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COVID-19: Job hunting in the post COVID world

Pubali Neogy
·3-min read

Navigating the labyrinthine world of jobs to climb up the career ladder can prove tricky in this precarious time we find ourselves in.

Shifts in patterns are already visible. Companies are doubling down on digitization, automation and artificial intelligence for business continuity; big and small players in the software industry are seriously mulling over letting their employees work from home permanently. And, then of course there is the small matter of 500 million lost jobs because of stringent lockdowns and economies grinding to a halt.

Clearly, a new mix of jobs and work pattern is emerging because of these pandemic-induced changes. To make the most of this changing scenario, here are a few useful pointers:

Ecommerce as a saviour

Low-skilled workers in manufacturing and other industries, who have been unceremoniously replaced by automation technologies such as robotics and artificial intelligence-powered software in a post pandemic world, can look to the ecommerce industry for succour. This is one sector that has bucked the trend, for obvious reasons.

At the start of this year, when the pandemic had already rendered millions jobless, ecommerce giant Amazon announced plans to add 75, 000 to its workforce as delivery drivers and warehouse staff. It was a win-win: People without jobs could apply for those to enable the company better cope with the increased demand for online deliveries.

Going forward, it is predicted, online orders would continue to rise even if lockdowns are lifted. As the pandemic rages on, its only natural for consumers to opt for contactless delivery. This simply translates as more and more ecommerce jobs.

Demand for sophisticated technology experts

For all the highly skilled workers out there looking to take their careers to the next level, machine learning and artificial intelligence could spell new opportunities. With contactless interactions gaining traction due to the pressing need to limit the spread of the virus and managing cost pressures arising from the economic slowdown caused by COVID-19, more and more processes would be automated in near future. This means a rising need for data scientists and technology specialists.

In the second quarter of 2020, for example, IBM saw a substantial rise in demand for its artificial intelligence-driven Watson Assistant, a platform for deploying chatbots and customer services for contactless customer interaction.

Meanwhile, other tech giants, namely Alibaba and Amazon are betting even bigger on cloud services in response to the rising digitization. Certifications in cloud technologies seem like a must-have for job seekers these days.

All these thrust on remote working and digitization brings us to another area of opportunity – cybersecurity. As files and other crucial information are shared through various networks, vulnerabilities have increased manifold. To ward off security breaches, ransomware attacks, and other such threats arising out of the new mode of working, cybersecurity experts will be highly sought after in the near future.

Edu tech and healthcare to offer opportunities aplenty

A flourishing edu tech, thanks to professionals upskilling and cross skilling themselves and schools and universities closed, is another thriving area. Tech experts, app developers, and subject matter experts can bank on the sector to give them employment.

And last but not the least, healthcare is another area that holds tremendous promise at this juncture. With a vaccine still sometime away and case counts alarmingly high, medicos are definitely in high demand. Doctors, nurses, caregivers and of course researchers trying to develop a cure can hope to command high salaries as demand for their services rise.