Thursday, April 24, 2014

Consider Employment Projections in Your Career Planning

By Susan Pines, Shy Job Seeker Blog  

Use Employment Projections in Your Career Planning [Shy Job Seeker Blog]
Use employment projections
to assist your career planning.
The following content is derived from an article in the Monthly Labor Review, published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This information is useful to job seekers, students, and individuals making plans for the future. I have edited it for length and made other changes for readability.

Occupations and industries related to healthcare and construction are projected to experience the fastest job growth through the years to 2022, as an aging population and expanding health insurance coverage change the preferences of consumers and a resurging housing market spurs long-awaited recovery in construction.

As the economy continues to improve in the wake of the Great Recession, the long-term patterns of growth and industry activity can be more readily observed. In the coming decade, demographic changes are expected to have pervasive effects on the nation’s economic outlook. As individuals age, their consumption patterns change and their demand for healthcare and related services rises. These trends are expected to play an important role in employment. In addition, by expanding insurance coverage to millions of Americans, the Affordable Care Act will place greater demands on the healthcare system. Highlights of the projections through 2022 include the following:

  • Labor force growth will slow to 0.5 percent annually as participation rates decrease among younger and prime-age workers and as more baby boomers leave the labor force.
  • Slow gains in the labor force will limit the growth in gross domestic product (GDP); GDP is projected to increase at an annual rate of 2.6 percent.
  • Total employment is expected to grow by 1 percent annually, with the fastest job gains occurring in the construction sector and the healthcare and social assistance sector.
  • Occupations related to healthcare, healthcare support, construction, and personal care services are projected to add a combined 5.3 million jobs, an increase representing approximately one-third of all employment gains to 2022.
  • Occupations requiring a high school diploma are expected to add the greatest number of new jobs, accounting for nearly 30 percent of all employment gains over the projection period.
The influence of changing demographics is expected to be felt across all facets of the economy. The dominant pattern of declining labor force participation is projected to continue, largely because of the substantial number of aging baby boomers. 

Image courtesy of  dpavumba  /

Saturday, April 12, 2014

5 Ways to Energize Your Job Hunt Now

By Susan Pines, Shy Job Seeker Blog 

5 Ways to Energize Your Job Hunt [Shy Job Seeker Blog]
Energize your job hunt today!
Do you apply for a few jobs a week and then wait for employers to call? If so, you are passively searching for work. While that’s a comfortable approach for shy and introverted people, it’s not the best way to get hired. Employers receive hundreds of resumes, and you will not stand out with a docile job search. 

By taking active steps to find a job, you will most likely get hired sooner. Here are five great ways to change your job search today:
  1. Find targets: Where do you want to work and why? Even if your target companies have no advertised openings, contact them to explain how they can help the organization succeed and grow.
  2. Uncover connections: Technology has made job searching more impersonal than ever. Do you know someone who can connect you with employers of interest? Any personal contact can help your application get considered. Employers don't like to advertise or hire people they don't know.
  3. Customize: Are you using the same cover letter and resume for every job application? It takes a few minutes to tweak your job search materials to fit a company or an opening. Be sure to use keywords from job ads to help your resume get through automated resume screening systems. Also, be careful not to eliminate yourself when you answer online application questions.
  4. Offer proof: Employers want to know that applicants can do the job. Be sure to explain your skills and accomplishments in concrete terms.
  5. Stick with it: Most job seekers, especially the long-term unemployed, face rejection and no response from employers. Persistence is key to becoming employed or reemployed. Find ways to stay positive and motivated. Stay in touch with people who will encourage you.
Don’t take a passive approach to finding your next paycheck! With the preceding tips, you can put true action into your employment search. 

Image courtesy of Master isolated images /

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Laid Off? Sammy Stay-at-Home Won't Get Hired.

By Susan Pines, Shy Job Seeker Blog  

If you have been laid off, it’s easy to sit at home and dwell on your situation, especially when you are shy or introverted. Before you know it, you may become isolated, feel hopeless, and develop a poor attitude. A recluse has little chance of becoming reemployed.

Laid off? Unemployed? Get out of the house
to improve your job search prospects.
Here are my tips to move from isolation to reemployment after a layoff:
  • Expect to zig-zag through emotional stages, including shock, anger, and depression. This is normal. Just don't get stuck in a bad place. Start a proactive job search as soon as possible. A proactive job hunt includes getting out of the house to meet others and to network, which will help your attitude and your prospects for the future.
  • Remind yourself of the skills and traits you bring to the right employer. Be sure to use and improve these skills, especially when you are unemployed. Perhaps you can coach someone, practice your skills through a hobby, or volunteer.
  • Limit passive activities, such as playing games, surfing online, and watching TV. Stay active to stay positive.
  • Build a support system and make contact with it every day.
  • Stop thinking about your layoff as "why me?" Instead, start thinking about getting hired and say, "why not me!" Walk down the street and think, "Why not me!" Pull your shoulders back and keep saying that to yourself. (Just don't say it out loud if you are alone.) You'll get some fresh air and an energy infusion.
  • Learn new skills, volunteer, get part-time work, take a class, and attend business events. These activities will help you stay sharp and meet people, which is important especially for introverts. Plus you may be able to add something new to your resume.
  • Develop an active job search plan that goes beyond applying for jobs online. This plan can include networking with employers, reaching out to everyone you know for job leads, looking for organizations that are growing, following up on all job leads, and participating in a job club.
  • Contact your local American Job Center to learn about the job search assistance it offers, courtesy of the U.S. Department of Labor. Learn more at
Don't be a Sammy Stay-at-Home after your layoff. Avoid isolation, get out of the house, and get hired.

Image courtesy of  David Castillo Dominici  /