What resources can you recommend to help older job seekers? I am 60 years old and have been out of work for nearly a year now. Do you have any tips or advice for me?
While the U.S. job market has improved dramatically over the past few years, challenges still exist for many older workers. The good news is that there are a number of job resource centers and a wide variety of online tools specifically created for older job seekers. Here are some resources to help you in your search.
Depending on where you live, you may be able to access one of the many career service centers located throughout the U.S. The American Job Center (AJC) has around 2,500 centers nationwide and is a fantastic place to start. Funded by the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration, AJCs are free-to-use resource centers that can help you explore your career options, search for jobs, find training, write a resume, prepare for an interview and much more. To find a center near you, call 877-872-5627 or go to CareerOneStop.org.
Another option is the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP). The SCSEP is sponsored by the Department of Labor and helps place income-eligible workers over age 55 in part-time, temporary community service positions where they can learn job skills. To learn more, or locate a program in your area, visit DOLETA.gov/seniors or call 877-872-5627.
The AARP's Back to Work 50+ program is another option to consider. The program currently offers workshops in 19 locations around the U.S. and provides career counseling, job coaching and skills development for 50-plus job seekers. If you cannot attend a workshop, they also offer an excellent guide called "7 Smart Strategies for 50+ Jobseekers." To get a free copy, or see if there is a workshop in your area, call 855-850-2525.
If none of the above programs are available in your area, check with your local public library or nearby community college to see if they provide career services.
Job Search Sites
There are also a number of online job search sites that can help you connect with companies that are looking for mature, experienced workers. One of these websites is WhatsNext.com, which offers a job search tool and has online assessments, calculators, career guides and career coaches to help you. Another option is RetiredBrains.com. This website provides information on finding temporary or seasonal jobs, starting a business, working from home, writing your resume, finding full-time work and continuing your education. Check out RetirementJobs.com where you can post your resume and search for full-time or part-time jobs online. There is also Workforce50.com, which has job search functions and a list of age-friendly employers by industry. It also gives you the ability to sign up for job alerts.
Work at Home
If you are interested in working from home, there are many opportunities depending on your skills. Just be cautious of work-at-home scams that offer big paydays without much effort. Some popular work-at-home jobs include: sales and marketing, customer service, teaching and tutoring, writing and editing, web development and design, consulting, interpreting and medical coding.
To find these types of jobs, FlexJobs.com may be a good place to start. This website filters out the job scams and lists thousands of legitimate work-at-home jobs in dozens of categories. You can gain access to their listings for $15 for one month, $30 for three months or $50 for a year.
Start a Business
If you are interested in starting a small business but could use some help getting started, the U.S. Small Business Administration offers tips, tools and free online courses that you can access at SBA.gov.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.