Woman having a video job interview with 4 other people

Around the world, businesses are in various stages of starting to re-open from the COVID-19 pandemic. For many companies, this means re-thinking their hiring strategies and what types of employees they need. With so many Canadians currently unemployed, employers are seeing a huge influx of job applications, so it’s important to understand what they’re looking for and to be prepared to stand out from the crowd.

Here are some of the trends we are seeing and how you can use them to show your value as a candidate:

1. Be prepared for remote work

Coming out of COVID-19, many organizations have realized remote work is a viable part of how they do business. Some plan to have their teams continue to work completely from home, others are giving staff the option to work remotely when they wish.

For example, Shopify announced that they are now a “digital by default company,” giving their employees the freedom to work from anywhere. Companies like Google and Facebook have stated that the majority of employees will continue to work from home at least for the remainder of 2020. A study by Global Workplace Analytics predicts that 25-30% of the workforce will be working from home multiple days a week by the end of 2021.

How can you address this in your job search?

    • Many companies will be looking for employees who are self-motivated and comfortable with working remotely. If you’ve worked from home previously, provide tangible examples of how you managed it effectively. If you haven’t, do your research and be clear on how you plan to approach this.
    • Demonstrate that you have the ability to handle the technological aspects of working from home. Do you know how to do basic troubleshooting if you experience computer or phone issues at home? Are you comfortable with video meeting platforms like Zoom, Google Meet or Microsoft Teams?

2. Show your adaptability & the breadth of your skillset

Companies are dealing with tighter budgets, and therefore being strategic about the types of employees they add to their team. Many are creating positions with a broader range of tasks, or even “hybrid roles” that combine responsibilities normally allocated to different people or departments.

    • Show the full breadth of skills that you bring to the table. Perhaps you are a finance professional with a strong background in data analysis and technology? Or you’re a graphic designer with a flare for copywriting?
    • Go into interviews prepared with examples from your past experiences that demonstrate your ability to multi-task and willingness to take on new responsibilities.
    • If you have completed our Workstyle & Performance Profile assessment and the results show you are naturally open to change, highlight that to prospective employers.
    • If you are currently a student or are considering further education, find courses that expand your focus area. Do research on how your chosen field is evolving, and what you might need to be better prepared for jobs of the future. Schedule informational interviews (these can be done virtually!) or speak with a career advisor through your postsecondary institution.

3. Be creative & solution-oriented

Companies are being challenged to be extremely innovative as we navigate this “new normal.” We’ve seen so many businesses evolve in creative ways during COVID-19: restaurants completely changing the way they provide meals, banks offering more services online, retail layouts changing to allow for safe social distancing. In many cases, new ideas come from front-line workers, not just top-down. Now more than ever, it’s important to show that you are innovative and solution-oriented. Go into interviews prepared with specific examples of ways you have creatively tackled a problem, implemented something new or saved a company money.

Job hunting is challenging right now—there are a lot of candidates currently looking for work, so it’s crucial that you take steps to make sure you get noticed by employers. Check out the openings on our job board, and if you need tips to spruce up your resume, write a cover letter, ace your next interview or optimize your LinkedIn profile, check out our Career Resources.