Three years of actively searching for work and Darren Cox hasn't given up hope getting back into the work force.
Three years of actively searching for work and Darren Cox hasn't given up hope getting back into the work force. Valerie Horton

Man has applied for about 1000 jobs with no luck

EVERY day Darren Cox wakes up, turns on his computer, and looks at the latest job advertisements.

Despite holding a number of qualifications, having 25-years of experience in the transport industry and participating in regular volunteer work, he has not been able to secure employment in the past three years.

He estimates that he has submitted about 1000 job applications in that period and still, no luck.

"It's frustrating seeing jobs you can do go to someone else," Mr Cox said.

"I apply for everything and anything."

Now living in a commission home in Childers, the 48-year-old's current situation is an improvement from what it has been during the ups and downs of unemployment.

The lack of money left him homeless for a period of about 12 months at one point.

Mr Cox is desperate for a regular an income and he doesn't discriminate in his job applications.

"I've applied for all sorts of jobs from groundsmen, to transport, to management," he said.

"I've worked as a garbage man before.

"In the past three years I've lived all over the region; Maryborough, Tiaro, Gympie, Childers, and will go where the job is."

Mr Cox says the difficulty in finding a job has only become a problem as he has gotten older.

"Before, I would walk into a place and get a job," he said.

"And now it's just getting harder and harder."

Mr Cox has gained a Diploma in Management whilst job seeking and also holds a heavy rigid license, is authorised to drive buses, and has a front end loader license.

For the past three years he has also been a regular volunteer with Fraser Coast Tourism and Events helping out at events held across the region.

"I also have forklift operating experience and used to have a traffic controller ticket, which I'd be happy to renew for a job," he said.

"I've thought about starting my own business but it's the lack of money that stops me."

He believes his age is a contributing factor as well the limited number of jobs available in the Fraser Coast region.

"Employers have incentives to hire young people and those over 50, but not much reason to hire those in their 40s especially," he said.

"I've noticed a lot of people in this age bracket are struggling."

But it is people of all ages having trouble finding a position in the current job market.

Shane Falkenberg, 21, has been looking for a job ever since his old contract ran out as a gaming supervisor in December. 

"I thought it would take me two months to find something but not we're almost halfway through the year," he said.

"I'm finding it tough, I have loads of experience and am struggling even getting an interview."

Mr Falkenberg estimates he has applied for up to 300 jobs so far, with a full-time support worker being his ideal job but applies for other roles too.

"I live at home and sometimes care for my mum, so I want to stay on the Fraser Coast," he said.

"Most of my work history has been in retail and labour work."

Sarino Russo Job Access regional manager Leah Dixon said that though being consistently rejected may be discouraging, little changes to a job applications can make a huge difference.

"Don't ever downplay your experience or omit skills or qualifications," Ms Dixon said.

"Do some basic company research and write a compelling cover letter."

For the mature-aged job seekers, she suggests focusing on marketing to the employer your value to the company.

"Make it clear to the employer that they will get more knowledge and experience for their money if they hire you over a lesser qualified applicant," she said.

"An interviewer may see you as a potential threat to their position.

"You need to assure an interviewer that you understand the bounds and scope of the job description and would only share your experience and advice if specifically asked."

If you have an opportunity for our interviewed job seekers, Mr Cox can be contacted on 0475 426 941 and Mr Falkenberg on 0499 646 863.


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