61% Of Americans Looking For Jobs Right Now Want To Switch Careers

 The pandemic has hit the US economy and job market hard, battering some industries beyond recognition. That’s inspired many job seekers to change careers altogether, according to a new study.

About 61% of US job seekers surveyed — which includes people who are looking for new roles and people who are unemployed — have looked for a job in a new industry because of the pandemic, according to a new Morning Consult survey on job seeker insights commissioned by Amazon.

Amazon commissioned the study as part of its announcement of Career Day, an event on September 16 in which a team of 1,000 Amazon recruiters will hold 20,000 free career coaching sessions. Along with other hiring efforts announced this year, the company said it now has 33,000 open roles to fill.

More than half of the Americans surveyed who are currently looking for a new job are doing so because of the pandemic, according to Morning Consult.

That tracks with overall trends: The US economy is down more than 11.5 million jobs since the pandemic hit the country, and the job market is still reeling with 884,000 more Americans filing new jobless claims last week.

Some US job seekers are nervous about a skills gap as they navigate a quickly evolving labor market.

More than 27% surveyed expect that some or all of their skills will become irrelevant in the next five years, according to Morning Consult. Nearly half said they would quit their current job to go to a different company if the new employer-provided company-funded skills training.

A majority of the job seekers surveyed are trying to transition into fields like healthcare and technology, which reflects that these two industries are still booming at a time when many are suffering.

Meanwhile, survey respondents are unsurprisingly downbeat about prospects in the travel, leisure, and hospitality industry, with 53% saying they believe that industry will be the least likely to hire new employees because of the pandemic, an Amazon spokesperson for Amazon told CNN Business.

When it comes to jobs, women have long been aware that they aren’t on a level playing field with men. But now, it seems disadvantages stretch beyond pay and promotions - they begin right at the interview process.

According to a Resume.io survey of 2,000 respondents, there are 12 questions women get asked more than men.

Nearly half (45 per cent) of all female respondents were asked the question, ‘Why should we hire you?’, compared to just 37 per cent of men.

A whopping 43 per cent of female respondents were also asked the questions, ‘Where do you see yourself in five years?’ compared to just 34 per cent of men.

Interestingly, the two questions men were asked the least were, ‘What is your greatest weakness?’ (27 per cent of men compared with 37 per cent of women) and ‘Describe a time when you failed and how you handled it’ (20 per cent of men compared to 26 per cent of women).

Here are eight more job interview questions women were asked more than men:

  1. What are your greatest strengths? (44 per cent of women compared to 34 per cent of men)

  2. Why do you want this job? (44 per cent of women compared to 37 per cent of men)

  3. Are you a team player? (37 per cent of women compared to 31 per cent of men)

  4. Why do you think you’re a good fit for the company? (40 per cent of women compared to 34 per cent of men)

  5. Why did you apply for this job? (40 per cent of women compared to 35 per cent of men)

  6. Can you explain these gaps on your resumé? (19 per cent of women compared to 18 per cent of men)

  7. Why didn’t you like your last job? (22 per cent of women compared to 21 per cent of men)

  8. How has your education prepared you for your career? (19 per cent of women compared to 18 per cent of men).

“Women are expected to prove their ‘worth’ in job interviews,” Content specialist at Resume.io  Rolf Bax said.

“They are more commonly asked about their strengths and weaknesses, and even why they should be hired.”

Here are some things men get asked more than women in job interviews:

  1. Questions about political views (18 per cent of men compared to 8 per cent of women)

  2. How honest are you? (22 per cent of men compared to 13 per cent of women)

  3. Questions relating to their age (34 per cent of men compared to 26 per cent of women)

  4. Questions relating to sexual orientation (15 per cent of men compared to 7 per cent of women)

  5. How do you feel about working for a younger manager? (16 per cent of men compared to 10 per cent of women)

  6. What is the worst decision you have ever made (14 per cent of men compared to 9 per cent of women)

  7. Questions relating to their previous salary (36 per cent of men compared to 31 per cent of women)

  8. Questions relating to drug use (27 per cent of men compared to 21 per cent of women)

Unsure how you would answer some of these job interview questions? Here are the 10 most frequently asked job interview questions, and how to answer them.

If you’ve been asked a question that makes you feel uncomfortable, SEEK Group human resources director, Kathleen McCudden, says you are well within your rights to either just be silent and not respond or say, ‘I’m not actually comfortable to answer that’.

“I think if they are concerned that that is going to impact whether they’ll be successful in the job or not, then I think they probably also need to ask themselves, ‘Is it a company that I want to work for anyway?’” She said.

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