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Old 02-02-2014, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Southern California
5,488 posts, read 8,168,558 times
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Here's my take on this topic:

Firstly, to answer the OP's question in the thread title, employers just seem to want people that other people want too, so they want people currently working. Employers also want to see that the person is staying current with their job skills & not getting laxed & out-of-date.

I HATE that practically ALL employers these days (it seems like all of them) want "recent experience". They don't want to even talk to you once you've been unemployed for it seems about 6 mos or longer. That can really lower someone's self-esteem IF the person allows people to lower it, that is, because it makes the long-term unemployed people appear completely non-valuable & the currently employed person look like a hot commodity when often, it may just be luck that the employed person is currently work. You need a tougher skin these days to get a job than years ago of course because it's so much more competitive.

Regarding if one thinks that hiring someone who's already employed somewhere else is considered "stealing that employee", I know some people may think that it's stealing, but I personally do NOT think so. People change jobs all the time because they want to for various reasons (want a change, want better pay, sick of current boss, wants closer commute, etc.), so it's the perogative of the person who's changing jobs to change their job. NO one's putting a gun to their head. Others can offer the person other options & if the person takes it, it's still because of their own desires/aspirations.
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Old 02-02-2014, 08:15 AM
 
47,573 posts, read 60,679,370 times
Reputation: 22283
Quote:
Originally Posted by aliss2 View Post
I've been a stay at home mom since 2010, and I'm a bit nervous about this, I have to admit. I have spent the last 3.5 years at home with the kids and abroad. I can now speak a second language, but haven't actively worked or volunteered in the field (it was not possible at the location). I hope my second language will at least show I've done some learning in that time (it is one of the two official languages here, not a completely obscure one).
You can explain your employment gap --- you chose to stay home with your kids when they were small --- that's a fairly acceptable reason. Be positive about it and don't be surprised if you find male employers are better on that than female employers.

The interviewer cannot bring up children but you can, you also should make it clear that you have excellent child care and won't be calling in sick frequently.

One way to approach it is to first ask yourself why you would hire you if you were the one hiring.
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Old 02-02-2014, 09:21 AM
 
2 posts, read 1,653 times
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Originally Posted by TXred View Post
^This is great I agree with some others...people unemployed for some time are most likely unemployable. It is not the job of the hiring companies to give people a "break" and hire them. It is their job to get qualified employees and make a profit.

This attitude is why people lie on their resumes.

I have found that all companies want years of experience. I even saw a meat packing assembly line job ad today that demanded 3 years experience in a meat packing environment; not just 3 years experience, 3 years specific experience. Now imagine what they want for jobs that aren't offered by the dozen.

Every company thinks "Oh well we're the best, so you need to get experience with those other chumps first.", they hire overqualified people who move on to a better offer within months and just continuously repeat this cycle. Gee wonder why turnover is so high, you're advertising for entry level but you really only mean "entry-level pay". Every company thinks they are "above" hiring at the job's level and any little thing they can nit-pick, they will. It boils down to arrogance.

I have been in college for four years but from the reactions of potential employees you would think I've been backpacking Europe or sleeping on a beach. Maybe I should just pull a "catch me if you can"
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Old 02-02-2014, 09:21 AM
 
Location: the Permian Basin
4,196 posts, read 3,090,264 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beenhereandthere View Post
Indirectly, an employee is being stolen from another company.
Wrong. The employee is a human being, not property of the company.
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Old 02-02-2014, 09:23 AM
 
Location: the Permian Basin
4,196 posts, read 3,090,264 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beenhereandthere View Post
Just wondering from your prospective, why you think that it's better to hire people who are currently working (and stealing, in a way, someone else's employee) or out of work for less than 3 months, as opposed to 6 months or more?
Because employers want employees who are current on their skills and training.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:11 AM
 
333 posts, read 326,765 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malamute View Post
Working your way through college is also nothing new. Millions of people have worked while going to college so they could pay for it.
You miss my point entirely. A lot of job applications have requirements to specific software and skills that you can only get by working in that specific industry. One time I saw a job at GE that required you to have experience with GE Financial Software. No college will give you access to that, and since it's a customizable software your experience can vary.

My point is the "skills" gap I keep hearing can be fixed if some training is provided. I don't mean baby or nurture them, but expecting everyone to come out of the gate guns blazing and be 100% perfect without any training on a company's methods or software is ludicrous. And expecting people to be able to "stay up to date" when they are unemployed by expecting them to purchase all this software or specific programs to train themselves isn't feasible. Most people can barely get by, and you expect them to buy licenses to train themselves is nuts.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:16 AM
 
333 posts, read 326,765 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage_girl View Post
That's why I would stress volunteering. FWIW, after the burst in 2008, a lot of volunteer positions were available demanding degrees to be volunteers. A lot of these places knew what the market would have available and just as an employer who pays, they wanted to capitalize on it.

Also, a lot of places do offer free classes or mini-workshops. I have learned the purpose of those classes isn't to provide you with all the skills you need to know, but a rudimentary understanding and a way to get connections so you can participate in the opportunities that will actually teach you a relevant skill.

A volunteer position isn't blowing smoke, either. It's a reference. For my volunteer positions I have signed an agreement about having them be my reference when the time comes, and they can verify what I did.
Volunteering can only get you so far. The jobs I'm applying ask for experience with software like Omniture, SQL, SPSS, and so forth, and there aren't many volunteer analyst jobs out there. On top of that most industries won't have volunteer work to give you needed experience. Do you expect a civil engineer to find volunteer work that will give him valuable experience he can use on his resume? Doubtful, especially when it comes to road designs and project management.

In regards to free classes and workshops how common are they? I live in the Chicago area, and I don't see any schools nearby offering free classes for databases or complicated software like Affinium. I do see free classes for basic stuff like Excel or Word, but those classes are mostly setup for older people who are learning the computer. Or an occasional class that is dedicated towards more admin work which is useful, but I guarantee you won't find free classes giving people experience to a specific industry like electrical engineering. On top of that the work you do in a classroom differs dramatically from the workplace. I've learn that the hard way.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:23 AM
 
333 posts, read 326,765 times
Reputation: 465
Quote:
Originally Posted by spifficus View Post
This attitude is why people lie on their resumes.

I have found that all companies want years of experience. I even saw a meat packing assembly line job ad today that demanded 3 years experience in a meat packing environment; not just 3 years experience, 3 years specific experience. Now imagine what they want for jobs that aren't offered by the dozen.

Every company thinks "Oh well we're the best, so you need to get experience with those other chumps first.", they hire overqualified people who move on to a better offer within months and just continuously repeat this cycle. Gee wonder why turnover is so high, you're advertising for entry level but you really only mean "entry-level pay". Every company thinks they are "above" hiring at the job's level and any little thing they can nit-pick, they will. It boils down to arrogance.

I have been in college for four years but from the reactions of potential employees you would think I've been backpacking Europe or sleeping on a beach. Maybe I should just pull a "catch me if you can"
This is very accurate. The job market is so bad that employers are taking advantage of it by offering entry level pay to overqualified people. I think we are getting to a point it's starting to backfire as people will move on quickly because they can find better paying work with their experience and skills, and on top of that they end up falling behind and lose productivity as they are taking too long to fill a valuable need. It's astounding how you see certain departments across the country seems to have low morale and are overwork while hiring managers and HR keep spouting, "we need to be selective to finding the absolute greatest person out there." Don't get me wrong, you can't hire anybody for any job, but the criteria and being picky to me is a reason why we are in this spot, and why people can't get back on their feet while companies continue to complain they can't find anyone.
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:34 AM
 
Location: U.S.A., Earth
4,507 posts, read 2,887,969 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anonak View Post
Thank you. I am so sick of hearing how the unemployed should be taking classes to stay relevant. With what money? Even when I was working full time I couldn't really afford to take classes, so how could someone who isn't working afford it?

edit: I see that several people have suggested free online classes or self-teaching. While I agree that this is better than nothing, do companies really value these accomplishments?

p.s. - I am employed part time, but I am looking for ways to increase my marketability, so I am genuinely curious.
I recall at a small, IT career fair, I had to be the youngest one there. Everyone else were easily in their 40s, 50s, and even 60s. There were 3 booths for "extra classes"/"dayschool" (forgot what they're called) which were manned by... Strayer University, Trident University, and perhaps Devry as the 3rd one? Well, the room was small enough that you can see everything going on at once. Not one of those 3 booths had a single person approach them. I heard onlookers commenting that people need jobs to pay their bills. They don't have the time nor $$ to take more classes to learn stuff that they didn't already learn from their 20+ years of experience, and various other tech and IT certifications.

I actually did have intentions to talk with them and find out some timeframes and costs, but it was only after talking with all employers. I ended up not doing so because all 3 left and never came back over 1 hour prior to the fair's end. I guess they figured they weren't going to get any takers and may as well close up shop early and get a jump start on traffic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aliss2 View Post
I've been a stay at home mom since 2010, and I'm a bit nervous about this, I have to admit. I have spent the last 3.5 years at home with the kids and abroad. I can now speak a second language, but haven't actively worked or volunteered in the field (it was not possible at the location). I hope my second language will at least show I've done some learning in that time (it is one of the two official languages here, not a completely obscure one).
My bro-in-law was in this situation... he was out of work for 4 years b/c he was a stay-at-home dad while my sister worked and made a good income. He did freelancing, but when he was offered a full time position by reference, he took it, as he may not have another chance to get back to FT work afterwards.
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:35 AM
 
821 posts, read 922,247 times
Reputation: 1283
Quote:
Originally Posted by STT Resident View Post
From my perspective as an employer (retired) the question is moot since I did, several times, hire people who had not been employed for quite some time. The issue was not how long they'd been unemployed but why and, further, what they had been doing while unemployed.
What can a person possibly do that is related to their profession while unemployed other than look for more work. What is someone going to tell you, that they lead a life of leisure at best, or were scared to death that they were going to be unemployed unduly and were applying and interviewing for job after job?

I once had a wiseass interviewer ask me what I was doing during a time of unemployment. He didn't like my answer and later in the interview said, "It would be one thing if you were doing great things during that time off". I know few people who do "great things" in their spare time out of work and I couldn't imagine what kind of "great things" a person can do during three to six months off of work with dwindling savings, mundane and boring days, and a decreased morale.

I can already hear people say stuff like, "What about volunteering?" or "What about getting another certificate, more schooling?" or more of this, more of that, bla, bla, bla, when those things are of little concern to middle or lower class people scrounging to just get back on their damn feet! I am currently in the midst of hiring someone for a position who I will be managing and I am always sympathetic to people's circumstances and never put them through the goddamn ringer with zinger questions such as, "What are your strengths and weaknesses?" and about what greatly ambitious things they were doing during time off instead of getting up at 10 to 12 in the morning or afternoon and doing as they pleased or ridiculing their precarious situation.
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