The challenge of finding a job in 2019

Why Is It so Hard to Find a Job in 2019 and What You Should Do – Zipjob

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If you’ve been searching for a job for any serious amount of time, then you understand how difficult it can be to find a job in 2019. You might even wonder if you’re perhaps not as employable as you thought you were. Believe us when we tell you: you’re not alone. Millions of other job-seekers are experiencing those same frustrations. Sadly, many job-seekers expect that finding a job in 2019 will likely be just as difficult. Once you understand why jobs are so hard to find right now, you can take steps to improve your odds of success.


Why Is It So Hard to Find a Job?


It can be frustrating to look at job boards and see all those open positions, especially when your resume is being ignored. And it’s hard to ignore all those ‘Help Wanted’ signs you see whenever you’re driving through any town’s business district. After all, if there are that many companies in need of employees, why can’t you land those interviews you need? How is it that your resume is being passed over time after time?

First, recognize one thing: many companies have no intention of filling all those positions. Many promote from within.

Others simply solicit resumes on a regular basis to build up a reservoir of potential candidates they can turn to when positions do come open.

As a result, the job market may not be as wide-open as it appears at first glance. In short, don’t assume that your job search is any more difficult than any other job-seeker. The fact is that you’re all competing for a finite pool of available jobs.


Why Many Candidates Can’t Find a Job


Why is getting a job so hard


As you see from the graphic above – A typical job opening receives nearly 250 resumes. Out of those candidates, 4-6 will be called for an interview and one person will be given an offer.

Here are some other reasons why it’s so difficult to find a job.


Companies are Overly Selective

Hard to find a job because companies are selective

It’s also important to recognize that the job market has changed. Decades ago, employers would hire candidates with the intention of employing them for life. They viewed those hires as long-term investments. That meant that they could take a chance on a new hire, train that person, and get a return on their investment over time.

These days, that dynamic has changed dramatically. Most employees move from job to job throughout their career. Companies are no longer as loyal to their employees as they once were. Because of that changed relationship, employers need to get an immediate return from their hiring investment.

That’s led them to become ever more selective about who they hire. They need to know that you can provide immediate value to the firm.


Applicant Tracking Systems

Resume Trends - Make sure you write your resume for ATS systems

For many workers, the ATS may be a real obstacle to finding a job in 2019. These Applicant Tracking Systems are used to screen resumes based on keyword usage. Yes, it is a questionable way for humans to hire other humans – but it’s also an unfortunate reality.


ATS Resume Test 

You can see how your resume performs in an actual ATS scan with our Free Resume Review:

Free ATS Resume Scan


Job-seekers who are not sufficiently aware of how an ATS screens a resume may find it difficult to overcome that obstacle. Later in this piece, we’ll offer some ATS-related advice that can help you with this challenge.


A Reliance on Outdated Resumes

Stop using outdated resumes

For many struggling job-seekers, the problem is as simple as their resumes. Employers are looking for resumes that stand out from the crowd, so those old, outdated resumes are not the best option these days.

When it comes to finding a job in 2019, successful candidates will have resumes that effectively showcase their value as employees. Unfortunately, many of today’s job-seekers have no idea how to craft that type of resume!

For example, does your resume still rely on the objective statement to capture a hiring manager’s attention? If so, that could be a major mistake. Objective statements focus on what you want from your career, rather than how you can meet the employer’s needs.

Think about that for a second. If you were in that employer’s shoes, would that approach appeal to you? Chances are that you’d want to hear more about how that candidate can add value to your team, right?


Finding a Job in 2019: Improving Your Odds


Struggling to find a job? Here are some great tips to improve your job search strategy.


The good news is that finding a job in 2019 doesn’t have to be an excruciating experience. There are, in fact, many things that you can do to improve your odds of success. Most of them are focused on just a few key areas of concern, though:


Focus on Your Resume!

There’s no way around it: if you want to maximize your odds, you need a stellar resume. Sure, there was a time when resumes were all but a formality, but they carry a lot of weight these days. If your resume is mediocre at best, good luck finding a job in 2019.

(Hiring a professional resume writer can increase your chances of landing of interview. Check out our post on the best resume services.)

Your application is likely to be passed over time and again by other candidates with better resumes.

You can get a head start on improving your resume by checking out this post: Improve Your Resume: 7 Tips to Land More Interviews.


Use Keywords Wisely

Remember those ATS screeners we mentioned earlier? Do yourself a favor and learn how to use keywords in your resume.

That will help to ensure that yours gets past the machine and onto the desk of a real human. The third tip in that linked article explains more about this important subject.


Apply for the Right Jobs

Are you applying for the right positions? Too often, job candidates fail to choose positions that best match their skill sets. Other times, they fail to properly showcase the right skills in their resumes. Remember, most hiring managers only spend a few minutes on an initial examination of your resume.

If it doesn’t catch their eye in that time, it gets tossed aside. Make sure that your most relevant skills are the ones required for the position – and highlight them in your summary statement.


Network, Network, Network!

Don’t forget about your network. You’ve spent years building a network of associates and contacts in your industry. Leverage those relationships to get your foot in the door. Ask them for referrals. Proactively request news about new job openings that match your qualifications.

In other words, don’t just wait for a job to appear – use every tool available to you to land that interview you need.


Closing Thoughts: Finding a Job in 2019 Doesn’t Have to Be an Excruciating Experience!

While the job search experience is seldom easy, finding a job in 2019 doesn’t need to be a painful ordeal. The key is to recognize the challenges that you face, and take proactive steps to counter those obstacles.

With the right resume and strategy, you can find that job you deserve – and do it without much of the frustration you’d otherwise experience.


  1. Bob Jobseeker says:

    Because America is an overrated, delusional, empire in decline run by an ever more powerful corporate dictatorship?

    • The Truth Sets You Free says:

      It will not get any better with time either! Many of these so called jobs don’t even exist and the ones that do pay horribly while either working you to death or keeping you trapped in downwards mobility, so you incur poverty and poor health at some point! The educational system is for-profit guarantees no job but tons of debt to the poor, hopefully masses. It’s been in decline for 4 decades at least with no hope of betterment!

  2. Chris says:

    Companies are too selective – is an understatement……

  3. greg says:

    job hunting makes me suicidal and it shouldn’t be like that

  4. Anonymous says:

    IT is a painful ordeal you have to either have experience n if you just came out of high school can be difficult

  5. Anonymous says:

    This is one reason suicide is on the rise. No hope unless you know people.

  6. Undisclosed says:

    Its easier to get a job right out high school because employers dont want to pay for experience. They would rather hav quantity over quality.

  7. 1/19/19 says:

    Honestly from my experience It was hard for me to get a job after high school I had no experience. I would get called to some interviews or none and still wouldn’t get hired. l got a seasonal job and now that I have experience in retail I have been putting my resume out there and still nothing. It is either me who really bad luck or it is super hard to get a job in this society. I am in need of trying to get a job and nothing comes up for me even with a resume and experience.

  8. Steve says:

    Actually this isnt completely true, it isnt just resumes , its online asessments thats the problem as well, the online assesments dont work.

  9. Undisclosed says:

    Thanks for this valuable information. I worked hard to get my BS in Business Administration. There’s a saying” you got the pilot license, now these employers want you to have the plane”.

  10. Ginny says:

    As an employer looking to hire good people, the number one issue I’m having is that majority of the applicants (like 60+%) just do not know how or even care to follow basic instructions when completing the application or following a few easy steps to do the interview. They have typos all in their email replies, cover letters and resumes. You can easily get someone to check this stuff before you apply. We even see people too lazy to change the job title or company name of a competitor when they apply to our agency. If you’re not going to pay attention to detail or follow basic instructions to get the job, then you’re sure not going to follow them when you get the job and get comfortable

    • Jean Kent says:

      As a former employer I agree. This is why I check everything in the job description along with resume and cover to make sure it matches. The most irritating experience I’ve had to date was going in person to a listed job as requested in the listing and being told that the position is not at that location after all and the hours are now pt. Am I qualified to do these jobs? Yes. And more times then not I can excel in that position. Many jobs are cleverly disguised as customer service when they are straight commission sifales. The turn over I see for companies listing the same position is frustrating. Wrong hires or false advertising? Sometimes it’s not the seeker..been unemployed for a short time considering- 2 months – and the bs staggering. Would have never put people through that process, very direct with my word. Leads me to wonder how these companies treat their customers

    • Dominique says:

      Why should we be eliminated because if a few typos in a cover letter? Do you know how many jobs people apply for in a day? The article just said that 250 resumes against 1 position. So where are people supposed to find the patience to perfect one resume and cover letter ? And these people that actually take the time to read over 10 cover letters a day do they even exist? Understand that it’s a numbers game. Nothing personal against your company. It’s hiring manager like yourself that’s pushing good resumes out of the door!

  11. James says:

    Sometimes the job is advertised as part of company policy and they have to appear to conduct a fair and unbiased interview process, yet they already have a chosen candidate for the job right from the start….

  12. Frank says:

    Government is ignoring this difficulty. It is nearly impossible to find a good job in the US in IT unless you happen to have the right credential for the job. IT jobs don’t even require a college degree any more (except for upper management positions); they rely on certifications. Certs that are expensive and time consuming to acquire. The job situation in the US is broken and the “roaring economy” stories we hear are lies. The reason the unemployment is so low is that people have been forced to take jobs they hate just to pay the bills – or just barely pay the bills.

    • Tristan says:

      The true reason that “unemployment is so low” is really due to the fact the numbers are taken by who is DRAWING unemployment. Once a person has consumed the benefits they are allowed, and are no longer being paid, they are removed from the monitoring system. Every time people are removed they can state that “unemployment numbers are done” as a result of fewer people actively drawing unemployment benefits.

  13. Mr. Harris says:

    No matter what I do, I can’t find a job everywhere. How are you even supposed to have experience when no one gives you a chance? And don’t give me that college degree speech, because that’s bullshit. I’m already in debt because of that. I’m pissed and soon, I’m gonna become the monster everyone fucking fears if I don’t get hired. I’m tired of going hungry.

    • Jennifer says:

      I’m having a hard time, too. It’s absolutely ridiculous. All my life, I have never had a hard time getting a job. I think the employers are personality disordered. They’re psychotic. They want the perfect candidate like it’s dating. It’s just a job… not dating … you know when you’re looking for the “one”. Hire the person and train them. That’s it. It used to be that way. How are we supposed to survive? And why is the unemployment rate so low when it is this hard to get a job? That makes no sense. That’s crazy, too!

      • Neda says:

        I’m having the same issue. I feel like some companies don’t even know what they want, they just drag you in for an interview then they go completely silent on you. And don’t even get me started on recruiting agencies. I’ve never been out of the job for more than 3 months , now it’s been 6 months. I feel like it’s a lose lose situation.

        • Jennifer says:

          Thanks for replying. Omg! Recruiters don’t help at all and some have put down my experience. They are mean and nuts, too. The world has gone mad. I’m just wondering when or if it will just go back to “normal” already. This is scary.

          • Tara says:

            I’ve been out of work for 4 months after a layoff and having the most difficult time. I have 24 years of healthcare experience and a doctorate. The feeling so defeated and depressed. I’m going to lose my mind, not to mention my house and cars. I feel bad for my husband and kids. I have built this great life and now it’s going to be taken away. How can I not feel hopeless?

  14. Jennifer says:

    I’m having a hard time, too. It’s absolutely ridiculous. All my life, I have never had a hard time getting a job. I think the employers are personality disordered. They’re psychotic. They want the perfect candidate like it’s dating. It’s just a job… not dating … you know when you’re looking for the “one”. Hire the person and train them. That’s it. It used to be that way. How are we supposed to survive? And why is the unemployment rate so low when it is this hard to get a job? That makes no sense. That’s crazy, too!

    • Ray says:

      In the same boat. I hear you! They want the perfect candidate -a candidate who does not have longevity or work ethic! Forbid you don’t know one piece of software but have all the necessary experience for the rest of the role!

  15. Neda says:

    I’m having the same issue. I feel like some companies don’t even know what they want, they just drag you in for an interview then they go completely silent on you. And don’t even get me started on recruiting agencies. I’ve never been out of the job for more than 3 months , now it’s been 6 months. I feel like it’s a lose lose situation.

  16. Jay says:

    I have also been without a job much longer than I ever expected. Its hard when you see all the headlines about a worker shortage and can’t land a job. I have over 10 years of experience and feel like a loser.

  17. Ray says:

    I really am at a loss myself. Healthcare company I was with for 11 years decided to do away with their private insurance arm and I was a Senior Claims Examiner. They said they would help us all find positions but all they would offer were entry-level billing positions (which for me was a huge step backwards considering I did that when I started). With my experience I did not think it would be this difficult to land a decent position and once again have job security and a meaningful career. I am now broke, credit cards are maxed and I can’t pay my end of the mortgage. But these employers keep wasting time and offering the same position for months and then do not review your resume when you apply for the said position. It is beyond maddening! I don’t even know how I am going to job search once my internet gets shut off for lack of being able to pay the bill! Will be the same situation with my cell phone soon…on the bright side I guess the collectors won’t be able to reach me since they seem to be the only ones calling! The whole process is self-defeating and these companies don’t care, the leaders have their three digit salary and cozy positions!

  18. Ray says:

    Also I want to add -why- seriously- WHY when a recruiter or employer reaches out to you on a site such as LinkedIn and tells you about an opportunity and you reply and say you are interested and would like to know more -do they not answer back?

  19. Pigbitin Mad says:

    It definitely is AgeIsm. These are the key takeaways for me.

    1. We are vilified for not being “agile” and are constantly accused of being averse to change.
    2. When they see numerous jobs in various industry, rather than being praised for being “agile,” we are again vilified as either a “jack of all trades” or “career changers” which is their code for a FAILURE.
    3. Women are all advised to apply for jobs even when we don’t meet ALL of the qualifications (as this is what men do), only to get raked over the coals and interrogated about one thing you may lack which is a proprietary software that only they use. And because the interviewer found it difficult to learn, they assume you are a moron to because they can’t imagine what it is like not to be a moron.
    4. We are expected to know everything under the sun about this job and how to do it, when our chances of actually getting hired are lower than my chances of getting killed by a terrorist tomorrow. Would people spend $1.00 on a lottery ticket if they had to spend a couple of weeks studying for a completely new subject test each time they bought one? This is what the modern job hunt has become. Instead of taking two weeks to learn the job (the efficient way). You have to learn an entirely new job every month just to apply…. and then see the job go to someone whose idea of literature is Harry Potter and graphic novels.
    5. If you are not in love with the sound of your own voice and relentlessly positive in the face of being told constantly that you are a “loser” because you cannot describe how, “once upon a time I purchased office supplies from a catalog” or “once I created a spreadsheet that calculated automatically the totals for each RFQ” as though it were tantamount to running a multinational corporation, or inventing time travel.
    6. Actually able to see that people who constantly blab about their own accomplishments are generally people who never have time to actually DO anything. If you are not one of those tiresome blabbermouths and are actually able to focus and remember things you are told, you are summarily dismissed as not “a go getter” or a “team player.” Don’t believe me? What happened the last time you tried to transfer an internet or Cable TV account to a new address just four blocks away (Cable? Oh right, that makes me a Luddite).

  20. Ray says:

    @pigbitin -you are so dead on!

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