Wednesday, March 26, 2008

How much does the jobless rate affect your job search?

The Cincinnati Business Courier recently reported that the Ohio jobless (Why they don't just say unemployment?) rate fell in February. When I first started this blog back in 2002, I often wondered about the unemployment rate.

It's really a bit of an inaccurate number, when you consider that it's the number of people filing for unemployment each week. It doesn't count those who are still unemployed yet have either stopped meeting the reporting requirements or have had their unemployment benefits expire.

The rate describes a macroeconomic condition; i.e., a condition of unemployment as a whole. More importantly, I also found, at least for me, that I began using the unemployment rate as an excuse for not keeping up with my job search as intensely as I could have been.

So the jobless rate is falling or rising... whatever.

The statewide/national jobless rate shouldn't affect your own job search and career management. Stay focused on your own job search. Companies still have positions to be filled. Your industry (also known as "vertical" by some) may have high demand for labor. Don't use the rate as an excuse.

Am I off base here? Does any of this make sense? What do you think?

Check out my other blogs:
Daniel Johnson, Jr.
Journey Inside My Mind Blog
Journey Inside My Mind Podcast

Related tags: , , , , , , ,


jay martinez said...

The Jobless rate does not affect my searching at all, it affects the mindset of the recruiter I think. The phone used to ring off the hook for me, from all over Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, little companies, medium companies on and on. But people becoming unemployed makes the recruiter think well they are losing there jobs because they were not as qualified as they thought so why should I call anyone? The phone is deadly silent now. My skill set has not diminished but the recruiters have. Hopefully that makes some sense.

Paul Monaco said...

Many people are realizing the job hunt begins while you are still employed. That's when you have a never ending flow of contacts from many related industries and open doors to ones you may not otherwise have access too.

I feel that many of the available jobs out their are filled by word-of-mouth and the recruiting is done between vendor and business partner relationships.

Treat every business meeting with outside vendors and you would dealing with potential future employees. Keep names and contact information for everyone you've associated with even if it was only a sales solicitation.

With this method, jobless rates and local economy are really a non-issue.

JibberJobber Guy said...

I hate watching a state or nation celebrate a low unemployment rate, while I'm 100% unemployed.

That rate means nothing to me as a job seeker. And if it is low, and I can't get a job, I'm left wondering what's wrong with me.

Wendy Belancourt, CPRW said...

The jobless rate should be used as a tool of measurement to guide you in an intelligent search that gets results. There are tools available today that allow you to research and strategize if you need to shift your career focus. Take the temperature of the market in for your position in your industry in the geo area(s) you wish to work.

If you don't get a healthy reading, you can:

1. Find out WHERE companies are hiring for your specialty and consider targeting those cities. You can even check out which cities are right for you using online tools.

2. Explore available opportunities in other industries and network to get an interview.

3. Explore switching your area of expertise to an increasingly in-demand position.

Keep on top of hiring trends in your industry to consider additional education WHILE you are employed. While unemployed, take advantage of your reduced income status to get financial assistance for educational courses.

Pick a specialty that requires short-term instruction/certification that is fairly new to the industry for positions with small competitive pools.

For instance, in IT, two growing fields are ITIL and security. The number of trained specialists in these areas does not meet current U.S. employment demands.


As a recent subscriber to Get That Job!, I just have to say that I love Daniel's blog. He has hit on a timely topic for me as I work to evolve the resources for my clients to get their job. Thanks Daniel.

Anonymous said...

I think, when it comes to finding work, people focus to much upon what everyone else is doing. The sad truth is that if one does get hired, it's because they are doing something different from the rest of the crowd. If one is worried about the current unemployment rate, all the reason to revamp one's approach. Be forward thinking. Don't focus on what you have done. Focus, instead, on what you will do.

raeka said...

Your post makes complete sense!The effort to look for jobs shouldn't stop or get slow

3 of my friends actually found jobs recently in this "slowing" economy time!

physician recruiters said...

I guess now there are more people willing to work because reality smacked them dab in the face. I myself didn't believe that the richer get richer and the poorer get poorer until I did something about it. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that it takes a dollar to make two dollars. Let me keep it simple.... For those looking for better jobs, jobs that differ you from the person standing next to you, open your eyes in a different perspective and look at things differently. WE ARE ALL QUALIFIED!

It doesn't matter what it is that you do. Even if you don't know what you want to do or be, but remember that if it is something that really interests you, you will succeed more and better than you neighbor doctor.
Believe in yourself and even if picking up trash is something you enjoy, find more ways of increasing your clientele and inventing new alternatives of how to expand yourself in the community!

Much Love,
-Joe E

Daniel said...

Wow, great comment, Joe!

By the way, I should remind folks that updated content is now published at

Thanks for adding to the conversation!