There have been widespread lay offs in the last six to nine months, and the talent acquisition industry is no exception. As somebody who has been laid off before myself, I took time to offer some advice to people who might be going through a similar situation at the moment on Episode 133 of Talent & Growth. Here are five steps you can take to re-start your career: 

1 – Change Your Perspective

If you’ve been laid off recently, the chances are, it’s not about you. We’re living through a crazy time in the economy and the talent market, so this is an unfortunate part of the cycle. Talent acquisition is one of the first functions to be hit by periods of uncertainty, so try to remove some of the emotion from your situation and look at it more objectively. These cycles always happen, but it’s not your fault. 

2 – Upskill Yourself 

Use this time to upskill. Think about the areas which you haven’t had exposure to or training in, and think of it as a way you can add another string to your bow. Companies often need someone who can wear two or three hats at once, so how do you get to that level? What courses can you do to make you more attractive to a company moving forwards? Everyone wants to save money, so if you can demonstrate to a company that they can save money by hiring you for two or three roles rather than just one of them, they’re going to be interested. 

Businesses are going to want to know how they can save money using automation. AI is everywhere, so get yourself up to date with what functions are out there that you could implement for a new company. When a company asks you, ‘What AI should we be using to save our business money?’ You want to have an answer. If you don’t get all over it, you’re probably going to fall behind. 

3 – Ask for Help 

What I’ve always loved about TA is that everyone’s sharing and helping each other out. LinkedIn is my favourite social media by far because it’s so positive. It’s always worth posting that you’re looking for work. People who don’t even know you will tag you and tag other people to start a conversation about it, because they want to help. It’s that kind of platform. Put out what you’re looking for and what you’re good at. Don’t be afraid to do that. 

Find the best recruitment agencies out there and speak to them. Find out what’s going on in the market. If you find a good one, they’re absolutely worth their weight in gold. When the time comes for you to help other people, you will as well. Think of asking for help as an opportunity for someone to pay it forward, and you will pay it back. That’s how you build a really great community and network. 

4 – Don’t Rely on Your CV

You go on LinkedIn to connect with people. There’s no point just sending a CV to an advert, you should connect with a line manager, send them a personal message, and then follow up. Explain why you want to work for that company, and don’t be afraid to get personal. You’ve got to stand out, because there are a lot of people out there looking for a job. The difference between somebody giving you a job or never looking at your application could be a personal message that really spoke to them. It really can’t hurt to try. 

5 – Research Your Opportunities 

If you apply for a job as a Chief Talent Officer and you do some follow ups, that’s great. But, wouldn’t it be even better if you found an opportunity before it went out and 1000 people applied to it? Look into the companies who are making moves, who’ve just received investment, and who you know that could be interested in someone with your skill set. Try and spot the opportunity before it’s posted on job boards. 

To hear more in-depth discussion of the advice in this blog, tune into Episode 133 of the Talent & Growth podcast here