New study has been released which seems to counter a lot of the common sense advice we often receive about what to do between jobs.
It ultimately found that middle-aged workers' duration of unemployment didn't meaningfully impact whether they would receive a call from a recruiter after applying for a job. But individuals who had already taken jobs for which they were overqualified were actually less likely to get a call than those without a job at all.
That is to say, a lower-skill, lower-wage "interim" job taken by an individual hoping to avoid a lengthy bout of unemployment "significantly reduces the likelihood of receiving a callback" from a recruiter.
It should, however be noted that this study focused on older workers (in three brackets from 35 to 58) - other studies show that younger workers have an opposite result, with longer periods of no work at all raising more red-flags, than taking work for which they are overqualified or unrelated.
Anyway - interesting information to keep in mind, when taking or getting advice, and before leaving a job in the hopes of finding a new one.
Calm yourself. Nobody said anything about technical knowledge. I only state what I've seen, and it doesn't necessarily apply to every situation. But for a repeated example: I've been through four company-wide IT "refreshes" or system upgrades, all but one conducted by young turks (the IT pros) who knew it all, wouldn't ask the old hands anything, and set up systems that didn't get the correct "it" done.
Short-term unemployment makes for far more effective and efficient job-hunting, too. If you can make ends meet without an interim job and this lets you concentrate on aggresssively job-hunting as if job-hunting were your job, it's worth it.
By definition, at that point, Job hunting is your job.
I find myself in this very position with some unique twists and turns. I'm 46 with over 25 years of administrative management in a variety of places from hospitals to online businesses to restaurant management. I married young so I wasn't able to finish my formal education. I acquired 103 credits, many of which are not transferable. However my skill set from experiential learning is off the charts.
Four years ago I was making a decent middle class income for Texas standards when I met and fell in love with someone in prison (divine connection, long story, save it for another day). My title at that time was Relationship Manager for a major marketing company that worked with universities. I was their star employee until my last name changed from Munson to Cardenas and I began to mentor women and got involved in criminal justice reform. I was "quietly" let go when they restructured the company, with a glowing reference of course.
It was then I decided to go to culinary school "just because." I had worked for years raising children and doing the 9-5. It was ME time. Everywhere I worked while going to school I excelled and climbed the ladder, but I found the industry to be brutal and sexist. Every time I conquered a certain level there was always some other chef trying to manipulate and take me down. Long story short I got out of the industry, but am working on a salsa product line.
Now I'm fulfilling another dream, finishing my BA in Criminal Justice and then God-willing law school. Many say I'm too old and it's too expensive to go the distance. I'm taking it one day at a time.
My resume is a patchwork of amazing accomplishments that I am really proud of. However, in this job market I find myself too over qualified for many of the jobs out there. I've tried to dummy down my resume, but I'm told I have too much experience. On the flip side, those high powered jobs are now requiring years of experience in the same industry and/or at least a BA or Masters. That's just one part of my problem. If you Google my name, I'm all over the place advocating for criminal justice reform and who I am married to. I get blasted by Republicans because they say I'm too liberal. I get blasted by Democrats because they say I'm not liberal enough. Living in Texas, with it's conservative views, doesn't help with the job process.
It's not an easy place to be and trying to find decent employment has become somewhat of a dream. I'll keep doing what I'm doing in the self employment arena, but it would be nice to have something steady and solid. On a final note - Liam - I asked that professional food photographer and she said the Chef's do the plating.
From a layman's socio-historical perspective, I'd point out that the survival imperative of the past pretty much no longer exists in modern western society. The safety net of social programs has removed most the ancient "work or starve" motivation, while the "cost-cutting" rise of what's been termed"shadow work" has eliminated many of the minor earning opportunities from the paid work world.