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The Question

Now that businesses are starting to open up again, I’m wondering if it’s a good time to start looking for a new job. I haven’t been happy at work for a while and I feel a change is long overdue. But with so many layoffs, I’m not sure if anyone is hiring. Is this the right time to put myself out there or should I still wait awhile? I just don’t want to waste my time.

The First Answer

Julie Labrie, president, BlueSky Personnel Solutions, Mississauga, Ont.

If you are interested in making a move job-wise, this is indeed a good time to start looking. One big advantage is that you’ll have less competition right now.

We have seen a significant decrease in the number of people actively job-searching and posting their resumes online since the beginning of the pandemic. We are hearing from some job candidates that they are worried about how stable a new employer may be, while others are opting to stay back from a sense of loyalty.

The interesting thing is, as businesses begin to resume normal operations, their prepandemic talent shortages are likely to surface again, perhaps not immediately in sectors like retail, restaurants and entertainment, but definitely among professional jobs. Many companies are remotely hiring and on-boarding new employees right now.

For those worried about stability in a new job, it is important to remember this: While there are no guarantees in any situation, most established companies investing in new hires now are doing so because they foresee stability. It costs too much in the hiring process to bring in someone new, only to let them go right afterward. That’s not a profitable move.

So as a job seeker, if you put yourself out there, your competition will be lower than usual, giving you a better chance to stand out to employers who need your talent.

The Second Answer

Bruce Sandy, principal, Pathfinder Coaching & Consulting, Vancouver

If you want a new job, applying to jobs shouldn't be viewed as wasted time, especially now that businesses are reopening and starting to hire again.

You already have a job unlike the thousands of individuals who were laid off because of the coronavirus pandemic. You can be more selective of the jobs you want to consider and apply for as a result. Be aware that you might be less motivated to apply for new positions because you already have a job. You also may be making or looking for excuses that this may not be the right time to be looking for other work.

Reflect on why you want to make a job change now and how motivated you are to start the career search process. Looking for a new position requires clear motivation, focus, effort, perseverance and patience. If you are looking for an excuse such as the current pandemic to not apply for positions, then you are likely not prepared and motivated to make a change. The reality is that many companies are starting to rehire for both in-person and remote positions.

If you are motivated to find a new position then figure out what next job you want and what companies you would like to work for. Start checking job postings online and on company websites. Update your resume and your LinkedIn profile. Let your personal and professional networks know that you are open to pursuing new job opportunities. Also, let job recruiters know that you are open to them contacting you about opportunities on LinkedIn and other professional networking sites. If you need further help then consider hiring a career coach or counsellor.

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