Remember the ol’ Seinfeld episode when George Costanza referenced his break up speech with “it’s not you, it’s me?”
Okay, even if you have no idea what we’re talking about, when it comes to job searching in some if not most instances, it’s not about you. It’s about me. And by “me,” we mean the employer.
If this is any consolation for the job market and beating your head against an exposed brick wall, it’s not you. Don’t take it personally. You could be doing everything in your ability to network, expand your horizons, learn a new skill, interview, and land a job yet there’s something bigger than you that’s out of your control: The economy.
Yes, we know this is a basic truth but you know what? Sometimes it’s worth repeating.
According to a report published by The Associated Press, employers in April posted the fewest jobs in the previous five months. The significance, of course, points to a flat job market but also signals the next few months may be flat as well.
As pointed out in the piece, the U.S. Labor Department indicated job openings fell to 3.4 million in April. This is a drop from 3.7 million in March!
As for the drop, it could partly be attributed to employers becoming cautious about adding headcount only to have to reduce it soon thereafter. Maybe jobs aren’t being posted because they’re filled internally and another trend is turnover.
When employees leave, in some instances a new job requisition is not posted. Their job is absorbed by teammates who are just thankful they still have a job. In some ways, turnover equates to job security but mostly it equates to additional work for the same exact pay.
According to stats in the piece, there were 3.7 people competing for every open opportunity (on average). In a so-called normal job market, the ratio is more like two to one.
Our advice? Yes, these are bleak stats but you’re not going to get a new job if you succomb to them. Never ever ever give up.