LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

Bill Brunken spends most of his recent days in front of a computer combing through job postings. He says he goes through "hundreds of them."

Brunken is one of the 600 people who was let go by JCPenney early last year. He had been a senior marketing manager there for 26 years.

Brunken said he remembers the phone call in April detailing his dismissal as though it was yesterday.

He said he's fully aware of how employees are feeling now at Penney's Plano headquarters, where the company is considering yet another round of layoffs.

The retail giant made the announcement last week, but was vague about how many people will receive pink slips this time around.

Here is Penney's official statement e-mailed to WFAA by a media spokesman:

"As J.C. Penney enters its second year of transformation, we're continuing to learn and adapt, making changes as business requires. We recently made a slight shift in the home office organization, resulting in negligible team member reductions across multiple departments. By doing so, we have further streamlined operations and reduced work that is no longer necessary moving forward."

"There's always rumors. Nobody's sure what's going to happen or not," Brunken said, recalling that those days at headquarters were filled with anxiety. He said the workload stayed the same in the weeks leading up to the pink slip.

"There's X number of jobs, and there's X number of people looking for them. How do you match that up?" Brunken asked.

Natalie Moffit with Workforce Solutions says marketing jobs are often the first to go. She said people like Brunken need to be open to retooling and retraining to stay competitive.

Brunken has been looking for 10 months now, but this is all new territory for him.

"I didn't have a resume... I hadn't had a resume," he said. "I had to put one together."

Moffit paints a different picture of the job market in North Texas, where she says unemployment is 5.9 percent.

"Being here in the D-FW Metroplex gives them an advantage," she said. "We have a really diverse economy here."

For now, Bill Brunken continues to go to networking functions and says he often sees his former co-workers there, too.

Brunken said it has been a humbling experience, and that he doesn't take it personally.

He said his attitude will move him forward.

"Somebody's looking for me; I just have to find them."

E-mail jpanicker@wfaa.com

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE
Read or Share this story: http://www.wfaa.com/story/money/2014/08/18/14048288/