Job Hunting Tips for Laid Off Workers

by Katie Jeffries on February 17, 2010 at 9:00 am

Psychologists say losing your job is equivalent to a death in the family on your mental state.  In the second part of her job hunting series, WHIZ’s Katie Jeffries has tips for laid off workers.

"It was a shock, it was something that I was totally unprepared for, there had been rumors for the week prior to that, that there would be some kind of layoffs, but I had no idea that it was going to effect me at all," tells Shelli Stenz.

Shelli Stenz was laid off from her job as a distribution supervisor with the Limited Brands almost one year ago. She checks multiple job websites almost everyday and applies to any job she is qualified for, but she says getting up everyday and looking for work is beginning to take its toll.

"It is like you don’t even have purpose. You know, sometimes I don’t even get up or get dressed sometimes because what’s the sense," says Shelli.

Bob Mercer the Executive Director of the Career Opportunity Center in Zanesville says the center is seeing an all time high of 2,000 people a month. For those laid off and looking to get back into work, Mercer says your employment history on your resume is very important.

"Try to have no gaps in that history and so I think when people are laid off they need to think about volunteering and doing some other things that might enhance their resume," says Mercer.

So take the jobs skills you have acquired and work with a non-profit. It shows iniative and you are still actively using your job skills. Also, it is important not to be alone in your search. Mercer says every person has a network that can be activated during a job hunt.
"The very first thing we talk about is trying to activate that network and for some people they have been on the job for many, many years and that is hard to do, but it is as simple as saying ‘if you hear something that might be a good fit for me would you think about me, let me know’," tells Mercer.

For workers with an extensive amount of experience, Mercer recommends using the website The website is a job matching service that matches experience and education level to jobs throughout Ohio. In this recession, it is beneficial to expand your search to surrounding counties and even further.

"We have started looking nationally, outside Ohio, which is unfortunate because we are very happy here, but if i have to relocate that is what i have to do," tells Shelli.

Shelli and her husband, Tom, are currently supporting their family on Tom’s salary and Shelli’s unemployment benefits. But when those run out they are not sure what they will do. Though the situation is not ideal, Shelli has tried to see the glass half full and use it to spend more time with her family.

"My children have been able to be involved in some more extracurricular activities, I have been home with them more we have been able to do more things together on the weekends," says Shelli.

I’m Katie Jeffries, WHIZ News.