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10 Tips on How to Find A Job After You Retire

{ Posted on Oct 23 2010 by Marcus Alston }

A 2010 study by the Urban Institute found that 26% of men and 29% of women born from 1933 through 1937 had re-entered the workforce in a full-time or near full-time position after retirement.  These numbers are for men and women born 2 decades earlier (20% of men and 22% of women).

This should not be shocking considering people are living longer than ever and the recently economic which has decimated many plans of retirees (and non-retirees alike).  Additionally, with companies cutting back on many retirement benefits and the social security benefits being altered slightly, full-time retirement is more difficult, scarier, uncertain, and expensive than it was even a decade ago.  Many retirees can no longer afford to retire in the traditional way.  Besides the obvious financial benefits of reentering the workforce, working offers retirees a way to stay lively, intellectually challenged and connected with the larger population

There is good news for retirees:  the unemployment rate for people over 55 is better than it is for the rest of the population (about 7% versus about 9.6%) Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate was for: adult men (9.8 percent), adult women (8.0 percent), teenagers (26.0 percent), whites (8.7 percent), blacks (16.1 percent), Hispanics (12.4 percent), and Asians (6.4 percent).  Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Here are 10 tips for retirees:

1.  Write down all your jobs and all your experience as far back as you can remember.  Your most recent experience will count more, but you don’t want to short change yourself in terms of all of your experience.

2. Identify what you are looking for in a job. Full-time, part-time, amount of money needed (You should have a budget in place to help you decide how much money you need if this is a driver);  9 to 5 job, desk job, salaried job, hourly job, new career job or just a “make ends meet job”; short term assignment, temporary, permanent?  Want to reinvent yourself and do you want to do something totally different from what you have done in the past?  Do you just want social interaction?  Something mental or physical to do?  Are you doing it for the benefits, such as health insurance?  What you need out of a job will drive what you should focus on or what you are willing to accept.

3.  Identify your dream job and then other jobs you are interested in, from the most unrealistic to realistic in terms of your chances of getting them.

4.  Brainstorm about companies and jobs that employers are looking to fill in the marketplace.  AARP has a senior friendly, job search engine at visit

5.  Identify any key skills desired by today’s employers that you may be lacking.  Consider taking a course through your local town or local community college to build these skills.

6. Create a resume highlighting your skills and areas of expertise. Have a few people proofread it and offer you constructive criticism.  Emphasize your experience and skills without overemphasizing age and tailor your resume to specific job you are applying for and include key works (“Buzzwords”) for the job description in your resume.  This may mean that you have several different versions of your resume.  Buzzwords catch the eye of the reader and make you more relevant for the position.

7.  Network.  Go out and meet people and reconnect with friends.  Let them know you are still in the market for work.  Use LinkedIn, a social networking site, to create or update your electronic presence.  Employers do search LinkedIn for talent.  You can also use the site to network.  Try Facebook as well for getting the word out to your friends that you are in the market for work.  There are also online site just for retirees.  Try, or

8.  Be Patient.  The job market is more competitive than ever before.  The overall unemployment rate is 9.6% which means that a lot of people of all ages may be competing for the same job   Be patient and do not give up.  You bring a lot of valuable experience to the table.  Be realistic.  You may have to take something that is less attractive than you would otherwise want, but it may open up other doors.

9.  Consider Starting Your Own Business.  More and more people are starting businesses, whether its traditional store fronts, manufacturing or at home businesses.  You bring a lot of experience to the table that could be used to start a business of your own.  With technology, running a business on shoe string budget is easier than ever.  And as a retiree, you should have more time than when you were working to spend on a new business.  Consider something in your field of expertise or make use of your special hobby or talent.  A lot of writers (or opinionated people) become bloggers.  Develop a business plan and consider consulting with a small business counselor for guidance, especially if your business is going to require a significant financial commitment.

10.  Be careful of Work from Home and other Job Scams.  There are a ton of work from home scams out there claim that you can make $1000 or more a week working from home in your pajamas for just a few hours per week.  I have not found any at home opportunities that I would recommend.  Be careful of any job placement company that wants to charge you money for finding you a job too.  Check out any company with the Better Business Bureau and get references (I recommend at least 3).  If you don’t mind probably losing the $50 or $100 or more they are going to charge you and that you may lose, then I guess you can gamble and try these opportunities out without doing any background checks on them.

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2 Responses to “10 Tips on How to Find A Job After You Retire”

  1. In 1996, I got laid off from Somerville Lumber, a great New England company. It was a presage of the whole chain going down. My store closed and that was that. Despite 17 years as a receiving manager, I had a hard time getting interviews. I had a full resume of every job position. The lumber chains were not interested. They didn’t care to hire someone with expertise other than their own home grown employees. A friend suggested I trim my resume to my last three positions. I cut fifteen years out of my life and suddenly employers were calling me back. I know the landscape has changed, but getting the chance to put your foot in the door is a big deal. It gives you the chance to sell yourself. The hardest job I’ve ever had to do was getting a job.

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