The Jobless Crisis: Boardroom tips for ex-executives
Friday 19 February 1993
All but one of the seven sitting around the table yesterday were qualified accountants, two had Masters degrees in Business Administration, another had graduated from Cambridge before training with Price Waterhouse. Although they had experience at finance director level, only one was over the age of 44.
They appeared confident and good humoured as they discussed the difficulties of 'downsizing', job rationalisation and the right approach to factory closure and 'outplacement' services.
It was difficult to believe they were all unemployed, up-market representatives of the 3,062,065 out of work. Most had earned more than pounds 40,000, plus perks, in their former jobs; one with a clothing manufacturer, another with a national brewer and another with an industrial conglomerate. The talk was not of the public perception that at least accountants would do well out of the recession, but of 400 applicants for every job, age discrimination beginning at 35, using your contacts and of how to get your curriculum vitae noticed.
Nigel Collin, 42, former finance director for the Techland Group, a computer company, rationalised himself out of a job when a review concluded the group did not need a full-time finance director. He did not believe it would be so difficult to find a replacement post. His failure is put down to 'too general' experience when companies are playing safe and looking for expertise related directly to their sector. And his age.
'Old age is 35. It makes you realise the market has totally changed,' he said. Like many of the others, Mr Collin has padded out his redundancy payment with freelance earnings and has formed a company with a colleague in his home town of Maidenhead, Berkshire, to provide advice for firms too small to employ their own professional staff.
The boardroom group, one of whom had travelled 120 miles to be present, was taking part in a seminar organised by Robert Half, a recruitment agency specialising in accountancy.
Jeff Grout, managing director, said he was running monthly job search workshops at his company's London offices. Participants, no matter how senior, were given advice on how to approach companies, using their contacts to best effect and on interview techniques. 'The market has not worsened from three years ago - we are in a completely different world. The demand for accountants is at its lowest level since the Second World War,' he said.
The only slight signs of optimism were that the level of temporary contracts was at its highest level for 18 months and the volume of recruitment advertising in January had been above January last year.
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 3 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 5 Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Isis releases first video showing the stoning of woman accused of committing adultery as her father shouts 'don't call me Dad'
This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
FCKH8's provocative anti-sexism video showing young girls swearing reinstated by YouTube
Diwali: What is the festival of lights – and how is it celebrated around the world?
Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
London bus driver 'kicks gay couple off for kissing'
£45000 per annum: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Datacentre Consultant (Datacentre,...
£100 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Cardiff: Randstad Education Cardiff is...
£45000 per annum + Excellent Benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: .NET Develope...
£40000 - £65000 per annum + bonus + benefits + OT: Ampersand Consulting LLP: C...