Posted on 21/04/2020

Job Searches during the COVID-19 Pandemic

By Thiranut Chankhot 

RSM Recruitment (Thailand) Limited has been receiving numerous enquiries from its valuable candidates asking about what our opinion is when it comes to looking for a job during this uncertain time where coronavirus appears to be taking over the world and business decision makers appear to be focused on nothing else. And questions that we are receiving include “What you can do to maximize and optimize your efforts?” and “Whether it’s worth even doing anything at all?”

So without further ado, we will provide you with our perspective on what you can expect during this time of uncertainty when it comes to looking for a job as well as what you can do to optimize your time. We appreciate that this is a very unique situation that we are in and so understand that it can be very difficult to really know how to navigate and how to even go about your daily lives without the certainty that this is going to end anytime soon.  Hopefully, these key expectations will help you frame your minds in the ways where you can be more “Productive”, “Focused”, and “Confident” in your job searches. 

Expectation # 1:  Recruiting is likely on hold right now but not everywhere 

Contrary to what you may believe many of our candidates have landed successful job offers during this coronavirus crisis. These candidates were going through interviews when the coronavirus pandemic had just commenced or before it was recognized as being quite as serious a problem as it is now, and that process continued and they eventually received their job offers. Generally, though, our candidates were not just starting their job searches during the coronavirus pandemic.  Many decision makers in companies have put their recruitment needs on hold due to the various uncertainties that exist. That's understandable because of the situation that we're in with staff being required to socially distance where possible and in many cases to work from home. So even if you reach out to hiring managers and recruiters, just be aware that they may not respond to you immediately as they would in a typical environment. 

This is an opportunity for you to just simply take a step back and accept that things are going to move more slowly and take longer than you had initially hoped for. 

However, it does not mean that you should just simply give up on your job search because eventually things will change with curves in different economies flattening and hopefully the discoveries of successful treatments, vaccines or even cures for COVID-19 though each of these may take more time. Ultimately the world economies must continue to function so decisions will be taken by governments to reduce lockdowns and stimulate businesses in their individual countries including Thailand. So the good news is that when companies are back up with their businesses running, they will again be looking to hire good candidates again. Many forward looking companies are already looking at potential candidates to join them when this situation is over or simply improves. Jobseekers need to be ready to pounce on those opportunities as soon as they eventuate. So it is of prime importance for all serious jobseekers to be pro-active as “You” want to be the first person that employers call and “You” want to be top of the employers list and “You” want to be at the top of the minds of recruiters and hiring managers. How do you do that? There are several key steps that you can take during this down period and which include: - 

  • make your LinkedIn profile attractive 
  • make sure that you have a compelling well written CV or resume
  • practice your responses to anticipated questions

When the opportunities do show up, you must be ready to jump on them, and be prepared to go. 

Expectation # 2:  Hiring managers are still keeping their eyes out for strong talent

Just because hiring managers and recruiters aren't hiring right now doesn't mean that they're not going to hire eventually.  So that means you still want to stay on their radar and make sure that they remember who you are, and know that you're actively in the market, and you're a good candidate for any potential opportunities that will come up later. 

It's not as though Covid-19 stops all or even the majority of decision makers from performing the roles that they have been assigned. Recruiters still have to look for good talent and hiring managers still have to keep their eyes open for any good potential job candidates so a pipeline is still being developed irrespective of the hiring timeline most likely being far slower than the norm. So, to take advantage of this, you can reach out directly to hiring managers and recruiters usually over LinkedIn and simply let them know that you are there and ready to seize any opportunities when they eventually arise. 

Moreover, email hiring managers and recruiters and simply let them know what roles and opportunities you'd be interested in. But of course, only do this if you have a compelling attractive CV or resume to send over to them. If you don't have that yet do not reach out. You want to make sure that you have something substantial and impressive to show them so that you can be at the top of their minds when they’re ready to hire again. 

Expectation # 3:  Interviews will most likely be undertaken virtually

We believe that this is something that is going to stick with us in the future where hiring managers and recruiters end up using and relying on technology to do interviews more than they have in the past. So, using Skype, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, or any other video call platform to do your future interviews is just something that you can expect from now on.  

  • Make sure that you have a good quality camera or webcam setup on your laptop
  • Make sure that the angle is at the same level as you and not beneath you or too high above you 
  • Make sure that you have good lighting and usually a nice big open window in front of you is the best type of lighting
  • Be mindful of your backdrop. Have a wall behind you ideally. Add a few nice friendly features to it. Make it look as though you are in a working environment similar to how you would look in your office

Expectation # 4:  If you’re not aware of what you’re consuming and thinking on a daily basis, you will feel anxious, stressed, frustrated, and uncertain during this time period 

If you are completely consumed with the Covid-19 pandemic news, then the thoughts going through your head will most likely have put you in a bad place mentally. This by definition will be an indicator that you're not doing a great job of taking care of yourself. You can therefore expect that you're not going to be very happy during this time and we’re sure that's not what you want. 

Living in fear, we end up feeling hopeless, feeling that there's nothing that we can do, best replica watches and feeling completely trapped in our situation.  Here's the solution, it's all about training yourself and training your mind to be positive, and being disciplined. Start to separate the thoughts that aren't helping by essentially eliminating them. So that you can start to take care of yourself better, and you can start to feel better about where you're at and be more accepting of yourself in this situation. The old saying that “the glass is half full and not half empty” springs to mind or better still “the glass is overflowing”! 

Expectation # 5: This is the time to reflect on what you really want

This is a time to reflect on what you really want as much as this may feel like a curse. It's actually a special precious gift that you've been given, and that is the gift of time.  Time for you to be introspective, time for you to reflect on your life, your career, where do you want to go. When this is all over, what direction do you want to head into. Previously, you're simply on that hamster wheel trying to just work and come home and just live your everyday life. But now it is time for you to pause to reflect and ask yourself these questions. This is an opportunity for you to be able to move yourself in a more positive direction. If you can expect that, this is a precious gift of time then hopefully you'll be able to optimize it and use it well. 

So, those are RSM Recruitment (Thailand) Limited’s five key expectations when it comes to your job search during this Covid-19 crisis. We really hope that you take each and every one of them into account and hope that they help to bring your mind to a level and way where you'll feel better as you move forward in this time period of unprecedented uncertainty.