The Over 40 and Overqualified Job Seeker
There are a lot of unfounded beliefs for job seekers when it comes to landing employment – especially for those who are older and/or overqualified. These are two of the biggest concerns we hear from job hunters 40 and over. “I’m not being interviewed because of my age.” “I’m not being offered a position because I’m overqualified.”
The first thing to look at when they voice these concerns is the rate of job interviews they are actually landing. The average interview rate is 10 percent when you are applying for jobs and we find that in most cases, those 40-plus job seekers are achieving at least that percentage.
So the question is this, are they really being passed over because they are older or overqualified?
In some cases the answer is probably yes, they are viewed as too old or experienced for the available position. However, this is also true for those candidates that are perceived as too young or inexperienced or even factors like belonging to controversial groups or attending the wrong college – yes – this happens!
Although some are fair and others are biased most hiring managers use certain criteria when they evaluate potential candidates so unfortunately some applicants will be excluded based on these criteria.
So how does an older job hunter minimize their chances of being the one passed over? By strategically sharing their background:
- Don’t show more than 15 years of work experience on your resume
- Don’t include college completion dates unless you’re a brand new graduate
Just doing these two things will go a long way to present you as an attractive candidate.
How do you avoid the chances of being perceived as overqualified job seeker? Only present information that is relevant to the job you are pursuing i.e. you are targeting jobs as an accounting specialist – don’t emphasize your work as an accounting manager, downplay your leadership background and play up your skills in hands-on execution.
Using these few tactics, job hunters 40 and over can minimize the chances of being perceived as too old or overqualified.
Over 40 and need help beefing up your resume? We’re the best at what we do – let us prove it – contact us today to get started!