action:
- Have it reviewed by a professional. We’ll provide a free analysis and ScoreCard of your résumé whether you move forward with us or not. Click here to submit, and we’ll get back to you within one business day
- Let a respected friend, family member, or colleague take a look at it. Chances are, your proofreader is sheltering in place as well and may very well appreciate the project
There are companies hiring right now. FOX Business assembled this fantastic list that, as of its publication on March 31, 2020, contained details about 100,000+ job openings.
Note: while industries centered around travel and tourism (e.g., aviation, hospital, auto rental) are decreasing their workforce, others are ramping up in big ways. Employers in supply chain, shipping logistics, consumer products (e.g., grocery stores, pharmacies) and even some technology fields are hiring a lot of workers during this time.
Preparing for the Video Interview
Video interviews may be new for you. If you haven’t previously used Zoom or Teams or other digital meeting spaces, this checklist is for you.
- Clean your workspace and ensure your background is appropriate. Your background should be a plain wall or something professional. If your interview will be via Zoom, consider setting a virtual background
- Conduct the interview in the room that contains your router/modem. This should increase your overall internet speed and reduce the likelihood of glitches
- Keep anyone else in the house out of the interview room. This includes pets!
- Set your phone, smartwatch, and tablet to Do Not Disturb
- If using your mobile device for the interview, disable app notifications and close all apps
- Have relevant notes in front of you for quick reference (e.g., research about the company, questions you want to ask your interviewer(s), answers to questions you anticipate being asked)
- Have your résumé printed and in front of you
- Dress as if you’re interviewing in person
- If using Zoom, get into your Settings beforehand and set the virtual background (if using), test the audio and video, and enable the “touch up my appearance” feature
During the Video Interview
- Ask if your interviewer(s) can hear and see you without any issues
- Gesture and move just like you would in person—don’t become a robot simply because you’re on camera! Nod, smile, laugh, and talk with your hands. These make you an active listener
- Use our time-tested interview tips, but also exhibit calm and patience when they talk about next steps. COVID-19 will no doubt slow down the onboarding process
- Technology isn’t perfect. If it seems like someone cuts you off mid-sentence, understand that there could have been a lag in the audio. Don’t take it personally
Did we miss anything? Share your own experience with job searches and video interviews during COVID-19 in the comments section for other jobseekers.
Most of all, be thankful for your health and stay focused. The economy will recover.