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How to safeguard your career and income during the Corona Crisis

Even though the markets partially recovered right before the weekend, more extreme fluctuations are expected due the COVID-19. Hundreds of American workers have already lost jobs over the past week, as the coronavirus epidemic starts to take a more profound toll on the global economy, and brings more organizations to a standstill. With that in mind, do you think your dental job is secure?  

At times, the unfortunate comes to pass. One moment, both your personal and work life seems to be perfect. Then, in less than no time, you are thrown off the track and your world crushes.

For the last few years, we have heard about the amazingly hot stock market and record-high levels of employment. Your children’s college savings, 401(K), and brokerage account were gradually growing uninterruptedly.  You perhaps felt secure in your job. In a few words, life seemed pretty amazing. Then, before you knew it, it all changed.  

A distant rumor spread about some virus in China. At the outset, it appeared like any other global issue that usually turns out like white noise. The epidemic started growing worse; however, you still felt immune — figuratively and literally. China is like a concept to Americans. It is far away from us. Suddenly, the coronavirus (COVID-19) became real.

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Presently, reports from several countries have claimed that their nationals have contracted the disease, and some have succumbed to it. As a result, millions of people around the world have been quarantined. Travel has been banned or restricted to some cities. Businesses grounded to a halt. And most notably, the global supply chain has been knocked offline.  

Effects are now being felt in the U.S

As the chain reactions of the pandemic and economic implications take hold, the U.S will not be an exception. A few weeks ago, Bank of America claimed that the coronavirus is plunging the world economy into its worst since the 2009 financial crisis.

For now, many professionals and workers in the country, the situation may still appear calm. However, this pandemic can change everything. Soon, organizations are going to start downsizing and cutting back. They will not instigate any new business initiatives, as they would instead wait for better future clarity. Recruitment will cease. Employers won’t want to hire new people — unless it is an essential need — as they become afraid of the future.  No need to bring onboard new employees when economic conditions are worsening, they will say.  

Employers are contemplating layoffs 

Unfortunately, some organizations, including dental practices, will soon consider laying off their staff. Most likely, they will conclude that it’s economical to lighten the payroll load and save costs by getting rid of some employees. It is cold-hearted; however, dental practices and businesses, in general, need to protect their interests first. 

The pullbacks and cascade of downsizings will increase as the media magnifies the situation. And since it’s the presidential election season, many politicians will blame their opponents for allowing the pandemic to grow. The lethal combination of politicians wanting to score political points and media peddling fears will exacerbate the already-tenuous economy and job market. 

So, what do you do if you risk losing your job?

The early layoffs are a sign of how the virus is triggering a quick turnaround in the U.S economy, which only days ago appeared healthy. Unemployment was approximately at a half-century low.  

There are things you can do if you are starting to suspect that your dental job is on the line. Preparing might help you cope with the emotional and financial strain that is associated with loss of employment. Here’s how.

1.  First, it’s good to deal with your fears

Hold on tight. Seeing what is happening, it may be frightening for a moment. However, we have demonstrated again and again in the U.S that we can triumph over adversity and prevail. This scary situation may last several months or longer. Remain strong. History confirms that Americans are inventive and smart, especially during desperate times like now. We have managed continuously to unearth ways to combat deadly outbreaks, diseases, and pandemics. Well, it may not happen overnight; however, we will find the appropriate antidotes, and vaccines and life will get back to normal.

2.  Talk to your boss or employer 

If you notice all the warning signs of an impending job loss, talk to your employer or dentist for clarification. At times, you may be wrong about your fears, and it is wise to seek clarification as insecurity and uncertainty can affect your performance.  

3.  Start growing your rainy day fund 

This is the most practical tip to implement, and it is one that you have undoubtedly seen in almost all financial-preparedness posts you have read so far. Now, what may not have been clear to you is how much should be saved when dealing with a financial crisis such as this. There is no single or perfect answer to that question, but there are quite some basic guidelines to follow.

Generally, you should have a minimum of six months’ expenses in savings. This translates to enough money to cover necessities such as food and personal care, housing and utilities, and other vital financial obligations like medical insurance payments.  

It may take time to save up enough money to attain the six-months-in-savings mark. However, just try to have a practical saving plan in place. And once you get to the target mark, don’t stop, keep on keeping on. 

4.  Start being frugal with your bills

The most practical way to build up your savings is by cutting on your monthly bills. When you suspect an impending job loss, the worst thing you can do is incurring expenses on items that don’t really matter. Is there a way to limit some of your bills? Perhaps the energy costs are a little higher than they should be. Is the heater or air-conditioning being left on unnecessarily?  

Practicing sustainable methods like eating at home and organic gardening is also a fantastic way to reduce your expenses and become self-reliant in the event the financial crisis we are experiencing persists for long. These are only a few of the many measures you can implement to cushion yourself from the unexpected.  

5.  Prepare for losing your job

Unemployment programs differ by state; therefore, the most critical step is to file a claim in your respective state (the state where you work and not where you reside). Be prepared to provide personal information such as the period you worked for your former employer and proof of address. Be aware, though, that it usually takes 14 or 21 days after you submit your claim to get your initial check.

If you receive unemployment benefits, in some instances, you may have to reimburse them once you start getting your regular paycheck again. Thus, ensure you understand the fine print when applying for these benefits.

6.  Seek advice

When you are in a susceptible situation, with your job at risk, logical thinking seems to disappear. What you may particularly need in such a case is the support of professionals or friends who can provide trustworthy and solid advice about your career options. The advice you get here can go a long way in helping you remain confident and professional during these troubling situations. More so, the provoking insights you get from others will help shed light on some things you hadn’t even thought of, regarding the corona crisis.

7. Diversify your income by looking for temp job opportunities

Despite the financial crisis, not all organizations or dental practices will be laying off staff. Thus, there is still hope of finding employment when your current employer releases you. But where can you find dental job opportunities at such a moment? You have to go beyond the typical newspaper adverts and job boards to know which dental clinics are still hiring. 

Heard of Cloud Dentistry, an on-demand staffing platform? This is an online market place where dental practices hire temp dental professionals for short term positions or single shifts. This cloud platform will let you create an online profile, share previous work experience and portfolio, and search the available job vacancies based on filters and qualifications.

Remember, when there is uncertainty, most employers will go for temp employees as opposed to full-time ones. So, for many dental professionals seeking fresh opportunities or wishing to make an extra coin during these difficult financial times, temp jobs can be the perfect solution. At times, a temp role can be the proverbial lifesaver that helps you to pay at least the basic bills, while you get your next “permanent” job.

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It is easy and convenient to get a job via Cloud Dentistry. Start applying now and honor as many interview calls as you can. This way, you might land a few extra gigs that can help you supplement your dwindling income sources. 

Over to you

Many forces are entirely beyond your control during a financial crisis, especially a pandemic-triggered one. However, if you direct your energy and efforts towards developing a practical survival strategy, you will have a higher probability of riding out of the storm triumphantly. The economy will, without a doubt, bounce back; your job is to ensure that you do, too.  

We hope this information was helpful, and you have formed a clear picture of how you can commence your economic collapse preparations.