Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Friday January 25th 2019

Jobless 41-year-old diploma holder facing challenges in the job market due to contract work conditions

Dear Mr Gilbert

Thank you for taking time to read my email.

I am 41 years old and completed my Diploma in Business Administration at Singapore Polytechnic in 2012.

I have been doing administrative work with various Statutory Board/Ministries for the past 10 years.

Due to changes in HR practice, Fixed Term contract jobs dominated the Singapore job market.

I  was offered 2 Fixed Term contract jobs (non renewable) from 2011 – 2013.  I found them challenging and accepted them.

After completing these 2 jobs, I found it difficult to secure a new job.

Employers regard me as ‘old’ and ‘unable to take up new challenges’.  They also classify Fixed Term contract jobs as ‘job hopping’.  Online job portals and recruitment agencies also do not give chances to older workers.

Interview opportunities were often accompanied by plenty of rude remarks, regarding my age, qualification and work experience, from interviewers.  I try to be polite and convince them but they are blinded by their own prejudice.

WDA was unable to help and tried to evade the problem by sending me to unsuitable job fairs.

As time passes, the gap between my last employment and the present time widens.

There is nothing wrong with me but I cannot be telling people that the previous interviewers discriminated against me.

In this changing world, we have to adapt to changes and take on jobs that we do not like.

I also upgraded myself hoping for a better life but failed to gain acceptance from employers.

There is a group of selfish people out there who abuse their authority and take away our chances for survival.

They are paid a high salary to sit through interview sessions just to insult people and kill time.

How does this make us a fair and inclusive society?

I would appreciate it if you could offer me some advice as I do not know how to take the next step.



Editor’s note:  We have offered the writer our coaching service.

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2 Responses to “Jobless 41-year-old diploma holder facing challenges in the job market due to contract work conditions”

  1. abc says:

    You need to provide more info on your job hunt. What job are you looking for? What is your expected salary? What is your experience and skillset?

    To be honest for a 41 year old guy to just get his diploma recently and some more only basic admin experience on contract, I don’t think you are going to get anything more than 2k. With a large number of youngsters now, it is understandable that employers will prefer younger workforce to do admin work. This has more to do with skillset than age. Even a ITE grad if work many years will usually acquire some useful technical skill.

    The question for you really is – what have you been doing for the past 20 years in the workforce? Cannot be really just generic admin work without any skillsets right? Do you have any special skills or qualification to market properly? If you really don’t have anything beyond that, then the problem really is on your end for going through most of your adult life learning nothing and still stuck at basic admin stuff.

    Also cut down on all the unproductive rhetoric about higher ups plotting to take away your livelihood or how interviewers just sit around do nothing and make fun of you. Everyone is just doing his/her job, they don’t like to be there anymore than you do. There is no need to spread unfounded rumour or take things personally against the interviewer for not choosing you.

  2. sal says:

    Hi Larry, make your option open. Its good if you can find job overseas who appreciate your skill set. Life is a journey, dont make SPORE your only choice of employment.

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