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Unemployed 50-something pre-press tech wondering if its time to switch gears.

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  • Unemployed 50-something pre-press tech wondering if its time to switch gears.


    Hi-
    I am in my late 50s with 30 years of pre-press experience in a newspaper environment. I was laid off last March and I've been interviewing for pre-press work in other printing environments with no success. From an employer's point of view, would you say because of my age, I am unlikely to be a desirable candidate? I love pre-press, but I'm wondering if, at this stage of the game, I'm just spinning my wheels and wasting my time?

    I REALLY would appreciate any advice!

    Thanks

  • #2
    Is it your age or your type of experience that's holding you back from getting a job. I am assuming you are interviewing for jobs which are not in the newspaper field, Is your experience current and valuable to other print areas, you may need to 'update' your skill set.

    You may have to relocate, is that something you are willing to do. You have a lot of experience and if you throw in the towel what other skills is someone going to pay you for. Skilled people even at your young age are still valuable you have to market yourself.
    Good luck cheesecorn

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    • #3
      Did you ever think about doing pre-press work for print shops from your home online? I'm in the same boat as you and i have managed to get some regular clients who keep me busy and it pays the bills....working in my jammies is the best.. It might take some convincing to do and you might have to make yourself slightly more affordable but it can be done... Your knowledge and their convenience is your best sales pitch...

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      • #4
        Originally posted by prepmaster View Post
        Did you ever think about doing pre-press work for print shops from your home online?
        That's what I've been doing the past 13 years, after working for others for 30 odd years before that. I source press work to trade shops. Takes time to establish so be prepared to be broke. Also be prepared to spend on promotion because home based doesn't have a store front or signage to attract people. But yes, working in your jammies is awesome! 2:00pm now and considering a shower (don't bug me, I've been working).
        Clients will appreciate your knowledge. Especially if they've been dealing with franchise shops & the like. I'm pretty much retired now. Have hung on to some customers - the tax break on a home business is good.
        I don't work for other shops. Deal direct with mostly smaller business, some larger (one takes what comes). You'll need to establish a network of suppliers you can trust. I'm reasonably close to Toronto which has a wealth of trade shops. Still, some are better than others. It takes time. Good luck!

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        • #5
          I can relate. I'm 52 and manage the prepress department for a folding box printer. I've been in printing over 30 years and have worked for some successful companies. SGS, Schawk, GPI. I have a ton of experience in every aspect of prepress. I have gone on a handful of interviews over the past few years and have literally been offered $40-50k less than I currently make. I'm being offered the same money I was making in the 90's. Used to be moving around was the way to make money when there was high demand a greater level of skill and craft involved. Those days are long gone. I would never suggest someone get into this business anymore.

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          • #6
            Companies like the one I work for are constantly looking to hire people with industry experience. Check out some job listings here —> https://jobs.esko.com
            "you never know how the past is going to turn out"

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            • #7
              Originally posted by eskopdl View Post
              Companies like the one I work for are constantly looking to hire people with industry experience. Check out some job listings here —> https://jobs.esko.com
              Seriously? In my experience Esko is one of the most ageist companies on the block, right up to former colleagues telling me that they were sent out to the glue factory because they hit the magical 45 mark.

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