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25/04/2013

Why you should take a job, even if you didn’t study for it.

In Kenya, there are two types of people looking for work. There's the job market for people who have been out of work for less than six months, and the market for people who have been out of work longer.

Employers prefer applicants who haven't been out of work for very long, applicants who have industry experience, and applicants who haven't moved between jobs that much. But how long you've been out of work trumps those other factors, a new employment report shows. People who have been out of work for six months or longer find it hard to get jobs.

As long as you've been out of work for less than six months, you can get called back even if you don't have experience. But after you've been out of work for six months, in many cases, it doesn't matter what
experience you have. Quite literally. In other words, the first thing employers look at is how long you've been out of work.

Long-term unemployment is a terrifying trap. Once you've been out of work for six months, there's little you can do to find work. Employers put you at the back of the jobs line, regardless of how strong the rest of your resume is. After all, they usually don't even look at it.

Let's be clear. Employers discriminate against the long-term unemployed. Employers look at how long you've been unemployed as a better proxy for skills than anything else on your resume.

So, how do you solve the situation? Get a job doing something, even if it’s not directly related to what you studied in college. It is far much easier to get a job while having another job, than getting a job while sitting on the couch. Remember, employers like to hire busy people, because it shows their skills are in demand elsewhere, and their job track record is proven.

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