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Archive for the ‘Candidates’ Category

Although I have blogged about resume writing before, this time I would like to include new information that will help you update your resume for future submittals.

There are innovative ways to present your resume that look great; however, they are not working for you if they lack key pieces of information.

Contact Information

What should you include?

First Last Name
Street Address
City, State, Zip
Phone (Cell/Home)
Email Address

Many of you may be skeptical about including your address in your resume, but you are making it harder for the recruiter to include you in their search. You may be willing to drive 30 miles one way to work, however that distance could be the deal breaker for the employer.

Degree v Skills

Education

What is the salary difference between a degree from XYZ prestigious university and a degree from ABC state college? According to Riviera Partners’ placement data, the difference is about $12,482. The difference is not as much as what most people assume it is; however, those that graduated from prestigious universities had to pay more tuition than those in state and jr colleges.

Skills

Resumes are parsed into a database that recruiters are able to access and browse by field. The recruiters browse through hundreds and thousands of resumes in search of a candidate with skills specific to a job order.

The skills and experience content in your resume will determine your qualifications for that specific position.

Experience

Recent graduates should read our post on the importance of internships.

Gaps in employment are not uncommon, but should be filled with relevant information such as volunteer work. Doing volunteer work is fulfilling and beneficial to your career. A cover letter may be used to explain employment gaps, but they are often not parsed.

Don’t forget to give examples!

 

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Stating the obvious: Employers can not access your background check information without your written approval.

Employers want to make sure they hire the best candidate for a specific job opening and for their company/organization. And so, employers will ask for your permission to do a background, credit, and/or education check.

Hiring managers have to verify the information you submitted–such as employment history and education–during the hiring process is accurate . Most companies either don’t accept online degrees and won’t hire that candidate; however, there is a small percentage that will consider hiring a people with online degrees.

Employers–with your permission–will do a reference and background check if they plan to hire you in order to assure themselves that you are not a threat to the company. The background check may demonstrate to an employer that you may have gotten into trouble in college, but have a clean record now. On the other hand, it can demonstrate a history of reckless behavior. It is up to the employer to determine the time span they are evaluating. For example, company ABC doesn’t care about anything you did seven or eight years ago, whereas XZY care about everything in your history.
Non-traditional methods of screening candidates is through social networking pages. Facebook is where most people get caught and may be the deal breaker for recruiters and hiring managers. It is less professional than LinkedIn, and is visible to potential employees. In our Labor Day blog post we included an image that shows you where to go to change your privacy settings.

As a reminder to job seekers every where… be honest with the recruiter or hiring manager in charge of processing your information. They may ask you ahead of time about your past, so there aren’t any surprises.

Feel free to comment & share!

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Thirty-eight years ago the first cellphone call was made, and since then we have witnessed how cellphones have transformed the way we go through life. Cellphones used to be for the elite top executives, and now they’re a must have for everyone. Just as cellphones have evolved, the way we use them has too. Are we overwhelmed, distracted, or using mobile phone productively?

Cellphones are a communication tool, and we don’t use them just to make phone calls to clients or candidates. Checking e-mails and replying is a great way to stay informed when you’re out and away from a computer. What’s easier than writing and sending e-mail? Texting. One text [160 characters] to reach a client to let them know you’re on your way or any last minute changes. Today people feel more comfortable sending out a text than making a call. Office employees used to worry about developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS), but now we also worry about developing BlackBerry thumb (even for those not using BlackBerry phones).

The on-the-g0 business person also benefits from mobile applications. Mobile applications they have become a helpful tool when navigating through traffic (or avoiding it with traffic and GPS applications), and getting to your destination. Available on the app store you may find applications that help you keep track of lunches, organize clients, shipments, and stay in touch on social networking sites. Moreover, in a previous post we mentioned that there are helpful applications for job seekers just by going to the app store and searching “jobs” you get over 25 results–most of which are available for free.

According to a survey released last September, “1 in 4 U.S. Adults Now Use Mobile Apps” in the two years since the development of mobile applications the most downloaded applications are games.

So do you have the applications on your mobile device that are productive or counterproductive?

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Do you cringe at the sound of the words “You’re fired” or “I’m sorry, we’re going to have to let you go” at work? I can say I do because I like to have things planned out, and stability… Not to mention a paycheck! Left and right business that had survived other down economies were closing, the morning drive to work was not as bad, and many offices reduced their work force. So, if you had a job you were lucky.

During the past few years people stayed with at their job was lousy or underpaid. There were also plenty of unpaid internships… Although you can’t put an exact price on experience gained, there wasn’t much out there to choose from either. Now that there are more job openings, people have the option of staying, waiting for a promotion or moving forward.

ABC Money posted an article this week titled, “Laid Off? No, I Quit!,” which relies on recent trends in the labor market.

What would set you off or make you say, “I quit?”

  • You have a problems with your co-worker(s).
    • You may try to keep your comments PC (or not), but you can’t stand your annoying supervisor any more. Or you’re tired of all the nagging gossip. Who knows? There’s always that one person who gets under your skin.
  • Your commute is lousy.
    • Gas prices are unpredictable, traffic is a drag, or you have to travel at least an hour to get to work.
  • You need a better benefits plan
  • You’re underpaid or underappreciated

Needless to say the list goes on and something’s gotta give! 

 Now is the time to take a look at your options, and possibly Contract (long or short-term) and Contract to Hire positions a try. Last year we discussed “Being Open to Contract Positions” and there was both positive and negative feelings regarding contract positions. But with more temp positions opening than full time potions, don’t you think it’s something worth looking into?

Find us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest job market headlines!

facebook.com/protemsolutions

twitter.com/protemsolutions

Let us know how you feel!

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We are a week into the new year and one of your resolutions  is most likely to find a new job in 2011. Where do you start?

Technology

The internet has made it easier to find new job openings and research companies. Popular job search engines like Monster, CareerBuilder, Indeed, Dice, LinkedIn, and Craigslist provide job seekers a variety of job opportunities. Today you can keep track of your account using your mobile phone using their free apps.

 Social Media

Twitter

You may be reluctant to sign up for a Twitter account, and you don’t need an account to search for jobs. On the Twitter.com home page you can enter words into the search box.

The search results you get back are a result of tweets with hashtags, which are words preceded by the number sign (#jobs).  You can make it specific to “Accounting jobs” and the search results are updated live.

I recommend reading How To: Use Twitter Hashtags to Boost Your Job Search on Mashable for more basics on using Twitter.

LinkedIn

It’s important to update your LinkedIn profile. Update your picture, jobs/titles, summary, etc. Add people to your network. Networking helps you where Monster and other websites can’t. That is to say, you make connections with people that work somewhere, recommend you or provide information about their jobs.

Resume

Some websites may ask you to upload your resume in pdf format to avoid viruses. On Word 2007, you choose the option “Save As” a PDF instead of .doc or .docx.

Before you send it, make sure you look at our post Getting the Job: Resume & Interview Tips

https://protemsolutions.wordpress.com/2010/05/27/careertips/

Good luck!

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The essential purpose of an evaluation is to assess the employee’s overall effectiveness in regards to the organizations goals and objectives for the month, quarter, and/or year. Along the same lines, it is designed to assure the company they have right people working for them. As a result, an organization is able to control their company by measuring its success and failures based on the results.

Helpful

Although the performance review is used mainly by superiors, the person being reviewed benefits from the review as well. Depending on how the review is done, the results may cause the employee to feel feelings of accomplishment, personal growth, and self-worth. Similarly, reviews with unexpected results reflect poorly on the salesperson self-worth. It is important for each individual to take responsibility for his or her transgressions or failure to meet the organization’s goals and objectives. A great review can lead to promotions, bonuses, you name it! You take control of your own career when you transcend your supervisor’s expectations.

Scary

Those who oppose performance reviews argue that they are flawed. They may believe that their review has some biases. Issues with co-workers or team, for example, may be a reason to fear what they have to say in regards to your work ethic although you feel you have done the best you can. Another reason to fear evaluations is related to the fear of being fired. Donald Trump does it for entertainment, but when your boss does it.. it’s strictly business.

It is what it is…

Every member of the organization should be reviewed in order to ensure success, improve and continue to innovate. During a tough economy evaluations become more significant to managers because as Jim Collins would say you want to have the “right people on the bus, and the wrong people off the bus.”

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Avoid making these mistakes during your interview, and increase your chances of closing the deal.

Being Late

Being Unprepared

Second, being unprepared for interview questions can cause you to digress from the question by  rambling on and on…. Rehearse! Be ready to answer questions like “why are you looking for a new job?” or “tell me about yourself” and be specific.

  • Being under dressed to the interview

What you should do to avoid this mistake? First things first, go to the interview dressed appropriately. It’s better to be over dressed to an interview than being dressed too casual. The job may not require a suit and tie every day, but if you can look your best then you have made a positive first impression.

  • No examples that demonstrate your skills

What you should do to avoid this mistake?  Avoid giving general answers like “I’ve worked with balance sheets, income statements, Microsoft Office…” Instead you should respond by giving specific examples that have quantitative data. You’ve probably worked on a project, so explain what you did. Let the interviewer know how much money you saved the company. “I saved the company $10,000” sounds better than “I saved the company money.” Other candidates may be leaving out details that can make you stand out.

  • You have not researched the company & you do not have any questions

 Once the interviewer is done asking you questions they’ll ask you if you have any questions for them. If you don’t have any regarding the company itself, ask the interviewer how he/she has been able to progress. You should definitely have looked up the company before your interview on their website, LinkedIn and other social networking sites.

Bad Mouthing Your Bosses/Company

In the news we’ve heard about people being fired for social media updates bad mouthing their bosses. Similarly, it is not the best idea to bad mouth your boss because you may come across as a disgruntled employee.  It is in your best interest to come across as positive .

The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”

Winston Churchill

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