DEAR READERS: With unemployment numbers skyrocketing and no firm idea of what lies ahead, it's hard for anyone stuck at home with no real work, and in many cases no real income, to figure out what to do. And while it's not the greatest time to be looking for a job, there are opportunities out there to explore.
"In the world gripped by a health crisis, many people find themselves jobless. Certain industries, though, are still thriving," reports Michael Tomaszewski, resume expert and career advice writer at Zety. "Occupations that, despite the crisis, need additional workforce include accountants, finance specialists, the entire IT industry, e-commerce, marketing companies, and media."
Some of those positions -- finance jobs, for example -- obviously require applicants to have specific skill sets. But as Tomaszewski notes, some opportunities in marketing, e-commerce, content creation, IT, research or SEO are relatively easy to upskill to.
"If you ever had a thing for writing, you are an expert in a certain area, check out online blogs, magazines, news portals, and businesses," he suggests. "Many of them look for contributing writers. You can easily write content from home, and you will get paid too."
Other businesses, he adds, are looking for data researchers that will find, extract, and analyze online data for them. "You can certainly engage in such activity if you are an analytical thinker and know how to use basic research tools -- and you can learn how to use them through online tutorials," Tomaszewski says.
There are also opportunities to land work in law and teaching. Here are two resources I learned about recently:
This online marketplace, which connects attorneys looking to freelance with a network of lawyers that need help with written work, offers a variety of resources for stay-at-home lawyers to remain productive and generate revenue.
"During these trying times, our priority is to collectively pull together with the legal community and provide the support they need to continue practicing as stress-free as possible during the months ahead," CEO Greg Garman says. "COVID-19 is forcing small firms and solo practitioners to embrace new ways of doing business, and those that are able to adapt quickly to these new conditions may even emerge on the other side of the pandemic stronger."
Philip Landsman, a litigation attorney in California, is finding the service helpful during this especially challenging time. "Having extra time to delegate projects to my LAWCLERK legal team is turning out to be a rare silver lining during a terrible world crisis," he says.
Varsity Tutors (varsitytutors.com)
This live learning platform connects students with tutors, who work as independent contractors. According to Chief Academic Officer Brian Galvin, the platform has seen a tremendous increase in interest from tutors, many of whom are teachers.
"Applications have more than doubled nationwide, compared to the same time last year," Galvin reports. "The platform is experiencing unprecedented demand, as students -- especially [those in] kindergarten through fifth grade, who have historically been less receptive toward online learning -- work to stay on track during closures."
Tutors on the platform report seeing an uptick in opportunities.
"I've actually noticed a slight increase in demand in tutoring since the coronavirus. Normally March is one of my slowest months, but since many students are being forced to complete their lessons at home instead of in their schools, I've seen more students than usual asking for tutoring in their math classes," tutor Chase McCloskey reports.
(Kathleen Furore is a Chicago-based writer and editor who has covered personal finance and other business-related topics for a variety of trade and consumer publications. You can email her your career questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.)