How To Set Your CV Apart While Job Hunting During Covid-19
The world of work has changed over the past year and a half, and so have the skills employers are now looking for when scouring your CVs. Here’s how to set yours apart
The logistics of the workplace during Covid-19 has cast a spotlight on a number of skills, which previously were nice-to-have, but now have become very important to keep the ship moving.
Some of the skills that employers will be looking for in the future include a candidate’s ability to be resilient and work under pressure, to work independently and to be comfortable in the online environment in terms of submitting work, responding to feedback and participating effectively in meetings.
The trick is to look back over the past year and find examples from your work or study life to demonstrate how your experiences and actions match the required skills from job vacancies or your current job.
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Great managers have also learned and grown over the past year, and don’t expect emotionless super-humans who didn’t miss a step during the pandemic. However, if you dig deep, you will find instances where you rose to the challenge, and perhaps moved beyond what you thought you were capable of. In addition to job-relevant technical qualifications from a respected institution, you can set yourself apart in the job market now by highlighting those skills, which will provide a measure of confidence in the hiring manager that you will be able to keep going even while challenging external circumstances remain or re-appear down the line.
If you want to make a change or apply for a promotion, you can try to find concrete examples from how you managed to navigate virtual skills during lockdowns. In the past, specialist skills were paramount, but now, regardless of your field, everyone has to be a generalist as well. That means you have to demonstrate that you are able to not only use the tools of your trade but that you can also apply them strategically, by using complementary skills. Your strength as a candidate no longer comes just from your main field of focus, but from the unique combination of skills you bring to the table.
This is not a time to wait until things start making more sense or become better. You have to keep doing everything you can to build on your self-confidence, skills and personal empowerment. By tweaking your approach to your job search, and adjusting your personal branding to suit our new environment, you can continue working towards your goals and aspirations, one step at a time.
Words: Peter Kriel, general manager at The Independent Institute of Education.