Tag Archives: jobs

Cheer Up Your LinkedIn Profile

cheer_up_March2014We all spend time reading other peoples’ posts and updates on social media, but when is the last time you skimmed over your own profile and updated your information? Do you need to refresh your profile by adding new skills and work history, or do you need to delete some old things from your profile? Here are a few quick tips to cheer up your LinkedIn Profile.

What is Your LinkedIn Profile Saying About You?
Is your LinkedIn profile leaving an accurate and good impression on those who view it? A CareerBuilder study shows hiring managers are using social media to evaluate candidates’ character and personality traits outside the confines of the traditional interview process. When asked why they use social networks to conduct background research, hiring managers stated the following: 65% wanted to see if the candidate presents himself/herself professionally, 51% wanted to see if the candidate is a good fit for the company culture, 45% wanted to learn more about the candidate’s qualifications, 35% wanted to see if the candidate is well-rounded, and 12% wanted to look for reasons not to hire the candidate.

LinkedIn is a great social media tool for letting people in the professional arena learn more about you, your skills, and your work experience. So, where do you start?

Update Your Profile Picture
First things first, start with updating your profile picture. If your picture is more than five years old, it’s time for a new one. Make sure your photo is a head shot of you in business attire, not a picture of you with other people. Don’t forget to smile!

Freshen Up Your Summary
If you don’t have a professional summary, you need to write one. Don’t ever leave your summary blank. In fact, don’t leave any field blank on your profile. Your summary is one of the first things an employer sees when they look at your profile, which is a great way to introduce and present yourself. Take a quick look through your profile and professional summary to make sure you’re showcasing yourself and your abilities. Your summary doesn’t need to be long or in-depth, but it does need to point employers in the right direction. Keep in mind, your skills and information are searchable so you’ll want to use key words and descriptions that align with your industry.

Clean Up Your Group Lists
Joining groups on LinkedIn is a great way to grow your network. If your interests have changed since you first joined LinkedIn and you’d like to learn more about a different industry or company don’t hesitate to join their LinkedIn group. Cleaning up your old groups and add new ones can help you cheer up your LinkedIn profile.

Follow New People
Do you have professional role models that you look up to? See if those people have LinkedIn accounts and request to follow them. Following those you look up to and seeing their updates on your LinkedIn feed can help encourage you in your job search and keep you motivated during your career journey.

Cheering up your LinkedIn and other social media profiles might be just what you need to get noticed. These edits and updates can be done in a short amount of time, so cheer up your LinkedIn profile today. Have you landed a job by using LinkedIn? Let us know in the comments section below!

The Best Apps to Organize Your Job Search

organize_job_search_apps_March2014In this ever-changing, technologically advanced world we live in, it’s important for job seekers to stay proactive in order to find work. It’s also important to keep everything organized during your job search. And what better way to do that than by using your smart phone? Although staying organized throughout your job searching process can seem overwhelmingly difficult at times, these helpful apps can help make your life easier.

Resume Builder Pro
This best-selling app just changed its name from Pocket Resume to Resume Builder Pro. It allows you to create, maintain, and email your resume from your Apple, Android,  or Blackberry device. Resume Builder Pro simplifies the tedious task of compiling a resume by doing the work for you. Check it out on your iPhone/iPad app store or Blackberry Web Store for $2.99 and on Google Play for Androids for $4.99.

Job Search Organizer
Job Search Organizer was named the best and most popular independent job search app in the Apple app store and is the only app on the market that successfully combines job search and organization features. This free app is currently only supported by Apple.

Evernote
Use this app to store notes, voice reminders, and ideas, as well as create to-do lists, manage tasks, attach images, and more. This award-winning app allows you to capture your memories and find everything fast, while giving you the ability to access it from anywhere. You can find free downloadable versions of Evernote for Windows, Mac, Android, iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry, and more at www.evernote.com.

Dropbox
This free app is compatible with Apple devices, Android, BlackBerry, and the Kindle Fire and allows you to bring all your documents like resumes, a reference list, and cover letters, with you anywhere and lets you share them easily.  With everything you need consolidated in one place, you have the ability to respond quickly when opportunity strikes.

It can be hard to keep track of every detail of your job search, so take advantage of these helpful apps. Each app is user friendly so don’t worry about being tech-savvy to be able to use them. Do you use apps to help organize your job search? What apps have helped you? Share with us in the comments section below!

Spring Clean Your Reference List

Spring_Clean_Reference_List_Feb2014Have you been using the same references for years? If so, what better time than now to spring clean your reference list? Cleaning up your reference list is just as important as updating your resume. Here are some tips to keep in mind when reviewing your reference list.

Maintain a Good Relationship with Your References
When is the last time you talked to your references?  If you’ve listed supervisors you’ve worked for in the past, do you know if they’re still employed at the same company? Touch base with your references and let them know they’re still on your list. If your supervisor is no longer employed with your previous employer, consider deleting him or her off your reference list. Although you should look for senior-level co-workers or leaders, you don’t have to strictly include supervisors in your reference list. Find a co-worker or manager who knows your work ethics and will give you praise.

Always Ask
Don’t forget to ask your references if it’s okay that you continue to use them as a reference. Each time you apply for a job and use references, make sure you give them a heads up and time to prepare. Not only is it polite, it’s practical. Your potential employer could be calling them and they may not pick up if it’s a number they don’t recognize.

Choose Your References Wisely
Your references should be professional colleagues. While family and friends would be great spokespersons to tell of your success and accomplishments, you need to use professionals as references who can speak of your work experience. Having a variety of colleagues that know you from different perspectives will give a diverse and positive statement to your future employer.

Coach Your References
It would be a shame to have worked so hard job searching and getting your resume together only to find out that you didn’t land the job because of a bad reference. Coaching your references will help avoid this. Write an email to your references or give them a phone call reminding them of your job search. Let them know about the job you’re applying for and give them the description so they can be ready to tell about your qualities and skills that fit that specific job. Give them a copy of your current resume so they can speak to your abilities.

What’s been your experience in asking for references? Have you ever had a reference that was the deciding factor in whether you were hired or not? Let us know in the comments section below.

Poll: What do you think the impact on jobs will be if the minimum wage is raised?

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How would an increase in minimum wage affect jobs and hiring? The debate has been circulating for a while over whether a higher minimum wage will cause more people to accept the current job openings or whether those jobs will be eliminated by companies due to the increase in cost to their business. Let us know what you think by voting in our poll.

Look! Interview Tips

Look_Interview_Tips_Feb2014
Have you ever wondered what goes through the hiring manager’s mind when you’re in an interview? Wouldn’t it be nice to know what they were thinking, what they want to hear from you, or what they want to see on your resume? We asked a few hiring managers to share their insight on interview musts and they shared these top four interview tips.

Have Professionalism
The employer you’re interviewing with has goals to grow and brand a company. It’s important to understand that how you present yourself in your personal life may not match the image of the organization, so remember to put your best foot forward. Dress appropriately for the job for which you are interviewing. If you’re not sure, it’s a good idea to ask the interviewer about the dress code. Additionally, there is so much more to professionalism than just dressing the part. Integrity and a good work ethic are also very important attributes to possess and can take you a long way in the hiring process. So make sure you can show these attributes to your interviewer and be ready to share good examples of those traits.

Have a Typo-Free Resume
Job seekers often trust their own eyes to proof and edit their resumes. If no one else reviews your resume, there could be typos that you missed. Find a friend who is great at spelling and grammar or someone that you respect professionally to review and critique your resume before your job hunt, and especially before an interview. If the interview process boils down to three people with the same qualifications and your resume is the only one with a typo, you’re making it easy for an interviewer to choose another candidate.

Have Interest in the Job and the Company
Jennifer Anderson, the hiring manager and vice president of Marketing and Communications at Express Employment Professionals, said, “Often I ask a job seeker to describe to me the ideal job and more times than not the answers come back with something completely unrelated to the job they are seeking. For example, someone may interview for a Marketing Coordinator’s position, but when they describe the ideal job, they want to be a stay at home mother and work from a home office.” So it’s important for the interviewee to understand not only the qualifications of the job they are applying for but also what it is they really want to do with their life and career.

Have a Commitment for More than One Year
Longevity is one of the top qualities employers look for in new hires. Most employers will spend the first six to nine months training you to do a job. Not only will they have invested their time and shared their knowledge, the company has been paying you a salary during your training period. Do your best to learn all you can during training and commit to making the most of your job for a couple of years. Anderson encourages people to let the interviewer know that you’re reliable, you’ll give it your best, and you plan on sticking with the company to help it grow.

After job searching for what seemed like forever, editing your resume, and applying at numerous businesses, it’s time to prepare for an interview. What are some interview tips you’d like to share with us? Let us know in the comments section below.

What to Look For In Career Technology Education

Career_Technology_Jan2014_webWhether you’re considering expanding your education for the first time or wanting to learn a new trade, your local career technology school could be just what you’re looking for. A career technology education often provides quality training for less time and money than more formal university programs. And, with Harvard University’s 2011 “Pathways to Prosperity” report showing that more than 25% of those holding post-secondary licenses or certificates from a career technology education earn more than the average bachelor’s degree recipient, getting a career technology education is a great way to further your career and increase your earning potential.

If you do decide to attend a career technology education, you still need to do a little research to make sure you’re choosing the best one for your needs. Here are four things to keep at the top of your checklist as you make your decision.

The Program You Want
Not all career technology education’s offer the same programs and certifications, so start out by finding the ones that offer what you’re looking for. If you aren’t quite sure what type of career you’re interested in, career technology schools are also great places to try different fields of work until you find one that fits. According to the New York Times, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that “of the 30 jobs projected to grow at the fastest rate over the next decade in the United States, only seven typically require a bachelor’s degree.” So you might take job security, projected growth, and earning potential into consideration as you decide on a program.

A Price You Can Afford
One of the best aspects of a career technology education is its affordability. “Because trade and technical schools are often directly tied into the employment needs of their region or state, prospective students can find low cost or free programs,” Mary Docken, director of market development at Hobsons, an education solutions firm, told Fox Business News. It is important to compare all the career technology schools within driving distance to see if one is cheaper than the others or if one has better scholarships or financial aid options.

Quality Teachers
Once you decide on your area of study, take a look at the various career technology teachers. What type of training do they have? Have they worked in the real world? What’s their reputation among their students? Often times, the instructors are more down to earth and approachable than university professors. “Instructors are usually well seasoned professionals with direct experience in the field, which is often not the case in the traditional college setting,” Erin Davis, director at McGraw-Hill Higher Education, said in a Fox Business News article.

A Good Reputation
Attending a career technology school that has a good reputation with local professionals and employers is critical if you want to maximize your chances of quickly landing a job after completing your training. So try to talk with some potential employers and find out what schools and programs they prefer to hire from. When a career technology school has a good enough reputation, some employers will even hire students before they graduate.

Just because career technology schools don’t receive all the hype that universities often do doesn’t mean they aren’t a great, viable option for you. Many of the jobs you can receive training for from a career technology school will provide stable, well-paying careers. And, even if you were already proficient in your field of work, sometimes getting that formal certification is what it takes to make you stand out from other job seekers.

Did you attend a career technology school and now have a great job? Do you think career technology schools can prepare you for a career just as well as universities? Let us know in the comments sections below.

Scariest Interview Ever

If you think any of your previous job interviews were scary or nerve-wracking, wait until you see what applicants went through during an interview with LG Electronics. To promote just how life-like images appear on the 82-inch ‘Ultra HD’ TV, LG created a fake office that had a TV positioned to look like a window. Through this “window” applicants could view the skyline outside. As the interview proceeded, applicants saw the sky change from blue to black as a meteor fell from the sky and the city suddenly exploded. The reactions from the candidates were hilarious.

This “scary” interview has now become a TV advertisement sensation for LG, check it out here.