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experiences with the job market

#1 experiences with the job market
01/07/2009 13:29

job hunter

Just wondered how other people are getting on with job hunting at the moment.

I have been out of a job 3 months and had zero interviews. Is that all down to the market? Or does it suggest something wrong with my job search?

If the latter can anyone recommend a company they have used who can help me?

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#2 RE: experiences with the job market
01/07/2009 15:14

Mars A Day to job hunter (#1)

There must be something wrong with you job search, as even in a recession it's unusual to go 3 months without a single interview. Can you tell us more about how you have been going about it, what things you have done? Hard to offer advice unless you can be more specific.

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#3 RE: experiences with the job market
01/07/2009 15:53

K to job hunter (#1)

Depends what you're looking for (some jobs are just rarer and more specialist than others) and what your skills/experience are like (large gaps between your CV and the job requirements are harder to bridge than small ones).

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#4 RE: experiences with the job market
01/07/2009 20:36

job hunter to K (#3)

I have a broad background across a number of industries and functions. A few years ago I felt this would be a strength. I recognise it now as a problem - I am a good number 2 in everything.

Have done frequent and indepth search of advertised jobs using company and portal websites. There are plenty of roles I am partially suited for but very few exact matches. My strongest industry is performing very badly - almost no vacancies.

I have applied for almost everything advertised with varying degrees of CV tailoring. I have not applied for anything on-spec. The agencies tell me my CV is good.

I did some networking at the start mostly to let people know my situation. They were keen to help and some introduced me to others. However it did not lead to any discussion of specific jobs. No one was actively recruiting.

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#5 RE: experiences with the job market
03/07/2009 10:19

job hunter to job hunter (#4)

Any personal experiences from people who are actually looking for a job at the moment?

I am guessing there must be a few job hunters reading this forum!

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#6 RE: experiences with the job market
03/07/2009 12:37

LeChiffre the villan to job hunter (#4)

The reason you havnt gotten any intervies may be that your resume lacks focus. Broad experience in many different industries/project bodes well in good times, but in bad times, employers are looking for proven candidates who present minimal risk.

My advice is to focus on something, and stick to it.

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#7 RE: experiences with the job market
06/07/2009 14:19

Baz to LeChiffre the villan (#6)

Hi Job Hunter

I am in the same boat. The biggest problem I'm having is dealing with the rejections. I can easily give friends etc advice and reassurance but when it comes to myself its hard see it as clearly. My confidence has been knocked.

I am trying to change industry following a post grad qualification so it was always going to be tough. I have had interviews but nothing for a good few months. I would agree with other posters that it is better to come across as focussed on a role/industry rather than as a strong generalist. It just cuts down on the work that potential employer’s hr/ recruiters have to put in. It can be tempting to apply for everything going after this period of time but this approach will have an impact on your application. Like you I need to decide exactly what I want to do and then disregard everything else.

Recruiters are making a bad situation worse with the behaviour you’ll find in the various CP threads. I also get the feeling that some of the consultancies that advertise directly on this site are up to similar tricks. It’s almost a form of self promotion for them to be seen to be hiring (or at least interviewing).

Tough times mate, I wish you luck.


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#8 RE: experiences with the job market
06/07/2009 15:25

Mars A Day to Baz (#7)

Baz, you are discounting the considerable cost to an organisation to go through the recruitment process - to do so simply to give the impression they are hiring and in reality are not, especially in a recession, is a waste of financial resources they simply cannot afford. Think of the billable time of everyone involved in screening and interviewing each applicant who gets to that stage, multiply that by an average number of candidates, and the cost per campaign runs easily into tens of thousands of pounds and easily more.

It is easy for one's confidence to take a severe knock in this market, and this creates a self-fulfilling prophecy leading to more self doubt which you cannot help but transmit in interviews.

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#9 RE: experiences with the job market
06/07/2009 17:09

Baz to Mars A Day (#8)

Fair enough Mars, I know from reading on here that you are experienced. I was just trying to give the OP some insight on how other Job hunters are feeling right now. I feel pretty safe in assuming he/she is suffering at least partly because of the current climate and was just trying to show that some of the things that can knock confidence are beyond their control.

I understand what you are saying about recruiting costs but I have also seen some extremely high calibre individuals rejected. I do wonder if some consultants suddenly have a little more time available for non-billable company work. As for the cost, I am assuming that relatively cheap HR resources will conduct the first cut. After which a telephone interview with senior consultants followed by a meeting near their client site represents a relatively small cost.

I have been interviewed up to this stage by one of the companies still advertising on this site and I find it hard to believe they couldn’t fill the role several months later. Their reason for rejecting me after 2 interviews was something they could have seen at the CV screening stage. So I do feel a bit like my time was wasted in a way similar to how recruiters have behaved lately.

All I really want to say to the OP is that there may be nothing wrong with your CV and the three month wait for an interview could be down to increased competition or wasting time on rabbit holes. So you are left with a choice, focus on something you can sell yourself into now or wait to be spotted as a person with potential by someone willing to take the risk.

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#10 RE: experiences with the job market
06/07/2009 17:40

Mars A Day to Baz (#9)

Baz fair comment; I take your point about being rejected at an advanced stage when they could have concluded this sooner - although if it helps this happens just as much in a boom market, although it's obviously less dispiriting then. Many companies go to market without a clear idea of what they actually want, or have decided that what they do want has to be precisely met by the candidate. In the current market the least you need to do is to show yourself as being a mitigated risk if there is any at all: companies want sure bets in this environment, and can you blame them?

Lack of confidence/lack of progress in job search:

The 2 go hand in hand: I repeat that the knocks which affect your confidence in turn affect your job search and vice versa. Firstly OP needs to change mindset: instead of taking knocks OP needs to look at how to turn adversity into opportunity. He (I'll assume you are a he OP, for ease of reference), should have several CV versions tailored to different slants on his CV. Keep it traditional, clear and with enough detail to sell your experience. Don't worry about being too long - we no longer deal with CVs in hard copy so going over 2 pages is acceptable. You should not be wasting time tailoring your CV to each application - this simply slows the process and distracts you from what you need to be focusing on - i.e. identifying opportunities. Ask yourself OP what sectors, niches or specialisms you CAN demonstrate strength in, and what roles you could cross sell yourself into. Talking to a recruiter may help in this regard (a good one will anyway). Think of it this way: a CV for main focus, a CV for strongest niche and a CV to cross sell (emphasising core skills etc rather than specific experience). When looking for roles, don't focus only on advertised roles - it's true that the greater % of roles are not advertised, and additionally companies - even in this recession - will hire someone who they feel can create value in the organisation: so make some considered speculative approaches, network network and network - use social networking sites like Linkedin etc, let people you know see you are available, and in turn try to offer something in exchange - swap leads etc. In terms of mindset, look for the positive, and treat your jobsearch like you job: set yourself goals and targets, dedicate time to researching roles and looking for those jobs where you could cross sell yourself, even if that means outside MC. Start working at 8am? Then you start your job search at 8am, break for lunch, keep going. Compile what you get back from the market - got a rejection? Useful - file it, and a month later go back to that firm and see whether new opportunities have opened up and use the contact info you now have from the letter or email. Use a spreadsheet to keep track of company and recruiter contacts, progress, dates of calls/emails etc so you know where you are.

Despondency not only comes across in interview negatively, but also saps your energy levels and self belief: and what MC can do without these? While you are out of the market (and it won't be for long) use this window of opportunity to do something useful and beneficial - learn a language, get fit, travel a bit, do a business course of some kind, help a charity or whatever gets you going. It will not only make you realise that life is not solely about your career (as important as that it) but will also balance your perspective, and keep you mentally healthier. Daytime TV will rot your mind. If you are interviewing (whether on phone or face to face) who would you hire: the one who bounds in brimming with energy, with things on the go, stuff to talk about, and a sense of cohesion in his life, or the one who comes in totally focused on getting a job, any job?

OP if this was not an anonymous forum I would offer to meet you for a coffee to help, as I think you just need pointing in the right direction, which I've attempted here, albeit in a ranting form.

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#11 RE: experiences with the job market
07/07/2009 08:55

an to Mars A Day (#10)

excellent post M A D

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#12 RE: experiences with the job market
07/07/2009 11:09

Confused to an (#11)


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