Experts address age, credit trouble in jobs chat

2:33 PM, Aug 20, 2011   |    comments
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Two experts talk about the job picture on 11Alive Weekend News.

ATLANTA -- Two employment experts fielded questions from viewers about getting an interview and landing a job during a live chat on Saturday morning.

It's part of 11Alive's commitment to helping viewers get information and find an edge in this tough economy.

Rosemary Gignilliat is the owner of RG Staffing, and Gerry Klein is the Human Resources manager for Georgia Retina.

In case you missed it, we've posted the chat below. 

8:59
Comment From rosemary gignilliat

As a seasoned recruiter, I am here to answer your job seeking questions.

8:59
Comment From Gerry Klein

I look forward to answering your questions regarding your search for a job and what I look for in the perfect candidate.

9:03
Comment From DJ

I find Job Fairs are a total waste of time. After spending time and gas to meet HR personnel only to be told, "go on the website and fill out an application", Is there another way I am able to connect , I am usually told to go on the website and put in an application.

9:03
Comment From jg

Why are employers choosing not to hire the long term unemployed? I've been out of work for 2.5 years, have an MBA, have volunteered in my free time, and have kept up my skills. However, an employer would not know that unless I was able to sit in front of them. I think it is so unfair that employers would treat us this way.

9:04
Rosemary Gignilliat:

it depends onwhat kind of job you are looking for and how many candidates the company is looking to hire. Worst case, it is good experience to get in front of the hiring authority.

9:05
Gerry Klein:

Send in the resume and make sure you sign the cover letter and that there are no mistakes in spelling. We receive many resumes and we know what we are looking for in a specific position opening and you on paper must meet those requirements to get further.

9:05
Comment From Rosseta

Any advice for the person with an excellent education (Chicago MBA), who spent many years overseas and came back to US. While living overseas, the person wasn't working in a field of his education. Thanks

9:05
Rosemary Gignilliat:

it depends on why you have been out of work, have you been interiviewing and if so, why have you not recieved offers.

9:06
Gerry Klein:

I would gladly hire the long term unemployed if they have the qualifications we are looking for in a specific position.

9:07
Comment From jg

Ms. Gignilliat...that's just it...I have not been able to get in front of anyone for an interview! You send in resumes, and they hit the black hole....no response. I have given up on finding employment.

9:08
Rosemary Gignilliat:

You need a recruiter to help you!

9:09
Gerry Klein:

The agencies know what our company is looking for and what works for us.

9:09
Comment From jg

Oh believe me, I've used those also!

9:10
Rosemary Gignilliat:

send me your resume torgstaffing@bellsouth.net and a note that says we have had this on line conversation and I will take a look at it.

9:10
Comment From jg

Will do Ms. Gignilliat. Any feedback from you would be appreciated!

9:13
Comment From nw

How do you suggest I approach prospective employers about my age (53)?

9:15
Gerry Klein:

I love our employees who are mature. They bring a strong work ethic to the company. When I interview I close my eyes to age. I am a boomer and have just hired a boomer. However, I for the most part hire for entry-level medical positions. You may feel you are over qualified for some of the openings that are out there. I believe in getting your foot in the door. Gerry

9:15
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Age--there is no substitute for experience! As long as you are not overqualified for the job, stress that you come out of a generation that values hard work, strong ethics, etc  

9:16
Comment From Frank

What advice do you have for older workers who need to brush up on their computer/technical skills, but aren't sure where to go for it?

9:16
Comment From DTJ

What advise would you give a person who has all the experience that a job ask for accept for the degree?

9:16
Comment From DJ

My question, what can I do to increase my chance of a one on one interview?

9:16
Rosemary Gignilliat:

go to your children and grandchildren!

9:17
Gerry Klein:

All the colleges and technical schools offer programs for brushing up on computer skills. Call them!

9:17
Comment From Rosseta

I;d like to update my question.Any advice for the person with an excellent education (Chicago MBA), who spent many years overseas and came back to US. While living overseas, the person wasn't working in a field of his education. Started his own little company, created local ACC branch and so on. Has a lof of experience in quiet different subjects. Does that create a problem for a possible employers ?Thanks

9:18
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Have a great resume on good paper with lots of bold print and months as well as years, accounting for any time lapses.

9:18
Comment From nw

Good advice on age...but how do you get noticed and invited in for an interview.

9:18
Comment From jg

COMMENT TO FRANK re brushing up on computer skills....go tomicrosoft.com --- they have free lessons on their suite of programs. Also the library is an excellent resource in brushing up on skills. These are FREE!!!

9:18
Gerry Klein:

It will be more difficult to get hired if the job requires a degree and you do not have one. I would suggest being creative in trying to get in the door to see the hiring manager. Then you have the opportunity to sell yourself.

9:19
Rosemary Gignilliat:

No need to go back more than 10-15 years on your resume--have an eye appealing resume that is easy to read.

9:20
Gerry Klein:

If you mail in a resume, put it on a different, heavier stock of paper; perhaps using a different soft color paper. Include letters of reference that say you are the best ever. Again, be creative to get noticed.

9:21
Comment From Rob

I have about 30 years expereince with computer, asset management and accounting. Most potential employers will not hire me because I have no degree (currently going back to school to obtain one). Why are employers so reluctant to hiring an older person with extensive experience?

9:21
Comment From Dorothy

I am 61 years young and have been self employed most of my adult years. 6 years ago I sold my business and planned to retire but our economy did not allow me too follow thru. I have been on a job search for well over a year and can not find anyone interested in hiring me. Do you think it is because of being self employed for so long?

9:21
Comment From RQC

I have been out of work for two years and my credit has suffered badly. How do I handle credit checks before the potential employer pulls my credit?

9:21

Comment From DTJ

i like that Idea of mailing in the resume on quality paper as well as adding letter of reference.

9:22
Comment From DJ

Speaking of resume, I have worked primarily as a seasonal or temporary employee and my resume has gaps of 2 - 3 months between each assignment. How can make these gaps disappear on my resume?

9:23
Rosemary Gignilliat:

no reason for a company to do a credit check if you are not handling money. Most companies are forgiving of poor credit due to the economic condidtions and high unemployement. If they are doing a credit check, tell them up front. companies seem to appreciate that.

9:23
Gerry Klein:

I have met so many folks in their sixties who retired early and now are looking for employment and not having success. I would suggest look to the growing fields like healthcare and the aging population. Transportation of older folks to medical appointments should be an area that needs personnel. Think outside your usual box and think of the connections you may have.

9:24
Gerry Klein:

We no longer look at the credit as being a negative in hiring. We know people are struggling out there.

9:24
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Don't worry about a 2-3 month gap. 6 months or longer need to be addressed.

9:46
Comment From DTJ

RQC i can understand i lost my job 3 years ago and over the two year time span my credit suffered as well. I have found a job how that i have been on for a year however i want more. I know i deserve more

9:46
Comment From Shai

I agree with Rob. I have 30 yaers of experience also. Currently not pursuing a degree because I have the required skills. In fact, I'm usually overqualified for the positions for which I'm applying!

9:46
Comment From Dorothy

How do you suggest I go about finding employment to transport older folks to appointments. Can you suggest a company?

9:46
Comment From Rob

What about temp agencies - are they worth the time spent?

9:46
Comment From K. E.

Is there any agency that would sponsor persons that need to maybe get a certification to improve their chances of getting employment. I have work experience in housing; however, I have applied for several opportunities, but I cannot even get an interview.

9:47
Nick the A.P.:

Sorry for the comment delays! I will be easing the comments back slowly so everyone can catch back up!

9:47
Comment From Hard Worker

I just wanted to let people know my employer is always hiring, not just in Atlanta but pretty much nationwide. Retail and some office jobs. Go to shopaarons.com and look at the careers tab

9:47
Comment From Kim

I'm receiving unemployment right now and I'm 5 months pregnant. So I need a good paying job that would be worth my time and that would allow me to take time off to have my baby around the first of January. Or do u think I should just wait till the baby is born then try and find a job? I still would need a job paying $17/hr and up for it to be worth it. What should I do?

9:47
Gerry Klein:

I cannot suggest a company but recently went looking for that very thing for a friend. Look on the internet at transportation specifically medical and it will show several companies. Now, remember, I do not know they are looking for employees but with the booming boomers out there I believe there will be such a need.

9:48
Comment From jg

Ms. Gignilliat, what which industries do you staff for?

9:48
Comment From Dorothy

Just listened to you live, thanks for all your words of encouragement! You have given me the umphhh to get back out there!!

9:48
Rosemary Gignilliat:

temp agencies are an excellent source--always the chance of being brought on full time if a maternity leave does not return or if they fall in love with you and your work. Less pressure than interviewing.

9:48
Comment From Melissa

Should your resume just be 1 page, or what is the status quo now?

9:49
Gerry Klein:

Kim, I think you will find it difficult to find a job right now. Personally, I would suggest waiting to the baby arrives and then returning to the job market. The field should be open for you especially when you tell them you had a baby and are now ready to return to the workforce. Good luck.

9:49
Comment From Jon Brodeick

I lost my job in 2008. I am now 74. I went back to school to get a Masters in Creative writing. I'll graduate in December. MyGPA is 4.0 and I am an energetic, willing to work Senior.

9:49
Comment From Amy

I'm writing for my husband who is in the construction business. He currently works for a building supply company, but is unhappy with the way the company runs. He is 50 years old and would like to look for something new. Which direction do you suggest for him?

9:49
Gerry Klein:

One page resumes are the way to go. Hiring managers have limited time so make it easier for them.

9:49
Rosemary Gignilliat:

I staff corporate administrative and medical staff

9:49
Comment From Maggie

I was terminated yesterday from my company. Can you give me some names of agenices that I can contact. Thank you.

9:49
Comment From Guest

Is it better send a resume to a staffing service or call to make an appointment?

9:50
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Awesome!! Get back out there and don't stop until you get a job.

9:50
Comment From Melissa

Are there any web-sites that can help you with your resume?

9:50
Comment From Holly

Do you recommend phone calls and in -person visits following filling out on-line aplications for a job?

9:51
Gerry Klein:

Again, personally, in anything that is connected to an area that has suffered with the economy, I would stay put. As someone once told me, people worked for years on assembly lines and they may not have liked it but it provided for housing and food. Hopefully, things will improve and he can then feel free to move on.

9:51
Rosemary Gignilliat:

I have always like 2 page resumes. I do not think a 1 page resume is enough space to sell yourself and the font is ususally too small.

9:51
Comment From Shai

I've taken my portfolio to several interviews and the hiring managers liked several of my ideas because they provided solutions to problems in their companies. They asked for copies and then didn't hire me! Twice!

9:51
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Jane fonda just wrote a book and she is 73!

9:52
Gerry Klein:

I seldom have time to answer the phone calls and you probably will not get through to the hiring manager. Send a warm note thanking them for taking the time to review your application. Gerry

9:52
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Email your resume to me atrgstaffing@bellsouth.net and let me know that it is you. also, tell me why you were terminated.

9:52
Comment From Holly

when asked "where would you like to be in 5 years", what is the best response to give during the interview?

9:52
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Send the resume. We are overcome with calls.

9:53
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Thank you notes, either handwritten and mailed or personally delivered to the front desk or emailed are a must.

9:53
Comment From Barbara

I am 61 seeking. Office. Position. Willing and able. Trouble go. The distance. For. Employer. I want to work

9:54
Comment From Maggie

Thank you. Unfortuately they told me it was a Management Decision, but wouldn't give me a reason. I have been there almost 2 years and very dedicated.

9:54
Gerry Klein:

I always ask about if you had a crystal ball where do you see yourself in five years. Candidates often tell me that they hope to go to nursing school or move into management. Don't forget the hiring manager is looking for someone to fill the current job and hoping after extensive training that the employee will be around in five years. Work your response so that the employer can see that you plan on making your career in that company.

9:55
Comment From BR

I have had an extremely successful career with IBM & several other companies over the past 30 years. I took several years off and moved away as my husband wanted to retire. I'm now back in the area and want to get a job. I never finished my degree as I had to work and help support my family but IBM hired me anyway and I was very successful. A lot of job postings say they require a degree. Can I apply for some of these jobs and try to explain this in a cover letter? Thank you.

9:55
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Shai--that is terrible! Call them and remind the managers that they loved yourideas, took your portfolio and you would love to work for the company.....Ask them what the next step is.

9:55
Comment From Shai

Any response to Rob's question about 30 years of experience and no degree? Same situation. Are employers even giving hard work and experience a chance?

9:55
Gerry Klein:

Barbara, I just hired a 66 year old for a part-time position. Perhaps you need, if you can afford it, to take a part-time job to get your foot in the door. Companies need to realize that 60 is the new 40 and people want to work much longer.

9:56
Comment From anonymous

Ive done all the right things, BUT, I have a felony from 10 years ago. I don't want my past to define me. I am a "professional" in healthcare, and cannot get hired. HELP!!!!!

9:56
Comment From Maggie

How do you sell yourself on an interview when you have been terminated? Do you tell them it was a management decision or ?

9:57
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Best 5 year answer is RIGHT HERE WORKING FOR YOU and assuming as much responsibility as I prove that i can handle. this is a very important question and can be a deal breaker.

9:57
Comment From Shai

Any response to my concern about employers "stealing" ideas during interviews and then NOT hiring the applicant?

9:57
Comment From Jacqueline Thomas

I was laid off last year. I decided that if I must start over, I would l like to

9:58
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Maggie--find out the reason so you can address it on future interviews and find out what they will say on a reference.

9:58
Comment From Lillian

I'm a certified medical assistant. I graduated in 2009 and top in my class. I've had my resume looked over by people in the industry but I still I get no hits on my resume. Does cold calling really work?

9:58
Comment From Barbara

I want to work can you help. Me

9:58
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Depends on what the job is.

9:59
Gerry Klein:

Shai, I think you need to get in front of the hiring manager if you can and explain your experience. I came from years of volunteer work and managed to work that to my advantage in looking for a position years ago. You will do better with hiring managers that are older and have seen the value of the experience.

10:00
Comment From Judy

I would llike to filnd a job that has about 25% travel to different parts of the USA. How do I locate a job like this?

10:00

Comment From Maggie

I pushed for a reason but they wouldn't give me one. Before I sign the Severance Agreement I will see I can get more information. Thank you.

10:00
Comment From Barbara

I am 61 and still above ground. With. Energy. To burn. I want to work

10:00
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Background problems--tell the company up front if you get through the first interview and they want to do a check. Tell them that you have turned your life around and part of that involves taking responsibility and letting them know. Run a background check on yourself and see if it comes up. It may not.

10:00
Comment From Shai

I actually went to two interviews in the past few weeks where the hiring managers told me that as I was talking and describing my previous accomplishments, they were getting ideas to address problems in their companies. Then, they didn't hire me!

10:01
Comment From Jacqueline Thomas

I was laid off last year. I decided that if I must start over, I would l like to work in a field that I enjoy. I returned to school, did very well and am now unable to find a job because employers are seeking more experienced healthcare personnel.

10:01
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Maggie--you need to find out why. What kind of "management decision" and why was it made.

10:01
Gerry Klein:

Lillian, send your resume to Rosemary and she will make sure that those of us that hire medical will receive it. I look forward to seeing it.

10:01
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Shai--i answered you--did you see it?

10:02
Comment From Lillian

What do you suggest I do differently in my job search to get hired?

10:02
Comment From Lillian

Thank you what is her email?

10:03
Gerry Klein:

Lillian, her email is RGstaffing@bellsouth.net. I already told her that I want to see your resume and I am not paying a fee! Good luck.

10:03
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Medical assistant---yes--the cold calling for this over saturated area does work. I have seen a great demand lately and have filled 5.

10:03
Comment From Miles

Where is the best place to look for a PT job, Retired but bored. Area ales manager for major appliance company?

10:03
Comment From Maggie

How should I address the "why". Should I send them a note. The company is notorious for not returning phone calls and not paying their bills. Should I find an attorney instead of signing the agreement? Help.

10:03
Comment From Holly

does being over qualified really limit your chances when you are applying for a particular job? would it be best to omit over and beyond qualifications for a certain job?

10:04
Comment From Jon Brodeick

Thank you Rosemary. Please be on the lookout for my resume.

10:04
Comment From Karen T

Rosemary and Gerry, thank you for this chat, I will be sending my resume.

10:04
Gerry Klein:

What are you willing to do Miles? Look for new shops that are opening. Retail is tough but a way to start. It could be a new yogurt shop that needs help.

10:05
Comment From Eric

Good Morning, my company lost the contract and the new company that comes in made all of us offers less then what were currently making, they're trying to cut my pay by 14,700 dollars?

10:05
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Maggie--if so, then walk away and don't leave your copies again/

10:05
Comment From Shai

Just read your response, Rosemary. I will contact the companies again. Not sure if I want to work for them though - if they'll take an applicant's idea and use it, what do they do to the employee's suggestions? Hmmmmm . . . . sounds like an ethic issue to me.

10:05
Comment From RQC

I have a similar situation as "anonymous". Where the charges for a felony were thrown out. However, the information still comes up in a Google search. I am upfront about the information.

10:06
Gerry Klein:

Eric, these are tough economic times. Sometimes we need to take less and hope things turn around quickly.

10:06
Comment From fay

How and where do youfind jobs that have travel in the usa. I would love to travel for work during the week.

10:07
Comment From Guest

Ernst and Young have many jobs that require travel

10:08
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Felony--let them know from you before they find it.

10:09
Rosemary Gignilliat:

Shai--I agree!

10:09
Gerry Klein:

I need to sign out. Thank you. I have enjoyed talking with all of you. Gerry

10:10
Rosemary Gignilliat:

thanks for your interest--luck and good prayers for all!

 

 

 

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