Secure Your Social Media

Password_May2014_webSocial media now plays a role in your job search and in the HR world. It’s important to protect your information. Social media security issues often arise as a result of weak passwords. Hackers can easily access your account and hijack your information if you’re not careful about how you choose your passwords.

In 2012, the top three most common passwords were “password,” “123456,” and “12345678.” No matter how many precautions you take to protect your social media networks, if you don’t take the time to protect your password, you may be easy prey for savvy hackers looking to gain access to your accounts.

Passwords and Account Settings

One way to start securing up your social media accounts is by updating your passwords and account settings. It’s important for your safety and online identity to protect yourself by making a few easy changes to your password and account settings.

When it comes to passwords, you’ve got to create sequences of words and letter that are very unique. It’s also important to change up your passwords frequently.

How to Keep Track of all Your Passwords
I know it seems like a daunting task to re-create a unique password every month, not to mention keep track of it, but it could pay off in the future to have safe and protected social media networks.

Having trouble remembering all those different passwords? Try using a password manager application that organizes and protects passwords and can automatically log you into websites.

Worth the Investment
With graduation around the corner, you’ll be glad your sites are secured. A recent CareerBuilder study of 2,100 hiring managers and human resource professionals found that nearly two in five companies use social networking sites to research job candidates. And one in five hiring managers said they found something that has caused them not to hire a candidate. By keeping your accounts secure you lower your risk of fraudulent posts that could be damaging to your reputation. So remember, during your job searching process, the importance of keeping your social media accounts secure and cleaned up.

What have you done to secure your social media accounts? Share with us in the comments section below.

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.

Poor Leadership Top Workplace Stress

StressPollResults_May2014_webApril was stress awareness month, so we checked in with our readers on the top workplace stress triggers in our monthly poll. Topping the list with 21% of the results was “lack of/poor leadership,” followed by 15% responding that “long hours/increasing workloads” are the biggest trigger of stress. Tied for the third spot with 10% of the votes were “inadequate pay/benefits” and “poor working environment/company culture.”

Here is how the remaining responses ranked:

  • Concerns about job security: 9%
  • Poor work-life balance: 9%
  • Work is uninteresting/not your chosen career: 7%
  • Poor relationships with co-workers: 7%
  • Inadequate job training: 5%
  • Lack of opportunities for advancement: 4%
  • Other: 3%

Top Causes of Stress for Leaders and Managers
Leadership challenges plague both employees and those charged with leading a company. Express Employment Professionals also asked the same questions about workplace stress to the readers of Refresh Leadership, a blog for managers and leaders, and “lack of/poor leadership” topped their list with 17% of the votes. “Long hours/increasing workloads” came in second place with 15% of the votes, ranking the same spot on the list as top causes of stress for the Movin’ On Up readers.

If you’ve thought being the boss would solve all your stress at work, this may crush your hopes of an easier life when you move up the corporate ladder. However, it can be comforting to know that you’re not alone in facing challenges with leadership. A search for leadership books on Amazon returns over 20,000 results, a testament to the true struggle leading a team and working with others can be. As a point of reference, there were only 10,000 weight-loss books on Amazon, even with the constant diet fads.

Leadership is often about communication, and your manager may be better served in helping you if you find an effective and efficient way to share your challenges and successes. It may not solve all your workplace worry, but it could be the start of less stress.

Ways to Cope
Check out these related blog posts with suggestions on managing workplace stress and improving relationships at work:

What have you found to be the most efficient way to manage workplace stress? Share your ideas in the comments section below.

It’s Heating Up – Summer Safety

SummerSafety_May2014_webIt’s heating up outside, and some regions are already experiencing heat waves. As we get closer to the summer months it’s important that everyone understands the signs of heat illness and practices prevention.

3 Degrees of Heat Illness
Although there are many types of heat illness, here are three basic types to be aware of:

  1. Heat stress often involves confusion and heat cramps. If you are experiencing muscle cramps due to heat, tell someone, move to a cool shaded area, and drink lots of fluids like water, a light juice, or sports drinks. You can return to work if the cramps subside and you are feeling better, but you should not return to strenuous duty. If you’re not better in an hour, discuss taking the rest of the day off with your supervisor.
  2. Heat exhaustion is more severe. Symptoms include heavy sweating, weakness, dizziness or confusion, nausea, clammy skin, pale complexion, cramps, high body temperature, and shallow breathing. The treatment is the same for heat exhaustion and heat stress, but the focus should be on drinking cool water.  It is also a good idea to cool the body with a cool shower or wet cloth. If you experience heat exhaustion, you should not return to work that day.
  3. Heat stroke is very serious and can even be life threatening. Signs include profuse sweating or the extreme – sweat suddenly stopping. You may also suffer from hallucinations, chills, a throbbing headache, high body temperature, and slurred speech. Contact a supervisor and seek medical treatment immediately if you think you or someone you work with is experiencing heat stroke. The body must be cooled immediately during heat stroke. Soaking or dousing the body in cool water is recommended.

Preventing Heat Illness
To prevent heat illness, it is best to begin drinking fluids before your shift begins and to drink water at least every 15 minutes. Preparing in advance of heat exposure is the best way to avoid heat illness.  Water helps the body stay cool internally and prepares you for losing moisture through sweating. Sweat cools us by evaporating into the air, releasing heat. Remember to include regular breaks in shaded areas as well.

As the temperature outside continue to increase, it’s important to remember these heat safety tips to protect yourself and those around you. How do you avoid heat illness when it’s warm outside? Let us know in the comments section below.

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.

Inside an Employer’s Mind: What They Look for in a Resume

Insidean_Employers_Mind_ResumeResumes can make or break a job search. It’s a critical element in getting an interview, which is a necessary step in landing the job. We asked a few current and former recruiters what stands out most to them in reviewing resumes and we want to share that insight with you. We’ve also linked to a few great articles on crafting the perfect resume to make this your one-stop shop for job search success.

Read on for the three most common things employers look for in a resume.

Is this resume a match?
The single most important factor in reviewing resumes for David Lewis, an expert in the recruiting industry with more than 10 years’ experience is, “Does the resume ‘resonate’ with the actual job description?”  He advises job seekers to submit a customized resume to each job that is tailored to mirror the job description.

Keep in mind, hiring managers are reading your resume along with a stack of others at the same time. This environment lends to them scanning and looking for similar keywords and skill statements that are resonate with the job requirements. It’s important that you are using standard terms to describe your abilities so your resume stands out as a match. Creatively describing your abilities can hurt you in this instance, not to mention if the company is using an applicant tracking system to screen your resume the keywords will need to be identical.

Casie VanRuymbeke, a contract and search specialist, said “Make it clear that your experience is a match – don’t assume the person reading your resume will infer that you have the right skills based on your previous job titles.”

What is the work history on this resume?
Having the skills required for the job is essential, but your experience can be the most important part of your resume. Blake Whisenant, a former recruiter, said “I checked resumes to see who they worked for in the past, this can make the candidate more or less desirable considering the reputation of that company.”

Another thing employers look at it is your longevity in past positions. If you’ve experienced several short-term jobs, you may want to consider a functional resume format to draw less attention to your timeline while still showcasing your abilities.

Jonathan Thom, a professional with more than 20 years in staffing and recruiting, says he looks at the work history on a resume to demonstrate a “consistent direction in title growth” as well as “stability and tenure.” One thing he advises job seekers leave off their resume is personal information, like irrelevant hobbies.

Besides just the length of time worked in a position, highlight specific accomplishments within that job. Demonstrate your capabilities by sharing examples or milestones to paint a picture of how you can impact a potential new workplace.

Is this resume formatted clearly?

If you have the skills and the experience that make you the perfect person for the job, make sure your resume presents all this information in an easy to read manner. Keeping your formatting clean and simple is important. Check out this information on trimming up your resume.

If you are customizing resumes to shine a light on your relevant qualities for each job opening, make sure you are reviewing each resume and making necessary edits before submission. Keeping your resume free of typos and grammatical errors is an ongoing process and it should be reviewed each time you alter it.

In closing, check out our article 3 Resume Elements to Land an Interview for more tips on perfecting your resume.

What advice have you received to help make your resume stand out? Share with us in the comments section below.

Poll: Who are you?

ReadersPoll_Sept2013_webIn order to provide the best content for Movin’ On Up blog readers, we invite you to participate in a brief survey. Your answers will be used to help plan future article topics for our blog and further career assistance from Express Employment Professionals.

Poll: How Do You Think Millennial employees Want to be Managed?

Job Seeking and Career Advice PollA Google search on “Millennials in the workplace” returns more than 2.4 million results, reinforcing the impact this generation is having in the business world. Millennials have proven their ability to contribute in the workplace and mingle with the other generations, but it’s still a hot topic of conversation.

Born between 1980 and the late-1990s, the 80 million members of the Millennial generation are a force to be reckoned with, outnumbering even the Baby Boomers. But when it comes to their desired management style, we want to hear what you think. Vote in our poll to tell us how you think Millennials want to be managed.

The Three Best Hard Skills to Have

HardSkills_August2013_webWhile soft skills, including dependability, motivation, and communication, were cited recently in a report from Express Employment Professionals as the most important skills employees possess, hard skills still play a vital role in today’s job market. In fact, one could argue that even if your soft skills are perfect, at the end of the day, there are certain critical hard skills needed to succeed. Because Express hires and employs more than 376,000 people per year, we have great insight into what is important in landing the job. Let’s take a look at the top hard skills ranked by Express franchises as important to employers.

  1. Experience
    Work experience ranked highest on the list of hard skills. Education is great, but there’s still the need to prove that you can do the job. And if you have trouble getting a job in your career field, find a job within the industry, even if it isn’t your ideal role. Being able to list a related industry on your resume can show correlated work experience. Check out this recent post on unemployment versus underemployment supported the value of getting work experience to your overall career.
  2. Technical ability
    To best showcase your technical abilities on your resume or LinkedIn profile, use specific versions of software you have experience with or qualifying descriptions. Be specific about your ability, not just that you have skill, but how fast or at what level you can do the job. Understand the numbers in your job and be able to market yourself with specific results.
  3. Training
    Whether it’s conflict resolution, goal-setting training, or a continuing education event, keep a record of the training you’ve received and what you’ve learned from it. Be able to explain what you’ve taken away and how you’ve applied it. Additionally, have a plan of your own on how you’re going to stay informed on changes and advancements in your industry to stay on top of your game.

    What hard skills have been your biggest asset in your job search? Share with us in the comments section below.