Guest post by Bernie Weiss, Vice President, Seniors Job Bank

 

Anyone looking for a job or seeking to change careers knows the difficulty of finding fulfilling work. If you are age 50 or over, you know how much more difficult it can be. The average length of unemployment for 55+ jobseekers is about 50 weeks, compared to 34 weeks for younger jobseekers.

Most 50 and over individuals in the United States are vibrant, dedicated and knowledgeable. They are a valuable resource for an employer that is looking to add talent, experience and a quality work ethic to its team.

Studies show most workers will not only have several jobs in their lives, but more than one career as well. This statistic doesn’t alleviate the stress of being out of a job or help in the search.

Job hunting in an environment of constantly evolving technology can be intimidating, but there is a variety of resources to help people with the job of finding a job.

The Seniors Job Bank (SJB) is one such organization that offers support for seniors in central Connecticut. The mission of the Seniors Job Bank is to connect work-seeking folks over 50 to homeowners, companies and other entities with jobs they need to get done.

To use SJB, a person registers to become a service provider by describing the kind of work he or she can and wants to do – without being limited by previously held positions. While many service providers choose to continue practicing their accustomed vocations, others seize the opportunity to profit from knowledge and talents they didn’t (or couldn’t) apply during their “regular” careers.

After passing a background check (for which there’s a $30 fee) the new service provider is added to SJB’s list and becomes eligible to be referred as jobs in his or her field become available.

The way that happens is that when what SJB designates a client – a business, public agency or household – with a position to be filled calls, its request is matched with service providers qualified to handle the task. SJB then gives the client contact information for several appropriate service providers whom he or she may interview and consider. The client and service provider selected for the job negotiate the terms of the assignment, including its duties, expected results, and compensation.

Some domestic clients are looking for help with a wide variety of one-time chores or home maintenance projects: jobs such as fixing a stuck window, getting yard work or cleaning done, arranging for repair of appliances, or obtaining aid with putting family documents and records in order.

Other clients need continuing help around the house or personal assistance. Some examples include weekly lawn mowing, driving a patient to scheduled medical appointments, and periodically picking up the groceries.

With companies and government agencies too, jobs can be one-shot or longer term engagements. They may involve office tasks, transportation, retail, industrial, and any number of other types of activities.

While all SJB service providers are at least 50, the clients employing them may be of any age. It’s free… SJB charges nothing to be referred to potential employers and customers.

The Seniors Job Bank’s service provider database comprises approximately 500 men and women offering more than 300 discrete occupational and professional skills, blue and white collar. SJB was established 38 years ago. It’s a non-profit, volunteer driven community asset whose office is in West Hartford. SJB is reachable via its website, http://www.sjbct.org/, email at info@sbjct.org, or phone, 860-521-3210.