The sessions led by Emmerson Kitney come as the UK unemployment rate has risen to its highest level for two years, with the economic impact of Covid-19 and lockdown felt across all sectors.
Latest Office for National Statistics data shows that 695,000 UK workers have already disappeared from the payrolls of British companies since March, when the coronavirus lockdown began.
And despite new measures to support businesses being announced as the furlough scheme comes to an end, many businesses are expected to have to further reduce costs over the coming months, leading to more job losses.
David Kitney, managing director of Emmerson Kitney, says his business is already fielding an increasing number of calls from people who have recently found themselves out of work, and some who are in fear their jobs are at risk in the near future.
But he says his firm is also aware of many businesses which are recruiting and looking for “the right people who become available at the right time”.
As a result, Emmerson Kitney has announced a series of free webinars, based around the skills of producing a great CV, applying and interviewing for jobs, in a bid to help people give themselves the best chance of securing employment.
The webinars feature several leading local employers, including Ideal Heating, KCOM and Giacom, who will tell those taking part exactly what they look for in candidates.
“The forecasts are that, unfortunately, unemployment rates are going to rocket in the coming six months and both businesses and individuals are going to face yet more challenging times,” Mr Kitney said.
“It is widely anticipated that the new support measures which will come into place beyond the end of the furlough scheme will not be enough for many businesses to maintain the levels of employment they did pre-Covid-19, so towards the end of the year, and early next year, we could see significant more job losses.
“Having said that, we are also seeing a good number of businesses which are currently recruiting, and for some companies this is a great time to pick up good candidates who are in the job-seeking market again.
“That makes it vital for people to know how best to sell themselves, from writing a CV to impressing in interview, as it will be a very competitive market.
“We are likely to find is a situation where many people are out of work for the first time in many years, people who are not likely to have been through the process of applying for a new job and perhaps are not comfortable with selling themselves on paper through their CVs, or in person at an interview.
“It is important to help people to know how to stand out and give themselves the best chance. We want to help people back into work.”
Seminars will set out the ‘dos and don’ts’ of job searching
Mr Kitney says his team has created a series of short 45-minute webinar sessions which will be run in October.
Each participant will be completely anonymous, making it open not only for people who are out of work, but also perhaps people who are currently employed but feeling unsecure in their current role, or looking to move on.
The webinars, which will include insights from leading local employers as to the qualities they seek when recruiting, will explain how people can best prepare and make sure they stand out ahead of other candidates when applying for positions.
They will focus on how to ‘Prepare’ best the job application process, covering the following areas;
Preparing a great CV Researching opportunities Exploiting your network and contacts Preparing for interview Attention to detail References and testimonials Essential must do tips and things to avoid
“Understanding the true skills a candidate can offer, helping them ensure that comes across when applying for jobs, and excelling in interviews, is a big big part of the service we provide to job seekers at Emmerson Kitney, and that is expertise we now want to offer to people across our region at a time they need it the most,” Mr Kitney added.
“We will go over the dos and don’ts, the mistakes we see time and again, and the snippets which can make a CV and candidate stand out.
“We’ve also seen very poor CVs that have seen very credible and talented candidates ruled out at the first stage in the recruitment process. Knowing how to apply for the right job is a skill people are going to need more than ever.
“We’ve found that many people fail in the very basics when applying for a new job.
“Many have great career achievements which are tucked away at the bottom when they should be right at the top, and some people have much sought after skills which they don’t even add to their CVs because they simply see it as part of what they do.
“Phrases like hard-working, reliable and motivate are just buzz words and they are minimum standard of any employee. Employers want to know what people have achieved and what they are known for in their previous jobs. People find that hard at times to sell themselves, but we can help identify those areas which will make employers take notice.”
Mr Kitney says he is willing to extend the webinar series longer term should the demand be there, and would be willing to work in partnership with local businesses which find they have to reduce staffing numbers in the coming months, to offer extra support to their employees.
“I think there is a collective duty to support one another through challenging times,” he said.
“Businesses don’t want to let people go, but many will have no choice. We’d be happy to talk those firms which are having to let staff go about hosting sessions with them to give their staff extra support as they find themselves back in the jobs market.
“We’re confident the economy will bounce back, and that jobs will be available, but of course there will be a period of time where the market is hugely competitive and there will be huge numbers of people applying for limited numbers of roles. The time to stand out is now.”
When are the webinars being held?
The dates and times are:
Tuesday, October 20 – 9.30am
Wednesday, October 21 – noon
Tuesday, October 27 – 9.30am
Wednesday, October 28 – noon
How do I register?
Go to the Eventbrite page, choose a one of the time slots available and register. You will then receive an email with details how to attend. To find the event page, search ‘Job Searching and Interview Preparation Webinar’ on Google.