2020 left some lasting impressions on the job hunt and workforce that are changing the way companies are recruiting and hiring candidates. But how can job seekers prepare for those?
Find out below!
- Hospitality will take longer to boom
Hospitality took one of the biggest hits in 2020, with an overall 55% estimated decrease in airline passenger revenue in 2020 and 50-70% passenger decrease in 2020 from May to August. With fewer travelers, there were also fewer hotel bookings. STR has forecasted the 2020 hotel revenue per available room (RevPAR) decreased 50.6%. With such low occupancy rates, many hotels were forced to reduce their workforce significantly.
We are slowly making progress in getting COVID-19 under control and rolling out a vaccine but travel and hotel bookings will take some time to bounce back to pre-COVID levels, which means the hospitality industry will take some time to rehire back to pre-COVID levels as well.
The industry will certainly come back, and hospitality companies will need great people to return to the industry as well, it will just be a slower comeback.
How to Adapt:
- Consider taking a temporary position. Hospitality candidates should consider taking on a position such as an uber driver or delivering food or groceries to help with financial responsibilities and mental health while you continue to apply for a hospitality position.
- Keep track of the data. There are many hospitality trades and companies, such as STR and Hcareers’ unemployment reports, that can help you keep track of where the industry stands. This will give you a good idea of if the industry is getting close to a rehiring wave, and how many opportunities will be out there.
- Remote work is more popular
Most employees were forced to work from home for safety during 2020 and now, and some companies in turn are going to allow employees to work from home full time moving forward. Although many hospitality positions are not able to work from home, there are a few departments that can allow this flexibility. If you want to be able to work from home, consider these positions and plan your career path moving forward accordingly.
How to Adapt:
- Prepare yourself for video interviews and work. For safety reasons, many companies are still interviewing candidates through video calls for now. Show the interviewer during these that you are comfortable and professional with video technology to help solidify your ability to work remotely.
- Highlight important WFH skills. Specific skills, such as time management, organization, and communication are more important for remote workers, so be ready to show the interviewer that you excel with those. Prepare specific work-related examples of times those skills shined.
- Diversity and inclusion are at the forefront
The national conversation focused on diversity and inclusion in 2020, which translated over to hiring as well. There is a magnifying glass pointed at companies, and candidates and guests not only want to hear that a company supports diversity and inclusion but see proof. The hospitality industry is pretty diverse already, but there is a lot of diversity lacking in upper management roles, so we will likely see upper management diversify in 2021.
How to Adapt:
- Look out for the proof. When you are researching a company to apply to, look at all of their marketing, including their website and social media. Is there representation across all channels? Is their leadership team shown and who is on it? What are their goals and mission? Do they have a diversity and inclusion team or program? Make sure all of these things match up to what you want in a company to know if it will be the right fit for both of you.
- Competition is fierce
With so many hospitality companies having let go of their workforce, there are a lot of really talented candidates on the job hunt. Now more than ever it will be important for candidates to find ways to stand out with their resume, cover letter, and interview skills.
How to Adapt;
- Research job opportunities. Try to find out what are the most applied to jobs and what states have the most job openings throughout your job search. Also, research what each state’s unemployment level is to get a sense of what the competition will look like for you where you are applying to. Based on these numbers, you may decide to apply to another department, or maybe even consider moving to another area to increase your chances.
- Keep your resume and Linkedin up-to-date. There are many tips and tricks to make sure that your resume will at least get in front of the hiring manager. Try to keep your resume simple in design to look professional and pass through the ATS, highlight the important skills in the job posting instead of skills that don’t match the job posting. If you have certificates, make sure that those are up-to-date and listed on your resume. Most importantly, have someone you trust to look at your resume to check for spelling and grammar and to get a second opinion. Make sure that your LinkedIn profile matches your resume so that if an employer looks at both they mirror each other.
- Reach out to your network. Knowing someone at a company or creating a connection with someone can be the foot in the door that will put you ahead of other candidates. Don’t be afraid to message hospitality professionals on LinkedIn or reach out to previous managers and coworkers. You can start by asking for informational interviews or to catch up over coffee and eventually ask for a reference or referral. You never know how an opportunity can come about, even if it’s not immediately!
Take a moment to recognize that you made it through 2020, which was no easy feat. Even if 2021 is off to an uncertain start, there is a lot of reason for hope. There is a lot more optimism for hiring this year, and companies will be needing a lot of great workers soon.