Accessibility Links

How to job hunt during the Covid-19 pandemic

Posted on: 29 Apr

The world is a different place now than it was even just a couple of months ago. As of April 2nd, half of humanity was on lockdown, with world leaders calling for social distancing and isolation in a bid to flatten the curve of Covid-19. With these measures has come a massive upswing in working from home. With businesses unable to operate from offices and commercial hubs, many employees and contractors are now finding themselves in the unusual position off full-time remote working. Some are furloughed, while others still are in the unfortunate position of being out of work due to the global pandemic.

Whatever situation you’re in, now could be the perfect time to reflect on your career goals and think about your next steps. Many people have more time on our hands than ever, so why not channel that towards proactive career planning? Follow our tips on digital interviewing, networking and more to help secure your next role during this tricky time.

Build your digital presence and network

With conferences, seminars and networking events cancelled or postponed, career networking has moved to the online realm. Those job seekers who continue to build relationships and share ideas on through digital networks will find themselves in a better position to secure open vacancies.

Now is a good time to pay close attention to your LinkedIn profile (and any others that are popular in your sector). Optimise your profile to include a unique URL to make your profile easier to find, ensure you include industry- and role-specific keywords throughout your profile (and especially in your tagline and ‘about you’ section) and update your work history with specific details and achievements.

You may also wish to join professional groups on LinkedIn, Facebook and other social networks. Simply search for a relevant group (such as Medical Sales Professionals, Medical Writers UK or Life Sciences Europe) and you’ll find an abundance of groups filled with like-minded people speaking about topics that will be relevant to you. Join in on conversations, post your thoughts, share professional articles and make yourself visible to others. By demonstrating your expertise and interest, you may be more likely to be contacted by recruiters and hiring managers who often use those groups to source new talent.

Practice patience

While it may seem like now is not the best time to be job hunting, for many industries there are plenty of opportunities. At IQVIA, we have a range of active Medical Sales and Services vacancies and are working hard to continue providing exceptional opportunities for candidates. In other markets, there may not be quite so many opportunities, with stretched recruiters and resourcing teams being faced with all new challenges that may be slowing down time-to-hire. Be patient and don’t panic. If you don’t see as many opportunities that fit your criteria, expand your search or take a couple of days off before you look again. Teams have shrunk during this time and hiring managers are juggling multiple roles at once, so they may be sporadic with their communications as they navigate the world of online working and onboarding.

Prepare for digital communication

Medical Sales Representatives are highly accustomed to frequent communication, which can take place over a variety of platforms. For others in the life sciences industry, such heavy use of digital communications technologies may feel unfamiliar. If you’re used to discussing questions and sales face-to-face, rather than screen-to-screen, applications like Zoom, Hangouts, Teams and Skype may take a bit of getting used to. However, with no clear lockdown exit strategy, no hint at reductions of social distancing and the suggestion that Covid-19 could permanently shift working patterns, savvy jobseekers would do well to tackle tricky new technologies and software applications now to ensure familiarity when it comes time to interviewing and onboarding. This is particularly important for people actively applying for roles – you never know when a request for an online interview will land in your email.

Take a look at our infographic for more tips on successful video interviewing.

Upskill

If you’ve got time on your hands and want to boost your professional profile, consider new skills you can add to your repertoire. PwC ranks upskilling as among the six most significant healthcare industry trends, which makes this a key consideration for anyone looking to progress within the sector.

If you work in international markets, consider brushing up on entry-level language skills. If your technology knowledge could do with some work, embark on a research project in artificial intelligence and robotics. And if you are really committed to upskilling, you may want to consider a certificate or other qualification within medtech or another health science related field. Self-study and commitment to ongoing improvement is hugely attractive to employers and might make all the difference when it comes to securing your next role.

Find your next medical sales job with IQVIA

At IQVIA, we’re committed to fighting back against Covid-19, helping to accelerate the development of Covid-19 treatments and vaccines, and ensuring our candidates have access to the best roles on the market. Find out more about what we’re doing in the battle against Covid-19.