By Lisa Raffo
All the uncertainty in the economy can easily rattle a job seeker’s confidence. But experts say it’s important to stay calm and think strategically.
“A slow economy doesn’t mean there’s no opportunity for work, it just means you have to think differently. It’s a detour; the highway is closed but there are a lot of very interesting and scenic back roads—some of which may turn out to be faster and more enjoyable,” says Bill Coleman, Chief Compensation Officer at Salary.com.
For a look at companies who are hiring people to work in retirement, check our listings right here on RetirementJobs.com. And consider these tips as you launch or continue your search.
1. Focus on industries that are less likely to be affected by an economic downturn – such as health care and education. Hospitals and schools will still be serving their populations. Even if your background is in another industry, there are often ways you can parlay your skills to one of these fields.
2. Consider taking a position that you are over-qualified for. It’s a way to get into a company and prove yourself so that when the economy is looking brighter, you’ll be in line for advancement.
3. Look for opportunities to propose a “contract” solution to a company’s employment needs. A company may not be hiring people on staff or it may even need to lay people off, but it still needs to get work done. Could you propose doing a project on a “contract” or “freelance” basis? You’ll get paid an hourly rate or a flat fee for your work, but usually will not receive benefits. But it’s a way to establish a relationship with an employer that could pay off when the economy turns around.
4. Consider temping. Some professionals consider this to be “beneath” them – but it can open up a world of possibilities. You get to experience a company’s culture before deciding whether you’d like to work there. It helps fill your immediate cash flow needs. Plus, some temp agencies offer benefits to full-time employees.
5. Cast a wider net. Prepare 2 or 3 different resumes to highlight different skill sets so that you can apply for a wider array of jobs. For example, if your background is in marketing, you might be able to position your experience to make yourself an attractive candidate for a sales or public relations position.