Half of Workers Laid Off in the Last Three Months Have Found Jobs

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gethiredWe get it: The economy sucks. But, new research suggests that maybe, just maybe, it’s starting to get better.

Forty-one percent of workers who were laid off from full-time jobs in the last three months reported they found a new full-time, permanent position while another 8 percent found part-time work, according to a survey from CareerBuilder that included 807 workers who were laid off from full-time jobs within the last 12 months. The survey was conducted between February 20 and March 11, 2009.

“This is encouraging news for the 3.3 million workers who have lost their jobs in recent months,” said Brent Rasmussen, President of CareerBuilder North America. “It’s going to take longer to find a job in today’s market, but there are opportunities out there in key areas such as healthcare, government, education, sales and technology. It’s important to devote five hours or more to your job search every day, check online listings, talk to recruiters, join social networking sites – use all the resources you have available to you.”

Here are some other key findings from the survey:

Gender vs. age

  • 59 percent of men compared to 49 percent of women who were laid off in the last 12 months were able to find full-time employment
  • Workers ages 35 to 44 were the most likely to find full-time jobs after a layoff at 68 percent
  • Workers ages 18 to 24 were the least likely at 41 percent, followed by 46 percent of workers age 55 and older

Severance and long-term savings

  • Only 32 percent of workers who were laid off in the last 12 months received a severance package from their employers
  • 69 percent reported the severance sustained them for two months or less
  • One-in-four said it sustained them for less than one month
  • Forty-five percent of workers who were laid off in the last year had to tap into long-term savings as a result of losing their jobs

Impact on pay and hours

  • 49 percent of workers who were laid off in the last 12 months and landed new positions took a job with less pay
  • 15 percent were able to negotiate higher compensation
  • 20 percent took a job with less hours
  • 12 percent took on more hours


  • 13 percent of workers who were laid off in the last 12 months and found jobs relocated to a new city or state
  • 39 percent of those who are still looking for employment reported they would consider relocating for a job opportunity

Transferring skills to other industries and fields

  • 38 percent of workers laid off in the last 12 months and landed new positions said they found work in a different field from where they were previously employed
  • 70 percent of these workers said they really enjoy the new opportunity
  • 44 percent of those still job hunting are looking for work outside of their profession

Starting a business

  • 25 percent of workers who have not found jobs are considering starting their own business

Rasmussen recommends the following tips:

  • Keep an open mind: Make a list of your current skills and look at a variety of job postings inside and outside your field to see how they measure up to the job requirements. You may be able to fill in gaps through an online certification or even through volunteering, which employers do regard as relevant experience.
  • Go beyond the basics: Ask a graphic designer to help you with your resume to make it eye-catching. Show off your skills with a digital portfolio of your work or follow-up with an opinion on a relevant article or industry news item after your interview.
  • Relentlessly use social media: Get on professional and social networking sites, Twitter or write your own blog to create a recognizable personal brand online and connect with industry insiders. Create a Facebook group of your own and invite recruiters and hiring managers to join.
  • Make yourself searchable: Make sure to include keywords from the employer’s job posting in your resume and cover letter, so your application shows up closer to the top in employer searches.
  1. From the sounds of it, I have been blessed with a layoff that came with a gracious severance package- that is one positive of this whole unfortunate situation. I wish you ALL the best in this job market.

  2. If anyone needs a free resume critique, send me yours at getaresumenow@aol.com. Free! I know not everyone needs a resume, but some really do. You might need two or three different types of resumes in this market though because you may have to pick a job that you are a bit overqualified for or a very different type of job than your last and you need to show transitional skills. Or maybe you are not listing past accomplishments and your resume just looks like everyone elses – just listing job description. No one cares. Resume doesn’t get you a job, just gets you your foot in the door. But as your first impression, it is the first most important thing you need. I prepare resumes for a a fee, but I promise I will give you a free step by step critique so that you can do it yourself if you want. And I won’t send you annoying emails to try to get your business

  3. Lately, people have been asking me if I see any difference in the rate of hiring now, as compared to a year or so ago. In my work as a career counselor helping people find jobs, I get to see first hand how quickly and successfully searchers land employment. I have seen NO difference in the rate of people securing positions, so this blog post is right on track. It’s super important to remember that the vast majority of jobs don’t get advertised. Instead, they’re filled through networking or by contacting potential employers directly, as described in this informational article at http://www.careersolutionsgroup.net/job-searching-target_research.shtml . The jobs are out there!

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