Over the last two decades, the job search process has changed dramatically. If you want to be successful in your search, it’s important to understand these changes.
See also: How to ace the interview.
|Newspaper ads were the main source of job listings.||Millions of job postings show up online every day. Check out AARP’s job search tool www.aarp.org/Jobs.|
|Résumés were presented on paper and delivered by mail or in person.||Electronic applications — emailing résumés or submitting forms online — have become the norm.|
|An actual human being read your résumé.||Your résumé may get scanned electronically for keywords. Including the right keywords helps your résumé get noticed.|
|If you applied for a job, you normally received a response.||Due to the volume of job applications, many employers won’t acknowledge receiving your résumé. Don’t take it personally. Keep up networking to expand your contacts and job leads.|
|One résumé was all you needed, listing all of your past jobs.||Develop multiple résumés based on different positions you’re pursuing. List only the past 10-15 years of work experience. Focus on key skills and achievements.|
|Recruiters were around your age, or older.||Many recruiters will be younger than you. Know how to answer questions about working with younger colleagues and bosses. Show you’re in step with current industry terminology.|
|A lack of technology skills may not have been a drawback.||Computer skills are important to most jobs and change quickly. Highlight your tech skills; get more training if you need it.|
|The job interview was fairly predictable.||Count on getting not-too-subtle questions related to your age. Be prepared to give examples of achievements that demonstrate your ability to do the job for which you are applying.|
|There were limited sources of advice for job seekers.||The Internet is chock-full of information for job seekers. But try not to let yourself get weighed down by information overload.|
|Finding a job was more about what you knew and less about whom you knew.||A successful job search includes networking. Sign up for a LinkedIn account and reconnect with former colleagues and friends. You’ll be surprised how far-reaching your network can become. Also take advantage of network building through Facebook, Twitter and through the AARP Technology Education Center.|
- Understand how the job hunt has evolved, and start adapting to the new way of doing things.
- Start by accessing job postings online. A good place to begin is Life Reimagined and www.aarp.org/Jobs.
- If your computer abilities are lacking, consider training to get your skills up to date.
- You’ll need more than one résumé in today’s job search. For help, check out AARP’s tip sheet on which type of résumé is best at www.aarp.org/JobTips.
Get yourself connected through social media and start taking advantage of old and new connections for your job search.
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