Handling Job Offers Beneath Your Experience

As a career coach I often am asked “What should I do if I am offered a job that is beneath my experience and skills?”   “Do I hold out because the job market is improving or do I accept the job offer and get back to work?”

 There are pros and cons to accepting a job at a lower level of responsibility and income.  Hiring authorities understand that this has been a very difficult job market and many people accept a job to earn an income until they can find employment suitable to their experience and skills.

The negatives of under-employment are your current salary is lower, your level of responsibility is lower and this job will be listed on your resume.  You also have less time to conduct a full time search if you are under-employed.  The positives often outweigh the negatives and include:  income, interaction with other people who are working, the ability to add to your professional and personal network and the ability to quickly move up the ranks based on your experience and skills.

Here are a couple of success stories of candidates who accepted positions that were beneath their level of experience:

  • An unemployed electrician decided to drive a cab while job searching. He drove the cab for eight months before he was offered a job by one of his passengers, who just happened to own one of the largest construction companies in Florida.
  • Another candidate decided to work at a coffee shop because she was bored and had been unemployed for over a year.  She had a regular customer who ended up being the CEO of a major corporation located close to the coffee shop.  After several conversations, he shared his business card and she is currently working as a VP of Marketing for one of their largest divisions.  This opportunity was a step up for her from her prior Director of Marketing position including a raise in income.  They didn’t even consider what she was earning at the coffee shop.

Many holiday positions turn to full time employment and temp and contract opportunities turn into full time careers.  Jobs have also been created around individuals who accepted an entry level position, only to be noticed by executives who wanted to better utilize their talents.  If you are financially solvent and conducting your job search 40 hours a week, under-employment may not be a good idea for you.  If this does not describe your current situation, this is something you may want to consider.

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What Clients Say About Patrice & Associates

  • I am grateful to have met Corina and will surely have a professional working relationship with her for years to come!

    Corina Mack was extremely thorough and quick to respond to all of the needs of myself as well as her business client. Her ability to communicate between the 2 of us made the process so quick. Corina was very knowledgeable about the company she was representing and their current team that was in place. Sometimes companies receive an overwhelming amount of applications for positions and Corina’s ability to pre-screen potential candidates surely expedited this businesses needs to fill their role.           Regards, John R. Guyon III I am grateful to have met Corina Mack and will surely have a professional working relationship with her for years to come!
  • Erin DeFreitas was Top - Notch!

    Could not have been better!

                          Thank You!     Eddie T. Erin DeFreitas was top-notch!
  • I am beyond thankful Jaclynn Graybill!

    Jackie was my recruiter and she truly is an exceptional addition and excellent employee!  Patrice & Associates provided amazing service which made my decision to chose this organization to work for seamless.  I have referred Jackie to a few of my friends, and I am confident they will receive the same outstanding experience as well!

    All the best,

    Chantal

    I am beyond thankful Jaclynn Graybill!
  • I give Jay a 10 out of 10! 

    Jay Gray is an exceptional recruiter and someone who truly cares about what his client is seeking for employment. Jay helped me through the entire hiring process and made me feel confident about my new career opportunity. I am truly grateful to have had his help. Once again, thank you for you service and it really did help me in a time I needed someone like Jay to come in and help secure a position that valued my worth. I’m really enjoying my position and I’m fortunate for the help!               Much Thanks! Walker Patterson I give Jay a 10 out of 10!
  • I have been nothing but completely happy with Jonathan Litt

    Jonathan Litt has been absolutely amazing during the process of getting me hired for a new position. I’ve been in hospitality for many years, as a Director of Finance in hotels. The last year and a half has been quite difficult, even for those of us who remained employed during the pandemic. After a year of running a department alone due to property wide layoffs, a stressful transition (brand and management company), working crazy hours, along with a 20% paycut for 9 months, I started feeling very overwhelmed and drained. I told myself it might be time for a change and I was going to let the universe help me. And, it happened! Jonathan Litt found my resume and reached out to me inquiring if I was interested in a Finance Manager position, in the Food world. And, I thought that it was worth speaking to him.
    Immediately, I felt this position might be a great fit for me. From the very first email, and texts, he was amazing. He is so professional and helpful, down to helping with revising my resume to point out things I hadn’t even thought of, to helping with getting prepared for the interview. I’m so confident in my abilities but always hated interviews because you never remember the things you want to explain or the right questions to ask. I also find it to be amazing that he reaches out via text because we all know how much easier texting can be these days when you’re in meetings and/or have deadlines and cannot always hop on a call. I was offered the position and start in 2 weeks and I’m so excited! I’m grateful that I can stay in finance, while taking a chance in a new direction, albeit still in hospitality, and will finally have a better work/life balance.
    I would absolutely recommend Jonathan Litt not only for anyone seeking a new role or for companies seeking the next “right fit” for their business. I look forward to keeping Jonathan in my circle of contacts.
    Thanks,
    Erica Garner
    I have been nothing but completely happy with Jonathan Litt