With the South African economy shrinking by 0.7% in the first quarter of 2017, following a GDP decrease of 0.3% towards the end of 2016, we are officially experiencing economic recession. In these troubled economic times, when many companies have to fight for their survival in their specific industries, most choose to close their doors to new employees.

It’s nothing personal; they simply can’t afford any more overheads until sectoral economic growth is evident. For this reason, finding a job during a recession is almost impossible – but not entirely so! Affirmative Portfolios offers up five recession job hunting tips to help you find a job when nobody’s hiring. Put your school caps back on, it’s going to take a little research!

Focus Your Job Search on Growth Industries

The last thing you need while looking for a job is to land a position in an industry that is slowly dying. These industries include print media (specifically newspapers), telephone manufacture, photofinishing, physical data storage manufacture, and libraries.

It’s alright to cry about the slow demise of these industries, but if you’re wanting to find a job that you can turn into a lengthy career – you’ll want to find one in a growth industry. These include computers/IT, health care, security, education, and environmental.

To find a job in a growth sector means you almost guarantee yourself an income for years to come. Think about jobs that society will always need doing, and consider applying for these first when job hunting.

Find a Company First, and a Job Second

One mistake that many make when trying to find a job involves a phenomenon known as the ‘shotgun method’. This involves sending a résumé out to every human resource manager possible and hoping to land a job for landing a job’s sake.

Like shooting a shotgun into a veld and hoping to hit a rabbit, this method of finding a job is not only ineffective – it’s also degrading. You deserve to find a job that actually interests you! This requires a mental shift from trying to find a job simply to pay the bills, to a mentality of wanting to grow yourself by finding a job that will facilitate your future vocational growth.

So, start by deciding on five jobs you think you’d excel at. Next, find five companies in your city that would employ someone to do those jobs. Look into each organisation and decide if they’re a good fit for you, before letting them decide if you’re a good fit for them.

Revise and Tailor Your Resume

Once you’ve decided on the industry you’d like to find a job in, and you have a few organisations lined up to submit your CV to, the next step is to customise your résumé. Remember: your CV is essentially a piece of personal marketing. The first thing employers experience about you is your email message to them, the second is your resume that you’ve attached.

Your CV is a chance to impress any potential employers with all of your best attributes and skills. Your résumé is not a one-size-fits-all document. You need to tailor each CV you send out to the specific company you’re looking to find a job at. For tips on revising your résumé, read up on how to revise your CV in five easy steps.

Outsource Your Job Hunting

Another industry that takes a considerable knock during a recession is the recruitment consultancy industry. One companies close their doors to new staff, recruitment consultant’s task of helping you find a job becomes that much harder.

Recruitment consultants will have to work twice as hard to find candidates placements during a recession, so consider employing their services and making them work for you! This gives you time to research your field of expertise and work on presenting yourself as the best candidate for any position you are shortlisted for.

Remain Positive at All Times

You’ll hear this over and over again when telling people that you’re looking to find a job, but you must try to remain positive about your job hunting. Negativity will follow you like a shadow; come across in the way you speak, your body language in interviews, and even in your preliminary email correspondence.

If you remain positive, or at least give of the impression of positivity, you’ll position yourself favourably in the minds of your potential employers. If you can remain positive about finding a job during a recession, you have an attitude most employers would move mountains to have within their organisation.

Take the First Step to Finding a Job

Affirmative Portfolios believes that no South African should have to sit without employment, and for this reason endeavour to source temporary and permanent employment solutions for suitable candidates – no matter the economic climate! Find a job on your phone: simply download our app here, or contact us for more information.