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Gaining a job that pays above minimum wage...how hard is it?

Kal'Stang

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Just how hard is it to gain a skill which pays more than minimum wage AND gain a job in that skill set AND keep that job (IE:not losing a job due to being laid off... not counting firings)?

A lot of people throw out the phrase "gain a skill that will pay more than minimum wage!" like it's the easiest thing in the world to do but they never address the amount of available jobs in those given areas vs how many people there are in this country. 318 million people in this country and rising. At least half of which are of working age. Are job availability in those areas that require a higher skill set also rising on an even pace with the amount of people that are able to work in this country? This is something that I never see them address. Yet they love to holler and scream about people that only work minimum wage jobs. So, I'd like to see them address this.

So, what is the current job rate of above minimum wage jobs to available working population ratio? Can you guarantee that everyone will have jobs that pay above minimum wage? <--- This is assuming that EVERYONE was able to gain a skill set that pays above minimum wage. Of course we know that assumption to be wrong don't we? We know that there are people out there that are straight up incapable of achieving any type of skill set that pays above minimum wage. Yet they will be ignored, as always.
 

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Just how hard is it to gain a skill which pays more than minimum wage AND gain a job in that skill set AND keep that job (IE:not losing a job due to being laid off... not counting firings)?

A lot of people throw out the phrase "gain a skill that will pay more than minimum wage!" like it's the easiest thing in the world to do but they never address the amount of available jobs in those given areas vs how many people there are in this country. 318 million people in this country and rising. At least half of which are of working age. Are job availability in those areas that require a higher skill set also rising on an even pace with the amount of people that are able to work in this country? This is something that I never see them address. Yet they love to holler and scream about people that only work minimum wage jobs. So, I'd like to see them address this.

So, what is the current job rate of above minimum wage jobs to available working population ratio? Can you guarantee that everyone will have jobs that pay above minimum wage? <--- This is assuming that EVERYONE was able to gain a skill set that pays above minimum wage. Of course we know that assumption to be wrong don't we? We know that there are people out there that are straight up incapable of achieving any type of skill set that pays above minimum wage. Yet they will be ignored, as always.

I was listening to a program on BBC this morning and the owner on a medium level vegan restaurant that discourages tipping pays $ 200 a day to its better waiters.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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Just how hard is it to gain a skill which pays more than minimum wage AND gain a job in that skill set AND keep that job (IE:not losing a job due to being laid off... not counting firings)?

A lot of people throw out the phrase "gain a skill that will pay more than minimum wage!" like it's the easiest thing in the world to do but they never address the amount of available jobs in those given areas vs how many people there are in this country. 318 million people in this country and rising. At least half of which are of working age. Are job availability in those areas that require a higher skill set also rising on an even pace with the amount of people that are able to work in this country? This is something that I never see them address. Yet they love to holler and scream about people that only work minimum wage jobs. So, I'd like to see them address this.

So, what is the current job rate of above minimum wage jobs to available working population ratio? Can you guarantee that everyone will have jobs that pay above minimum wage? <--- This is assuming that EVERYONE was able to gain a skill set that pays above minimum wage. Of course we know that assumption to be wrong don't we? We know that there are people out there that are straight up incapable of achieving any type of skill set that pays above minimum wage. Yet they will be ignored, as always.

During the busy season, my company will hire people as temps, fresh out of high school at about $11-12 an hour.
If you do well enough, you go from temp to hire, with all the bennies including 401k contributions.

What's the catch?
It's manufacturing work and you have to work.

Edit add: Some young folks don't know where to look, but temp agencies are a good start.
 
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Kal'Stang

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I was listening to a program on BBC this morning and the owner on a medium level vegan restaurant that discourages tipping pays $ 200 a day to its better waiters.

I know lots of people that would LOVE to be paid that much per day. Including me.

And I love your example. It shows a job which doesn't require a college degree, IE: "Skill Set that is worth more than minimum wage", and yet its apparently doing well enough to pay its waiters 4 times more than minimum wage and gets recognition on the BBC. (don't suppose you can get a link to it can ya?)
 

Kal'Stang

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During the busy season, my company will hire people as temps, fresh out of high school at about $11-12 an hour.
If you do well enough, you go from temp to hire, with all the bennies including 401k contributions.

What's the catch?
It's manufacturing work and you have to work.

Edit add: Some young folks don't know where to look, but temp agencies are a good start.

Another good example of people not needing a college degree IE: "Skill Set that is worth more than minimum wage".

So far I've seen two good examples of jobs that needs no college degree and yet pays more than minimum wage. One of them even being in the service industry which is where most jobs are now a days.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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Another good example of people not needing a college degree IE: "Skill Set that is worth more than minimum wage".

So far I've seen two good examples of jobs that needs no college degree and yet pays more than minimum wage. One of them even being in the service industry which is where most jobs are now a days.

My employer has nudged me into getting back into school, but I really don't want to and am trying to leverage myself into the next higher position, without it.
In all though, if you add in the benefits and incentives, you can make well over $20 an hour with no formal education outside of a GED.
 

Aunt Spiker

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Just how hard is it to gain a skill which pays more than minimum wage AND gain a job in that skill set AND keep that job (IE:not losing a job due to being laid off... not counting firings)?

A lot of people throw out the phrase "gain a skill that will pay more than minimum wage!" like it's the easiest thing in the world to do but they never address the amount of available jobs in those given areas vs how many people there are in this country. 318 million people in this country and rising. At least half of which are of working age. Are job availability in those areas that require a higher skill set also rising on an even pace with the amount of people that are able to work in this country? This is something that I never see them address. Yet they love to holler and scream about people that only work minimum wage jobs. So, I'd like to see them address this.

So, what is the current job rate of above minimum wage jobs to available working population ratio? Can you guarantee that everyone will have jobs that pay above minimum wage? <--- This is assuming that EVERYONE was able to gain a skill set that pays above minimum wage. Of course we know that assumption to be wrong don't we? We know that there are people out there that are straight up incapable of achieving any type of skill set that pays above minimum wage. Yet they will be ignored, as always.

If someone is looking at hourly wage jobs they're missing everything.

I've never worked below minimum wage - but I haven't been employed on an hourly pay basis in over a decade. Last I was employed my state min wage was $6.15. I was paid $8.00 + (for being retail management).

Currently, my state's min wage is $7.50 (I think) if they employ more than 4 people. Which means that quite a few people are paid less than that $7.50.

And thus - why I never went back to the workforce as retail management. Instead, I'm making a decent living while being an author. I earn more now than ever before because I don't drive to work nor do I have to pay for childcare. Thus 100% of my revenue is take-home pay that goes to household expenses.
 

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There are general labor factory jobs that pay above minimum wage. The real difficulty is getting benefits such as PTO and escaping the cycle of temp jobs to which a few huge agencies hold access to millions of these. This is why america is about last in the developed world in days off and jumping into a higher economic class is becoming unheard of. I knew people at the one factory in town who were desperately sick. One would go to work in tears due to kidney stones. But she was paid above minimum wage. Living the dream i guess?

To answer your question, the best new skill you can acquire to gain access to these bottom feeder, technically above minimum wage, jobs is to not do drugs. A new plastics plant opened in the county i'm from, and they couldn't even fill the positions because most who applied tested positive. I'm not saying we don't need more worker rights, including to get high on our time off, but there you go

If you mean a job that requires *actual* skills like some tech knowledge, those typically start at $10-11/hr again thru temp agencies, not a living wage but above minimum. One of the brightest guys i know with a degree in CS had to start at data entry at $11/hr as a temp while living with his mom. Eventually he got hired in and a year later transferred to IT. His friend there worked **3 years** as a temp. Now they're both making $13/hr with 1 day PTO a month. So it's tough out there for new grads.

If you can finish an AAS degree or accounting 2 year and some quick books knowledge, you can maybe eek out a living from the start. But consider that over 90% who attempt this fail and still there's 30 apps per 1 position

A trade skill offers more stable and higher paid employment, if you can land an apprenticeship and are physically capable

Honestly even STEM degrees offer no guarantee any more
 

Orly?

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I think it really depends on what area you are talking about..

If you live in a poorer area where the cost of living is cheap it is much harder to find a job that pays anything reasonably above minimum wage.
To the contrary if you are talking about big rich cities or oil boom areas the cost of living is high and many jobs that are the same as everywhere else pay more, like McDonalds jobs..
 

Kal'Stang

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My employer has nudged me into getting back into school, but I really don't want to and am trying to leverage myself into the next higher position, without it.
In all though, if you add in the benefits and incentives, you can make well over $20 an hour with no formal education outside of a GED.

In most, if not all, manufacturing jobs I fully agree. It's the service areas though that often get yelled about the most, and the least "love" regarding wages/benefits. I know many like to think that those aren't "real jobs" but I really do beg to differ. They might not be as physically strenuous as manufacturing jobs. But they do have their own strain that can be just as hard on a person as any manufacturing job out there.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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There are general labor factory jobs that pay above minimum wage. The real difficulty is getting benefits such as PTO and escaping the cycle of temp jobs to which a few huge agencies hold access to millions of these. This is why america is about last in the developed world in days off and jumping into a higher economic class is becoming unheard of. I knew people at the one factory in town who were desperately sick. One would go to work in tears due to kidney stones. But she was paid above minimum wage. Living the dream i guess?

To answer your question, the best new skill you can acquire to gain access to these bottom feeder, technically above minimum wage, jobs is to not do drugs. A new plastics plant opened in the county i'm from, and they couldn't even fill the positions because most who applied tested positive. I'm not saying we don't need more worker rights, including to get high on our time off, but there you go

If you mean a job that requires *actual* skills like some tech knowledge, those typically start at $10-11/hr again thru temp agencies, not a living wage but above minimum. One of the brightest guys i know with a degree in CS had to start at data entry at $11/hr as a temp while living with his mom. Eventually he got hired in and a year later transferred to IT. His friend there worked **3 years** as a temp. Now they're both making $13/hr with 1 day PTO a month. So it's tough out there for new grads.

If you can finish an AAS degree or accounting 2 year and some quick books knowledge, you can maybe eek out a living from the start. But consider that over 90% who attempt this fail and still there's 30 apps per 1 position

A trade skill offers more stable and higher paid employment, if you can land an apprenticeship and are physically capable

Honestly even STEM degrees offer no guarantee any more

As much as I love my working class brethren, a lot of their drug problems don't stay off the job.
Can't count how many good people lost their jobs, after being given multiple chances at rehab and just staying sober at work.

As for STEM people, engineers are the first people my company lays off.
They don't provide much real value.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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In most, if not all, manufacturing jobs I fully agree. It's the service areas though that often get yelled about the most, and the least "love" regarding wages/benefits. I know many like to think that those aren't "real jobs" but I really do beg to differ. They might not be as physically strenuous as manufacturing jobs. But they do have their own strain that can be just as hard on a person as any manufacturing job out there.

I loved my service job, I'd do it now if it paid enough.(pizza delivery)
I don't look down on anyone who works for living, service or not.

Edit add:
A lot of people don't want to do manufacturing though.
It's not entertaining.
 

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My employer has nudged me into getting back into school, but I really don't want to and am trying to leverage myself into the next higher position, without it.
In all though, if you add in the benefits and incentives, you can make well over $20 an hour with no formal education outside of a GED.

but, how likely is it that you will survive a cutback when you have demonstrated a reluctance to improve your skill set?
 

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My favorite nephew was crying to me on the phone this morning from Maine. He was bitching about the lack of jobs in the area and how bad things were. He works at a gas station for $8.00 a hour. I told him to come on down to Virginia and I could get him started for $13.50 an hour ( to start) with doing rehab work under my son who has a really nice young worker, and is looking for a roommate to share expenses on a house down near the waterfront.

He said.... no way! There was no way that he was going to leave Maine.

Okie Dokie!
 

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I have worked for the "going wage" at a few places, despite my being more willing and more able to do the harder jobs, but only until something better comes along.
The employer is to blame. The boss doesn't want to tell the slackers that they don't deserve more money than those who give
more than is expected, so the boss just quietly screws the better worker as long as the worker will allow it.
In the long run, usually, the more productive/willing/able worker is biding his time until an opportunity presents itself.
Then the boss has to deal with losing that employee. Been there, done that.....I left a few jobs and left a hole in the shop's ability to support the needed maintenance functions.
This $15 minimum is going to be very inflationary, that is my guess...
 

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I'm rather vital because I improved my skill set.
I'm the standard fill in for many positions now.

School /= greater skills, it's just a credential.

reminder, what is it that your employer suggesting? Could it be that he has a rosier future planned for you
if your credentials better match the management job that could be his goal for you?
 

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My favorite nephew was crying to me on the phone this morning from Maine. He was bitching about the lack of jobs in the area and how bad things were. He works at a gas station for $8.00 a hour. I told him to come on down to Virginia and I could get him started for $13.50 an hour ( to start) with doing rehab work under my son who has a really nice young worker, and is looking for a roommate to share expenses on a house down near the waterfront.

He said.... no way! There was no way that he was going to leave Maine.

Okie Dokie!

that describes a LOT of people, including most of my relatives, who choose to stay in East Texas, of all places...
 

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It comes down to who you know. Back in the day most people could easily get entry positions regardless of education and skills, and learn on the job. Now a lot of places want experience and/or education. But if you know someone personally who can hire you or get you in, all those requirements get waived because the employer would rather be hiring someone trustworthy than someone random. I ended up going to school later than most and prior to my education all my good jobs came from knowing somebody who knew somebody. I was able to learn on the job until I eventually had transferable skills that landed me better positions. But it all started with knowing people.

I've known people with skills and education who can't get hired because their resume is just another name in the pile. I always tell young people that the best thing they can do regardless of how few credentials they have is to network, network, network. Whatever skills you have, however humble, turn it into a business card and trade cards with every person you meet.
 

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As much as I love my working class brethren, a lot of their drug problems don't stay off the job.
Can't count how many good people lost their jobs, after being given multiple chances at rehab and just staying sober at work.

As for STEM people, engineers are the first people my company lays off.
They don't provide much real value.

sometimes the work sucks so bad they can't get thru it sober

this one guy used to bring in 1/5 of peppermint schnapps every morning at the same time, in his lunch bag

STEM doesn't bring value to a society that doesn't value technology. Many of them go off to asia
 

Harry Guerrilla

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reminder, what is it that your employer suggesting? Could it be that he has a rosier future planned for you
if your credentials better match the management job that could be his goal for you?

There's no good way to say this.
I try to advance using alternative ways, usually leveraging my acquired skills.

If the position is guaranteed, I'd sign up.
Otherwise I have no ambition for school, it's a huge drain on my time and resources for a maybe/possibly.
I could go into the proofs that post secondary education is wasteful/often useless, but this thread isn't the place.
 

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During the busy season, my company will hire people as temps, fresh out of high school at about $11-12 an hour.
If you do well enough, you go from temp to hire, with all the bennies including 401k contributions.

What's the catch?
It's manufacturing work and you have to work.

Edit add: Some young folks don't know where to look, but temp agencies are a good start.

That's kind of how I got into my present job, though they are always bringing in temps and I'm 25 years away from high school. Of course, 11/hr. doesn't go very far at all when you're in your 40s.
 

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Just how hard is it to gain a skill which pays more than minimum wage AND gain a job in that skill set AND keep that job (IE:not losing a job due to being laid off... not counting firings)?

A lot of people throw out the phrase "gain a skill that will pay more than minimum wage!" like it's the easiest thing in the world to do but they never address the amount of available jobs in those given areas vs how many people there are in this country. 318 million people in this country and rising. At least half of which are of working age. Are job availability in those areas that require a higher skill set also rising on an even pace with the amount of people that are able to work in this country? This is something that I never see them address. Yet they love to holler and scream about people that only work minimum wage jobs. So, I'd like to see them address this.

So, what is the current job rate of above minimum wage jobs to available working population ratio? Can you guarantee that everyone will have jobs that pay above minimum wage? <--- This is assuming that EVERYONE was able to gain a skill set that pays above minimum wage. Of course we know that assumption to be wrong don't we? We know that there are people out there that are straight up incapable of achieving any type of skill set that pays above minimum wage. Yet they will be ignored, as always.

In the computer industry. There seems to be the opposite problem. You get everyone graduating (I include my past self) thinking they will be making at least $70,000 at their first job, because their school or certificate program promised this to them. This is WRONG!!!!! That however, does not dispute the fact that the everyone needs IT at their company. You just won't be making $70,000 right out the gate. You will likely be working for hourly minimum wage even on Help Desk Support (even though that may sound more important than sales associate) that or you suffer through long periods of unemployment when you go from contract gig to contract gig.

That being said, I say in my field the more specialized you are the more likely you will be making more than the minimum wage script readers that you call to help fix your internet. People always wonder how to get those big gigs at the software companies like Microsoft Facebook or Google or Apple. And most likely if they didnt know someone already at the company. They would have had a huge software hit on their hands prior to joining those companies. Software or skills that those companies wanted to acquire. If you don't have any tough, they won't listen to you and you will have to spend years mastering something you enjoy doing. Hopefully you will be introduced to this in one of your first jobs. Many will not...You need to bring something to the table yourself and show off your skill in order for the bigger guys to even pay attention to you. It helps to have contacts in the company if you don't and even if you do!

It's extremely hard to break out and continue to rise above your current tax bracket, but I am doing it little by little. You have to do this and want it yourself. You have to be a master at time management and think logically about steps to help secure your financial future. Most people my age (millennials that is) seem to put relationships above all else especially when there is accidental pregnancy. The government isn't going to help you. Your significant other (if you are both not married) isn't going to help you. Your party lifestyle isn't going to help you but your friends might be able to help you in the door. However, it's up to you to impress people. It's even harder to do this if you have anything lacking on your resume or a questionable record/image.

I don't feel any sympathy for a crowd of angry job seekers who demand that they get higher paying jobs after they failed to meet all of these prerequisites. Yeah, it's not politically correct, and it may be too tough for some people to stomach, but that's how I see it. I am thankful that I was well prepared for the real world with a great family, good traditions and values, great educations but all of that didn't really help me find a job until I just got one somehow! So they can complain about my white privilege all they want but not two years ago, I was in the same boat as they were. I thought I had a great degree because it was Computer Information Systems and not some crap degree like philosophy or creative writing. It still took months to find an above minimum wage job.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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sometimes the work sucks so bad they can't get thru it sober

this one guy used to bring in 1/5 of peppermint schnapps every morning at the same time, in his lunch bag

Yea, but around equipment that can maim or kill you and others, that isn't an excuse.
Not being heartless, but safety trumps this everytime.

STEM doesn't bring value to a society that doesn't value technology. Many of them go off to asia

All I can say is that's not universal.
Engineers often propose changes for the sake of change, without taking into account productively loss from using incompatible methods.
It's complex, but a lot of times they do things to justify their jobs, rather than justifying the change itself.
 

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It comes down to who you know. Back in the day most people could easily get entry positions regardless of education and skills, and learn on the job. Now a lot of places want experience and/or education. But if you know someone personally who can hire you or get you in, all those requirements get waived because the employer would rather be hiring someone trustworthy than someone random. I ended up going to school later than most and prior to my education all my good jobs came from knowing somebody who knew somebody. I was able to learn on the job until I eventually had transferable skills that landed me better positions. But it all started with knowing people.

I've known people with skills and education who can't get hired because their resume is just another name in the pile. I always tell young people that the best thing they can do regardless of how few credentials they have is to network, network, network. Whatever skills you have, however humble, turn it into a business card and trade cards with every person you meet.

in other words, if you're shy or just don't like bragging about yourself or aren't related to a higher up, you're screwed. There's always been some amount of nepotism in business and politics, but since the great recession it's really seeped into all levels of work. I even know someone who got hired at DHS (social services) at the capital because her mom worked as secretary for one of the county DHS directors on the other side of the state. So what is someone highly skilled without connections to do? I fear our meritocracy is dying

i think the OP can just peruse indeed.com or whatever and see how many require 3+ years experience at very specific protocol. Some of them even have the audacity to call themselves "entry level." I guess these days, relatively, they are
 
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