job seekers

How The Job Search Process Has Changed

Ahem, The Job Search Process Has Changed

Remember when it was common for companies to hang a “Help Wanted” sign in their storefront when they were looking to hire? Ya, a lot sure has changed in the last ten years. In today’s fast technological times, where one can order a car or food instantly from their smartphone, it’s hard to fathom the job search process of the past. Thankfully, modern technology has changed the job search process for the better. However, how job seekers apply isn’t the only thing that has changed.

What Else Has Changed?

Jobs Are Now Online

The internet has revolutionized how job seekers and companies interact in the last decade. Job seekers can now access dozens of opportunities in just a few clicks of their mouse. Gone (but not forgotten) are the days of the “Help Wanted” sign.

Job Seekers Are Now Applying From Their Phones

The smartphone has enabled job seekers to easily apply for a job within seconds with minimal effort. While it’s a wonderful thing for candidates, this has created yet another issue for HR managers to overcome to continuously attract top talent. In short, companies have had to Go Mobile or Go Home. Making career pages mobile-optimized has become essential to attract quality candidates and rank higher in search results thanks to a clever algorithm put in place by Google.

Job Search Engines Offer More Opportunities

A decade ago, job boards like Monster and CareerBuilder were the go-to platform for job seekers. However, with the rise of platforms like Indeed job seekers now can search instantly across multiple company career pages with just one click of their mouse…err… smartphone.

How Employers Can Deal With The Ch-ch-ch-changes

So what can companies do to consistently attract superstar talent in today’s technology-driven job search process? Companies must make sure their virtual “Help Wanted” signs are seen on high-traffic job boards and then they must make it easy for applicants to apply from their phones by mobile-optimizing their job postings.

Want to learn more on how your company can attract superstar talent in these techy times? Download our free ebook now.

Building a Successful Resume

Separating yourself from other candidates when applying for a job can be difficult. Recruiters generally have a vast talent pool to choose from and little time to decide which candidates to interview. Standing out can seem like a daunting task when all you have is a quick page or two to give as reference.

However, a few small tweaks here and there on your resume can go a long way. But, there is a fine line between doing too little and doing too much and you could stand out for all the wrong reasons. Having said that, here are some tips to think about when constructing your resume.

DO:

Be Specific. When discussing your achievements, be specific and provide quantities if you can. Not only will this information put your accomplishments into a greater perspective for the reader, but it will also make them more memorable. For example, many have managed a retail store, but few have managed a retail store and increased sales by 10%.

Use Bullet Points. Your resume needs to be as easy to read as possible. Recruiters often have to look through many resumes and don’t have the time to dig for information. If it takes to long for them to find important information, they may not see it all. Adding bullet points to separate crucial details increases the likelihood that a recruiter will see them at first glance.

DON’T:

Write Long Sentences.  As previously discussed, recruiters have hundreds of resumes to look through and only have time to briefly examine your resume the first go around. Make your words count and convey information using as little words as possible.  You don’t have to write an eloquent essay to get noticed. Your goal should be to minimize the time needed for the recruiter to obtain your relevant information.

Be Flashy. There’s no need to make a colorful resume with a cursive font to stand out. That’s not going to make you seem more qualified for the position and if anything, will only make your resume harder for the recruiter to read. Keep it standard and maintain focus on your accomplishments.

Remember these tips as you construct your resume and stand out for all the right reasons!

For more hiring and job seeker tips follow us on Twitter @CareerPlug

Matt Gass is CareerPlug’s Recruitment Services intern.  

Search for Jobs, Search for Culture

During the job search, figuring out whether your skills and knowledge base are right for a particular position is relatively easy. The job posting usually includes that information in the description and requirements section. What a job posting can’t tell you is if you will align with a company’s values and culture.  According to a Millennial Branding study, 43 percent of HR professionals believe cultural fit is the most important quality job seekers can have during the hiring process. So once you schedule an interview, make the effort to do some investigative work to see if you are a cultural match.

Before the Interview:

Company Website:

A company’s website is a great resource for a multitude of reasons.  It usually hosts the history of the company, number of employees, and information about the key players.  Look to see what’s written on the website regarding a company’s mission or values. This will give you a direct look into what type of company they are striving to become.

Social Media:

Follow the company on Twitter and give them a Like on Facebook to see what type of content they share. Do they have a unique voice? Are they participating in trending industry discussions? These are the types of questions that will help you get a sense of who they are and how they portray themselves on a public platform.

Another tip is to use LinkedIn to search for any personal connections within the company. These can be great candidates to reach out to for informational interviews.

Glassdoor:

Websites like Glassdoor can help you discover the details of a company that you won’t find on their website. Glassdoor features reviews from current or former employees and can give you an insight into many issues within a company including the dynamics between management and the employees.

During the Interview

Office Space: Not every company is like Google…but you can tell if a company is making an effort to promote a positive work environment from their office. A company’s space and layout will depend on the type of work they do and what is appropriate to accomplish that work.  The way they curate the space is how they can inspire company culture.  Look to see if the office environment is inviting, comfortable, and collaborative. A company that promotes these values probably has employees that are happier and more excited to come into work.

Interviewer: Preparing for an interview includes thinking through answers to potential questions, but it also includes thinking of questions to ask your interviewer! Don’t be afraid to be direct and inquire about his or her take on the company culture. Ask what they like best about working for the company. Questions like this that are tailored to the company will give you a better sense of the culture.

During the process, you might find that a company’s core values and culture do not match yours and that is ok! If you think about how much time you will spend at work (or thinking about work), taking the time to discover if you will fit within a company is a very valuable thing.

For more hiring tips follow us on Twitter @CareerPlug!

Taylor Wilson is CareerPlug’s Dedicated Account Specialist.  

 

Tips for Conducting an Effective Job Search

For whatever reason, it’s time to start looking for a new job. The job search process can be overwhelming but here are some quick tips to make sure you are searching in the most effective way possible!

Figure out what you want:

What are you looking for? This might seem like a basic question but it’s important to spend some time thinking about your hobbies, interests, and career goals. What are you good at? What are your strengths? What interests you?

Try to think about what you want for the future and not just on what you want right now. Isa Adney, author of Community College Success and the blog FirstJobOutofCollege.com, suggests applicants “focus less on how much you would love doing the functions of the job and focus more on where you will have the greatest opportunity to add value to the company, network with top people in your industry, and have the ability to get your foot in the door of a company that mostly hires internally.”

Be Proactive

Once you figure out what you are looking for, do some research to target companies and positions that sound interesting to you.  Follow companies on social media platforms like Twitter to get a better sense of their culture and take part in conversations related to your industry.

Use LinkedIn and your personal network to see if you have any connections to these companies. If so, reach out to see if you can obtain an informational interview; these types of meetings will give you the opportunity to learn more about the company. Keep in mind that many job openings aren’t advertised so this could be a great opportunity to get your foot in the door and let them know you are actively looking for work!

Update Your Resume

Take the time to not only detail what you did at each position, but what you accomplished. Including specifics about events like achieving goals or receiving recognition from the community helps show hiring managers you have the potential to succeed.

Expect to have more than one version of your resume. When a resume is tailored and as specific and relevant to the job, you can expect much better results.

resumecareerbuilder

Limit time on job boards

Blasting your resume to every single job board is not going to be the best use of your time. Think quality, not quantity. Apply directly on company websites, industry-specific job boards, or smaller and regional boards. Aggregator sites like Indeed.com and Simplyhired.com are great resources as well.

Once you find a specific job that interests you, pay attention to the details of the application. Go back and tailor your resume, write a cover letter if necessary and tell the company what specifically interests you about this position.

Start your search earlier!

The process of finding a job, applying, and going through multiple interview steps can be a lengthy process. Once I decided I wanted a new job, it took almost three months from the day I started looking to the day I accepted a position. Remember to stay positive! Anticipate the best and always display a mixture of professionalism and enthusiasm.

Seek professional development

Continue to seek professional development opportunities and increase your skills and experience while you are looking for a job. It’s important to improve your marketability, even while you are employed. Join a class, attend a workshop, or go to an industry conference. Take advantage of any opportunities that arise in your field…don’t get comfortable with your accomplishments!

Spend time networking with you peers, not just industry leaders.  These are the people who can offer honest assessments about your work and reputation when referring you for a job. Plus it doesn’t hurt to have additional connections to open doors during the job hunt!

For more job tips follow us on Twitter @CareerPlug!

Taylor Wilson is CareerPlug’s Dedicated Account Specialist.  

Tips & Tricks for Avoiding Hiring Traps – For Employers & Job Seekers

This post was penned by Andy Adams, a Sr. Account Executive with CareerPlug, whose background includes extensive recruiting experience.  

Here at CareerPlug, we recently read an article that provided some great tips for job seekers and employers alike.  For employers: what not to do when posting jobs.  For job seekers: what to look out for to spot unethical recruiting practices.

Employers –  These unethical practices could spell disaster:

danger-job-scamPosting Fake Jobs

It may seem like a great way to build up your candidate database, but unless you explicitly say that it is a proactive posting for future openings…don’t do it.  In most cases, you will collect resumes and never get back to these candidates.  The number one frustration of job seekers is lack of communication after filing an application.  This can lead to candidates having a bad taste in their mouth about your company.  Next thing you know, when you have an actual opening, your best candidates aren’t interested in talking to you because they never heard from you when they actually applied.

Being a Jack of All Trades, Master of None

Trying to be everything to everyone typically does not work.  Have a specialization in the types of roles you recruit for.  In organizations where this is not possible, as a recruiter or HR person, you must be an expert in hiring.  Work with hiring manager to write a compelling job description…rely on their expertise and be a partner.  And demand the same from them.  You should all be working towards a common goal, not in-fighting over writing a job description because you’re busy.

On the flip side of things, candidates need to be aware of these things as well in order to be successful in their job search: 

Spotting a Fake Job Ad

Fake job posts are not always easy to spot.  Sometimes they look completely legitimate until you talk to a recruiter and can’t get any information.  There are a few tell-tale signs though.  Be wary if a job post doesn’t list any details around the company, location, etc.  Also, if a job description is so broad and poorly defined, it could be a catch all for building a candidate pool…and if it is a real post, the company doesn’t know what they want to hire, so RUN!

great-recruiterWork With a Specialist

When working with a recruiter (whether corporate or agency), work with someone that specializes in your skillset.  If you are a financial analyst, try to make sure you are speaking with a finance recruiter.  Again, in smaller organizations, hopefully the recruiter has worked closely enough with the hiring manager to vet the skill set and is just gauging for culture fit, etc. before passing you on to the finance manager for a technical interview.  The point here is, if you work in finance, software development, or sales, would you want the janitor to be responsible for you getting hired?

There are plenty of more tips out there, but these are a few that can help candidates be more efficient and companies improve or protect their reputation in the market place.

For more hiring tips, follow us on Twitter @CareerPlug and follow us on LinkedIn.