Quarantine has been a nerve-racking time for both employers and employees. Whether you’re still working or laid off, the future is uncertain. What is certain is that you should use this time to make yourself as valuable as possible in the workplace.
Here are three ways to increase and reinforce your employability value during quarantine.
Update Your Job Portfolio
If you’re searching for a new job, you should use this time to vamp up your job portfolio. Each time you apply to a job, you should be tweaking and reworking your resume, cover letter and job samples to fit the job you apply for. One of the worst things you can do when applying for jobs is use a one-resume-fits-all approach. Check out our past digital on how to become a resume all star for tips and tricks.
If you’re currently employed, you should still update your job portfolio regularly. You never know when a new opportunity might knock on your door, and it’s best to update your materials as you go verses having to dig through hundreds of work samples to identify the best ones.
Sharpen Your Skills
It’s never a bad thing to have a wide skill set or to advance your knowledge. The more you know about your profession and the stronger your expertise, the harder it is for an employer to let you go or pass you by. Quarantine has probably left you with extra time on your hands, and you should use it to buff up your professional skills.
There are tons of free, online tools to help you learn new skills no matter what profession you’re in. Doing a simple Google search, you will surely find the right fit for you. YouTube also has thousands of tutorials and skill-building videos available for free.
Go the Extra Mile
Working from home can make it easy to slack off, but if you go the extra mile, you will show your employer that you are devoted to maintaining and increasing productivity despite the unfortunate circumstances we are all facing. Consider taking on extra work, working longer hours, paying closer attention to projects and checking in to see what else you can do to help the company. Your initiative will be noticed and appreciated.
It can be discouraging applying for jobs, especially while the job market is strained like it is now. Don’t let that deter you. Apply for any job you see fit and don’t give up. Be sure to do your regular follow-up but understand that it may take longer for employers to get back to you. Business owners have a lot on their minds right now, and it won’t help you to pester them. Find the happy medium.
You can also reach out to local recruitment or talent agencies. Capital Area Michigan Works! is a great resource to help you update your resume or connect you to job openings to apply for.