Losing a job is a stressful experience, especially if you are fired. Once this happens, potential employers may be less willing to hire you. However, most are willing to employ someone who’s been fired as long as the candidate can demonstrate their qualifications and explain how they professionally handled their termination experience.
The first step in finding work after being fired, is to review how your resume portrays your skills, knowledge, and core competencies. When describing jobs, stick to quantifiable achievements and responsibilities. That is, instead of using a long narrative to describe supervisory duties, simply highlight the number of assigned employees with succinct duty descriptions. Resumes should highlight extensive experience, but avoid presenting yourself as being outdated. For instance, if the industry no longer uses certain programs, avoid using them to demonstrate your technical competency. Instead, mention your current professional certifications.
Industries are always changing, so before you submit a resume or interview for a job, be sure to reexamine your skills in order to verify you are a competitive candidate. A previous employer may have internal standards and processes that are not commonplace in other companies, so research and read the latest industry news for developments and best practices. For example, a supervisor who loses a job at a manufacturing company may be very familiar with Just-in-Time (JIT) strategies, but potential employers may prefer Kanban or Six Sigma. Be sure to enroll in a conference or a short-term course to refresh your knowledge. If necessary, consider returning to school.
Recruitment agencies will have strong knowledge and intimate insight of their industries. The most talented recruiters will work in specialist markets, so they will know exactly what companies want and expect. This means they will know their industry’s salary rates, required skills, career expectations, and current hiring challenges. Recruitment agencies also have an extended reach into hidden job markets, because many jobs are not openly posted, and exclusive industries that only hire through internal referrals or agencies. For example, professional services related to IT, law, and finance often prefer to use a third-party to present prequalified candidates. You might also consider using a New Jersey independent contractor lawyer to help get you good representation through the hiring process.
As a final note, be sure to prepare a truthful and transparent explanation regarding the termination. HR professionals will always ask why you left your last job, so prepare an honest answer that illustrates your character. This means if you were terminated because of a negative conflict or poor performance, focus on what you learned and how you have changed.