Workforce Navigation During COVID-19

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First Things First — Reality Check

We are in the midst of a volatile pandemic. The situation will get worse before it gets better, with States varying in their responses. Please stay informed, and through only legitimate sources.

Buckle down, save your money, and plan for the worst. Do not panic, and remain calm, but now is the time to take stock of your current financial situation, expected/unexpected future expenses, and make a plan.

Should you Continue to Apply?

This is new territory for everyone, with layoffs and hiring freezes, many rightly wonder if they should still apply. You’ll need to be patient, and understand that any active applications may be on hold, and any new applications will also likely be put on hold. 

Consider How Urgent Your Search Is

Currently employed but looking for something new? It’s likely best to stick it out where you are right now. Make the best of a bad situation, and be thankful that you have a position.

Currently unemployed? You may certainly apply, but you may need to settle for a gap/temporary position, rather than a long term career position. Broaden your search, and do not be too picky.

Explore What Fields are Actively Hiring, but Understand the Risks

All non-essential work places have been ordered to work remotely from home. Many businesses are unable to make this transition, and have laid off employees. Applying in these fields would likely not be productive. Essential work places must remain open, and may offer employment opportunities. Understand the risk of public exposure, prior to applying. 

List of essential businesses

Stay in Contact with Employers

Hiring and human resource managers are overwhelmed and in a state of constant flux. It is still worth sending any contacts you have an email, politely inquiring as to what they recommend. When sending these emails, it is critical that you briefly acknowledge their situation, and offer your services. This is a great opportunity to demonstrate that you can make their lives easier. Make it about them rather than you. 

Skills employers are looking for

Dear so and so, This is . . ., I sincerely hope that you and your family are well. I appreciate how incredibly busy you are, and wanted to ask if there is anything that I could do to help.


We have a unique opportunity to gain insight into how potential employers behave, and treat their hard working employees during desperate times.

  • What changes have they made in response to the pandemic?
  • Did they lay off employees without notice, severance packages?
  • Did they cut the pay of ownership, upper management, in an effort to avoid layoffs?
  • How are they supporting their employees?
  • Are they offering discounts, extensions on health insurance for laid off employees?
  • The Washington Post business section is an excellent resource for these issues.

Reach Out for Help

Now is the time to take advantage of all the resources Brockport has to offer.

Spend Your Time Well

It’s quite likely that many of us have a great deal of free time on our hands. This can be spent on personal, academic and professional improvement, or wasted on social media and other forms of entertainment. The choice is yours, choose wisely.

  • The shutdown will create a more competitive job market.
  • With more people applying for less jobs, you must stand out.
  • Even if you can’t apply, spend time on your resume, cover letter, and job search.
  • Practice interviews, both in person and video.

Last Updated 10/27/20

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