Prepare for the Long Haul: Advice for Job Hunting During COVID-19

In the current climate, it could take time – perhaps a year or more – for you to find the right job, so it’s important to be ready for this.  It is hard to find definitive data on how long it takes to get a job if you are unemployed. What we can be certain…

Prepare for the Long Haul: Advice for Job Hunting During COVID-19

In the current climate, it could take time – perhaps a year or more – for you to find the right job, so it’s important to be ready for this. 

It is hard to find definitive data on how long it takes to get a job if you are unemployed. What we can be certain of is that, on average, it takes Frontline 32.3 days from the time it receives a brief from the client till that role is placed. Over the last ten years, this time to fill has fluctuated between 27.2 days and 33.4 days, and we do not expect this to change much post COVID-19.

On the other side of this pandemic, there will be many candidates who are unemployed, much more than has been the case in the past 25 years. This article goes into detail about various studies on how long it takes to find a job when unemployed.

According to this data, it typically takes around 22 weeks to find a job if you are unemployed, and after two years, it becomes increasingly unlikely that you will work in a paid job again. Many people in this scenario end up starting their own businesses, consulting or retiring. There is also data from various studies indicating that if you have been unemployed for 12 months, your chance of getting a job drops by 40% – scary!

So, if you’re looking for a job, what does this mean for you? I will row my own boat here: It means that developing relationships with recruitment consultants is more important than ever. Sure, apply to companies directly, but remember – the numbers show that it is unlikely you will get an interview without a referral (from a consultant) and the short period that jobs stay open for means that you will be spending a lot of time going from company to company.

In the meantime, prepare for the long haul. The best general advice is to get back in the workforce quickly. If you need to work, please don’t wait for the “right” role, take casual or part-time work, lower your salary expectations, be open to travel, relocate if necessary, and remember – it will be competitive, so if you are not prepared to do these things, there are others who will be.

Whilst doing all this, look for specialist recruiters in industry sectors you either have experience in or that your skills will transfer to. Invest time with a recruitment consultant (one who actually consults) and work with them (I’ll share more on how to do this in subsequent blogs) keep your skills up to date and remain positive!

For more advice or support with your job hunt, get in touch with our team of specialist recruiters today. And if you missed the first blog in this series, click here for an overview of the ten actions you can take to help you prepare, train and execute your assault on the job market.

Pete Davis is Managing Director of Frontline Recruitment Group (FRG). FRG is a specialist recruitment company with 30 offices across Australia and New Zealand. They have been operating since the early 1990s and have worked in high unemployment environments with employers and job hunters in many different industries. This blog series is about sharing some of the lessons of the past and integrating them with the technology and business practices of today. We hope you enjoy these articles and welcome your opinions.