Mature age job seeking

Flowers from Vasse marketI worked in the employment arena for a several years with agencies that assisted unemployed people into employment. I once believed that doing the following could be  helpful in finding a job:

  1. Do work experience – offer to do a couple of weeks free trial so that the employer can see your skills and abilities.
  2. Take almost any job that you offered  as it is easier to get a job if you are already employed.
  3. Be ready to take on lower skilled jobs if you can’t find any vacancies in your specialist area.
  4. Continually bombard employers and employment agencies with letters and phone calls. They may give you a job to get you off their back!
  5. Make sure that your resume and application are relevant to the job you are applying for.

There is some value in my suggestions however I see them from a different perspective today.

Nearly three years ago I gave up my well paid, mid-level job in Government with the intention of moving to the country and picking up some part-time work. After-all, I have worked hard and have lots of skills to offer, don’t I?

When I left the environment I knew so well, I found it was tougher than I expected. The people I worked with in the past knew my reputation and experience. Even a written referee doesn’t stand up with an employer who knows nothing at all about you and what you can or can’t do.

I decided to take my own advice and get some temporary, low skilled work with the idea that once I am in a job, my chances will be better. What I didn’t realise is that some lower skilled jobs are quite difficult to do if you have never done them before. I kept wanting to take on some bigger tasks in the organisation so that I could prove my skills. When I was able to do that, I felt a little cheated that I was still only being paid for a low skilled job. I went around in circles!

As for me, I am now self-employed and much happier all round, but it took a while for it all to come together. What are your thoughts or experience in seeking employment?



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