In March of 2020, the world as we know it was changed forever. When the news of the pandemic first hit, the amount of uncertainty concerning the future was at an all time high. For a college student hoping to find a job, a large amount of that uncertainty was linked to the infamous job search. 

In recent economic history, graduates have had a hard enough time finding jobs. When you add a worldwide pandemic that keeps people locked in their homes, one would think that it would make this process a little more complicated. However, two years later, one must ask the question; has the pandemic actually made today’s hiring process harder?  

Natalie Harris, senior marketing student at The University of Alabama

Natalie Harris is a Senior Marketing student at the University of Alabama and will be working as an Analyst at Deloitte in Dallas, Texas upon graduation. When asked about her networking experience, she attributed most of her success to LinkedIn and Handshake.

“I actually found my job with Deloitte through Handshake,” Harris said. “A recruiter contacted me there and that’s how we formed our relationship.”  

The pandemic might have actually opened the door for students to easily connect with recruiters all over the world. Companies are shifting their focus from in-person recruiting to finding talent via the internet, which revolutionized the most stress-inducing part of the recruitment process… interviews. 

“I feel more comfortable and relaxed on zoom,” Harris said when asked about her preferred interview method.

She explained that, “doing those in-person interviews is kind of nerve racking. You have to worry about things like driving to the location, waiting for your turn in the lobby, etc.”

From a company perspective, I talked to Verdi DiSesa, the Market Team Lead at J.P. Morgan Private Bank in San Francisco, California. When talking about how the pandemic changed the interview process, he spent more time emphasizing the change in employee expectations. 

“Especially in Finance, a lot of firms have had success over the pandemic, so everyone seems to be hiring a lot,” DiSesa explained. “There’s a lot of competition for the people that have the skill set and experience that we’re looking for.” 

DiSesa goes on to say, “it’s as much about me pitching and trying to sell the prospective hire as it is about us making a decision.”

While this dynamic may not apply to every industry, it’s interesting to see how major corporations are changing their approach. Many students have been brought up on the idea that companies have all of the power, but the demand for workers, paired with limited supply, has given job seekers more power than they may realize.

While knowledge of this power is great to discover, the age old proverb states “with great power comes great responsibility.” 

“The ‘quits’ rate and the feeling that people can get another job if they wanted to is much higher now than it has been in recent memory,” Disesa said. 

The people’s perspective on work, free time, and compensation changed greatly over the last two years, and corporations are starting to notice. This is why anyone seeking a job must always remember that they’re in a ‘buyers’ market.