I applied to a lot of places (about 80) and only got 1 offer. It makes me worried that when it's time to apply for jobs again I won't get any offers. I would like to know if such a circumstance is typical. A postdoc colleague of mine told me, "At least you have a postdoc." We both had a tough time in the current job market.

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    The 80:1 ratio isn't necessarily very informative, because they're not iid trials. You applied for 80, but most likely, there were some small number of those for which you were always a much better fit, because of a close match in research interests to someone at the other end. Jun 12, 2019 at 1:41
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    Anecdotal, so this is a comment rather than an answer, but I've known plenty of people who only got a single postdoc offer coming out of math grad school. So I would say your experience with the postdoc job market is fairly typical.
    – Darren Ong
    Jun 12, 2019 at 1:41
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    I also got one postdoc offer out of a lot (10 years ago), and it was the one that all along seemed most likely. Jun 12, 2019 at 1:42
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    If you edited the question to ask about a particular measure of competitiveness, than it would be better. You might also want to specify the countries where you were applying.
    – Tommi
    Jun 12, 2019 at 6:20
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    I assume it is true in other fields also, but in mathematics the job market is very cyclic. It depends on many things including the general state of the economy and the perceived needs of scientific progress among politicians. In a few years it might be quite different. But some of the questions on this site seem to say that right now there is more supply then there is demand in math. Work to be ready when/if that changes.
    – Buffy
    Jun 12, 2019 at 10:50


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