I overheard a woman tell her daughter and her boyfriend who just graduated from college to look for a government job rather than applying for a position in the private sector. She said that when she was starting her career in the workplace that the place to be was in the private sector, but now she thinks that the place to work is in the public sector.
She built her case based on the private sector jobs having a “shelf-life” of usefulness, the lack of security and the most-likely pension opportunity as being the place to work. This struck me as being both accurate and perhaps a wise move for the younger job seekers looking to choose a career.
I have indicated in an article I wrote on “The Hidden Job Market” that government jobs were a good place to look for work, yet I never meant for this to be the end all for a career. I still believe that there are plenty of opportunities in the private sector for those with advanced degrees and current marketable skills. Yet, this woman had a point when she said that the public sector would offer more stability and a pension after a twenty year period than the private sector.
She said that if someone opted to work in the private sector and made more money that they would need to save a large portion of it for their retirement, of which is not happening much by most. We in the U.S, save less than 3% of our annual income for retirement, which is not nearly enough to prepare for retirement, where as many public jobs offer up to 60% of annual wages in retirement.
The fact is that many of us will not have the aptitude for developing mobile applications or become the next social media guru. Most of us will have nice paying jobs that offer a comfortable lifestyle for now, but not much upside income in later years. Staying on top of your career in the private sector will take more effort as the competition for jobs increases as does our national debt that will lead to higher inflation which will give us less disposable income, making it more difficult to save for retirement.
Public jobs are becoming more appealing as the salary levels have increased and pension structures remain intact. We as a society will be paying more money out of our paycheck to fund the public sector jobs and the attached pensions. This is the new reality in the job market. Perhaps, it is time to look into government positions and see if it is a fit for you.
Check out http://www.govtjobs.com/, a free site for available public sector jobs. Let me know your thoughts on this career path.