It’s hard to chart a course when job hunting during a pandemic. But no matter what direction you choose you’ll need a resume. Whether you’ve lost your job or contemplating a new career one thing is for certain, writing a resume for the “new normal” job market isn’t business as usual!
In some cases your work history and background may align perfectly with the opportunity. However, the office job is now being performed from home. In other cases your hard skills match exactly the qualifications required for the job. However, the job also focuses on soft skills needed to be successful.
Your job search during COVID-19 requires a resume that demonstrates how your work history combined with your recent experiences due to the pandemic make you a perfect fit for the job. To do that, be sure to integrate these two elements into your resume.
1. Think “Remote”
Since many jobs are or may at least begin as remote positions employers will be looking for candidates that are familiar with work from home resources. Even if you didn’t use these tech tools in your previous jobs you can highlight the technology skills that have helped you navigate the impact of COVID-19.
Did you conduct video meetings with caregivers? Did you create community fundraisers on social networks? Did you implement your child’s home-school curriculum? Did you attend virtual industry conferences?
Include the technology you’ve acquired such as Google Docs, Zoom, Trello and Microsoft Teams in your resume skills section. Provide examples in your accomplishments section of how you used these resources to communicate, stay organized, and solve problems while volunteering, working through household issues or growing your network.
There’s no doubt remote work is here to stay so it’s important to add technology skills to your qualifications and to highlight them in your resume.
2. Brag Soft Skills
Employers look for soft skills that demonstrate how well a candidate will fit and grow within their organization. You use soft skills no matter what types of jobs you have. You also use soft skills to help manage stress and uncertainty caused by COVID-19. In fact, you probably strengthened some soft skills during the pandemic that weren’t required in your previous jobs.
Leadership – Did you mentor colleagues who were furloughed? Teamwork – Did you form a parent’s support group to address home schooling issues? Dependability – Did you commit to a volunteer schedule to deliver food to seniors in your neighborhood? Time Management – Did you adopt personal project management tools to address constantly shifting priorities in your household?
Include your most valuable, relevant soft skills in several sections of your resume. This makes it easier for employers to see how well suited you are for the position. This is especially important if you are changing industries.
Use the summary section to accentuate one or two soft skills that are reflected in the job description. Use the skills section to match your strongest soft skills with the specific requirements of the job. Use the employment history section to describe accomplishments using your soft skills including those that help you navigate the pandemic.
Of course a resume created during COVID-19 is built upon resume fundamentals. Free workshops are available to guide you through these fundamental steps and help transform an ordinary resume into an extraordinary resume that will get noticed in this new normal job market.