Media is fixated on two things:
COVID-19 numbers and the unemployment numbers.
The news hype takes advantage of every opportunity to heighten our fear and keep us spell-bound as we wait for the next message. Meanwhile, businesses are scrambling to find people. They need workers at every level. Check out the blog: COVID-19: Who is hiring? Where to look.
I hope you believe me that there are a lot of jobs out there! It’s logical to think, “With so many people out of work, what chance do I have to find a job?” Let me assure you that the chances are very good if you find jobs that you are qualified for and present yourself on your cover letter and résumé as a polished professional who is ready to contribute to the success of a potential employer.
FIRST MUST DO ACTION when applying for a job during COVID-19:On both cover letter and résumé, in a prominent place, put:
Able to work remotely.
Cover Letter TipsA quick reminder: hiring professionals spend about 10 seconds looking at your cover letter. It should be short, easy to read. Avoid dense paragraphs.
- The first thing that HR and recruiters want to know is if you are qualified for the job. This is most easily seen on a table that compares their job requirements with your qualifications.
- If you apply to a non-profit, then you should include something that tells why the position is personal to you.
- Readers are moving too quickly to make associations. So if the job calls for 7-10 years event management, do not respond with 8 years as a project manager. Even though an event is a project, readers are going very quickly. Use their language!
- If you don’t have a particular requirement, tell them what you do have that is similar.
- Be selective in what you send. Here is a quote from an annoyed HR/internal recruiter, “Why can’t people just tell me what I need to know for the job they are applying to!
- Résumé readers do not read top to bottom or left to right. They graze or wander around looking for something interesting.
- Wherever the reader’s eyes land, there should be something interesting that invites them to have a conversation with you!
- Limit what you put on your résumé to what is specifically relevant to the particular job you are applying to.
- More than two pages of work history will not be read and bullet points longer than one line are rarely read.
- Avoid overused words such as “strong communications skills” or “Proven strategic leader.” (ho-hum). Instead, use key words that show you are relevant in your industry.
Depending on your industry, use phrases such as: tension-tolerant, cognitive flexibility, mental elasticity. Do you know what words to use? I search the internet with the phrase: Top qualities employers need by 2025 in _________ (name of your industry).
Do you remember the initial words in this blog: ability to be flexible, manage changing priorities, and deal with ambiguity? Those might be excellent choices to include on your résumé.
- Separate the results statements and keep them brief. There should only be a few and should tempt the reader to ask a question…which means that s/he should call you to get the answer!
It’s all about carrots!Many people believe that more is better. They want to tell the reader everything they can, every detail, everything! Truly, I tell you that this only spells
It also shows an inability to prioritize information. YIKES!
Dear jobseeker, please listen to this: If you tell them everything, why would they need to call you? The point of your résumé is to tell the reader just enough so they want more! Carrots!
COVID-19: 10 Must-dos for every jobseeker
Are you struggling to find opportunities? Consider this blog:
COVID-19: Who is hiring? Where to look.
The next blog will discuss changes in the Interview process so you aren’t caught off guard.
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