Recruitment

10 Simple Job Hunting Tips

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Your Resume stands alone!

Remember when you send your resume in to a company, it stands alone.  Make sure your resume packs a punch, you need to stand out from the other 100’s of resumes the company receives:

 

Profile:  These 4 or 5 sentence paragraph or bullets are the first step on the ladder to selling yourself.  Make sure you fine tune it to the job description.

“Java developer with 5 years of experience handling multiple projects at the same time working in a Windows environment.  Led a Digital Team working in the finance and banking sectors.  Education includes a Bachelors of Computer Science and Sun  Certified Programmer for the Java 2 Platform certification.”

Education:  University Degrees and Certifications are listed in the job description.  Put them right under your Profile. Recruiters and Hiring Managers scan quickly for these qualifications.  They don’t want to hunt for them so put them right at the beginning.  Now they can move onto their next qualifications.

Skills and Technologies:  If the job description says you need Java then put down that you have Java or have worked in a Windows environment.  This is another qualification they do a quick scan for.  If it isn’t there your resume is tossed.  If it is there they can move onto the nitty gritty of your resume – the positions and achievements.

Professional Experience:  Underline your Company name.  CAPITALIZE your position, this will help it to stand out.  Next come your achievements.  Start them off with action words.  Again use the job description to make your achievements pack a punch.  Expand on the job description points using examples.

  • Strong technical background using C++, Java, JavaScript and C#.
  • Designed distributed high-performance trading systems ……expand
  • Mentored 3 Junior Developers …….expand

updateresumepostitsonmonitor1

After you shorten your resume to 3 pages maximum, what’s the last thing that you do?  Yes – Proofread.  Spelling errors show that you didn’t make the extra effort.  Yes, they seem like a minor thing, but they are a huge red flag – are you careless, don’t care, don’t know.  Will you make the same mistakes in your job.  If you are a developer – oops – your program won’t work.  Prove you want the job by starting off with a clean concise error free resume.

happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting

guestpostintroduction

Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

Career Change – How to Decide?

 Changing  Careers – Where to start?

It is important to assess or clarify exactly what you are looking for short term and also where you want to be long term.  Remember when changing your career it also affects your family life and your social life.  So don’t forget to include these categories in your list.  Here are 8 categories to help you analyze your next career change:

  1. ›What is your objective
  2. ›What type of organization
  3. ›Supervisory or not
  4. ›Salary
  5. ›Type of employment
  6. ›Location
  7. ›New technologies
  8. ›You and/or your family

educateddecisions

What is your objective

  • ›Are you looking to gain new skills?
  • ›Do you want to move into a leadership position?
  • ›What technologies do you like working with the most?
  • ›Where do you want to be in 5 years and what will help you get there?

What type of organization

  • ›Is there a specific industry you are interested in, ie finance, manufacturing, health, government?
  • ›Would you be interested in a large national/international company where there is room for transfers to other locations?
  • ›How about a start-up?  Do you have the skills that could take a start-up to the next level? Or just like the excitement of new and innovative environments?
  • ›Do you like bureaucracy or are you more comfortable in a family environment?

Supervisor or not

Some people are made to be in a supervisory position, other people find it very challenging.  There is nothing wrong with either side.  It is important for you to analyze yourself and decide if you like and want the extra challenges that go with supervising people.

  • ›Do you like a challenging puzzle? If you like getting involved in a puzzle then supervising might not be for you.
  • ›Supervising means making time for people and their problems and idiosyncrasies.
  • ›You have to be tough and soft and fair.

Salaryhousevacationloa

How important is Salary

  • ›Is money the most important thing in your life right now?  No shame in admitting this.  Money makes the world go round and helps you buy a house, go on a vacation, or pay off a loan.
  • ›Is learning a new skill more important than the salary?
  • ›Is this a good time to add extra experience and education to your resume and not worry as much about the salary?  Sometimes a long term career path means not necessarily going for the big pay cheque.

Contract or Permanent

  • ›Do you like the security of a permanent position?  These can include scheduled raises, health benefits, vacation time, possibility for advancement.  Your job may be like your family.

OR

  • ›Are you more comfortable being a contractor and being your own boss.  Like having control of your salary and where the write-offs go.  The larger salary compensates for time off between jobs.  Do you like the idea of being able to take a summer off or travel for 4 months?  Do you find that new people, new systems, new companies enhance your work experience or do they stress you?

Location – to commute or not

Commuting is a big deal breaker on my list.

  • ›Do you like to drive?
  • ›Are you and the company close to public transportation?
  • ›How about the expense of car, parking, public transportation?
  • ›How long does the commute take?  Are you going to be happy with needing an extra 2 hours for transportation?
  • Don’t forget to think about those long Canadian winters when you factor in commuting.

New and Innovative Technologies

Are you comfortable with the technologies you are using or do you want to train with the new technologies on the marketplace?

  • ›Keep up to date on new/emerging technologies and what companies/systems are using them.
  • ›What’s hot, what’s not?  COBOL, Java, Hadoop.  What companies offer training in the new technologies?
  • ›Read industry publications to keep up to date on emerging technologies.
  • ›Do you need to go back to school or take a course/certificate?

You and Your Family

Times change and so do you.  Just graduated, no family ties – then long hours and travelling with your job are great.  Add a family into the scenario or have an older parent you need to help with.  Your needs change and so do theirs.

  • ›There is nothing more fun than coaching one of your kids at yours/their favourite sport.  Will the new job provide the opportunity to get home early enough for that?
  • ›Does the new company have a day care centre?
  • ›Health Benefits can make a huge difference in your life style.
  • ›Older parents, spouse’s career, are you at an age when you would like a little more time off.  These are all factors that you have to analyze when you are looking for a new position.

What factor is the deal breaker for you?

Everyone has different needs.  As you grow in your career your needs will change.  It’s important to analyze each factor for each time in your life.  Be honest!!  Changing careers and companies is a hard decision and not something you want to regret.

Start with these 8 factors and analyze each one.  Let me know which factor, either one of these or one of your own that made the difference in your decision.

 

happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting

guestpostintroduction

Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

Can Twitter help me find a Job?

Can I tweet my way to a job?  Most definitely.  Can I tweet my way out of a job?  Most Definitely (but that is another post).

Twitter has 284 million “active” users. No real surprises in the top 10 list.  Twitter isn’t allowed in China otherwise they would definitely be on the list.

“Top 10 countries, number of Twitter users: USA, UK, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Netherlands, France, India, South Africa.”  (Forbes)

TwitterAgeDemographics

As you can see from the graph above – Twitter users are in their prime job hunting age.  54% of Recruiters are now using twitter.

When you join Twitter, be prepared for your network to grow in leaps and bounds.  What next?  Let’s start off with the basics.

Open an Account

  • First you need to open an account and set up a name.  You can use your real name or make up a handle.  Make sure if you use a “handle” that it is professional.  @ilovecats (is probably taken) wouldn’t offend me, but might not present the degree of professionalism you would like.
  • Post a professional picture of yourself or make up a logo based on what type of job you are looking for.  If you are a web developer you could do a cover photo with the different languages you use, i.e. html, java, j2ee, etc.
  • This account should be used for your job hunting only.  If you wouldn’t talk about it in an interview, don’t tweet about it, i.e. don’t be tweeting about how many shooters you did on a Friday night.  Although fun healthy family events present a positive lifestyle, so tweet pictures of your nephews and nieces.
  • Don’t start tweeting until you are finished with your set up, i.e. profile, picture, etc.  First impressions do make a difference.
  • Need help signing up, click here

Hashtags

  • What’s a hashtag?  It is basically a way to put tweets into a category so people can find them.  One of my favourites is #onstorm (oh yeah a hashtag has a “#” in front of it).  Every time there is the threat of a storm I check out #onstorm and find pictures and tracking information about where the storm is.  I’m a storm groupie.  #Leafs, #BlueJays, #cometlanding – there are hashtags for everything from sports teams to current events to traffic and yes the big one for job hunters.
  • The networking capability is massive in Twitter.  Here are top hashtags used for job searches and job openings.  You can also qualify your tweets by your skill, ie #java, #html, #banking, #ongov.  Do a little research to find out the popular ones.  Try one and see what happens.
  • Oh one last thing, maximum of 3 hashtags per tweet.  Do a little research to find out the popular ones.  Best thing is to try and find the one that works the best.

Followers/Following

Now you have to decide who to follow:

  • If you know what companies you would like to work for, then follow them first.  Most of them will post jobs on Twitter.  Try and find out who the hiring managers are, and if they have a Twitter account then follow them.
  • Again what skill are you selling?  Follow groups and people who have the same qualifications/interests.
  • Recruitment companies all have twitter accounts and they all post jobs on Twitter.  Find the ones that are in your area and have expertise in your field.

Tweetchat

Next step is forming a relationship with your followers

  • ENGAGE – yes you have to engage with your followers.  You can start off retweeting their tweets, but it is much better if you actually respond to one of their tweets.  It shows you did actually read their tweet, blog or story.
  • CONTENT CURATION is the process of collecting, organizing and displaying information relevant to a particular topic or area of interest.”  (wiki).  Tweet stories that interest you, retweet breaking news (if you see the subway is closed – tweet it), find blogs about your field and tweet them (with a comment).
  • LISTS – Lists are a way for you to organize all your followers.  CompaniesIwouldliketoworkfor, FavouriteTorontoPeople, TopJavatweeters, etc.  Lists can be public or private.  Followers like to be put on lists so don’t make them all private.
  • CHATS – there are chats for everything you can imagine.  Love gardening there’s a chat, love the Leafs – there’s a chat for that.  Every skill has a chat group from iCloud to BigData to Hadoop to name a few.  There are lots of job hunting chats and recruiter chats offering advice to the job seeker from “how to write your resume” to “how to answer interview questions”.  One of my favourites is #Tchat on Wednesdays – it starts with a podcast and then a 30 minute question period.   Joining a chat and taking part is the easiest and most fulfilling way to actually form relationships.
  • BEWARE – you don’t have to follow everyone back.  Be prepared to receive follows from Twitter accounts who are trying to sell 10,000 followers for $5.  As a job hunter you are using Twitter as a means for job searching not to make yourself look important.  All they do is clutter up your stream.

Twitter is just one of the wonderful networking job hunting social media platforms out there.  Use it to your advantage and enjoy the education, laughs and up-to-date information you will find as you tweet your way to a new position.

happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting

guestpostintroduction

Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

What to expect when working with a Recruiter

Recruiting Companies started making strides into the marketplace in the 70’s.  They were probably one of the first outsourcing practices large companies moved to.  Also known as headhunters, they were known as just a step above a used car salesman.  This all changed when large companies like IBM, Ontario Hydro and the Banks realized they were being inundated with resumes for every job they posted.

Remember every resume back then was paper, yes I said “paper”.  Delivered in the mail,  gasp gasp.  The mail room, to the HR secretary to the actual HR Managers were being drowned in paper.  Not only did they have to manually screen (no ATS systems) each resume, they also had to reply – yes, gasp gasp, again by paper and stamp.  HR Departments were being clogged.  Great candidates were being missed.  Hence the rise of the “employment/recruitment agencies”.

These agencies also had to change the way they did business.  Companies didn’t want them sending over a 100 resumes, they wanted 3 to 5 for each position.  The agencies now had to screen all these resumes and find the best candidate.  Just like buying a house, the companies attitude was “find me the right candidate or I’ll go to another supplier”.  Keep in mind the agency was only paid if the client hired a candidate.  Recruiters had to become experts in their field (technology, finance, administration to name just a few).  They also had become experts in the interview process.

Over decades, the recruitment process has changed. Which leads us to the question “What to expect when working with a Recruiter?.

Industry/Company Knowledge:

Recruiters tend to specialize so if you pick the right one they should be a wealth of knowledge about their field.  If you have hooked up with the wrong one the first thing they should do is direct you to an expert recruiter in the field you are looking for.  Take advantage of the Recruiter’s expertise in the company.  Ask him detailed questions about the company and industry.  Start with a few simple questions:

  • Company culture – will you fit in, is it a stuffy company, is it too relaxed, does it promote from inside, is training available?
  • is the company expanding?
  • is the company doing lots of hiring?

Expertise in their field:

  • Live Jobs – Recruiters sign contracts with companies for specific live jobs.  These positions could be exclusive to one or more recruiting agencies.   They aren’t available on the company webpage.  This gives the Recruiter you are working with direct access to the hiring manager.  Part of this relationship includes knowing what the hiring manager is looking for, and what kind of candidates s/he has liked in the past.
  • Resume Help – yes I said Help.  Because of their expertise, they know what the company is looking for.  Most companies don’t want to see 10 page resumes.  Your recruiter will help you to discard the superfluous information and leave in the information the company is interested in for that particular position.  Be prepared for them to reformat your resume.  Move education from the last page to the first.  Highlight the key technologies.  Resumes with “I did, I was”, “John changed, John has” will be rewritten to use prominent action words.  Expect this from them, they are experts in having their candidates (you) get to the next step.
  • Interviewing:
    • Screening Interview:  after receiving your resume, be prepared for a screening interview.  This interview is basically to  make sure you are available, do you have the education and technologies, finds out if you would be willing to do the commute or relocate if necessary.  This interview can be done by a Junior Recruiter.
    • Telephone/Video/Face2Face Interview:  Prepare for this just like you were being interviewed by the company, with a little less stress.  The recruiter’s job is not only to find out if you are capable and experienced enough to do the job but also to help you to interview well.  They will be looking for your accomplishments and helping you to present them in a relaxed manner.  Your “elevator speech” will be fine tuned.  Practice your questions and possible interview answers with the recruiter.
  • Salary/Benefits – the Recruiter will discuss the salary/benefits with you.  You don’t have to worry about it being discussed in the actual company interview.   The Recruiter is your salesman, after finding out what you are expecting s/he will present this to the Company and help find the perfect match.  This will include not only salary negotiation but also vacation, benefits, bonuses, start dates, etc.
  • Job Offer – this will be presented to you and explained.  And then you will take it home and read it over again.  If you have any questions – yes call your Recruiter.
  • Feedback – why didn’t you get the job?  The recruiter will have feedback from the Company and s/he should explain to you why you didn’t get the job.  What were you missing?  Was it experience? education?, too nervous?  too cocky?  What can you do to improve?  Was your salary expectation too high?  Remember s/he wants you to get a job so it’s to his/her advantage to help you improve and analyze what happened.
  • References – this also falls under the bailiwick of the recruiter.  Depending on the company the Recruiter will call your references.  That doesn’t mean s/he will lie for you so make sure your references are up to date.
  • Resigning – this can be very stressful especially if you have been with the company for a while.  The Recruiter will help you through this step.  S/He will offer advice on how the company may make a counter offer and whether you should take it or not.  Although their client is the company they also want you to be satisfied in your decision.  Recruiters love repeat customers.

shakinghands

Do you only get in touch with a Recruiter if there is a specific job you are interested in?  Definitely NOT.  Recruiters can help you with career changes, re-education advice, getting back into the work force, etc.  They are a job hunting resource, use them and form an honest and fulfilling relationship with them.

 

happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting

guestpostintroduction

Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

Formatting your Resume to catch the Recruiter’s Eye!!

 6secondstocatchtherecruiterseye

Having worked with recruiters for the last 14+ years the following article on Linkedin definitely caught my eye:  “What Recruiters Look at during the 6 Seconds They Spend on your Resume”.

 

http://www.linkedin.com/news?actionBar=&articleID=5595149483949174869&ids=djcQejsRdPoOd3oOczAUd3ARdiMNcz0Tej4PczARdz4Rd3cPejkRb3oQczgOcP8QcP8McPoMdzcVdjkIejkQe3AMc3kRdjoOcj4Oc3ARdiMVdzwQdP4Vd3APe3gVd34RejkR&aag=true&freq=weekly&trk=eml-tod2-b-pub-0&ut=21sgnABt6bk5c1

 

Yep! 6 seconds,  and it is so true.  Recruiters have trained their eyes to look for key data:  Education, Companies worked for, Current Position, and Previous Position.  Are you a professional contractor or a permanent employee.

 

This 6 second scan is what gets you to the next step; a phone, or face to face interview where they go over your resume in detail.

 Nothingcomeseasy

If the resume is cluttered with boxes, pictures, graphs and the recruiter can’t find the pertinent information then your resume is put in the hold folder for possible processing at a later date.

In the last 14+ years we have reformatted over 40,000 resumes.  This includes:

  • Using a clean, concise format.
  • Having a short profile to outline your strengths in relation to the job you are applying for.
  • ACTION WORDS – All points should use strong action words that describe your duties in very concise terms.  Here is just one of 100’s of webpages on the internet that list action words.  http://www.ceswoodstock.org/job_search/resumeaction.shtml
  • Never, never, never use the word “I”
  • And below is the layout we use, look how easy it is to find the key information.

 

So 6 seconds to catch someone’s eye.  Don’t waste it
RESUME SAMPLE

happyfacehanddrawn Good luck job hunting

guestpostintroduction

Lynne Carlson started her career off in administration, moved to Cobol Programming and for the last 14 years worked in all things recruitment.  Absolutely loves social media and excited about all the new innovations appearing every day!

Capital markets riding the cutting edge of the digital revolution

Planet4IT has been a successful IT staffing agency for 15 years.  Recently we started to notice that the ever-changing technology landscape has spawned a subset of talented individuals who don’t fit perfectly into the traditional IT world.  P4Capital is our response.

It’s a division aimed at people who specialize at the point where capital markets and wealth management intersect with technology.

Data is where all of these specialists interact, create, and work. Think of data as the meeting point of Digital and Capital.

In 1964, Marshall McLuhan coined the term global village.

The new electronic independence re-creates the world in the image of a global village.” — Marshall McLuhan

50 years later we are finally arriving at the point where it’s becoming a reality.  It is technology that is enabling this, but if you stop and ask yourself why are we pursuing all these technological advances you will inevitably come to the conclusion that commerce is the driving force behind it.

Commercial society has always been the hallmark of North America, and with the fall of communism and the rise of democracy the rest of the world is pushing commercialism to a whole new level.

There is perhaps no better example of commerce than the traders of Capital around the world.

The major stock exchanges see more volume now than ever before, and those who can find advantages in investment can turn very serious profits.

Big data has provided those who can effectively understand it an advantage that rivals the speculation of films like Limitless.

limitless-movie-poster-new-1

I see every scenario, I see 50 scenarios, that’s what it does Carl – it puts me 50 moves ahead of you.

With big data and good analytics come many advantages in the capital markets trading game:

  • The first is speed.  Real time databases such as Hadoop allow for information to be processed at a rate unprecedented in human history. We’re talking millions of information indices being turned into relevant and useful information in nanoseconds.
  • The second is depth.  Algorithmic programmers now have access to a huge volume of data they can sift through and collect relevant information from.   This has allowed traders to build significantly more accurate predictive models.    Now we are living in a world where data processing gives competitive advantage.
  • Thirdly and lastly for this post, is sales.  The world of commerce doesn’t exist without the private funding of people who are willing to put their money in other people’s hands.  The ability to maximize the amount entrusted is often an overlooked component of the trading game.  Sales teams and traders work side by side in banks around the world.  Big data analytics have given those sales teams ammunition to maximize their investment by building out customer profiles that predict who they should be contacting on any given day.

It’s easy to get distracted by the bright lights of the Digital world, but the reality is commerce is one of the biggest reasons these technological advances are useful to society.

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andrew

Guest Blogger: Andrew

Andrew is one of the newest members of Planet4IT, so he brings with him a fresh new perspective.

With one eye on the job market and the other on the IT world, he’s the man to go to for information on how the latest advancements in Data, Digital Marketing and Social Media are effecting business.

Andrew encourages you to reach out to him through not only telephone or email, but LinkedIn and Twitter as well