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Ask the Expert: How to Stand Out in Your Job Search
Susan Weinstock, AARP Vice President for Financial Resilience, is here to answer your questions on how to stand out in your job search, whether you’re looking to change jobs or start working again after a break. You bring expertise, maturity and experience to the workplace. Put it all to use with the help of AARP’s custom tools, services and expert advice.
Participation is easy! Simply ask your question by replying below.
Learn and Earn! Ask a question of our experts to earn 50 points awarded via code emailed to you after you participate (one entry per week given points). Ends January 13.
I have worked in AmGeneral for 19 years and been laid off I don’t know how many times and take another positions elsewhere on my résumé I’ve put down that I’ve worked at AM General for 19 years I haven’t really kept track of my other jobs during the times I was laid off what can I put on my résumé to explain this ?
Thanks for this question, l996086b. Resumes can be tricky to write and we need to make sure they show the best that we can be!
You may want to list the employer and then the dates that you worked there. Then list the employers in between and list those dates. This is also where a cover letter can be really helpful. You can use the cover letter to explain how you worked for your employer, left, worked for another employer, and then came back.
You also might want to try out AARP's Resume Advisor. We offer a free professional critique of your resume. Go to www.aarp.org/resume to upload your resume for the free feedback.
Best of luck in your job search!
Great question - and so timely, @AlmaW570489! Lots of folks are interested in this as well.
You might want to look at Indeed.com. They will let you filter your search just for remote work. On AARP's Job Board (www.jobs.aarp.org) you can include the word 'remote' under Key Words and it will show those types of jobs. Good luck!!
@gabea8, this is a great question - lots of people have gaps in their resumes, especially over the last couple of years. Did you do any volunteer work at that time or did you take courses or in someway do some personal development? You could put that on your resume.
Also, you may want to submit your resume for a free review at our Resume Advisor - www.aarp.org/resume. The person looking at your resume can critique it and that should help.
@DebraM49173, thanks for your question. Lots of people have physical limitations, not just seniors, and many of them are working or want to continue to work. Have you checked out the AARP Job Board? www.jobs.aarp.org
One example of a field that can accommodate physical limitations are customer service jobs. Lots of customer service jobs can be done remotely and can be done even with some physical limitations.
I would suggest checking out the AARP Job Board to see what you can find. There are lots of ways to filter your search to hopefully find a job that meets your needs. Best of luck!
@JesusLover29, this is an important question and it includes a variety of things to consider. Obviously, your financial situation is important. Have you saved enough for retirement? Do you need to keep working to build that nest egg? Do you have enough in emergency savings or would it be helpful to work to make that a reality? Do you have a lot of debt that you need to pay off, particularly credit card debt? Again, another reason to keep working. But you should also think about how you want to spend your time. Work provides a reason to get up in the morning and for some people is really the basis to fight social isolation. These are really important for mental health, so make sure that if you plan to stop working you have ways that you will pursue so that you won't become socially isolated.
Hope this helps you make a decision!
Hello and happy 2022! I'm so excited to hear from you about your experiences and provide any help that I can. We are hosting our next Online Career Summit on January 26 from 1-4 pm ET. We will hear from experts and offer the opportunity to talk to a career coach as well as network with other participants. Please go to www.aarp.org/onlinecareersummit to register.
Hi folks! To start off this conversation, I would be interested in hearing about your experiences in the current job market. We've all heard about labor shortages and how employers are desperate to hire people. Are you experiencing this?
I'd also like to learn more about your experiences if you have been part of the "Great Resignation." Why did you leave your job? Did you already have something else lined up? Are you waiting it out to see how things play out post-Covid? Are you only interested in remote work?
I'm excited to get this conversation started!
I quit my job about a month ago. I have been working remotely for about a year. I love remote work, but customer service is dragging me down. I'm tired of dealing with rude people and people that can't speak the language of our country. It's tiring. I'm 57 and in my last position the company expected me to be a jack of all trades and the pay scale was not in line with those demands, so I left. I have been so busy since quitting, that I haven't even wanted to work. It's hard to change careers at this stage of my life, but I want to do something like data processing or something that I don't have to deal with nasty customers and don't have to be in an office with people who may or may not have Covid since it doesn't appear to matter if your vaccinated or not, you can still get it. I'm all ears, if anyone has any suggestions.
There are lots of jobs out there if you are young and have minimal salary requirements. Us, older, experienced, folks require money. I have been ghosted by recruiters once they figured out how old I was or how long I have been in the workforce. But then, why would I want to work for them anyway?
@LynnE556901 Thanks for this question - I can't think of anything that is more timely. This is a real struggle and it doesn't just affect older workers. Think about a younger worker in their first job - that networking aspect is so important but so hard to do remotely.
Have you thought about trying to do one-on-one calls with specific people in your firm? Just for 15 minutes as a way to say hello and check in? This might be a way to at least start to establish a relationship and get to know one another and 15 minutes isn't a very long time.
Hope this helps!
A new contractor took over and said they didn’t have a management position for me. I had been working at the same place for 19 years. They cut management positions but hired someone who had been there 6 months as opposed to someone being there 8 years or me who had been there for 19 years. During the interview, they even asked me about retirement and I said I was not ready to leave the world of work. I am 65. I have since been applying but I really struggled with the question as to where do I see myself in 5 years. I am sure they don’t want to hear me say sipping margaritas on the beach. I stuttered around and did not do well answering that question so I would really appreciate any guidance you could offer. Thank you!
@ConnieK544563, I'm sorry to hear about your experience - but good for you for continuing to pursue working - it's a great way to ensure your future financial stability and ward off social isolation!
We are living longer and working longer, so there's no reason to stop working if you want to continue! When asked a question about where you see yourself in 5 years, I would suggest talking about your interest in working for this particular employer and why this would be such a great fit. You could talk about your interest in potentially being promoted within the company or working with and/or mentoring younger workers. If they ask specifically about your retirement plans you can also say flat out that you see this employer as a great fit and don't anticipate retiring within that time period.
I hope this is helpful! Good luck in your search.
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