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View Poll Results: Are you underemployed?
I am underemplyed, not by choice. 25 30.49%
I am not underemployed regarding my skills, salary, etc. 25 30.49%
I am underemployed, by choice. 28 34.15%
Other. 4 4.88%
Voters: 82. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-09-2012, 01:34 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Christine View Post
I guess I just don't believe in these terms. You take whatever job and you do the best you can and make the most of your job. I think that just makes you "employed."
I totally disagree. I think underemployment is a huge issue. It's one thing being underemployed by choice or "overemployed," but it's a really frustrating problem when former management level workers find themselves working minimum wage jobs because that's all they can find. Underemployment usually means extreme financial hardship as well.

I grew up in a time where underemployment was expected, for example right out of college, for certain time periods in your life, but not so common at other times. Now it seems to happen to all age groups - after layoffs etc.
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Old 12-09-2012, 01:46 PM   #17
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Well, no, I'm not underemployed. But I do feel underpaid.
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Old 12-09-2012, 01:58 PM   #18
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Not underemployed but definitely underpaid.
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Old 12-09-2012, 04:03 PM   #19
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Yes, sort of by choice. I have a college degree and worked as a financial data product manager for 13 years. They didn't allow me to work part time anymore so I then got a job as a bank teller (very big pay cut and qualification cut). I want to work part time so I am around more for my kids. I recently quit the bank teller position because it was one of the most unprofessional places I have every worked (and this includes part time jobs in high school). So I'm looking for another part time job. I would love to find one where I could use my skills part time but if I can't I guess I will go back to being "underemployed" until my kids get a little older.
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Old 12-09-2012, 04:46 PM   #20
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No, but only because I've worked my tail off to get where I am. Back when I was waiting tables with a college degree we called the crap jobs you took when you were getting started "paying your dues". Interestingly, for me that dues paying led to a very successful career because I learned that there is nothing more important to your success than hard work, determination and pride in outcome, no matter what your circumstance. It has served me far better than if I'd fallen into my "correct position" after college.
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Old 12-09-2012, 04:56 PM   #21
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From the election coverage, I took underemployment to describe people that are employed "full time" but whose hours have been so drastically cut that even though they are technically considered full time, they are not getting enough hours to make ends meet.

I am part time at my place of employment, and I usually get over half the number of hours full time people get. Rather than 40 hour weeks, for an 80 hour paycheck, they actually usually have a 50-60 hour paycheck. So, I would consider those at my office to be underemployed.

I am part time, as a I said, and trying to get a business venture off the ground. I barely make enough to get the bills paid. So, in that sense, I probably consider myself underemployed as well.
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Old 12-09-2012, 05:55 PM   #22
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Dh is underemployed. After being out of work for 2 years, he got a job paying 50% of his old pay. He's a union carpenter working for a non-union company, his boss doesn't always provide a safe working environment (for example the van they drive to jobs has no back seat - just office chairs tied down in the back). He's also sent on jobs out-of-state with only $20 per diem, and he puts up with these things (except the van - he refuses to ride in it) because we need the money. It's extremely stressful for him. He's been trying to find union work for a year now so I'm hoping 2013 will be our year!
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Old 12-09-2012, 06:17 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disykat View Post
I totally disagree. I think underemployment is a huge issue. It's one thing being underemployed by choice or "overemployed," but it's a really frustrating problem when former management level workers find themselves working minimum wage jobs because that's all they can find. Underemployment usually means extreme financial hardship as well.

I grew up in a time where underemployment was expected, for example right out of college, for certain time periods in your life, but not so common at other times. Now it seems to happen to all age groups - after layoffs etc.
My definitition of "underemployed" is basically what another poster just wrote about: getting your hours cut down/scaled back or working less than full-time not by choice.

However, the OP, in my mind didn't phrase it that way. She said:

Quote:
Someone told me that I am "underemployed", which basically means that my skills, education, and experience are not being utilized in my new job; and also that my new salary does not match my skills, experience, etc.
Which basically says to me that she is not in a job that works her to her potential regarding skills. And naturally, her new salary shouldn't match her skills, experience, etc. if she's not using them.

In her terms, I don't really agree that she's underemployed. In your example, that is truly underemployment.
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Old 12-09-2012, 07:22 PM   #24
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I believe there is a distinction between the terms "overqualified" and "underemployed". I understand the terms to mean:
Overqualified: applicant has skills and/or experience that exceed the requirements for the position and the salary would be significantly lower than a position that utilizes the candidates full potential.
Underemployed: The position does not offer enough hours/compensation to maintain a reasonable standard of living requiring either cut backs to lifestyle and/or additional employment to make ends met.

I am overqualified (2 master degrees) for my underemployed position (stay at home mom paying no $
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Old 12-09-2012, 07:40 PM   #25
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I am another underemployed by choice. I quit my full-time teaching job 5 years ago because it was taking too much of a toll on the family for not enough return. My husband got a raise that was a quarter of my salary and daycare was eating up half.

Now that my kids are both in school all day, I've gone back as a substitute teacher. I work most days at their school (for a pittance, of course), but overall it works out well.
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Old 12-10-2012, 09:35 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesMom View Post
I am overqualified (2 master degrees) for my underemployed position (stay at home mom paying no $
Ha! Love it! So true!!
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Old 12-10-2012, 10:06 AM   #27
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While I'm in a position that fits my background and education, I'm somewhat underemployed by choice. I chose to leave a position a number of years ago that was on a management track in order to spend some time as a SAHD and am now back to work, but in a position that doesn't pay as much or have as big of an upside, but one that I chose because it meets our overall family needs.
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Old 12-10-2012, 10:58 AM   #28
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Based on what I've read here, I guess that I'm both overqualified and underemployed. I'm an engineer and I'm overqualified for the customer service job I'm doing and purposely underemployed since I jumped on part-time hours because I hate the job so much. I had hoped to get somewhere at this place.

Moving and layoffs can really do a number on a career.
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:06 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesMom View Post
I believe there is a distinction between the terms "overqualified" and "underemployed". I understand the terms to mean:
Overqualified: applicant has skills and/or experience that exceed the requirements for the position and the salary would be significantly lower than a position that utilizes the candidates full potential.
Underemployed: The position does not offer enough hours/compensation to maintain a reasonable standard of living requiring either cut backs to lifestyle and/or additional employment to make ends met.

I am overqualified (2 master degrees) for my underemployed position (stay at home mom paying no $

Nothing to add, except love your signature.....looks like you have a Harry and a Won won!
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:09 AM   #30
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I am underemployed by choice. But, it works well for me right now.
I quit my job to go back to school full time. I went looking for a new job to fill the gaps in our budget and found a perfect choice. It's nights and there isn't much actual work involved so I get about 4-6 hours per shift to do my school work. Since I can get all my school work done on the job, I have a lot more free time to spend with my family, and I don't feel stretched too thin going to school while working full time.
I'm way over educated for this type of work and they pay isn't great, but the fringe benefits make it well worth it.
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