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Monday, September 28, 2009


Outplacement Agencies Are Busier Than Ever

Outplacement agencies are enjoying a sizable surge in business due to the millions of unemployed Americans looking for help finding their next job.

Outplacement services provide an office, counseling and expertise on finding a job, or new direction. This includes career assessments, job leads, networking and coaching on resume writing and interviewing.

Private outplacement firms are hired by companies to assist with laid-off employees, typically executives and professionals.

Officially, they just offer job search coaching, but that also includes psychological support for people laid low by a job loss.

According to Wikipedia, the term "outplacement" was coined more than thirty years ago by the founder of a New York based career consultancy. With the increased rates of downsizing, rightsizing, redundancies and lay offs, particularly during the 1980s and 1990s, businesses increasingly found a need for some form of assistance in reducing the trauma of redundancy for both departing employees and those who remain.

Indeed, research shows that losing one's job is one of the most stressful experiences a person can face, ranked third behind death and divorce.

Since millions of people have been laid off due to the recession, outplacement services have seen their client list soar. Employers are tapping these agencies to assist those that have been terminated with their new job search.

According to the Wall Street Journal, a growing number of high-level executives are now paying for their own outplacement services that are pricier but custom-tailored to each individual. In exchange for the higher price tags, these executive outplacement firms provide a wider array of services, including legal advice, custom research and counseling.

More laid-off senior managers now must pay part or all of the bill for this customized counseling because employers are less generous in the current economic environment. At the same time, jobless executives need every possible leg up in a fiercely competitive job market.


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