It’s all about hiring trends and job search!
Welcome to 2022 and a hiring landscape like we have never seen before. To start the year off, here is my list of job search topics, hiring trends, and areas to consider if you are tackling a job change, resignation, or complete career pivot in 2022.
Before I even get into my list of Hiring Trends for 2022, one overriding concern pops up with all of my clients. That is, do you stand out in your job search compared to your competition. What does that even mean for your search? Can you articulate your career story?
As of December, we have about 6.9M unemployed people in the United States per the BLS. There are roughly 180M active users on LinkedIn and 40% of those log into the platform daily. That’s 72M North American daily users. My assumption is 50% of that 72M are actually job seekers, the rest may be recruiters, marketers, salespeople, brand managers, and others whose business is social.
That’s about 36M active job seekers, and that number could certainly be higher. Are you ready?
Top Job Search & Hiring Trends
#1 – Remote Work Is Here For Good
If you like working from home, the good news is that you will be able to continue doing just that for the right employer. If you want a hybrid role, that work is out there, as well as full-time in the office. The catch though is your current employer may not offer the scenario you want for your work-life balance.
If remote is what you want, make sure that you spend time on your résumé talking about your remote work skills, distance and communications technologies, and ways you helped pivot work to remote during the beginning of the pandemic. What are the new skills you have from your current remote work experiences that translate to a new employer?
Conversely, if you want to get back to the office, how have you been resilient throughout workplace challenges? Did you facilitate a safe and productive environment for you or your team? How can you help an employer bring people back and manage that transition?
Whatever your hard and soft skills are for the environment, make sure those are front and center. What were the lessons you learned throughout the pandemic that will make you better moving forward? Are they appropriate for your résumé, or should they be in a cover letter?
#2 – Vaccine Status & Job Search
This one has been a hot topic in the coaching and résumé world. If you distill vaccine status down to its basic element, it’s a data point. Some employers are going to need that data and others are not. When do you put it on your résumé?
When it comes to coaching my clients through this one, the number one question is who do you want to work for? Does it matter to the company? Will the company pass over your résumé for someone who states they are vaccinated upfront? Is the company mandated by a state or federal rule that the employees have to be vaccinated?
If you answer yes to any of the above, put your vaccine status on your résumé. In that scenario, the employer is going to ask about it on the application or in the interview. Provide the information and up your chances of getting that first-round interview.
Right or wrong, several polls asked about vaccine status and in some, 33% of respondents said they would pass on a résumé if the candidate did not list their vaccinated status. To answer this question correctly, you must know the employer and the industry. Do your research into the hiring requirements and proceed accordingly.
#3 – ATS vs. Humans
It is my personal belief that the fear of ATS, or applicant tracking systems, drives a lot of bad résumé decisions. The bottom line is that there is technology in the hiring process, period. When you upload your résumé, the software reads it, parses out data, and uploads it into the company file. You know from filling out applications when it works well and when you have to retype everything.
In my practice, I have the best success writing clean résumés that won’t get stuck in an ATS but still provide what the resume sourcer, recruiter, and hiring manager want to see. In your job search, you have to spend time making sure the career documents work for everyone you meet, be they AI constructs or humans. Keep it simple!
One rule with ATS is to use basic résumé formatting. Don’t use templates. Don’t use text boxes. Steer away from two-column documents. Stick to basic formatting, and always copy your résumé file over to a .txt format to see what does and does not hold.
At some point, everyone in the hiring process forgot that a hiring manager makes the final decision. A résumé has to show what you can do and how you are different than the other applicants. But, an ATS doesn’t care about that. It just parses keywords so that recruiters can run internal searches. At least today, a person still has to make the final hiring decision. Don’t forget to write to them.
#4 – Video Interviews
Given that we are all Zoom experts at this point, it’s no surprise that video interviewing is here to stay. Do you give good Zoom? Look, no one likes video interviewing. I struggle with my own client calls at times. However, video is a technology everyone needs to be comfortable with whether it’s Zoom, Teams, or Google Meet.
The number one thing to remember is practice, practice practice. Get to know the tech. Learn how to mute, unmute, turn the video on and off, chat, and use all the basic functionality of the tool. There will come a time in your interview when you need all those things. If you are asked to present, do you know how to take over the presenter duties and work the tech?
If you claim to be a fantastic remote worker, prove it on video. How are you going to communicate your knowledge, likeability, communication skills, and talent in a video environment?
I can help you with not only one-on-one video interviews but with those pesky one-way video interviews. Plus, because I’m a Certified Employment Interview Professional (CEIP), I know what’s happening with the latest trends and technology. Let’s get you communicating your best for whatever interview platform comes your way.
#5 – Top Skills
The top skills LinkedIn defined in their Workplace Learning Report for 2021 were resilience and digital fluency. These were closely followed by communications across remote teams and emotional intelligence.LInkedIn Learning – Workplace Learningn Report 2021
Never before have soft skills and competencies beyond technical skills been in such demand. If you want remote work, you have to have remote skills front and center. I suggest diving deep into LinkedIn’s top 10 soft skill list.
How do we engage remote teams and distributed work? How do we ensure our direct reports and colleagues stay connected? What about engagement with a client you haven’t seen in 12 months face to face? It’s no longer about doing the work. Employers want to know how you do the work in the face of challenge – that’s the resiliency part. Every candidate must get comfortable addressing resiliency in some capacity. Especially as it relates to the hiring manager, the team, clients, and a prospective company.
#6 – Career Story & Accomplishments
The two most important skill this year is the ability to distinguish yourself in an interview from your competition.
Over the years as my clients have come to me to develop their job search strategies. What stands out is that most people don’t have a fair grasp of what makes them unique from their competition. We go to work. We do our thing on the job. It’s just the job. Except, there are things that are special and different about the way you do your job, the clients you support, your training, your overall world or industry view. To you, it’s just the job, but to your boss and colleagues, and your clients, it’s what makes you memorable and different.
An awful interview question, but one that speaks to this topic is, “Tell me, candidate, if you and another applicant have the exact same skills, why should I hire you?” Today the question is, with the great resignation, how will stand out against all the other candidates who are also applying? What is your career story?
Do you know enough about the company you are applying to so that you can ensure your accomplishments match what matters most to them? At the end of the interview, it’s not that your career story matters to you, but that it matters to the person making the final hiring decision. Do you know what they want?
#7 – Negotiation
Right now, companies are bringing back the perks to attract applicants. That’s great. Who doesn’t want a few perks? The catch is, what do you need your package to be comprised of to meet your financial, social, and emotional needs?
I’ve seen a lot of interesting hiring cycles over the years. When stock options became a thing, so many new hires left a ton of salary at the table because they were sure the options would manifest into millions. That rarely happened. It did, but not as much you’d think.
Today, some companies are dangling work from home and flexibility for a lower salary. Is the work the same? Will the salary set you back in your career? Are you going to make less? Have you done your research on the company, industry, and current benefits?
The best offers are received and answered by shrewd negotiators. Never accept the offer on the phone when it is given. Always buy yourself at least 24-hours and make sure you get the job offer and benefits handouts in writing. You don’t know how much or little you will make until you know the salary, bonus, vacation, benefits costs, 401(k) contribution, stock, and whatever other perks a company may have.
It may be worth taking a bit less for a remote job as you have no commute costs, but how will it make you feel to do the same or similar work for less?
Get Ready for Your Job Search
Job search trends are just one piece of the puzzle. You can study the job search trends and be a hiring trends expert, but if you don’t know the prospective employer and what matters to them, the trends are irrelevant. If you cant pitch a meaningful career story in the interview or on your résumé, someone else will have done the company research and made a better connection for the offer.
I strongly suggest a