7 Tips for Finding a Job in Your 60s

by Guest Author

find a job in your 60sAs a consequence of living longer, our working lives are being extended. Some have to work in their sixties and seventies; others are choosing to as they feel far from ready to retire.

Looking for employment is not easy at any age in today’s economy. However, if you stay positive, take the right approach, and have confidence in your skills, it is possible to find meaningful employment.

 7 Tips to Help You Find a Job in Your 60s

#1) Identify the skills you have to offer.

You need to understand both the skills you have to offer as well as the skills in demand in your area.

If you have just come out of full time employment, think about the skills you utilized. Which of your skills are relevant to today’s marketplace? Which are most in demand? Which can you build on to make yourself more marketable?

If you are returning to work after a career break, think about the skills you have developed, perhaps in raising your family such as scheduling, budget management, organizing, catering, or problem resolution. Think how you could package these skills to offer a potential employer.

 #2) Update your skills.

Are your skills current? Do you need to invest some time getting up to speed? For example, if you work in administration, are you up to date with the latest software packages, calendar management systems, etc.?

Are you up to speed on social media? This is one of the fastest growing areas for new job creation. Is expertise in this area something you could offer one employer or even several different companies on a part time basis? Portfolio working is becoming increasingly popular.

Are you a member of any professional associations where you can take advantage of any training they offer? Are all your professional accreditations up to date?

#3) Put together a resume for today’s world.

These days, resumes are often scanned in to employers’ systems upon receipt and searches are made against key words. Your resume must contain ‘keywords’ to describe your skills and job titles which are meaningful to employers.

Look at advertisements on job boards. What words and phrases are used to describe roles you have the skills to do? Make sure you have these same words and phrases in the introduction and the body of your resume. This makes you more likely to be selected for an interview.

#4) Network, network, and network some more.

In addition to responding to job advertisements, networking is key.

Network online with people on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Tell friends, family and former colleagues that you are looking for employment. Attend local networking events.

Make it easy for people to contact you. Print cards with your contact details.

Put together a list of local companies to approach and then consider who you know that can make introductions you.

#5) Thoroughly prepare for job interviews.

When you’ve landed an interview – prepare, prepare, prepare!

Research the company online. If you have the name of the interviewer ahead of time, Google them. See if they have a profile on LinkedIn or Facebook. Look for any common ground. You may know people in common or have attended the same schools.

Prepare answers for potential interview questions. Think about situations you’ve handled which show your skills put into practice.

Ask for a copy of the job description prior to interview.

Wear something that you feel confident in.

#6) Be realistic about your salary expectations.

Be realistic when negotiating salaries. Chances are the person interviewing you has had their salary frozen for some time, or even taken a pay cut.

#7) Remember your strengths.

Remember your strengths so you will feel and project confidence.

You have more life experience than younger applicants. You have more experience dealing with crisis situations. You have more experience communicating across the generations. You are likely to be more flexible if your children have left home.

Research shows that more mature workers are more reliable. You could be an excellent mentor to younger members of staff. Remember these and your other strengths at interviews.

Be confident in your belief that women over 60 make great employees, and that an employer would be extremely fortunate to have you as part of their team.

Good luck with your job search!

Thanks for Ceri Wheeldon for this article! Ceri is the founder of  www.Fabafterfifty.co.uk.  She has also been a headhunter for 25 years and has lived and recruited on both sides of the Atlantic. For more detailed tips relating to job search, please refer to the careers section on the Fabafterfifty.co.uk website.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jo Carroll March 1, 2012 at 10:08 am

I’m quite happy writing, pottering, travelling when I can. But this is brilliant advice for anyone who still needs, or wants, to be part of the workplace – a great post.

2 Bonnie March 2, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Jo, how fabulous that you’re happy with what you’re doing. Glad you liked this post.

3 mercadeo May 8, 2012 at 5:08 pm

What’s all this talk about keywords? We’re told they’re essential to a job search — we should use them in our resume and cover letters and use them when searching for job openings. But what are they really, and how do you know you’re using the right ones?Keywords are specific words or phrases that job seekers use to search for jobs and employers use to find the right candidates. Keywords are used as search criteria in the same way you do research on the Internet. The more keywords you use, the more closely the job will match what you’re really looking for.For example, if you type the word “retail” into a search engine, you’ll get literally thousands of job descriptions. But if you type the phrase “merchandising manager,” you’re going to get fewer and more useful results.Get keyed up.Most job postings are loaded with industry- and position-specific buzzwords. Take your cues straight from the source and include those same words in your resume. To find more keywords, research industry trends and visit professional association Web sites to uncover current buzzwords — especially those used by the hiring company or industry leaders.Don’t get lost in translation.Most companies use applicant tracking software, which scans resumes for keywords relating to skills, training, degrees, job titles and experience. Make sure your resume gets through the gatekeeper — present your qualifications as if the reader is comparing the words on the resume to a list of desired qualifications.Remember the magic words.Here are some specific examples of popular keywords. Make sure to also use keywords that are specific to your industry.

4 Tony March 22, 2014 at 2:57 pm

This was an excellent post. The 7 steps outlined are some of the most important to gaining employment in our ‘mature’ years. Preparing a powerful resume and delivering an excellent interview are some of the most important steps. Once you get to the interview the interview itself is the sell. Thanks to Ceri Wheeldon for the article.

5 Bonnie March 24, 2014 at 9:58 am

Glad you agree, Tony, especially since you are working in the “how to find work after 60″ field yourself.

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