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Are currently employed individuals more prepared for a new position than the jobless?

Posted on July 26th, 2011 Read time: 1 minutes

Hiring new employees is no picnic. Some businesses get so frazzled by the process that they contract outsourced human resources providers to recruit permanent or contract workers to meet their needs.

However, a recent article in the New York Times questions whether employers and recruiters may be overlooking a qualified segment of the population in their search – the unemployed. According to writer Catherine Rampell, websites such as, and Craigslist have been advertising positions that ask only for individuals currently employed or recently laid off to apply.

One of the reasons many businesses are espousing a preference for the recently employed – defined as out of work for a maximum of nine months – is industries and technology are changing so quickly that individuals who haven't been working consecutively for a year or more could be far behind in terms of the skills the job requires.

"Clients don't always tell us 'we don't want to see résumés from unemployed workers,' but we can sense from what people have interested them in the past that they're probably looking for somebody who's gainfully employed, who's closer to the action," Dennis Pradarelli, a talent acquisition manager for recruiting firm Marbl, told the source.

Earlier this year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission held a hearing to address the matter. During the proceedings, Helen Norton, associate professor at the University of Colorado School of Law, said reliance on current employment "serves as a poor proxy for successful job performance." 

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