5 Tips for Finding a Job After 50

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated June 1, 2022 | Published February 25, 2020

Updated June 1, 2022

Published February 25, 2020

It’s possible—and even common—to change your career at any age. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, people born near the early 1960s held an average of 12.4 jobs from ages 18 to 54. Older employees can successfully market themselves in today's workplace by emphasizing their experience and skills. 

In this article, we provide tips for getting a job when you're over age 50.

How to find a job after 50

To find a new job in your 50s, you need to show hiring managers that you’re a strong candidate. Here are five steps you can take to improve your chances of finding work when you're an older employee:

1. Emphasize your experience

Describe your ability to handle all types of situations calmly and professionally. When creating a resume, focus on areas where you have the most experience and how you can use this experience to help your next employer. List the things you’ve accomplished and the variety of projects you’ve worked on.

Related: How To Include Years of Experience on Your Resume

2. Avoid looking overqualified

When creating your resume, make sure your experience comes across as suitable for the position. If you appear overqualified, the hiring manager might assume you might not find the work challenging enough. In your resume or during an interview, include an example of when you have collaborated with coworkers of all experience levels, allowed someone else to lead a project or tried a new approach.

Related: 9 Steps To Change Your Career Path at Any Age

3. Remain active in the industry

Stay current in your knowledge by attending conferences, seminars or continuing education courses. List these events or classes on your resume. This shows hiring managers you’re still eager to learn.

4. Use professional networking sites

Online platforms are key resources for finding jobs. Make sure you have an updated profile with a professional photo and a link to your resume. Also include a general idea of where you live geographically within the United States and your industry, which many hiring managers search for when looking for candidates. If the site has a feature that lets employers know you’re available for job opportunities, turn that on.

Related: Professional Networking: What It Is and How To Master It

5. Give a great interview

During any interview, show the hiring manager how your years of experience can benefit them. Give them an idea of what it would be like to have you on their team. Show that you enjoy collaborating with others and sharing your knowledge. At the same time, let the hiring manager know you can be trained with new skills or methods and are willing to learn.

Related: How To Find the Best Jobs for You

Do's and don'ts when finding a job after 50

To give yourself the best chance of finding a job after 50, consider this list of do's and don'ts during the job search, resume creation and interview process:

Do

  • Do create a timeless resume. Remove details from your resume that can age you, such as the year you graduated college.

  • Do update your email address. If you’re still using outdated email accounts, create a new, professional account with a common service.

  • Do network. Use the network of professional contacts you’ve developed over your decades of work to look for job opportunities or references.

  • Do give yourself an online presence. Many hiring managers use social media and professional networking sites to find and research potential candidates. Make sure you’re active on these sites—share or comment on business articles and post about what you learn at conferences—and connect with or follow people within the industry or companies you’re interested in.

  • Do practice for interviews. It’s always helpful to prepare for an interview by practicing with a friend or family member. Also, record yourself talking so you can find out if you sound engaged and professional or whether you should change your tone or inflection.

Related: 50 Unique Questions To Ask in Your Next Interview

Don'ts

  • Don't overload your resume. Keep your resume to one page—two pages at most—so employers can scan quickly and easily. List only your work experience from the past 10 years, and give short examples of your job duties with notable achievements.

  • Don't get discouraged. Apply to jobs even if you feel like you only meet some of the requirements. Experience and a willing attitude might just make you a great candidate.


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