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You're hired! Steps to take the 'un' out of unemployed | News

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You're hired! Steps to take the 'un' out of unemployed
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With the unemployment rate hovering around 8-percent in Spokane, the competition among job seekers is fierce.

"I'm going up against astrophysicist for like mundane positions," said Jamie McAtee, who is currently unemployed

According to WorkSource, 19,700 people are collecting unemployment in Spokane right now.

In May, 35-year-old Jamie McAtee was laid off from her administrative assistant job in Liberty Lake.� This is the second time she's been unemployed in the past 18 months.

"It's very demoralizing," said McAtee. "You go in and you think you have all, everything set up, where it's ok. I'm in my 30's, I'm doing OK, I've got savings I've got all this stuff�and then you get laid off and it's just kinda like wow."

video For the past six months, McAtee has started every day on her laptop, searching for a job, tweaking cover letters and sending out resumes. McAtee estimates she's sent out over 80 resumes.� She's even landed six interviews but that's where it stops. She specializes in marketing, public relations, communication and social media.

"Definitely my strengths are organization. I love Excel," she said

To help with McAtee land a job, KXLY teamed her up with employment specialist Ray Keevy.

"It hasn't changed in 20 years, the basics, the fundamentals of what it takes to find employment have not changed in over 20 years," said Keevy.

In the past two decades, Keevy has helped thousands of people find work.��He now meets one on one with job seekers and holds training sessions at WorkSource in Spokane.

"What works is making it personal, making yourself stand out," said Keevy.

Keevy said job seekers need to get their names in front of potential employers at least three times.� He said it starts with making a cold call to the company you want to work for.�He also suggested talking to the decision maker and asking questions about the open position, then send the decision maker a resume and follow up a few days later.

The more times you can get your name in front of a decision maker the more likely they will remember you out of a pile of resumes, Keevy said.

"And so that is what works is those little things.� Rather than just being one of the 99 that sees an ad on a web and goes to the website and fills out online ap, sends in generic resume- take the initiative," he added.

Once you land an interview don't be afraid to be yourself, Keevy said.

"If you are a little weak on a technical skill or something like that, that's what we hear from employers, they are going to go with personality over maybe a technical skill," he said �"You can't teach personality, you can't teach independence, motivation, you can't teach the positive attitude."

The top three mistakes job seekers make are not dressing appropriately, not being prepared and not asking questions. Keevy suggests dressing for the job you want and then taking it up a notch.

"Mistake number two is not doing your research before you go in, knowing the company, knowing the job description," he said

"At the end of an interview when an employer asks 'Do you have any questions for us?' and they go 'No, I think you answered them all,' that says you're not very interested you're not very serious," said Keevy.

After meeting with McAtee, Keevy believes it's only a matter of time before she finds a job. Keevy believes she needs to fine tune her interviewing skills and wait for the right job to come along.

"Jamie rocks;�if all my clients were like Jamie my job would be really easy," he said.

While unemployed,�McAtee has found more time to focus on her true passion; fostering dogs and cats from the Spokane Humane Society.

"My dream job honestly if I could wave a magic wand would be working in non-profit," she said.

Keevy is confident McAtee will have a job in the next six weeks.

"She's there, she's got it.� It's just a little something and it could just be not the right job, could be as simple as that, the right job just hasn't come along," Keevy he said.

All services at WorkSource are free. For more information about how to land a job click here.

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