Guidance From The Hiring Frontline: Job Searching In Lockdown

28 April 2020

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Our recruiting team are answering more candidate questions than ever before. Who's still hiring? What are my chances? Is now really the right time to move jobs? We asked Pentasia product specialist Darren Kirby to share his insights on job searching after 6 weeks in lockdown.

They say it takes about 21 days to form a new habit and after nearly 6 weeks in isolation, I think we have slowly started to adapt and accept this new reality, no matter how different and crazy this seemed in the beginning.

But what has this 6 weeks’ period showed me as specialist Consultant in the ‘world of Product’?

1)   The Market is still moving. The gaming industry is keeping strong and shows signs of booming. Job opportunities are still there to grasp from a candidate point of view and companies now more than ever need to be agile and adaptive; in other words: Tech and product development have become essential parts of any business that wants not only to stay competitive, but also to thrive.

 2)    Companies if brave enough, can secure great product professionals. If you are a hiring manager, this is the time to approach your dream candidates and get the ball rolling. Working
remotely offers a kind of privacy that you can benefit from. Moreover, commuting time has suddenly disappeared, so there is definitely more flexibility in people’s schedule. Organising phone calls, video calls, first stage interviews, informal or formal catch-ups – it’s easier than ever. Nobody is off limits so now is the time to strike.

 3)  Product candidates are in demand.Our Tech recruitment team has seen a drive; positions such as Technical Product Owners, Business Analysts and Scrum Masters are being the hot seats at the
moment. Furthermore, upcoming markets like Armenia and Estonia are becoming the hot spots in the industry, while the ‘usual suspects’ London, Malta and Barcelona still growing in Tech.  

Many companies are seeing this time as an opportunity to under go product development on their sportsbook products, whilst the sites are at their lowest usage – which is also leading to an
increase demand…

 4)    New opportunities in the Product Development. As sports all over the world is on hold for the foreseeable future and with no clear view of what future holds; Sportsbetting is undeniably suffering the most in the industry. Companies that are solely a Sportsbook are now looking into new routes and alternatives to remain profitable. Whether that means adapting to a new line of business such as live casino, Poker and Bingo or ever better seeking solutions in esports and virtual sports, revenue needs to be generated, so developing new products is essential.

 Candidates’ challenges in this crisis:

  • Overcoming their fears. Over a month in in this new way of working life and companies, large or small, are realising that working remotely is firstly doable and secondly can be equally productive.

  • This new reality is here to stay. Going back to normality will take some time, so companies need to be adaptive, smart and innovative. Business opportunities are there to be taken and it’s important to think ahead in the long term, not just to weather the storm. Life is carrying on one way or the other; companies only need to find their path into this new reality.

  • Competition. As this crisis has found the majority of the industry rightfully unprepared, unfortunately people have been made redundant or furloughed. As the market is now flooding with talent and competition has grown, candidates need to bring their game to a higher level. 

  • Different ways of conducting interviews. With moving restrictions in place, video calls have now become the new norm. Hiring managers and candidates are equally new to this process; therefore, here at Pentasia we have put together a guide with our top tips how to ace a video interview.  

  • Longer process. The downfall of remotely working at the moment is the fact that the hiring process can take longer than usual. Paperwork or authorisation process can be prolonged, as companies still finding their steps as working from home comes with limitations.

The catch and the solution

The biggest challenge for a candidate at the moment is to commit to a company that they have never visited their offices or haven’t met their future managers and colleagues in person.

On the other hand, the biggest challenge for a company is to ensure that they are collaborating with the right recruiters and they are talking to the right candidates, so that they are exposed to the best talent that market has to offer.

As a recruiter with many years of experience, I can safely say that my role in the hiring process is more important than ever. My main aim, as always, is matching the right candidate that will not only fit in the company, but will also contribute to its success in the long run.

To my candidates: It’s my job to ensure that I can secure you a successful career move and path.

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