Getting a job during lockdown may be easier than you think, that is if you know exactly what to look for and where to look. At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, over 40 million US jobs were lost, surpassing Great Depression figures and leaving a dent on the global economy.
Whereas certain industries are yet to recover, others are picking up. And as the economy gradually reopens, some businesses are opening their doors to new employees.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1.4 million new jobs were created in Leisure and Hospitality in May and 2.1 million in June. Although these may seem like small gains, it is gain nonetheless, (the first since the lockdowns began in March) one that if sustained could make a huge impact.
In this post, I’ll be sharing practical tips on how to get a job during lockdown, even if there’s a second or third wave of lockdown as some fear, but first.
Why Should You Get a Job During Lockdown?
There are several reasons to get a job during quarantine. Some of them include:
- You just want to work
- You hate handouts
- You have plenty of time
- You’re bored
- You have bills to pay
- Lockdown may extend
- There could be a second wave of infections and subsequent lockdown
- You want to test run remote work
Whatever your reasons are for wanting to get a job during lockdown, here are six (6) practical ways to go about it.
6 Ways to Get a Job During Lockdown
How to Get a Job During Lockdown #1: Know What to Look For
Remember that line from the intro? It’s the first step to getting a job during lockdown. Wakefield Research conducted a survey of business leaders of $500m+ a year businesses and found that 95% of them now favor remote work, with 61% planning to invest more in remote work enabling technology.
Already, Amazon, Facebook, Shopify, Twitter, Siemens, and many others are now adopting remote work, allowing some of their employees to work from home indefinitely. Another study also found that majority of millennials cite flexibility as a key job consideration.
These can only mean one thing; remote work is here to stay. It is gradually becoming the new normal. So, when looking for a job during lockdown, look out for work from anywhere jobs.
How to Get a Job During Lockdown #2: Know Where to Look
Now that you know what to look for, the next step is to know where to look. Many physical businesses are yet to reopen. In fact, reports show that 55% of businesses on Yelp that closed due to COVID-19 have permanently shut down.
Since most of these new remote jobs can be done online, the best place to look for a job during lockdown will have to be online. So, where exactly can you look for remote jobs online? There are several job boards online, but here are my favorites:
- Simply Hired
- Career Builder
- Snag a Job
- USA jobs.Gov
There are several other niche-specific job boards with more tailored jobs for professionals. A simple Google search can turn up relevant results.
How to Get a Job During Lockdown #3: Referrals or Word of Mouth
If you already have experience working remotely, especially as a freelancer, this is another powerful way to get a job during lockdown. Your portfolio, past work, or social proof, including customer testimonials, can land you new jobs.
In the last couple of days, I’ve been contacted via referral to write copy for two new apps, including app description, FAQ pages, and ad copy. I’ve also been contacted by other businesses seeking help for major copy projects.
Several professionals land unsolicited jobs after a happy client, colleague or connection mentioned them to a business in need of their services. Let your work speak for you and bring you new jobs during this lockdown.
How to Get a Job During Lockdown #4: Prospecting
According to the World Bank:
“The pandemic is expected to plunge most countries into recession in 2020, with per capita income contracting in the largest fraction of countries globally since 1870.”
Although the outlook is grim, certain businesses in certain verticals are experiencing a boom, e.g, e-commerce. During this pandemic Shopify became the most valuable company in Canada, Amazon hired over 150, 000 new employees, etc.
So, to get a job during lockdown, keep prospecting in sectors unaffected or least affected by COVID-19. Bamidele Onibalusi is currently leading a cold pitching challenge for freelance writers to help them gain new clients during this lockdown. And he’s making progress.
How to Get a Job During Lockdown #5: Freelancing
Speaking of freelancing now is perhaps the best time to be a freelancer. Pre-COVID-19, there were over 56 million freelancers in the US alone. Since the pandemic, many more are looking to become freelancers.
According to a FlexJobs report, 42% of people who are 100% remote have been remote for over 5 years, 28% for 2-3 years, and 19% for 1-2 years. The bulk of these are full-time freelancers.
Since most of the jobs of the future will now be remote, it makes sense to pursue freelancing. Although it has its pros and cons (like almost every other thing), it is one of the best ways to get a job during lockdown.
How to Get a Job During Lockdown #6: Social Media
Social media use has been a growing trend for years, but usage has soared since Coronavirus. Shelter-in-place orders and social distancing measures have kept people home for longer than ever. This has increased Netflix and social media screen time.
Apart from socializing, you can get a job during lockdown using social media. Facebook Job Search is a good way to begin your job search. You can also do the same for other social networks by searching certain keywords.
Another tip is to optimize your social media profiles. Have you gained a new skill or certification during lockdown, reflect it in your profile. Recently, LinkedIn laid off over 900 staff. Some are using the platform to canvass for their colleagues.
It is possible to get a job during lockdown, even multiple jobs as the case may be. Simply remember to:
- Know what to look out for
- Know where to look
- Leverage referral (WoM)
- Keep prospecting
- Use social media
- Try freelancing