The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every business across the U.S. and globally, dramatically changing the recruiting and hiring landscape. The long-term impacts on the workforce are unknown, but it is still possible to conduct a successful job search. Here are five ways you can thrive during this crisis and get hired.
- Utilize College Career Services. Think of the college career counselor as a partner who can support and drive your professional development. These individuals equip graduates with the resources and skills to successfully generate and take advantage of professional opportunities. They provide ongoing career advice, resume help, job placement services, interview tips and more. Career counselors have developed relationships with community employers, which often gives them access to unadvertised job postings. This means they can connect you directly with hiring managers and leverage you for positions.
- Grow Your Professional Network Strategically. Don’t hoard connections just for the sake of having them. Do reach out to people who can help you on your professional journey. Sending random invitations online has very little effect. Focus instead on engaging your current network contacts. Utilize social media platforms, job boards, and other digital communities to make new and meaningful connections. Attend online networking events and webinars. Build a strong professional pipeline. Many of your connections may work for companies that offer employer referral programs, where existing employees can recommend candidates for open positions. Inquire about these and other internal recruiting strategies. Ask your contacts for an information meeting to learn more about their company and market trends. Professional connections give you access to information, support, and increased business opportunities. Don’t let them stagnate.
- Build Your Professional Toolkit. Polish your resume and cover letter. Update your portfolio in a way that highlights your accomplishments, credentials, and background. Strengthen your skills and abilities. Develop technical and soft skills. Learn to use digital technology and social media. Enhance your presence. Web pages, voicemail messages, and email accounts may substitute for first impressions. Now more than ever, make sure they are effective and establish the value you can provide. Avoid suggestive language and playful addresses. You want to be taken seriously. Get involved in professional networks, join professional organizations, and promote yourself.
- Prepare to Meet Virtually. In person meetings are being canceled due to social distancing recommendations, stay-at-home orders, and other restrictions. Many firms are moving to remote options and screen sharing apps to communicate and interface. Hiring managers are pre-screening eligible candidates through phone interviews, conducting personal interviews virtually, and onboarding new hires remotely. Becoming proficient with video conferencing demonstrates to prospective employers that you can collaborate while teleworking. Follow the same best practices you would for a traditional interview, which includes professional decorum and dress.
- Pursue a Degree. Being at home may offer an opportunity to further develop your skills. Consider continuing your education or acquiring an additional academic credential. Not only will it make you a more attractive candidate, it will also enable you to get better at what you do, enhance your career, and differentiate you from other applicants. The Associate of Applied Science Degree Paralegal Program at Center for Advanced Legal Studies can qualify you for a wide range of legal positions and opportunities for upward mobility. It includes a broader educational foundation comprised of math, English, and science and requires more developed reading, writing, and communication skills. These skills enhance the Paralegal Certificate which can jump-start a paralegal career.
Center for Advanced Legal Studies has delivered programs online for over 10 years and experienced very little disruption as a result of coronavirus. Learning in our institution continues. Students have access to expert faculty, best practices, relevant curriculum, and online learning resources. Our administration is dedicated to uninterrupted assistance for students while we engage in remote learning. We have ramped up remote services and continue to support graduates and alumni in expanding and launching their paralegal careers. Visit www.paralegal.edu to learn more!
Director of Outreach and Career Services
Tami has an extensive and varied professional background that spans criminal justice, paralegal education, and international school marketing and communication. Her career has been guided by a focus on developing strategic partnerships that facilitate school growth and student opportunity. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Degree in Criminal Justice from Texas State University.