Finding a job in the Philippines has always been challenging, but the task has become even more difficult as the country continues to battle the ill effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Job seekers now have to overcome multiple hurdles to land a good position. After all, numerous companies have stopped hiring or closed down altogether. Millions of people have also lost their jobs, which means more competition for applicants. Besides the issue of fewer employment opportunities, job seekers must also deal with health and safety concerns as they try to look for suitable work.

Whether you are a fresh graduate searching for your first job or a seasoned professional hoping to land a better position, you can’t remain complacent in your job search in the COVID-19 era. You need to take a more focused and nuanced approach to navigate the process successfully. To help you get started, here are several pointers you may want to consider to stay on top of your career game in these uncertain times.

Make Use of Available Online Tools

The key to keeping yourself safe and healthy as you search for employment opportunities is to limit your exposure to people outside your household. This is why you should utilize all available online tools that could help you search for employment opportunities and expand your network safely and conveniently from the comfort of your home. For example, instead of going out to submit your resume personally to different companies, you can find jobs in or similar job search websites. You can also create job alerts once you have uploaded your resume to multiple job search portals so that you will be readily notified of new job openings.

Besides using online job sites, you can also meet new people in your chosen industry, reconnect with old contacts, and conduct informational interviews using video-conferencing tools. Try searching for online job fairs and virtual networking events that you can participate in as well. Essentially, be sure to make the most of online technologies. Keep in mind that you have more chances of landing a job if you explore all possible options.

Review Your Digital Presence

Most hiring managers go beyond scanning your application documents, especially for sensitive positions. They will also look at your social media accounts and online posts as they assess your qualifications. That said, the last thing you want is to jeopardize your chances of landing your dream position because of a 140-character tweet you wrote to blow off steam ages ago.

So, apart from polishing your resume and creating excellent cover letters, you should also take the time to review your social media profiles. Make sure that your profile, photos, comments, and posts will not hurt your chances. Better yet, use your online platforms to showcase your potential, talent, and character. Highlight your creative works, worthy causes, and other activities that will build your image and impress your future employer.

Prepare for Your Job Interview

You can expect job interviews to be done virtually in the COVID-19 era. That is why you should invest in a reliable internet connection, device, and software so that you are always camera- and audio-ready. Find a quiet, well-lit, and clutter-free space in your home where you can entertain video calls. You may also want to do test runs to ensure that the camera angle, lighting, and sound are just right.

More importantly, practice answering tough interview questions and learn how to talk through live videos. Remember that you still need to establish rapport with the interviewer. So, be mindful of your appearance, tone of voice, and mannerisms, and learn how to maintain “eye contact” through the screen.

Continue Growing

As you send out resumes and wait for responses, be sure to take this time to learn new skills and strengthen old ones. You may start by analyzing job postings to see what employers are looking for in a candidate. Use the information you gathered to know which areas you need to strengthen. From there, look for online courses and virtual training seminars that can help you out. Just search for “free online courses” on the internet, and you will be surprised to know that even top-tier institutions like Stanford and Harvard offer classes in different fields for free. Opt for courses with certifications to beef up your qualifications.

Stay Persistent and Open-Minded

Again, searching for employment during this difficult time can be extra challenging as the pandemic impacted practically all types of industries. Employers may take a longer time selecting candidates or stop hiring altogether. Although you can’t control the number of positions opening up, you have the power to control your actions.

Stay persistent and take the process seriously. Check job sites daily, get in touch with recruitment managers after sending your application documents, and continue asking for job referrals from friends and former colleagues. You may also want to keep an open mind to new opportunities instead of focusing solely on a specific post. Think outside the box and see how your skills and experiences can help expand your job options.

The pandemic may have brought unique challenges for job seekers like you, but all is not lost. With the right mindset, out-of-the-box thinking, and tons of patience, you can boost your chances of landing a job. Keep the above tips in mind and continue working to better yourself so that you remain competitive and ready when the right opportunity comes.

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