On the precipice of a highly divisive election, unemployment fell below eight percent for the first time in four years. This development looks very promising for those hoping for a big recovery in the economy, which has been a primary topic addressed on the campaign trail by all candidates. Most Americans already know who they are voting for and whom they trust to stimulate economic growth. But are job seekers prepared for what is waiting on the other side of joblessness?
It seems unemployment levels have been hanging over the heads of American citizens since the collapse of 2008. The housing market took a nosedive, it seemed for a while everyone was being laid off and the auto industry nearly collapsed. Each harrowing event created a lot of uncertainty in the lives of American families. With a disappearing middle class, frustration has been at an all-time high for those who feel they bought into a system that refuses to work for them and their loved ones.
Unemployment numbers reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics this month are hopefully the sign of changing times. People are eager to get back to work. Companies are more than ready to begin hiring again and subsequently creating growth in their markets. However, the playing field has changed and the way a job seeker is hired now may be a lot different than before. Ultimately, this could create even more frustration for job seekers who are expecting a new economy powered by the old rules.
Encouraging economic growth is not as easy as going back to the way things used to be. It fact, it could be assumed that going back will only recreate the same circumstances, leading to the same result: economic collapse. Thankfully, the government has thrown a lot of money behind cultivating jobs of the future in growing markets. Green jobs — those directly related to protecting and/or preserving the planet — are highly popular and heavily grant-funded. There are fewer manufacturing jobs and more white collar jobs. Although more people in the country are employed, we are still experiencing a high number of underemployed workers. There are still many employees who are not eligible to receive benefits from their employers. The amount of full-time jobs available is still less than desirable, but for those who have been unemployed long-term, in some cases any job is better than no job at all.
As people are re-entering the workforce, they may find it a different place than they left it — starting with the hiring process. Many small businesses — the widely touted engine of economic growth — use cloud-based software to do recruiting, hiring and payroll now instead of having a human resources person. This means you are much more likely to go through the initial vetting process almost entirely online communication.
To make sure they have the best chance of being hired, job seekers should take special care to research trends in how their field of interest operates their human resources department. The job market is still extremely competitive and being aware of a company’s inner workings is just one more way to present yourself as the premier applicant in the pool. Few can afford to enter this new market without properly preparing themselves. Know the rules so you can rule the market.