Many technologists are job-hunting during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Dice’s ongoing COVID-19 Sentiment Survey, just under a third of technologists who already work full-time are either on the job hunt or plan to start looking for a new job within the next two weeks. For those seeking their next position, it’s important to rewrite their résumé to take the pandemic (and its impact on the workplace) into account.
Fortunately, such a rewrite likely isn’t a radical one for most technologists. No matter what the broader circumstances, it’s important that technologists’ résumés emphasize their unique and relevant skillsets, as well as any previous projects and experience that align with what a new employer is looking for. Especially if you’re pressed for time, a template can prove useful—provided you modify it extensively (nothing will doom your chances with a company faster than using the same résumé template as a million other job-seekers).
Emphasize Your Remote Work
Although states around the country are trying to figure out how to safely open up businesses (some with more success than others), many companies have no plans to reintroduce workers to the office for many months, if not the rest of the year. Moreover, some firms (such as Facebook) are making work-from-home a permanent option for workers. Depending on how things evolve, the modern office could look very different even after the COVID-19 pandemic subsides—and everything from hiring to team meetings could be conducted largely via video conference.
In light of that, it’s important to use your résumé to emphasize your remote-work capabilities. In the bullet-points where you describe your experience, reserve one or two for discussing how you effectively managed a remote team (for example) or successfully met project goals while working with teammates dispersed in multiple time-zones. If you list your previous employers’ locations, make sure to note that the work was remote (perhaps with a parenthetical “remote” beside the employer’s city, if mentioned).
List Your Remote Skills
Companies shifting to remote work has spiked usage of certain key apps, such as (but certainly not limited to) Teams and Slack, as well as various file-sharing and cloud-storage platforms. As you rewrite your résumé's skills section, make sure to highlight your experience with messaging and cloud-based apps, especially any that you know your target company actually uses.
Point Out Your Efficiency
During this uncertain period, many companies are wrestling with how to best distribute their budgets, especially in the face of declining revenues. Teams that previously enjoyed a massive influx of cash every fiscal year might now find themselves trimming their budget lines.
Given this fiscal hyper-awareness, it pays (so to speak) to show employers that you’re responsible when it comes to budget. In your résumé's experience bullet-points, mention if you’ve brought projects to completion on-budget (or even better, under-budget) and on-time. That could prove a crucial differentiator as you try to stand out amongst experienced candidates.
And on a related note…
Not all technologists have a direct impact on revenue. However, if you have examples of how you’ve saved companies money—or better yet, how you created a new line of business or revenue stream—you should definitely reserve space on your résumé to highlight that fact. It could be something as simple as building an app for internal use that made team spending a bit more efficient. When hiring during this crucial time, companies are interested in candidates who’ve had an impact on the bottom line.