Welcome to a brand-new year—where new career opportunities are waiting for you. If you’re feeling a bit weary and ragged from 2020, we understand. So many things have changed for working professionals since we last counted down to midnight. And yet one important thing remains true: You deserve to find your dream job. Yes, things are done a little bit differently now. Virtual calls have replaced in-person meetings. Networking lunches are remote. But through it all, it’s become clear what matters: your family, your health, and your decisions—especially about your own career.
We spoke with some of our recruitment and hiring experts on how to navigate this new world of remote work and interviewing to find the job of your dreams. Here’s what they suggest:
1. Embrace video interviews
Treat video interviews like in-person interviews that happen to be in your personal space. “Take a minute to get up and walk around before your interview to get out any nervous energy,” says Amanda Slyper, a Booz Allen recruiter. “Whatever routine worked before as your in-person interview prep can still work now.”
Are you interviewing from your living room? Are your kids likely to run past the camera on their way to virtual class? Are you having technical issues right before your call? It’s okay. “If your child knocks on your door during an interview, it won’t compromise your candidacy,” says Shalonda Trent, senior manager, talent acquisition. “We all recognize these things are a part of life these days and it won’t hurt your chances at Booz Allen. We’re giving each other grace." Amanda agrees. “Roll with it. If your tech fails, reach out to your recruitment coordinator and let them know you’re having issues. Our attitude is that we’re all in this together.”
2. Tell your story
You won’t see your interviewers in person, so make sure you really shine by showcasing who you are and what you’re capable of bringing to the team. “Take the time to display your energy, fire, and passion for what you do. Tell your story and focus on your technical craft—what you know, what you’re good at, and what you aspire to learn,” says Charles Johnson-Bey, a leader in our global organizational change office. “We’re looking for people with the skills and experience to help our clients. Things may have changed in the world, but you still have that same opportunity.”
3. Network at a distance
Even if you can’t network in person, connecting remotely is still vital to your job search. “If you’re interested in a company, think about who you know in your network that can connect you,” says Amanda. “Don’t be afraid to tell someone who you trust that you’re looking to join an organization.” Online career sites are also great avenues for virtual networking. “LinkedIn is a safe space to connect with people you want to follow and understand their work philosophies, including recruiters,” adds Shalonda. “You can connect about your candidacy, but also learn more about a company.” Interested in learning more about us? Follow Booz Allen on LinkedIn and Twitter and check out these resources for candidates seeking to join our organization.
4. Prioritize your values
If last year taught us anything, it’s to appreciate the small things. You deserve to be happy—not only in your personal life, but professionally as well. Find a company that recognizes and supports you and wants to help you grow in your career. “2020 was a transformative year with many people standing up for something meaningful,” says Shalonda. “How you feel in your work transfers to your personal life. Find a place to work that shares your values and beliefs, not just one that offers you a job.” Charles agrees. “It’s more than just a job at Booz Allen—it’s the relationships you develop, the technology you help build, and the missions you serve. You’re not just one of many here. I can’t think of a better place to spend a career.”