Did you get laid off or lose your job during the pandemic? Or maybe you're looking for a new challenge or eager to move to the next stage in your career?

A job search during the latest wave can be complicated. With galloping infections, employers may be waiting to see what happens. You also may not be able to interview or onboard in person. So how do you land your next gig with this added complexity?

Know the Work You Want: Hybrid, In-Person, or Remote

Black woman in a business suit standing and working on a computer

Everyone has a different risk tolerance when it comes to COVID. For example, some people may have health conditions or a family member at risk, making remote work the best option. Before starting your job search, decide what kinds of jobs you're willing to consider.

While many companies have gone to remote or hybrid work models, some insist on working in-person, while others mix them up as pandemic waves come and go.

Related: The Best Job Websites to Find Remote Work

Once you know what you're looking for, limit your job search to companies that either default to your preferred arrangement or allow employees to choose what works best for them.

Stand Out From the Competition

One of the biggest challenges is standing out from all the other applicants searching for jobs right now. Especially as many companies are going remote and hiring from national or even global candidate pools. Make sure that your cover letter talks about your ability to work remotely and list the team collaboration tools you're familiar with on your resume.


Don't send out the same resume to every company. Instead, tailor your resume to the language in the job ad. Are they looking for resilience? Tell them how you're resilient. Also, research their current projects and how they might have been affected during the pandemic. Then, suggest how you'd love to help them navigate those challenges in your cover letter.

Use Your Socially Distanced Network

A woman is sitting outside on her computer taking notes about potential jobs.

A large proportion of people get jobs by networking or referrals. But asking someone for a coffee meeting is difficult given social distancing. Instead, connect via e-mail, Zoom, or LinkedIn with past colleagues, industry connections, and friends from college.

You can even offer to send them an electronic coffee gift card for their time. Ask your network to keep an eye out for potential opportunities at their companies or in their fields.

Nail the Video Interview

A young black man is sitting at a table on a laptop working

If it's a video interview, it can feel less personal. Video interviews can also be more stressful than face-to-face ones. Decide in advance where you'll sit and which background will look more professional in your home. If you have kids, have a family member take them out of the house for a few hours. If you have roommates or live with a partner, ensure they won't disturb you.

Get distracted watching yourself talking? Cover the screen with paper so you don't have to see yourself. Not sure how to convey your excitement? Do research about the company or project you would be working on and list ideas to share.

Still nervous? Do a dry run with a friend over Zoom to help build your confidence.

Don't Give Up! You'll Find the Right Gig

During the pandemic, making a job move can be stressful since the hiring process is so different. But if you have a good idea of what you want, you can stay motivated during your job search. When opportunity knocks, find ways to emphasize your remote work skill set and navigate the video interview. Then you'll get that chance to move your career to the next level at a company that's a good fit for you and your career goals.

Person walking with briefcase.
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