by Artur Meyster
Losing your job at any point can feel as if everything has fallen out of place and leave you wondering about the future. These feelings are only exacerbated by the current pandemic and millions of Americans have lost their jobs. In fact, a study from the Wall Street Journal found that around 30 million positions were removed from payrolls during the pandemic.
As all of these workers become displaced and struggle to get back on their feet, there are a few things anyone can do to help this process go faster should you find yourself in the same situation. There is one thing that should be done before even considering a new course of action, however, and that is to breathe. If you have lost your job due to Covid-19, just know that you are not alone.
Develop Your Skills
Regardless of which occupation you held before the onset of the pandemic, it is important to brush up your skills as you go out looking for jobs. It’s not about acquiring every skill under the sun, but rather obtaining the most relevant and useful skills for the future of work. Harvard performed a research study centered around the emergence of the fourth industrial revolution, which essentially predicts the takeover of technology.
In this study, they cover some of the skills that will be necessary for surviving in this future of work. Digital literacy and computer skills were at the top of that list, but the general underlying trend was skills surrounding technology. Humans will still be required in most fields and industries, but their day-to-day tasks will change.
To that end, identifying some of the top computer skills looked for by recruiters is a great way to figure out your next steps. Most of these skills can be developed from the comfort of your own home and through other resources, but acquiring these skills will be the key to setting yourself up for a long-lasting career in the future of work.
Attend a Tech Bootcamp
As mentioned, some of the top skills above can be self-taught, but others require a more extensive learning experience. For some people, it may be beneficial to attend a tech-based bootcamp that can prepare you with all the skills you need to go into a certain tech career.
In the past, trade schools and bootcamp educational styles were passed over for traditional college experiences. However, tech is changing the workforce faster than anyone expected and the rigorous four-year educational paths that used to be required for some fields have been dropped. For example, data science has been growing at a rate of 6.5 times the normal rate according to LinkedIn. This is a field that used to require a master’s degree, but the demand for data scientists has increased so much in recent years that graduates of top data science bootcamps are being sourced and hired.
The demand for tech-based jobs is going to increase so much in the next few years that pursuing a quicker educational path than a graduate program and launching a new career may be in your best interest after losing your job due to the pandemic.
Reflect on Your Career and What You Want to Do
Sometimes, the hustle and bustle of life can take over and distract your mind from the fact that your career really wasn’t right for you. Look back on the job you previously held and determine if you really enjoyed what you did. If so, consider yourself lucky as a large number of Americans typically don’t enjoy their work.
If you fall into the category of those who weren’t completely satisfied with their career, then take a look at some of the popular reasons for leaving a job and see if any of your sentiments line up. At the end of the day, losing your job due to this pandemic may be a blessing in disguise that frees you up to pursue a new passion.
Try to identify your unique skills and see if they are applicable to any emerging fields. Online Degree Hero has great resources and information on a number of tech-based fields that could capture your interest now that you are back in the job-hunting market.
Truthfully, the most important thing to do after losing your job due to Covid-19 is to take charge of your future. The reality is that you have lost your job during a time of massive disruption in the workforce. While the disruption has been accelerated due to the pandemic, traditional jobs were already starting to fade in favor of tech-based careers. There’s no sure-fire way to land a new job right after losing yours due to Covid-19. However, you can set yourself up to have a better chance in the future by taking certain actions today.
Artur Meyster is the CTO of Career Karma (YC W19), an online marketplace that matches career switchers with coding bootcamps. He is also the host of the Breaking Into Startups podcast, which features people with non-traditional backgrounds who broke into tech.
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