how to be marketable in a down economy

How to Make Yourself More Marketable in a Down Economy

Updated By Staff Writer on October 9, 2020

Whether you’re a soon-to-be college graduate or you’ve been in the workforce for quite a while, the thought of an economic downturn could make you feel anxious. When the economy is down, nothing seems quite as certain. Even if you’ve got a steady job, you don’t feel like you can take anything for granted anymore. And if you’re a new graduate, you may feel like the hopes of finding or landing your dream job are completely dashed.

But luckily, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of finding (and keeping) a great job. We’ve compiled a detailed guide on how to make yourself more marketable—even in times of economic uncertainty.

How Can I Make Myself More Marketable to Employers?

One of the first steps to finding a job in a recession is to look at your situation through the eyes of your potential employer. What are they looking for in an employee? What does their company value? What might set you apart from other job candidates?

Once you learn how to make yourself more marketable to employers, you’ll increase your chances of getting noticed by hiring managers and impressing your potential boss in the interview. Here are some ideas on how to better market yourself:

  • Write a resume with your desired career path in mind.
  • Be active on LinkedIn, writing blog posts and interacting with influential people in your network.
  • Join a professional group related to your desired career.
  • Know your value—research what salary you are shooting for before you go into the interview.
  • Create a portfolio of your best work.
  • Go back to school to gain more education relating to your career path.
  • Research potential employers. Understand their mission before you apply for the job.
  • Earn new certifications that are relevant to your industry.
  • Shadow, intern, or find a mentor.

What Are Some Recession-Proof Skills?

One of the best ways to recession-proof your career is by acquiring skills that are essential no matter the state of the economy. Some experts argue that jobs requiring “people skills” are the most recession-proof.1 Therefore, soft skills like emotional intelligence, tolerance and patience, and adaptability are all excellent skills to develop when you want a leg-up during tough economic times. Employers also value soft skills like creativity and ingenuity, whether they’re in healthcare, publishing, or anything in between.

Since technology is evolving at an increasingly rapid rate, tech and IT skills are another way to recession-proof your resume. Make sure you are familiar with all content management systems related to your field, and take courses teaching you how to use cutting-edge systems that could be relevant to your job. Other high-demand technology skills include anything relating to design, coding, and web development.

What Are Good Jobs to Have During a Recession?

Are any jobs truly recession-proof? While we can’t guarantee it, there are certainly jobs that are more secure in an economic downturn. Healthcare, utility work, and education are a few fields that usually remain steady no matter what’s going on with the economy. Some industries can even be positively impacted by an economic downturn. For example, a discount store might get more business when people are on a tight budget.

Here are a few examples of jobs that are generally stable, even during a recession:

  • Nursing and other healthcare jobs
  • IT jobs
  • Utility work like waste management
  • Accounting
  • Government employment
  • Education (teachers and professors)
  • Senior living care
  • Grocers and food delivery services
  • Public transportation work

How Do I Get a Job in a Bad Economy?

You’re more likely to get a job in a bad economy if you choose a career path that is steady even in a recession. You can further increase your chances of finding a job by developing recession-proof skills like emotional intelligence, time management skills, creativity, and more. Take time to research the employers you hope to work for, and craft a resume centered around their values and the role you’re applying for.

Independence University Offers Help in Unstable Times

No matter what your job prospects look like, remember that education is always an option. In fact, recessions usually tend to correlate with a surge in people going back to school, since getting more education makes you more marketable and teaches you valuable skills relating to your degree.

Whether you’re looking for more ways to recession-proof your career or ready to gain your online degree, check out Independence University today. Our career services department is always there to guide students through the process of applying for and landing the perfect job, especially during a recession.