December 14, 2013

How To Find A Job When You’re Over 50

Are you out of work? Did you get laid-off? Has it been awhile since you were in the middle of a job search? Let’s be honest, it can be more challenging to find a job when you’re over 50. It’s scary to be unemployed when we get a bit older. We have mortgages, family obligations, and bills to pay. Being unemployed when you’re over 50 can be stressful.

A large percentage of unemployed Americans are over 50 years old. This age group has years of experience, but still have a harder time convincing employers to hire them. They can be seen as overqualified, too experienced, lacking flexibility, too costly, or unable to keep up. This ageism is frustrating, but it is something that older job seekers have to deal with.

It’s important to be yourself and to be honest when you are hunting for a job, but you also have to show an employer that your age is an asset. Be the person that can help the company succeed. As a seasoned veteran of the professional workforce, you bring a lot to the table. Learn how to sell yourself to convince employers that you are the right person for the job.

If you’re over 50, here are a few job search tips that will hopefully help you land a job:

  • Apply for Appropriate Jobs – It may be best to avoid entry level positions so that you are not seen as overqualified.
  • Be Honest About Pay – Know what you should be paid. Do your research.
  • Ensure You Have A Web Presence – This shows you are in tune with what’s popular – LinkedIn, Facebook, Blog
  • Be Flexible – Be able to adapt to new companies, roles, and jobs.
  • Highlight Your Accomplishments – After years of experience, you have a wide skill set and you’ve done lots of things that will apply to your new job
  • Utilize Your Network – Let people know you’re searching for a job. Your network can help.
  • Try For Jobs In A New Industry – If you’re industry isn’t hiring, don’t be scared of trying something totally new. Have you considered a seasonal job?
  • Honesty Is The Best Policy – Don’t lie about your age, try to look younger, or downplay your experience. Be yourself.
  • Know Where To Look For Jobs – Advertisements, job boards, contacts – there are lots of places to look for jobs these days.
  • Take The Time To Have An Error Free Job Search – A good eye and attention to detail can help make your resume stand out.
  • Consider Other Ways To Make Money? – With your experience, maybe you have the skills to start a business or sell something online.
  • Get an Education – Stay up to date in your field. It’s important to show employers that you’re up to date on the latest trends in your niche.
  • Don’t Drain Your Retirement Fund – If you have to tap into your hard earned retirement fund, consult a tax advisor.
  • Update Your Resume – Get the latest resume tips and apply them. Don’t forget to include any awards, accomplishments, memberships, and education.

It’s important to not be embarrassed that you’re unemployed. Use your age, experience, and network to help get you back into the workforce as quickly as possible. One great resource that is available to you is JobMonkey. We have industry guides, social media, and an awesome job board to help you kickstart your job search. Don’t get discouraged with the job hunt when you’re over 50. Smile, be proud, and apply for jobs. You’ve done it before, and with a bit of help you’ll get hired asap. Good luck!

About this Author 

Derek Lennon is a skier and writer who lives, works, and plays in the mountains. He travels the globe in search of snow and adventure. Life has allowed him to live and work all over the world doing cool jobs and loving every minute of it.

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