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The Almighty Buck

Unemployed? How Long Until You Find That Next Job 401

An anonymous reader writes "If you're unemployed like me, you probably want to know how long it will last. Well, someone decided to see if they couldn't stastistically predict how long they would be unemployed by polling others - the results page is up for a variety of industries and it's interesting. Clearly the more data put in, the better the results, so while your at it, submit your own information."
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Unemployed? How Long Until You Find That Next Job

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  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2003 @06:51AM (#5823562)
    How is this fucking insightful? This jackass is a parasite living off of OUR tax dollars.

    You should get a job, continue your career, and get some self respect, "baby". That money is there for people who can't get work, not for lazy shits on extended vacation.
  • by evilviper ( 135110 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @06:53AM (#5823565) Journal
    Now why link to the site? It has practically no data so far, and that is all it's good for... There is no verification of the data, and the data is input by random visitors.

    A /. poll asking the same question would be many times more accurate.
  • US Only ? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JTunny ( 653851 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @06:53AM (#5823566) Homepage
    Asks you to enter a state and salary in dollars Any chance of including UK ppl somehow ?
  • Mod me down but... (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Renegade Lisp ( 315687 ) * on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:00AM (#5823585)
    ... posting an article on the front page of an international forum that has at least 25% of non-US readers,

    ... with the article still being intended for people from the US only

    ... and not even mentioning this in the article

    strikes me as a little odd.

  • by Max Romantschuk ( 132276 ) <> on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:10AM (#5823610) Homepage
    I don't know if this makes any sense or not... but I would stress that it is kind of pointless to use a tool like this, since you might be an exception yourself.

    Statistics often make sense on a demographical scale, but never on an individual scale.
  • by Renegade Lisp ( 315687 ) * on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:12AM (#5823613)
    I think these are two separate issues, (a) being US-centric in where the news normally come from, and whom they are most relevant for, and (b) ignoring the fact that there are non-US readers in the way a story is written.

    The former is absolutely fine with me, while the latter ... as I said, strikes me as a little odd.

  • by I Love Soup ( 655061 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:13AM (#5823616)
    And of course IT is going to the lead the rest of the categories, since unemployed IT people are more likely spending their (abundant) free-time surfing on the webnet.
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:-1, Insightful)

    by PhysicsExpert ( 665793 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:23AM (#5823639) Homepage Journal
    This raises an interesting point. why should the state finance the unemployed? At the end of the day most people are unemployed because they don't want to apply for the jobs that are available.

    Consider this. I knew someone who was a well paid sysadmin. I don't know what his salary was but it must have been over $500000. Anyway he gets made redundant but he only applies for similar jobs. There are plent of jobs in menial work available but does he try his hardest to get them. Does he hell, he knows he can get his unemployment benefit so he bides his time.

    Now unemployment pay is a fairly recent inovation which we've managed to get by without through most of history. The fact is that it puts a terrible strain on the economy ( those in work have less disposable income, those receiving benefit have slightly more but a gret deal gets skimmed off by beaurocracy) and simply encourages laziness.

    A better solution would be to set up an institution were those who have little money could live. Theyu could then receive basic needs (water. food, shelter) in return for carrying out menial work. When they had cleared their debts and found a source of employment they would be free to leave. This would discourage those too lazy to find work and reduce the burden on hard working citizens who are currently struggling on the money they get.
  • by LinuxXPHybrid ( 648686 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:24AM (#5823642) Journal
    This is not the first recession in our history; nor is the last one for sure. Unemployment does not sound too great and does affect your confidence and all, but it happens to everyone (which is to say, much of it depends on luck not so much your skill or personality). As a matter of fact, some of, what we call, successful business men experienced the same. Have you heard of this guy, Michael Bloomberg? Well, Solomon Smith Barney fired him almost 20 years ago. He ended up starting up on his own and he's a billionaire now.

    I can't say that you can be next Mike, but the point is, maybe it's a sign. Maybe success is calling you. Maybe you are not supposed to be employed (by anyone except for yourself).
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by iggy2k ( 668435 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:34AM (#5823680)
    HELLLLLLOOO nazis. i take it yuve never been out of work then, any idea how humiliating it is just to have to pay for food with stamps? and that idea....neighbours, hushed voices 'where are they going?' 'oh, he lost his job, so there being carted off to the institution' get real
  • by Skiboo ( 306467 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:40AM (#5823709) Homepage
    I think the point is, that non-US data will muck up the survey. Different countries have different amounts of unemployment, better/worse economies, so if you're trying to figure out how long it takes to get a job, you're better off with localised data.
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:42AM (#5823716)
    Regarding your last paragraph:

    Sounds like a poorhouse to me. Sounds like imprisoning people for their debts. Sounds like something we don't do any longer.

    But if you want to bring back the old ways who am I to argue?

    Just keep in mind some of us might like brigandry, highway robbery, banditry, just plain thieving and other old timey ways of earning one's keep as well as or better than the new fangled ways the educated folks is always tellin' us 'r better'n the old tried an' true ways.

    Put that in yer pipe an' smoke it mister PhysicsExpert.
  • There are lies (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MacroRex ( 548024 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:44AM (#5823722)
    and there are damn lies, and then there are statistics. Anything this generic should be taken only as a mildly interesting curiosity and nothing more.

    "I'm a IT guy and have been unemployed 7 months now, so I should find work in only 3 months.". How stupid is that? Everyone is a special case, and in the Real World(tm) employment situations depend on numerous big factors which have absolutely no effect on the statistics on that page. Local employment situation, work experience and references, charisma, personal networks, and how much effort you put to finding a job are all much more important than the metrics used in this survey. Not that this isn't interesting at all, but the title of the post is misleading in the extreme.
  • by mark_lybarger ( 199098 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @07:57AM (#5823770)
    there's a big difference between what you're describing and what the internet boom of 96-00 experienced.

    in a web services world it will be companies that have a solid business plan, and compines that think things trough. in the Iboom, it was anybody and everybody putting up a web site that provided nothing. there was also the fact that there was this Y2K issue that many many of companies spent millions of dollars for legal reasons to change 5 lines of code in their software systems and spend enourmous hours testing said changes across the board and saving every test log file and going through various levels of audits of the testing. basically y2k projects coupled with the internet boom kept a lot of people employed and brought in a lot of others.

    exposing webservices will let a few good people work for a while.
  • by MyNameIsFred ( 543994 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:07AM (#5823813)
    I agree the sample size is too small. For most of the industries his sample size is 1, 2 or 3. He can't take meaningful conclusions from such small samples.

    But I have other problems with the analysis. For example, he lumps all restaurant jobs together. This apparently includes a wide-variety of specialties (e.g., manager, cook, waiter) under a wide-variety of skill-levels (e.g., McDonalds and a Five-Star Restaurant). Similar comments could be made for Engineering. I might expect a difference in say Civil Engineers (the construction industry is doing well) and Electrical Engineers. He also doesn't consider years of experience directly. For those jobs requiring a college degree, he doesn't consider degree level. The list goes on...

  • by anshil ( 302405 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:13AM (#5823832) Homepage
    Mod me as flamebait if you want.

    The US and the US citizens generally don't care too much about the rest of the world. After all they are the greatest country in the world, or at last they believe this by heart.

    If it's true or not, at least it is the opinoun most of the europeans have formed the last years. And FAQ's like seem only to second that.
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:25AM (#5823872)
    This is UNEMPLOYMENT we are talking about here, not welfare. We (In the US) pay unemployment insurance ourselves when we are working, then get the money back when we need it. Just like (in theory) Social Security.
  • by ATAMAH ( 578546 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:31AM (#5823892)
    Whilst i am waiting for the page to open (and by the looks of things it has been slashdotted into oblivion) it struck me that an unemployed person is a lot likelier to make up a page like this than someone with a job :)
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:34AM (#5823905)
    He was making over $500,000? What? Some people have families to support and can't afford to take those jobs doing menial labor. Just because your situation would allow you to do so doesn't mean it can support everyone
  • Do it yourself (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:36AM (#5823913)
    Never mind waiting for someone to "give" you a job.
    If you want something to do, start doing it.

    Instead of selling a lot of your time away to big corporations (unless you really want to, of course) and such, start your own little company. It's not that hard.

    The most important thing is that you do something that you want to do and that gives you satisfaction. Don't wait for someone else to "employ" you. Take control of you own life. In the end, that's what counts for most of us.
    And it's usually more fun.

    (Oh, btw. don't buy into pyramid-schemes, Get Rich Quick-stuff or MLM. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.)
  • by LinuxGeek ( 6139 ) <djand DOT nc AT gmail DOT com> on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:41AM (#5823943)
    I have traveled to three other states besides my own looking for work. It has been just over a year since I was 'downsized' and things are very tight. Friends that know my capabilities have recommended me to their companies and they have need for more people, but not one is hiring to fill the need. My contact at the unemployment office told me last week that he may be job hunting soon, they are going to have to cut back too.

    I am capable and willing to work, even starting a business of my own. Then I got to watch my savings burn up while every single business I did work for waited months to pay me. If it were just withholding payment for services, that wouldn't have been so bad, but I paid for hardware that they were using. It took me four months to get paid for a couple of large jobs and that was my limit. I closed the business and went job hunting.

    Now I am in the trap of being way over qualified for the advertised openings like roofing labor and convience store clerk. They either don't want someone they know will be gone as soon as the first decent job is offered or they don't want to hire someone that has much more managment experience than they have. Some quirk about not hiring their own successor, go figure. Thanks for letting me know that my previous employer was just providing me with income because of my good looks and not because I was the highest paid technical employee they had.
  • by DarkEdgeX ( 212110 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:47AM (#5823974) Journal
    I guess I just don't get your problem here.. it's a US-centric website, and this is explained in the FAQ, but you have a problem when a US-centric story is posted and it's not billed as such?

    Where's the logic in bitching about that?
  • by MSBob ( 307239 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @08:55AM (#5824024)
    Why does this textbook babble get moderated as "Insightful"? You've just told them what every fucking web job board out there keeps telling people. Improve your skills... blah, blah... take a lower paying job blah, blah... be proactive blah, blah..

    Guess what moron, 100% of those unemployed already do that. And they stand no fucking chance in hell, let me tell you.

    Here's the key to job hunting: "networking"... And not the type involving NICs. My wife couldn't find a job as an accountant for over a year. Until I winced to an influential friend of ours. He made a few calls and the next week the phone started ringing.

    The moral of this is: Rather than learn the next pile of buzzwords, you stand a better chance of getting employed if you play lots of golf. I'm not being nasty just telling you that as a friend.

  • by tmark ( 230091 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @09:08AM (#5824094)
    Your argument does *not* make any sense, unless you believe ALL statistics are useless unless they make a prediction with 100% certainty. Are statistics relating smoking behavior and cancer rates useless, because there *are* exceptions ?
  • by Hellkitty ( 641842 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @09:20AM (#5824162) Journal
    Why is an entry level job like support desk considered aiming lower for a college grad? Sure, it isn't glamorous work, but not so long ago, that's what many college grads had to do - work crap helpdesk jobs for a couple of months to prove themselves. It's not like you came from a $100k+ a year job with 10 years of experience or anything. In a year, maybe it'll be aiming lower. For a recent grad, it's called paying your dues.
  • Network. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Alioth ( 221270 ) <no@spam> on Monday April 28, 2003 @09:30AM (#5824197) Journal
    Lots of tech people are long-term unemployed. But some are obviously succeeding.

    When times are tough you have to (and I hate this phrase) "re-invent yourself". During the boom it was sufficient to be a surly technology prima-donna with the social skills of Spock in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

    Competition is much harder now. Where I live, 18 months ago, there was at least one tech job in the weekly paper each week of the C++/Java type. Currently, there's about one every three months. Our entire national population is only 78,000 so you can imagine that we don't have exactly masses of tech jobs to start with.

    The last two jobs I got weren't advertised. In fact, the jobs didn't even exist - the positions were created.

    What was the secret to my success in getting employers to create a new job for me? Networking. Not the type you do with a NIC and a reel of cat5e (although it ultimately involved quite a bit of that) but going out and socializing, and meeting people who ran businesses or were in charge of IT departments.

    In the current climate you can't sit at home and surf the web/newspaper/have an agency pimp your {CV|resume} - the advertised positions just aren't there. (One agency told me they hadn't seen a tech position in 9 months). You have to go out of the house and get to know people. If you have an interest that many people who run businesses share, that's even better - I'm into flying and I've met many valuable business contacts through the flying club.
  • Re:Network. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Ranger ( 1783 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @10:02AM (#5824381) Homepage
    Networking works when you have friends who are employed. If they are out of work too it's kind of difficult to network.

    FYI. I was out of work for 15 months. And now I'm stuck at a call center job. It sucks being chained to a desk, but it's better than living in a cardboard box.
  • Selection bias (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Idarubicin ( 579475 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @10:10AM (#5824431) Journal
    Wow, what a useless source of stastistical information. Aside from being Slashdotted at the moment, there is a nasty selection bias associated with these data. Like phone-in polls, this is not a random sample.

    The question we can try to answer is: do people who spend long periods unemployed do so because they waste their time filling out on-line surveys?

  • by Michael Ross ( 599789 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @11:12AM (#5824871) Homepage
    ...unemployement rate is artificially low because it doesn't include people who have stopped looking...

    ...nor those who exhausted their unemployement benefits (e.g., six months) and are still looking. We just fall off the government radar.
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hpavc ( 129350 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @11:41AM (#5825110)
    he is getting the money that he put into his unemployment fund (aka unemployment insurence). if he works more than a few years he will over contribute to it and he loses that money. (turn your passion toward where that money goes -- all the dollars that employeed people over pay into the system)

    when bush 'extended' the coverage (which is normally done in any recession) the government does shell out cash from taxes into the fund without repayment as some gift. the unemployment fund will repay it if need be.

    that money is there also for people who get their wages reduces. if you were making $50k and then you got reduced to $35k you could get money from your unemployment fund to help out during your changes to assist you.
  • Re:Unemployment! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by JCholewa ( 34629 ) on Monday April 28, 2003 @05:02PM (#5828837) Homepage
    > Try going from $1200/week to only $400/week without losing your home,
    > car, savings, and everything else you've worked your entire life for.

    Wow. I ... wow.

    I know that you have to fund your family, but I've been working for something like a decade and a half (though only half of that has been in my chosen profession), and I'm feeling mildly put out that the unemployment rates being reported by posters seem to be in excess of my salary.

    Damn. I mean, I wish you the best of luck in keeping your family safe and getting back on track, but ... damn.


Q: How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job? A: Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.