Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Saturday January 13th 2018

41-year-old ex-SAF PMET finding it tough to re-enter the workforce

Hi Gilbert,

My name is Gerald. I am a 41-year-old Singaporean and have been jobless since December 2014.

I have also just graduated from my Bachelors in Business studies.

I have approached a few head hunters who have told me upfront that I am too old. :( I have even approached CDC but the lady whom I am assigned to help me find a job says she can’t help me because there are no vacancies on her list.

I have applied hundreds of jobs in Job banks, job street, careers at gov, etc, all of which till today no reply at all.

I am looking for an admin job as I specialise in that and have more than 10 years experience in it. I am also open to new jobs and skills.

I was with the SAF since I finished my O levels in 1992 and 17 years later, I came out in 2009.

Since then finding a job was tough as I had only O levels.

I went on to do a diploma, advanced diploma and now a degree so that I can stay relevant in the market, all using my own savings but unfortunately till today, my diploma, advanced diploma have not found me a job.

Most of the jobs I had in the past were recommended by friends of friends and they were all part-time or short contract.

Please advise me. Thank you.

PS: Enclosed is my resume.


Editor’s note: we are making plan to see the writer soon.

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Reader Feedback

8 Responses to “41-year-old ex-SAF PMET finding it tough to re-enter the workforce”

  1. Roy says:

    Gerald – are you open to relocating overseas? If you are, I see how I can help you. Could Transitioning get in touch with me on this? Thank you

  2. Saycheese says:

    Since you were in the SAF you must be a citizen and not an FT. Try getting a PhD first before applying for a taxi licence.

  3. jamie says:

    Ageism is well and alive in Singapore. One of the many prevalent job-discrimination that the Singapore government still refuse to make it unlawful for employers to do so. Singapore NEED an anti-work-discrimination act to protect the vulnerable people, regardless of race, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, and religion.

  4. Michael says:

    I have the same situation after retrenchment last year….what is Singapore to us I wonder…. everyone is celebrating SG50. …. yet I am suffering in job hunting …..

  5. More info Please says:

    May be you can share more details before someone can give advice.

    1) What’s your vocation in SAF?
    2) How much salary are your look for?

  6. Hi Gerald,

    Do not lose heart. The going is tough, especially when you are over 40 and all you’ve ever known is the SAF. I know someone aged 52 who found a job after 22 months of unemployment, so don’t give up.

    It’s good that you’ve upgraded yourself with diploma and degree qualifications. However, don’t expect to easily find an executive job when there are so many fresh graduates from more recognised universities competing for the same jobs. Be realistic and start from a lower supervisory level. If you are hardworking with a good work attitude, employers will notice and you can gradually get promoted to higher levels.

    In the meantime, taking on temporary jobs is a good idea. In fact, I’ve heard of many cases where temporary jobs become permanent jobs when you show good performance or when the boss sees a good employee, he/she might suggest another suitable opening within the Company. So treat your temporary jobs seriously – you never know where they might lead you. Plus these temporary jobs can also add value to your resume with new skills set. Persevere, work hard and adopt a positive attitude.

  7. ah tan says:

    if can go for WSH officer licence. that might help.

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