Congress is about to decide whether to renew unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless. Unless it acts by December 31, millions who have been unemployed for more than six months will begin losing benefits. With unemployment at nearly 9% and likely to remain high for the next few years, cutting off benefits for the long-term unemployed would have severe consequences for them and our economy.
Most job search advice is offered by so-called 'experts' who aren't actually responsible for hiring anyone. But hiring managers at major employers are on the front lines of the job market crisis. They screen thousands of applicants a week and are in a unique position to reveal what job seekers are doing wrong, and what candidates can do to get hired now, even in an ultra-competitive job market.
Unless you belong to a select group of people, you need a job in order to survive. Oprah Winfrey doesn't need to work another day in her life. The rest of us would have a hard time paying the electric bill without a job.
Your job search is a lot like "The Price is Right."
Catherine Callaway reports many people are training for new careers as result of poor economy.
People always talk about timing: "He was the right guy at the right time, so we got married." "I timed my investment perfectly -- right before the stock took off." "The timing was right and we sold our house in less than a month."
Tim Sheahan lost a high-paying job and decided to start his own business.
Good news: The job market is improving and employers are starting to hire again. But the rules of landing a job have changed.
Of all the parties the class of 2011 will be attending in honor of their graduation this spring, a pity party probably won't be one of them.
The phrase "shoot yourself in the foot" didn't create itself. In fact, job seekers probably coined it.
It's 2011 and it's time to take control of your job search. This year, it's no longer up to companies to hire you, it's up to you to get hired. Forget about how the economy is doing. Reflect on last year if you must, but then forget about that, too.
If life were a movie and you had just been laid off, you would buy a one-way ticket to some serene location and spend weeks or even months relaxing. You would unwind and examine your personal goals and return when you want. You might spend your days eating, praying and loving.
Chances are you probably know quite a few people who are smack in the middle of a job search, and if any of them are on your holiday gift list this year, you may want to pay a little extra attention to what you stuff their stockings with.
Taking a non-traditional approach to a job search can be a good thing.
Dear Annie: I graduated from college last spring and, after taking a few months off to take care of some family business, I'm looking for my first "real" job. I've been lucky enough to get several interviews, and they've gone pretty well, but I have to say, I'm kind of mystified. While I was still in school, I read a bunch of books about how to prepare for a job interview, and one thing they all said was that interviewers would be well prepared and ask probing, detailed questions.
An increasingly fierce debate is raging over the reason why unemployment is still so stubbornly high.
The number of job openings increased slightly in August, but there was no real improvement of the odds that unemployed workers will find a job, a government report showed Thursday.
You don't want just a nibble or an interview -- you want an actual job offer! Get your foot in the door and kick it wide open with these expert tips:
According to real estate experts, the biggest influence on a person purchasing a home is location, location, location. Without the perfect view or proximity to good schools, a great house can sit on the market for months.
Talking about how much you earn is kind of like talking about how much you weigh.
With unemployment at 9.6%, nailing that job interview is more important than ever.
Dear Annie: I just read your column on job hunting with a flawed credit history ("Bad credit, no job?" July 2010). I have an even worse problem. About 14 years ago, when I was a junior in college, I made a totally idiotic error in judgment involving drugs. I was arrested and convicted and did some jail time. When I got out, I finished college -- I was a computer science major with a minor in engineering -- and an uncle of mine hired me as an IT guy in a company owned by my family.
Just in case you haven't heard it enough: It's tough to get a job these days. So tough, in fact, that it's not unlikely for a job seeker to spend six months or longer looking for a job before getting one.
Does your application secretly have the words "overqualified," "desperate" and "likely to be bored stiff within a month" written all over it? If you are aiming too low in your job search, chances are employers will read between the lines and notice -- and move on to someone else.
U.S. employers shed 131,000 jobs in July. If you are out there reading the classifieds and scanning job boards, you are certainly not alone, but those postings can be difficult to navigate.
"Rejections are not unlike breakups," says Marian Schembari of New York City. "I remember one time I was rejected from the perfect job and spent the day in bed like a love-struck teenager eating ice cream and watching movies. Maybe not the most productive way to spend my time, but it definitely made me feel better!"
In a makeshift bedroom in her parents' house, Erinn Height applies for another job.
Question 1. May I claim gas and Internet costs on income taxes for job seeking? -- F. Henderson
New technological tools are often hailed as breakthroughs that will revolutionize our daily lives. Think of the iPhone's arrival a few years ago. Many of these much-heralded items fizzle away with little notice. And then others sneak up on us.
Age discrimination. Ask any baby boomer who's been job hunting for several months and he'll likely tell you a personal horror story.
When Terase Salerno was laid off in January 2009, she wasn't too worried about landing a new job, even amid the deepening recession.
It's no secret that finding a job in this economy is difficult at best. Since the recession hit in 2007, the U.S. Department of Labor reports there are now more than 15 million unemployed Americans facing the loss of their homes, savings and sanity.
Dear Annie: I've been looking for a job for about three months. I started out contacting former colleagues and bosses to see if they knew of any openings that might be appropriate for me. But I've now come to the end of that list, and I realize I need to start getting in touch with acquaintances from professional groups, my college alumni association, and so on.
In any economic climate, job hunting is nobody's idea of fun. And with the growing number of folks hitting the bricks these days, it seems the task is getting even harder.
Job hunting can be expensive. The costs of hiring career coaches, printing hundreds of résumés at Kinko's and flying out for weekend job interviews can really add up, especially for someone who doesn't have an income.
Filing nails or wearing flip flops? Stephanie Elam reports on some costly mistakes people make during a job interview.
Most job seekers say they're willing to do whatever it takes to find work in this economy. But are they willing to move 3,000 miles away?
Ever applied to a job online only to have your résumé seemingly vanish into a void?
Every day, William Schmidt gives job seekers with a not-so-great job history, a gap on their résumé or even a criminal record, a second chance.
With 14.8 million people out of work, competition for new jobs is easing ever so slightly, according to a government report released Tuesday.
HLN Money Expert Clark Howard tells us a simple way to improve your chances of finding work.
You don't understand. You updated your résumé, you're applying to jobs every day, you've cleaned up your digital dirt and you network every day.
Job fairs are notorious for long lines and lackluster results, but that doesn't mean they can't lead you to a job.
Dear Annie: I was startled to see in your article about job interviewing mistakes that there are now 6.3 applicants for every job opening in the U.S. But that is a national average, right? Are some cities better than others for job hunters?
Putting your job hunt on the back burner until after New Year's? That could be a big mistake, according to some hiring managers.
The importance of references seems to be a hot topic these days. Employers want to make sure they are hiring the right person for the job; but some thwart the process because checking references can be labor-intensive. On the other hand, job seekers provide references they know will give a glowing report, but employers are getting smarter and finding references you didn't provide.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 36 percent of unemployed people --or 5.4 million -- had been without a job for 27 weeks or more in September 2009.
In the current economic climate, people are finding themselves in dire situations. Veteran workers find themselves laid off after 20-plus loyal years with the same company. College graduates, with their diplomas hot off the press, can't find a job. Parents, who perhaps have never had to work outside the home before, find themselves desperate for a job.
Dear Annie: A few months ago I lost a middle-management job at a company where I worked for 14 years. I received four promotions during that time, but it had been quite a while since I actually interviewed for a new job.
When the financial storm sent shock waves through Wall Street and the broader economy, millions of people lost their jobs. Workers in New York City were particularly hard hit. Citigroup, alone, has announced over 100,000 job cuts worldwide since 2007. One casualty was Ebony Blue, a young financial analyst in the investment banking division, who was laid off in December of 2008. There weren't many openings in the financial industry. And with so many people still looking for work, Blue had plenty of competition. With only two years of experience under her belt since graduating from Ithaca College, Blue, 24, like many other young analysts, found it difficult to differentiate herself from a sea of job seekers in the industry.
In the current state of our economy, more than 15 million people are unemployed. That's 15 million people who are all looking for a little help, whether it's in the job search, writing a résumé, interview advice, networking or even finding a new career path.
Network, network, network. That's the conventional advice to the unemployed. But in the worst job market in 26 years, sometimes, it's the only method that works.
Dear Annie: I'm a week away from my 54th birthday and, man, am I getting discouraged. After being laid off from a fairly senior job in May, I've spent the past few months networking nonstop, and managed to get three interviews. One interviewer never got back to me at all, and the other two both said I am overqualified for the jobs they have to offer.
Despite millions of unemployed job seekers desperate for work, many open positions are languishing unfilled. The reason? Not enough candidates.
The 650,000 jobs created or saved by the stimulus package so far make up only a small step toward correcting the gap between the tens of millions of unemployed people and the few openings that those people are fighting over.
Dear Annie: I enjoyed your Sept. 30 column, and readers' comments, about how to decide whom to "friend" on Facebook. I recently joined LinkedIn, which I have heard is a terrific job-search tool, but I could really use some pointers on how to make the most of it. (I lost my old job about six weeks ago and, while my severance pay will last another couple of months, I need to step up my job hunt.)
Getting a job in this economy is tough everywhere, but some local job markets are faring worse than others. And nowhere is it harder to find a job than in Michigan.
From résumés accompanied by shoes to get candidates' "feet in the door," to candidates sending cakes designed as business cards, hiring managers have seen it all when it comes to memorable job-seeker tactics.
After being laid off this summer, Amy Bauer began to contemplate a career switch (from investor relations to corporate social responsibility). But it had been more than a decade since the 37-year-old from the Baltimore area had even crafted a résumé. For assistance, she turned to a career coach.
The résumé is the gateway to most job openings. But even the most qualified candidates have trouble standing out on an 8-1/2 by 11 inch sheet of paper.
Two people from different backgrounds are both looking for work after being laid off. CNNMoney's Poppy Harlow reports.
Is there any worse confidence killer than rejection?
It's not just teens and celebrities using Twitter these days.
It seems the longer you've been out of work, the harder it is to find a job.
When microblogging and social networking site Twitter debuted three years ago, plenty of people wrote it off as yet another pointless addition in the overcrowded networking world.
For job hunters, that very first line on your résumé can influence potential employers. Just ask Glenn Miller.
Image is everything in fashion, even when it comes to finding a job.
Dear Annie: I hope you can help me, because I am in a real mess here. I was laid off in January and, after a six-month job hunt, was offered a position similar to my old one. The new job required that I move from the Boston area to Atlanta. So my wife and I sold our house at a considerable loss, my wife quit her job, and we signed our kids up for their new schools in our new hometown. The company paid me a signing bonus and paid about half of our moving expenses. (My understanding is that the other half is tax-deductible, since we moved for work reasons.)
By now you've heard several times that the job market is competitive and it's more important than ever that you stand out to employers through your cover letter and résumé.
A recent college graduate is suing her alma mater for $72,000 -- the full cost of her tuition and then some -- because she cannot find a job.
Marleen Graham has been offered two different jobs in the past few months -- but both offers were retracted.
In the midst of the worst job market in 26 years, desperate job seekers are trying all sorts of extreme tactics to find employment.
Retirement dreams are quickly fading for thousands of older workers, as the severe market losses that ravaged once-healthy retirement accounts over the last year force many seniors to work longer.
In today's challenging economy, odds are you belong to one of two camps: You have already lost your job or you're worried that you could. Either way, you're feeling the stress of the highest unemployment rate in more than a quarter of a century and wondering what you should be doing now to improve your career prospects.
Facebook has become the playground for finding old friends, but for some job seekers, it can also be the key to finding employment.
You know the friend who constantly dates the wrong kind of person? The one who's endlessly frustrated that he or she is going to die alone because all the good ones are taken?
Can't seem to find a job? Maybe you're just not looking in the right places.
The expanded Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, has begun adding staff and plans to hire 800 more personnel as construction projects continue.
Dear Annie: I am worried about my husband of 19 years, who had a successful career in manufacturing project management until this recession hit. He lost his most recent job almost ten months ago, and at first he was doing a lot of networking, applying for jobs online, and even getting a few interviews, none of which panned out.
There are jobs out there, but it might just require a map to find them.
The right words make all the difference in life. Try asking "Wanna get hitched?" instead of "Will you marry me?" for proof.
CNN's Rob Marciano talks with college grads about their quest for a new job.
Even in the current job market, getting a pink slip doesn't always lead to long-term unemployment - especially if you're willing to do the extra legwork it takes to get hired these days. When David Hudson was laid off from his computer programming job, he sharpened his skills, did his due diligence and took full advantage of the resources available to him.
Let's say you've been job hunting for months now, and applied to so many employers you're starting to lose track of them all. One day you get a call from someone in HR at a well-known company. He found your resume on an online job board, thinks it's very impressive, and is looking forward to meeting you, he says. To set up the interview, he asks for your home address, date of birth and Social Security number.
In today's tough job market, it's critical to stand out. So how to make sure your application gets noticed: A flawless cover letter? Killer résumé? Glowing reference from the CEO? Not even. In the worst job market in 25 years, building an online presence is crucial to getting a job. Who you connect to, "follow" and "friend" can be just as important as conventional tools like résumés.
There are many job fairs around the country where job seekers can meet face-to-face with potential employers. Search the list here by date or to find a job fair near you.
CNN's Gerri Willis offers tips on how to make headway on switching careers in these economic times.
Despite what you might tell your boss, you've shopped online at work.
A record number of senior citizens attended a job fair this week in Loveland, Colorado.
Some people go back to school when they lose their jobs. Some spend all day on their couch. Others parlay their situation into a business.
Friends, here's one thing we've all realized by now: This isn't your ordinary garden-variety recession. During one of those - in fact, as recently as last fall - people laid off by one company could often go right out and get hired by a more prosperous competitor. Now, however, entire industries (banking, autos, construction, retailing, newspapers, the list goes on...) are shrinking fast, putting larger numbers of qualified candidates in competition for fewer openings. At the same time, thousands of people are leaving active military service every month. It all adds up to a huge number of job seekers looking for work in unfamiliar businesses - which, for many veterans, means any civilian enterprise.
Holding on to your job can get pretty tough when your industry is crumbling.
Dear Annie: I got laid off from a senior management job in marketing last September, just as the worst of this recession was getting underway, so I'm now coming up on six months' unemployment. As a hiring manager for many years (I'm 47), I always looked askance at candidates who had been out of work this long, so now I'm worried that prospective employers will do the same to me.
Job fairs are getting more competitive. Recent events across the nation drew thousands of people and one fair was so packed organizers had to turn people away.
Dear Annie: I lost my job as an IT manager in a downsizing last November and am still looking for another one. Apart from the fact that the tech job market is pretty flat right now, and employers seem to be taking a wait-and-see approach to hiring, I think my personality is getting in my way.
Unemployed people with disabilities are having increasing trouble finding a job.
With a record 12.5 million people unemployed in today's labor market, it's apparent that now, more than ever before, the people looking for employment must work even harder to ensure that they stand out to employers through their applications.