So -- you want a job, eh?
Even in this economy, there are job opportunities out there. To get them, though, you need to show your prospective employer that you excel in at least one of these three areas:
1) You can help the company save money. The more, the better, of course. At minimum, you'll want to show the company how you can save it at least three times its cost of hiring you (salary + benefits + overhead services + mandatory costs like unemployment insurance). That lets you show you can carry your own weight, gives the company a decent return on the risk it's taking by hiring you, and lets you have room to negotiate salary increases later, once you've proven your worth to the company.
2) You can help the company increase its revenue. Again, the more the better. This time, at minimum, you'll want to show how you can bring in at least ten times its cost of hiring you. Unfortunately, revenue isn't free. There are transformational and operational costs of doing business that need to be covered before the company sees a return above and beyond the costs of hiring you. In addition, if you're driving revenue, chances are that you'll be facing the customers in one way or another, so it's literally putting its reputation in your hands. As a result, the company has additional risks and costs associated with hiring you, and it'll want to see a larger legitimate potential return on its investment before it'll take such a risk.
3) You can help the company cost-effectively comply with regulatory burdens. In this case, direct experience and/or certifications will go a long way towards making the case that you're worth hiring. Companies don't want to deal with the costs of non-compliance, which in total (including the costs of defending themselves, the costs of scrambling to bring themselves into compliance after learning of their transgressions, and the costs to their reputations of public humiliation) often dramatically exceed the penalties or fines they'd pay. Compliance is an area where companies are obligated to spend money, even in a lousy economy, so if you can show a prospective employer how you can do it better, faster, and/or cheaper, you'll look like a hero.
There are still no guarantees these days, of course. But as you go up against the competition for whatever jobs you're looking at, the more clearly you can articulate how you will add value to the company, the better shot you have.