Out of work longer than 60 days can be a problem for in-demand professionals. The latest unemployment numbers show an economy that is doing great and more people are working than at any other time in U.S. history. So you are going to have to be prepared to address in an interview why you haven’t been able to find work. The unemployment rate for May was 3.6%, so as a job seeker you will be faced with greater competition for the few top paying positions. And employers are having to choose between numerous qualified candidates. Your competition is not coming from other unemployed professionals. Your competition is coming from passive job seekers.
What Is Meant By A Passive Job Seeker?
This term is used by industry insiders [HR, Recruiters, etc] to describe a candidate who is currently employed and not actively looking for another job. But if the right job opportunity became available they would leave for this new position. Companies like to hire passive candidates because they usually possess the skills that companies are looking for and their training time is much shorter. Passive job candidates usually require higher compensation packages in order to lure them away from their current employer. So now that you have an idea of what you’re up against let’s get down to business.
You Need To Develop A Game Plan
Let’s face it. You are interested in a top paying career and the competition is really tough. So you need to develop a plan of action of how you are going to attack the job market. The day has passed when you could email blast your resume to everyone on the internet. Tracking software catches 90% of resumes before a human gets to look at it. Also, your resume is your first introduction to the prospective employer.
- What should be on your resume?
- How many pages?
- What is a value proposition statement and where should I place this in my resume?
- Should I include a cover letter?
- How should I use social media to assist in my search?
- What are keywords?
- Should I use a recruiter?
- How should I prepare for the interview?
How To Explain Gaps In Employment
There are many reasons to be unemployed. The company downsized or you were laid off. Sometimes you are separated for other reasons that will need to be explained. Be prepared to address these reasons in a very concise manner. During this period of unemployment be sure to get involved in other activities that while they may be non-paying it still shows you have not been sitting home but have been putting your professional skills to good use. Is there an opportunity to volunteer at your place of worship, school projects or other civic duties? These non-paying projects can be captured on your resume thereby allowing you to share how you’ve been spending your time productively during this period of unemployment.
You’re Not Alone
Know that many professionals have walked in your shoes and faced with challenges to find a great career. And they succeeded by putting together their plan and devoting the required time to their job search. These questions and others are what you have to consider in today’s job market.
So if you are having challenges getting interviews and more importantly landing that ideal job then take some time to put together your plan of action. Most professionals don’t need a professional resume writer or pay a consultant to help in your job search. But oftentimes you get bogged down and pulled in so many directions it can be confusing and frustrating.