Jobless Job Applicants Are In No Hurry to Find New Employment

Layoffs was one of the topics discussed at a meeting of a local HR organization I attended last week.  Attendees from different organizations participated in a round-table discussion of the issues they’d each been facing since the last quarterly meeting. Not surprisingly, several raised layoffs as a “hot topic.” There was some discussion about how they were handling layoffs and the potential of more cuts in the future.

But not all organizations were laying off.   Some still were hiring as normal and others’ hiring needs had recently increased, for various reasons.  What was most interesting trend was also the most surprising.  Many of the attendees who were still hiring new employees regularly said that lots of candidates had been laid off by the previous employer.  Nothing new or surprising there.

What was so striking was the observation, which was repeated by several individuals, that the applicants didn’t seem to be in any hurry to become reemployed.  A Recruiting Director commented that the candidates who’d been let go were looking for “the best job,” not just “a job.”  And, to be frank, they are being pretty damn picky.  The recruiters and hiring managers admitted to being taken aback by the demands of the unemployed candidates.

So what does this say about our current workforce?  It sounds like Baby Boomers have adopted the Gen Y mentality of, “I’d rather be broke than suffer all day in a job I hate.”   Revolutionary.