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Finding Jobs Successfully For The Older Jobseeker

Aug 18, 2007
This is, in part, because employers have started to recognize that some of the skills that an older jobseeker can offer are different than those offered by younger people, especially those fresh from school or college.

This is because there is segregation in the types of roles that older applicants can fill much more effectively than younger employees, typically because they are stronger in certain skills due to the work experiences they have, and which young people have not, as yet, been able to acquire.

So this works well for employers, since they get employees far more suited to the type of role they need to fill and older jobseekers are able to benefit from a rejuvenation in the opportunities they are finding available.

Certainly, there is evidence in a number of countries, that younger people are losing out to those of the previous generation as employers assess what their precise needs are in a number of role types, and recruit accordingly - and often, these days, from the older population.

So, if you are in the position of looking for a job and you feel that your age might be against you, just what are the steps you need to take to have the best chance of a positive outcome?

Here are four key steps you must focus on:-

1) Getting Your CV or Resume Right

The big thing in your favor is the life and work experiences you have already had and that cannot be replicated by younger people. So, without making too much of it, emphasize what you have done in your work (and increasingly, outside the workplace too).

Carefully indicate the experiences you have had; the challenges you've faced successfully and the qualities you have, both that you feel for yourself, as well as that substantiated by evidence from co-workers, clients and customers as well as those you worked for.

You might also need to know that your length of service, especially with a limited number of employers over your career, is a good sign that you will be reliable as well as that you were held in high regard by your previous employers.

2) Prepare Yourself Well

When you are an older jobseeker, you need to work at it to ensure that you become irresistably attractive to prospective employers. To get this right, you need to be proactive.

By seeking out opportunities where you can develop your skills in the direction of roles you have been attracted to, you will look like you are very interested in the job.

This can take the form of additional training courses as well as taking on temporary experiences, maybe even unpaid, that will get your ready to hit the ground running when you get the job you're looking for.

3) Play Your Cards Right

It can be a huge challenge to seek out the right opportunities, however much time you can put in. So here's a secret. More people, especially older jobseekers, get jobs through people they already know than from applying cold.

So, you don't know anyone huh?

Truth is we all do! We all have networks that we've developed since we were little kids, so it's time to get others involved and fighting on your side. Tell your friends; tell your colleagues and (grit your teeth!), your ex-colleagues; tell your family. Even be prepared to tell just acquaintances.

It's not just the 50 people you first think of. On the one hand, it's the next 200 where you make the extra effort, but it's also about the hundreds of people they each know too! Indeed if you get this right, you'll have thousands of people all on your side, helping you out. You might be surprised at how valuable this asset is for you.

4) Look Specifically

If you are older, there are agencies that are working just for you. You will have likely as not, somewhere in your town that can help you in your quest. The world is getting savvier now of the possibilities that older workers offer, so it's much more available in your very own main street now than it ever was.

There are places where jobs for people like you are being advertized. Get 'Googling' for keywords like 'older workers' & 'older jobs' etc., in your location. It's quite possible that there is a role for you lurking somewhere, so doing all you can to find it, is down to you, as it won't always be possible for that perfect employer to find the older applicant they are looking for.

The jobs that are most likely to be available for older jobseeker?

- customer service roles, where experience of one-to-one interaction often comes easier after a lifetime in that sort of role.

- interim roles, where an organization is looking for short- to medium-term cover, which might be of a timescale to suit older applicants as well.

- professional roles, where long experience is of great value in supporting and mentoring newer, younger staff and where sometimes there might be a desire for the older applicant to lose a few hours in the week

This is just a small selection of possibilities. It is not exhaustive. Remember this is a win-win situation where employers in all sorts of businesses will benefit from having older jobseekers in their employee mix. It's out there for you, so make the effort and you will be rewarded.
About the Author
(c) 2007 "How To Land Your Dream Job". You can have the job of your dreams. It takes application, attention and the information you need to get you there, young or old. There's all you need at Martin Haworth's website, http://www.HowToLandYourDreamJob.com
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