indicatorAlberta Lifestyle

Six tips to help with your job search in Alberta

By ATB Financial 20 October 2020 4 min read

According to the latest report, Alberta’s unemployment rate for September 2020 was 11.7%. That’s way up from 6.6% in 2019, with the COVID-19 pandemic playing a significant role in the jump.

While these are just numbers, we know that behind them are real people struggling financially and emotionally during these challenging times. Lack of employment and reliable income can lead to bad debt, shrinking savings and worse.

The good news is that there are resources available to help. Here are some tips to help manage money and find new employment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

1. Review your current financial situation to understand the urgency.

To help figure out your best next steps, evaluate your current financial situation. Review your budget, expenses, debt and any money coming in from other sources. This could include layoff severance or a government relief program. A clear view of your finances will help you understand your immediate employment needs.

If you need help with this review, make an appointment with an advisor at your local ATB branch.

If you need help, don’t hesitate to apply for assistance.

Do you need employment immediately to cover your bills, or do you have time to invest in a thorough job search? If you find yourself in immediate financial distress, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Income, Housing & Employment Supports provides income support and assistance, including financial, housing, and job loss support, to Albertans in need.

Find options to cut expenses during your job search.

If you’re unemployed, chances are you’ll have less money coming in each month. To help with a reduced budget, it’s important to take a look for places where you can cut expenses each month while searching for a job. Are there subscription services you’re not using? Could you cook more at home? Check out some ideas on how to cut monthly expenses.

 

2. Take advantage of free job search resources.

There are many free job search resources available that can help you find meaningful employment. Online job banks and job sites can help you find opportunities in your current field or an entirely new one. Browsing these free sites will give you a better idea of what’s out there.

Update your resume.

Arming yourself with an updated, professional resume is an essential step in your job search. In some industries, it might help to tweak your resume for each application you submit. If you need help writing your resume, there are many free resources available. For example, the provincial government’s alis department offers job search assistance, including resume writing, networking, interview preparation and more. Many Alberta communities also have similar resources available through municipal governments or local chambers of commerce.

 

3. Talk to a career advisor.

If you feel overwhelmed and need help figuring out the next steps with your job search, talk to someone who may be able to help. You can get advice about your career, education and employment options from career advisors through Alberta Supports. Speaking with a professional can give you sound advice and referrals, and also provide further education and employment options.

 

4. Consider retraining.

If you’re having trouble finding work in your specific field, it might be time to consider retraining. There are several programs that can help with this. The Alberta government offers job planning and training programs that provide education, tools and resources to help out-of-work Albertans return to the job market.

Government retraining programs can help you make a career shift and enhance workplace skills. There are programs that provide training and support for unemployed or marginally employed Indigenous Albertans. All of these resources and programs can help you get back to work.

 

5. Invest time in networking.

Good networking can help your job search and get your name out there. Start by talking to your network of family, friends and past colleagues to learn about any opportunities in their networks. You never know what can come out of these personal connections.

Create or update your profile on LinkedIn so people can find you online. You can also use it to connect with new people. Employers use LinkedIn to recruit employees, and you never know what opportunities a simple online connection can bring.

 

6. Know that COVID-19 has changed how we find employment.

The pandemic has changed many things, including the job search, recruiting and hiring process. Even work conditions have changed for most industries. The way you’ve searched for jobs in the past might not be relevant today. Hiring processes take more time, as companies are also adapting to these changes.

The specific role you are looking for might not be available, so don’t be afraid to cast a wider net and explore new opportunities. A willingness to try new things might mean considering temporary roles while you continue your job search.

While everyone adapts to this new normal, it’s essential to have patience. Always follow up if you haven’t heard back from a company after submitting your application, as they are working through challenges too.

 

If you need help reviewing your financial situation or creating a budget to help you manage challenging times, we can help. Connect with your local branch today.

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