Ways to Get a Job Virtually
A Virtual Job Hunt: 5 Things to Consider When Making Your Next Career Move
Searching for new career opportunities virtually seems like a foreign concept to many professionals. Quite transparently, till recently, it most likely was not something on many employer's radars when considering their talent pipelines, onboarding processes, and general hiring practices. The same can be said for most professionals seeking new career opportunities. Nonetheless, COVID-19 struck, and it quickly worked its way into every crevice of life, leaving all of us to find entirely new ways of operating.
Although, as mentioned in previous blogs, it's important to remember one pivotal element—the world is evolving. Whether we like it or not, we're on the brink of discovery, finding new ways to adapt to current challenges and set a precedent for how things can—and will—be done in the future. This virtuous mentality factors in "the job search" as part of this rhetoric, as many have found and secured new careers despite the unparalleled uncertainty.
Within this feature, we'll look at:
- Five ideas to help your virtual job hunt
- Ways the virtual environment can be ultimately beneficial
- Why all of this matters
To begin, whether you're currently looking for a new career or could use this information later down the road, let's look at the following tactics that may be of use.
Restructure Your Resume
One of the most vital pieces for your virtual job hunt is ultimately one of the most straightforward—your resume. While it may seem juvenile to mention this, your resume should always be considered as the "key to entry" for any career opportunity.
How so? Well, your resume is typically the first point of reference for a hiring manager. For most, it's the "introduction" that sets the tone for everything moving forward. If your resume is articulate, polished, and well-structured, it exhibits the notion that you as a professional emulate this same behavior. While we are only human and ultimately imperfect, a presentable resume will always be better received than a messy one—regardless of the qualifications or experience it promotes. If you are a well-put-together individual, make sure that is communicated first and foremost in your resume.
Tout Your LinkedIn Profile
While we don't recommend being boastful, utilizing your LinkedIn profile is one of the best ways to network virtually and allow hiring managers and recruiters to see you through a professional lens. Much like your resume, a LinkedIn profile is your virtual introduction to a potential employer, and you don't want to be caught with a half-baked representation of yourself. "Googling" someone nowadays is a common practice for employers, and if you're going to pop up on Google, it's probably best that your LinkedIn profile is the first to populate. Your profile is how you can present yourself as an expert. Your LinkedIn is your virtual platform to position yourself as a well-rounded professional from showcasing your skills, authored publications, certifications, portfolio work, and more. That being said, make sure your profile is top-notch!
Get Comfortable with Zoom
Zoom is something we could all get better at. Very few of us were familiar with using Zoom until the pandemic struck. Those who have transitioned into the world of virtual meetings are probably all well-versed in the practice of "Zoom-ing" by now. However, it's imperative to understand Zoom for an interview, especially if working remotely becomes more of the norm for most businesses moving forward. One of the first things you can do with a Zoom interview is to treat it like a traditional interview, minus the physicality portion. How so? Well, to begin, be prepared. Plan to be on the Zoom platform and in the waiting room at least ten minutes early. Make sure that you're dressed professionally head to toe—yes, this includes wearing pants—and that your background is plain and without distractions.
Additionally, it's essential to do your best to find a quiet space that allows you to maintain complete silence and focus. We know this can be hard to do, especially in certain situations where family and roommates come into play—but try your best to keep the peace and avoid the infamous BBC News Zoom fail. Lastly, much like an in-person interview, make sure you're speaking directly to the person asking the question, listen attentively, smile, and throw in some personality! People love to see the character they're working with, so let your authentic self shine through.
Find New Ways of Communicating
As technology continues to evolve, we see emerging trends within the tech industry, specifically centered around digital communication. Popular software such as Slack is an excellent example of how digital communication is not only advancing but becoming the medium of choice when implementing effective communication amongst teams and within organizations. Yes, of course, we're still going to have those all-staff emails and may be required sometimes to communicate through older types of software; however, many technological trends are looking towards the future. It's pretty exciting! Who doesn't love trying new things?
The crucial thing to remember is that no matter what technological platform you're using, communication is key.
The same goes for finding a job virtually. Perhaps you join a LinkedIn group, become part of a Slack channel for aspiring business professionals, or message people on Reddit for potential opportunities. Again, while this all may seem a little foreign, embracing the future is sometimes the best way to turn things into future opportunities.
Be Open to the Virtual Office
Author Bob Goff says it best when speaking about embracing change: "Embrace uncertainty. Some of the most beautiful chapters in our lives won't have a title until much later."
This is undoubtedly true for some of the most exciting unknowns in life and can be the same for your job hunt. Imagine how strange being a "social media manager" sounded back in 2008. And, today, it's one of the most prominent and sought-after careers for many individuals in the digital age. That being said, the same can be argued for the virtual office. While the pandemic indeed forced us to work remotely, this could be the start of an entirely new chapter for many in the workforce. The best we can recommend is simply being open to the changes life can bring; you never know what may come from it!
So, What Are the Benefits of the Virtual Environment?
There's a laundry list of potential items that could be mentioned for this particular segment, but we'll focus on a select few.
Time, oh Precious Time
Saving time is one of the most significant and best parts of working remotely. Having that time back allows for less commuting and for people to focus more on what matters—family, friends, and anything else that isn't angrily sitting in traffic.
Additionally, working remote allows individuals who must physically go into the office—such as medical professionals—a quicker commute time as there aren't nearly as many vehicles on the road clogging up the freeways and contributing to the painfully evident traffic problem.
Rekindling a Hobby
One joyous part of saving time from not commuting is setting more time aside for your hobbies. Whether this is something you can do in your home—like painting or woodworking—or something outside of your space—such as a yoga class or paddleboarding—hobbies are important activities geared towards keeping us balanced. And, they are much more feasible when having more time to do so.
Starting a Side Gig
Do you know the phrase "time is money"? While it may be an overused sentiment, it's very accurate, especially for people in certain states—ahem, California—that benefit from not having to commute. Some of us love to stay busy by making some extra *ca-ching* on the side. Whether it be in-person or online, having a side-hustle is easier to commit to if you have the flexibility to work remotely. How? Well, mainly, it allows for you to plan your schedule more accordingly. If you work from home, you can say, "I will work from 7 AM - 3 PM today so that I can start my second job at 4:30 PM." Whereas if you have to commute, traffic and driving overall are unpredictable. It can be hard to guarantee what time you'll arrive at your next destination, ultimately taking away from your flexibility to commit to any form of side gig.
Increasing Happiness, Decreasing Stress
While it's not a blanket statement to say everyone finds working from home more beneficial than being in the office, many companies and employees have found working remotely has increased productivity and overall happiness. And, as mentioned previously, it allows employees greater flexibility to perform well at their careers and have more time allotted for the things they find valuable—whatever that may be.
Why Does This Matter?
There are numerous reasons why working and searching for a career in a virtual format is essential, but let's focus on one central concept—it very well could be the future. As already mentioned several times, the future is nearer than we might realize. Instead of choosing to ignore the inevitable, it may be better to embrace the change and see it as a time for innovation, new ideas, and fresh thinking. That's part of the joy of life, right? Exploring the unknown, discovering uncharted territories, and creating something entirely new in the process are all fragments of life that make it a journey.
Altogether, it's wholly dependent on you and how you chose to embrace the new changes. It's crucial to assess the changes occurring and see how you can fit into the bigger picture. As said by true innovator Mark Zuckerberg, "The biggest risk is not taking any risk... In a world that is changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks."