June 8th, 2020

7 things to do if you have lost your job or assignment

Being laid off can be frustrating, demotivating and even unfair, especially if it was not because of your performance. During the COVID-19 crisis, we all felt that the world changed overnight, and a lot of industries slowed down. Unfortunately, it includes the recruitment industry as well. 

I want to inspire you to turn this situation into a positive one and come out stronger! I will share with you 7 things that you can do if you have lost your job or assignment. When I was writing this post, I had recruiters in my mind, but it can be used for other professions as well. 

Let's start:

1. Let go of your emotions and move on

We are people and all of us have emotions. Being let go of your work or an assignment can cause a lot of stress. Here I would like to ask you to take a day or two off and to deal with your emotions. Fear, anger, frustration will not let you go further in your personal/professional life, so, please make sure that you acknowledge your emotions and move on. Write a diary, cry, do some boxing exercise, but make sure that your current situation will not drive you into depression. 

Nowadays a lot of really good recruiters are let go because of the hiring freeze. “Misery loves company” - so stick together. Talk to your friends, ex-colleagues that were let go, share job leads, motivate each other. Locking yourself out will not help you emotionally and will make it a lot more difficult to find a job.

Bear in mind that these are my personal advice, something that works for me. I hope that my experience will inspire you!


2. Update your LinkedIn profile

When was the last time you looked at your LinkedIn profile? People change, the way you speak changes, so your LinkedIn profile also has to change! Update your work history, do not forget to give an overview of what you have done and your achievements. A summary is also essential, this is a direct translation of your personality. Write a couple of lines that introduce the real you. Finished some cool courses? Fabulous! Add them as well! Think about the keywords that you are normally using to find candidates and use them on your LinkedIn profile! Are you a Tech Recruiter with a black belt in Sourcing? Do you know how to make an amazing Candidate Journey? Don't be shy, add everything! 

Last but not least, recommendations. Ask your co-workers, your boss, your candidates to give you a recommendation on your LinkedIn profile. This is a powerful tool that will give you a more professional looking profile. You are an awesome recruiter, do not be afraid to show it!


3. Make an announcement on LinkedIn and share the news

After you deal with your emotions and finish the makeover of your Linkedin profile it is time to let the world know about the news. I know that it can be scary, and you might also think that it will not work. I understand that. When I posted information about looking for a new assignment, it was also strange and scary. But there is nothing to be ashamed of, everyone can be in the same situation and if you let new people into your world, who knows, maybe they have been looking for a professional like you for a really long time!

It might not work as well, but then you open up yourself to the whole community of people who are either in the same situation as you or people who potentially might help you. 

Here you can be creative: write a post, create a video - the only rule - make it fun and authentic!


4. Reach out to your network 

Making a Linkedin announcement is only half the work. Acknowledging the fact that you are unemployed to your family, friends, ex-colleagues might be frightening, but it should not be. These people, your network, know the real you, so they will be a lot more eager to recommend you to their bosses if there is a suitable vacancy.  

As a recruiter, you are a networker, use those skills to find a job. When I moved to the Netherlands and was looking for a job, it was difficult. No connection, unknown market. But when I started asking questions to my Dutch friends, finding other Ukrainians working in a Dutch market and using the interview as a learning experience it changed everything and helped me to get familiar with the labour market, interviewing process and the Dutch mentality a lot faster! If you are Dutch, you already have a pretty nice network to start with. Think about your friends that you went to school with or ex-colleagues and reach out to them! 

Tip from Mariya: Keep being positive! When talking to people, keep the focus on the future and what you want to achieve.


5. Your CV

When you have decided to look for a job, give your CV a facelift. A resume is the first visual document that a recruiter or a hiring manager sees, so make it represent you. Think about a corporate clear resume or a creative resume with infographics or charts for start-ups and scale-ups.  

Nowadays there are a lot of different online tools that can help you create a custom resume for free. I like Canva, Crello and Enhancv, they allow you to be flexible in the structure of your CV and they have a user-friendly interface. Do you feel a bit fancy? Create a video cv or make a personalised video overview of your resume using Vidyard. Do not be afraid to be creative, use all your imagination to put yourself into a spotlight :)


6. Make a strategy and apply

When I was looking for a job, I made a full-time job out of that. Every morning when my boyfriend headed to the office, I would open up my laptop and start my research. If you are a result-driven person, then this process might be very frustrating. Usually, I would make a list of what I need to do during the day: apply for 3 positions, write a motivation letter, find and talk to 2 recruiters on LinkedIn, find a meet-up for recruiters, etc. Scratching items in the to-do list will help you come closer to finding your dream job and will leave you with a sense of accomplishment.  

Look up the companies that are still recruiting, learn about their mission, vision, people approach and translate it into your motivation letter and CV. Found out that a company has some sourcing problems? Solve their problem! Show that you are an experienced sourcer ready to rescue them. 

Talking to recruitment agencies is always a good idea, they can help you with some useful tips and tricks. WeAreKeen helped me to find 2 amazing recruitment assignments and guided me through the entire recruitment process. Check it out, maybe, you will find something for yourself! 


7. Expand your borders 

Everybody is working from home, right? So it does not matter if you are working from home in the Netherlands or Germany. Expand your borders and look for international companies that work remotely and apply there. Do not close yourself for the opportunities if they are in different countries. We are living in a tech area, and remote work is the number one trend (due to corona), so use this to your advantage. If it is difficult to find a job in the Netherlands, try to apply in another country.

Still difficult? Try to find something at UpWork. On this platform, you can find long/short term projects in different areas (recruiting, copywriting, resume writing, etc).



We are living in strange times, but in the end try to focus on the future: new opportunities, new people to meet, new things to learn and 1 year from now you will think that losing your job was the best thing that could happen to you. Remember, you are not alone on this boat. This can happen to every person and nobody is secure, so find peace and take the action to turn your life in what you want. Who knows, in a couple of months you might write a blog on how you found a job when nobody was hiring? :)  

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