We all understand what it means to be “employed” or “unemployed” because you either have a job or you don’t. “Underemployment,” however, is more complex and far more common than you might think.
The Center for Law and Social Policy estimates that 4 out of 10 part-time workers are currently underemployed, meaning you have a job, but in some way, you are working below your capacity.
Think you are underemployed but not sure? Read on for a closer look at 3 signs you are underemployed and what you should do.
Your Wages are Too Low
It’s true; some jobs do not pay a high wage. However, you may be underemployed if you think your role would typically pay more. Do your research and check out websites that track average salaries to understand better what you should be paid for the job you do. Remember to consider location when calculating your salary range. Job salaries differ from state to state and from place to place within a state.
If you find that your wages are below the market rate for your role, talk to management. If adjusting your salary isn’t possible, consider applying for positions that offer a higher wage.
In some cases, this is obvious. If you hold a graduate degree, but the position requires only a high school diploma, you’re likely underemployed. Now, it’s not a problem for you if you’re happy in a role considered underemployment on paper. However, if you have learned and acquired skills and experience and have no opportunity to showcase them in your position, you no doubt feel underemployed.
Before you decide what to do in this situation, ask yourself: Am I happy in this role? If you are, there’s nothing to fix. If you aren’t, it’s time to look for jobs that better match your skills and qualifications. Take the time to refresh your resume and update your professional profiles. Identify the best keywords to generate job leads in your job searches.
Not Enough Hours
When it comes to hourly work, it’s simple: the more hours you work, the more money you make. Employers may restrict the number of available hours for various reasons, including not wanting to provide benefits or simply not having enough work. You may be underemployed if you have to work multiple jobs to pay your bills.
Have you discovered signs you are underemployed? Before you hunt for a job with more available hours, check with your employer to see if you can move to full-time or work less desirable (and often higher-paying) shifts like nights or weekends. If these options aren’t open, start hunting for a role that provides the hours you need.
If you’re ready to explore your next opportunity, get in touch with our team at ABBTECH!