Corona-virus has been declared as a global pandemic by the WHO, with confirmed cases continuing to rise across the world, organizations are making hard decisions about events, work-related travel and requiring employees to work from home in an effort to slow the spread of the virus and minimize exposure for employees.
These decisions have implications for all workers, causing some business to shut down. Hourly-wage earners are not left out of this, are proving to be the most hard-hit.
According to Bankrate.com, only 37 percent of Americans have enough in savings to cover a $500 emergency. A study by CareerBuilder shows that more than two thirds of US Americans live paycheck to paycheck. This all means that for many families right now, missing even one paycheck can be a disaster. It means they don’t have enough money for the current necessities: bills, food and mortgage.
What happens for workers in fields like Production Companies, restaurant and food service, and maintenance and repair where a work-from-home option isn’t a feasible reality?
We bring to you tips to consider as you look for new or additional work to ease any job loss or hours-reduced related to the corona-virus.
1. Use transferable skills to find a new hourly job that allows you to work from home (even if temporarily)
If your main source of income is waiting tables, prepping food, cleaning hotel rooms or any other on-site hourly work, you might look for opportunities to utilize those skills in other capacities. Do you interface with customers frequently? Remote customer service or call center jobs might be available to you. Are you organized amid chaos and good with details? You might dip your toe into fields that require logistics and many moving parts, like project management. These opportunities might be temporarily work-from-home or serve as a temporary solution, but any potential re-framing of your current experience should rely on skills you already use daily.
2. Look for side gigs to provide some income.
Corona-virus is hitting every industry and job, and that includes freelancers and side gigs. Get creative. Consider online writing, virtual services, creating online education programs, selling your art work or working on your YouTube channel. Reach out to neighbors and friends and see if they need any help.
3. Look for contract work and opportunities fueled by the gig-economy
There are many employers that want to use or already utilize remote workforce’s on a contract basis. From freelance designers to consultants, consider how your skills might be useful to organizations in a temporary capacity or for remote, one-off projects. Use job boards to filter positions by remote opportunities, and/or temporary or contract work, to find open roles. As more people work from home, and the rhythm of everyday life is interrupted, services like food and grocery delivery, and using ride-share companies, will only increase.
4. Your skills could translate to salaried positions that may allow for work from home – and ultimately progress your career.
What have you done in the past that might be attractive to a new employer? Hiring managers are moving away from strict title matching based on past experiences, and they want to see how candidates navigated situations and projects with skills they have cultivated. Think about what you learned in previous roles, the knowledge you executed to accomplish tasks and how you worked with others to complete projects, and describe your experiences in a new way to connect to a current job opening’s description.
5. Search for opportunities within industries responding to corona-virus
If you’re looking to switch careers, or have previous training or experience in certain industries, consider high-growth sectors that are constantly looking for employees, especially during the response to corona-virus. These include truck and delivery drivers, home health aides and nurses, web developers, and customer service representatives.
6. Cut your budget.
If you don’t have a budget, create one now. Review all your expenses and see where you can cut. Tighten as much as you can, because no one knows how long this will last.
Just because we are socially distancing ourselves from each other does not mean you can’t network. Update your resume and your LinkedIn profile. Reach out to friends and old contacts in your industry and let them know you are looking for work. Connect with others in your situation, and see how you can help them out.
During a time where there doesn’t seem to be much good news, it’s possible that Americans will soon get some financial help from the government. Details are still being worked out, but the stimulus package is likely to be more than $1 trillion in spending. Hopefully those in need will soon see a check in their mail.