There is no debating that 2020 was filled with unexpected challenges and uncertainties. That said, we’ve made a great effort to adapt to these changes and remain resilient. International students who especially, through facing education, employment, and immigration changes have continued to believe in the Canadian journey.
As we near the end of the year, we reflect on some of these changes. In this post, we are discussing specifically in the job search process. Whether it’s been a successful year in your job search journey or not, it’s important to understand the hiring process (in 2020 and beyond) so that you are better equipped for the next stage in your career journey.
Here are three ways the hiring process has changed over the last year and tips on how you can better prepare yourself for these adjustments.
1. Networking and recruiting online
First, let’s consider how jobs are posted and sought out with employer and candidate interactions moving online.
One way to network and increase your chances of recruitment is by staying active with your online profiles, primarily LinkedIn. Think about how many times you’ve looked up an organization or an HR professional when you are applying for a job. In the same way, recruiters, industry professionals, and peers are also searching for your online presence.
Online hiring fairs are another great option for candidates who are looking to interact with a number of employers at one time. They often facilitate the full hiring process including meeting employers, submitting your resume, and taking part in interviews. If you haven’t already heard, we’re gearing up for Devant’s first hiring expo, Get Hired at Home, aiming to connect employers to international students and alumni virtually.
What does this mean for you?
To stay current as a job seeker, you will need to optimize your online profile. Update your profile with a professional profile picture, bio, and the latest details of your educational and work experiences. Once completed, you can start reaching out to potential connections. Remember to include a personalized message with your request. Keep it short, clear, and remind them of how you know each other. When it comes to staying active online, take some time to keep up with the latest news, trends, and events in your industry. By sharing and participating in online conversations, you may come across opportunities you may not have found in a traditional job search.
It’s also important for candidates to connect with organizations and associations that are putting together events and hiring fairs. This could mean signing up for relevant newsletters to stay updated or connecting with industry professionals who are involved in upcoming events.
2. Virtual Interviews
As we continue to take social distancing measures seriously, meetings and interviews continue to be virtual. There are a couple of ways virtual interviews can take place. You may be asked to submit a recorded set of answers to pre-selected questions or participate in a live interview with an employer. Increasingly, AI tools are also used in combination with virtual interviews to help screen candidates based on specific keywords and body language.
What does this mean for you?
Here are a few things you need to think about when you get ready for your virtual interview or meeting. First, ensure that your technical elements are in place. For example, get familiar with the video software, lighting, location, and volume. You also need to be cautious about eye contact and body language. Online etiquette can be different from in-person interactions. Next, practice and record your answers on your phone or your computer and do a self-assessment to see how you could improve your presentation.
3. Different qualifications and requirements
In a larger perspective, we should consider how the needs of candidates and recruiters have changed in 2020. Upon reflection, you may notice your priorities in 2020 may be a lot different than in prior years. The hiring process is similar. There may be cases where certain qualifications and requirements are more in demand, while others lose their importance.
For example, as a candidate, you may be more concerned with job security, work from home policies, and health benefits. The recruiter may be more interested in a candidate’s ability to work independently and adaptability through any future changes. They may also inquire about why a candidate is opting for a job or career move in the current climate.
What does this mean for you?
As a candidate, you need to position yourself to address these concerns from employers throughout the hiring process. This includes your resume package, online profiles and interview. Start by conducting thorough employer research, especially when it comes to the impact of COVID-19 on the organization. Then get specific for your role. Ask yourself how things may have changed for your position and how you fit into this new equation. Work to relate your experiences to both the position requirements and to the current COVID-19 climate.
Overall, candidates need to be more prepared than ever to showcase their qualifications and field questions and concerns from employers. You need to be aware of emerging technology and their can impact the hiring process. Showcasing your value to potential employers should be front and center: from networking to portfolio building to interviewing.
The good news is, the more knowledgeable you become about the job search process, the more successful you will be in implementing these strategies. If you are ready to engage with employers, register for our upcoming hiring expo, Get Hired at Home.