Getting a job at 60 in this economy

My mother-in-law just got laid off. She was working billing and payroll for a small company that is currently in its death throes–they’ve been laying people off for almost two years now, and although she saw the writing on the wall, she wasn’t looking as hard as she probably could have.

Any advice for a sixty-year old woman looking for work? She’s eligible for unemployment, but once that runs out she’ll end up taking quite the financial hit if she can’t find something else.

Apply for food stamps, seriously, I always get rejected but they let me know of programs desgined to help people. I even got into a job program to help ex-cons find work. OK it didn’t work out long term for me but it got me temp work for a month. I’m not an ex-con but by applying and getting rejected, I was told of this program which had openings so they let me in, even though I wasn’t an ex-con.

The other thing is temp work. The longer you’ve been out of work the harder it is. Some people have had luck with Craigslist. I haven’t but it’s probably just me.

Anyway get a Google Voice phone number for the resume and you can post it over there in your city. Of course you’ll get junk replies but it’s worth a shot.

I wish her luck. I’m only forty-nine and I’m finding that nobody wants to hire me. I don’t even get called in for interviews.

In Alaska I hear they have lots of positions on ice floes for older workers. Palin is working to bring the program to the lower 48!

I hear they’ve approached Dick van Dyke as a celebrity spokesman.

I’d advise your mom-in-law to get registered with some temp agencies - see how that goes. I would hope that a temp agency wouldn’t care about your mom being ready to retire in five years or so, and she has great office experience. It might only take a couple of assignments to get her all the way to a decent retirement.

If someone is elderly and maybe not able to stand a lot (anyone, just not the OP’s mil) they could try telemarketing.

60 is elderly?

Is so, that explains why Gen-Xers and Gen-Yers don’t employ anyone older than them.

Allow me to second the idea of going the “temp” route.
First of all, lots of companies appreciate someone with experience coming in to help get things organized.
Secondly, many companies use temp agencies to find full time employees, so it is a foot in the door for places she might not normally be considered.
Lastly, the joy of temping is that even if the job is crappy, you can look forward to it ending at some point and maybe the next job will be better/more fun/lead to long term. In other words, it allows the temp to check out the company as well.

I have had great success at temping - some of my best jobs came from it. I know it is a tight market, but let her know to call in EVERY DAY…in this case, the squeaky wheel does get the grease and they might give her a position just so she won’t call in anymore. Plus it does show commitment.

There’s at least one agency in town here that recommends showing up at their office at 7:30 or 8 in the morning, and if you’re ready to go to work, they’ll send you out as soon as an assignment comes in. I’m guessing most of those would be sick day coverages, but once a company gets to know you and your work abilities, they often find ways to have you back again.

That’s right - Accountemps would love to hear from a billing/payroll clerk.

Good luck to her. I got laid off two years ago and I turn 62 next month. All I’ve been able to find is occasional part-time work, maybe 20 hours a month.

Especially if her name’s Bob.

:dubious: There’s a big difference between being 30 and being 60. Most potential full-time employers would presumably be concerned about hiring and training someone who’s so close to retirement age. Since it’s not like the hiring situation is exactly booming right now, the OP is right to be concerned.

In my layoff ‘graduating class’ eighteen months ago, four of us were 60+.

One has found employment, the technical writer. The two senior engineers and a manager are still looking.

They shouldn’t know from your resumé how old you are. You may be listing too many years of work experience or giving other clues (year you graduated from college, etc.).

I’m serious about this, 49 or 60, if you have qualifications, find a way to present them in your resumé so that they don’t give your age away.

If they call you for an interview they will see roughly how old you are, but there are then two things in your favor: you can dazzle them with your personality and interview skills; and it is harder for them to reject you for your age because then it becomes a potential legal issue.