Job Zone 3: What it is and how to hire the right people

Use this guide to learn more about what Job Zone 3 is to help you get a better understanding of what employees in this category are looking for in a new job.

Hiring managers can benefit when they understand the differences between the five job zones. People seeking work fall into one of five job zone categories, each having their own unique distinctions. Education level, career goals, and income are all factors that determine the work zone a job seeker falls into.  

If you're a hiring manager seeking employees who have some experience and education in their field, you're likely looking for someone in Job Zone 3. To attract and retain the right person for your position, you can use this guide to learn more about hiring for this job zone.

What is Job Zone 3?

Job Zone 3 falls right in the middle of the job zone chart, and so, not surprisingly, people in this category have a midlevel of training and education. According to a recent Pew Research study, there are currently about one in five people who want a new job, mainly as a way to raise their income. This means that people in Job Zone 2 may be seeking advancement into Job Zone 3 and that the people in Job Zone 3 may want to move into Job Zone 4. More than 40% of people also change industries when they switch careers.

"A lot of job seekers feel they don't have the qualifications or experience to do a new job, and this can prevent them from applying for a job at your company."

This means that job seekers are often willing to go through training or to take classes to get the job they want, making advancement into Job Zone 3 possible. When you know what an employee is looking for in a career, you can better meet their needs. So learning more about the mindset of those who fall into Job Zone 3 can help you attract employees who will find a job at your company satisfying as well as find those who can fulfill the requirements of the role. 

In the long run, this translates to:

  • Increased employee retention
  • Higher levels of job satisfaction
  • Improved overall productivity
  • Better employee performance

What education do Job Zone 3 workers have?

For someone to be in the Job Zone 3 category, they most likely have a two-year degree. These workers will also have some on-the-job experience. Sometimes, they may have vocational training in place of, or in addition to, their degree. This level of education and experience gives them more opportunities than those in Job Zone 2, but they don't have quite the same advantages in the working world as someone who's in Job Zone 4. 

It can be advantageous to offer training or classes to employees who are seeking a higher-level role but need a little more education to perform the tasks well. If you're willing to provide this, make it clear in your job description so that you'll have applicants who feel they can meet your job requirements with more training. A lot of job seekers feel they don't have the qualifications or experience to do a new job, and this can prevent them from applying for a job at your company.

This limits your job pool, as these people may just need a bit of guidance to get them on the right track for working in your vacant position. A higher percentage of women tend to be Job Zone 3 employees, and women are less likely to apply for a position for which they don't feel they qualify. Create a Job Zone 3 posting that lets applicants know which requirements you're flexible on and that you're willing to work with them to meet the requirements once they're hired. Doing this encourages more people to apply, giving you a better selection of candidates.

What are Job Zone 3 occupations?

Job Zone 3 occupations fall into categories that require some education and some experience. Often, an associate degree is necessary for these roles. Sometimes you may also need your candidates to have at least one or two years of job-related experience. Let's take a look at a few of the roles in this job zone and what the requirements are to do the tasks associated with the position. You can also use the job links to see some examples of job postings for similar positions.

Legal assistant

legal assistant needs two years of relevant experience in filing and drafting legal documents. They should be skilled in effective and clear communication, as they often speak directly with clients. Their job duties may include answering phones and emails, scheduling meetings, using software such as Excel and spreadsheets, and doing billing.

Sales agent

sales agent will have the ability to market a product. They should also have excellent communication skills, as they often work in teams and directly with their clients. These employees should have good time management skills and be self-motivated. Sales experience is a requirement for this role and licensing or training is frequently associated with the position as well.

Dental hygienist

dental hygienist needs licensing in the state where they work and an associate degree. Their duties may include collaborating with dentists about treatment plans for patients, performing X-rays, updating patient charts, and explaining procedures to patients. They need to have excellent communication skills and the ability to work effectively with dentists and other staff members.


An electrician must go through training as an apprentice and a journeyman to become a full-fledged electrician. They should be able to read electrical blueprints and diagrams, use job-related tools, and lead a team. These employees also need skills in problem-solving and a desire to learn as industry changes occur.


cook needs some kitchen experience and culinary training. Their duties may include preparing food to be cooked, cooking meals to order, and communicating with the cooking staff about which tasks need to be completed each day. They may also need to reorder supplies and plan menus. Cooks need to ensure compliance with all health and safety practices and often require licensing for this.

What are the goals of Job Zone 3 workers?

Those who hold positions in Job Zone 3 have similar education and experience levels. So it should come as no surprise that these individuals also have similar career goals and desires. One thing these workers share is that they often want to help people and work in a role that allows them to do so. They find satisfaction in knowing that others will be better off because of the work they do. 

Many Job Zone 3 workers feel it would be scary to leave their current position. This can make it challenging to encourage them to switch over to your company, but it also means these employees are less likely to leave your company once they take up a position there.

How to attract workers to Job Zone 3 roles

Finding the right people to work for you is key to growing a business and keeping it healthy. To attract employees to your Job Zone 3 position, you can:

  • Appeal to their need to help
  • Reassure them of their abilities
  • Present the role as one that makes a difference
  • Discuss the positive company culture
  • Offer training and classes
  • Help them get licensing

Knowing about the different job zones can help you when creating a job posting. Hiring the best people for your team and work environment can ensure you retain employees longer. This saves you time and money and means you can create a work environment where people want to be.


Get inside the minds of nearly 2,500 job seekers with these powerful insights to help you land quality candidates. Grab a copy here. 

Find out more about hiring the right people and retaining them:

Discover why remote work resonates so much with women.

Use stay interviews to encourage your employees to stick around.

Conducting video interviews is becoming the norm. Learn how to do it right so you can get to know your potential employees.

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