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The New Normal of Job Interviews and Meetings: Understanding the Effects of COVID-19

As the workforce landscape shifts during the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of people are asking its implications. Social distancing guidelines forced employees and employers alike to depend on technology moving forward. How should individuals in the workforce navigate the newly-changed scene?

By | Patrick Bailey

No one expected a pandemic to change every aspect of our lives, especially during modern-day times. What we thought is something left on the history books to be known is now sweeping throughout our personal and professional lives.

Businesses have temporarily closed their physical locations. People started to work virtually within their homes. Establishments such as malls, offices, hospitals, and alcohol rehab centers retain social distancing guidelines to avoid the spread of the virus.

Aside from unemployment, which reached an unprecedented statistic comparable to The Great Depression, people are now learning to adjust to the new process of having job interviews and office meetings. 

Job Interviews and Meetings: What Is It Like Now?

So, what does the professional landscape look like now, in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak? As people are grappling through how they can continue their careers and businesses, here are some of the well-known strategies used for job interviews and meetings:

Using video calls

Video calls have been used for many job recruitments pre-pandemic, but now, they have been the standard to complete an application process.

Most interviewers choose these platforms:

  • Skype: Skype is a conglomerate of Microsoft with a focus on business-related meetings. Skype is mostly used for job interviews because it is accessible and available in most operating systems. Having a Skype is simple as individuals can simply share their username.
  • Webex: Another popular option is through the use of Webex. As many companies use Webex for conference calls, they are likely to use the same platform for conducting job interviews as well. People can send an email link to the user who is invited to the call.

Some popular platforms for meetings are:

    • GoToMeeting: People can easily access GoToMeeting links for conferences even without being part of an organization. For example, freelancers can access the link without having their own username compared to other platforms.

 

  • Zoom: Zoom video calls are also popular because they have a feature called “Share Screen” which allows multiple users to view a presentation, video, or any other type of information that you want to share simultaneously with a group.

 

Sharing and accessing information online

Business owners are now looking over various cloud-based software and applications to place essential information in the digital space.

For example, there has been a surge in the use of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software not just in the past months, but also in the recent years as a response to the ever-changing workplace landscape. This allows employees to share information, respond toward each other’s projects, and collaborate seamlessly even without a physical location.

Although these changes have been introduced pre-COVID-19, the emphasis on their advantages are highlighted especially during these times where physical meetings are not possible. Whether you’re a business owner, employee, or someone who wants to join the current workforce, here are some things to remember when attending interviews and meetings.

New Normal of Job Interviews and Meetings: Things to Remember

Dress professionally.

Although there’s a catchphrase “working while wearing pajamas” heard all over the virtual workforce scene, it is still important to dress professionally during meetings and interviews. Nothing has changed except the platform you’re using conducting these meetings. You’re talking to the same colleagues, bosses, and other staff.

Dressing professionally even through virtual calls and conferences shows that you are still maintaining your dignified stance, which sends a great impression.

Check connection settings.

If you are going for an online job interview, it is best to double-check your connection settings. You may just miss an opportunity if your interview is going well and your internet cut off mid-interview. Some HR specialists have a lot on their plate, and they might not have the time to reschedule an interview, especially when there’s a lot of high-level competition.

Set a time management strategy.

Sometimes, the confines of an office or any workplace setting give structure for your day. At home, there are a lot of distractions that can dismantle your ability to stay focused on your work tasks. Thus, you need a time management strategy to accomplish your meetings and interviews successfully. You can:

  • Block schedule: Set an undistracted time and place where you conduct meetings, attend interviews, or finish your tasks.
  • Use a planner: You may be tempted to avoid your business planner as your sense of normalcy gets thrown off, but it is still crucial to plan your day to get structure even when you’re doing tasks from home.
  • Do automated tasks on idle moments: Do you have 15-20 minute spare times within the day? You can use these short moments to do tasks that don’t require much mental efforts, such as deleting unimportant emails, looking over pending tasks, or scheduling meetings.

Job Interviews and Meetings: Accepting the Challenge

With social distancing guidelines and COVID-19 still having its effects on a global scheme, interviewers, business owners, and employees should rise up to the challenge of these drastic changes. With adaptability and resilience, people can succeed on the new atmosphere of the modern workplace.

Sources:

  • Cnbc.com – “Unemployment today vs. the Great Depression: How do the eras compare?”.
  • Businessinsider.com – “How to share your screen on Zoom in 2 different ways on a computer or mobile device”.
  • Globalnewswire.com – “Mobile CRM Market Sales Surge as Modern Businesses Emphasize Customer Satisfaction via Flexible & Scalable Solutions – Future Market Insights”.
  • Todoist.com – “The Complete Guide to Time Blocking”.
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