How to Grab the Attention of Hiring Managers and Recruiters

January 3, 2018

By Barb Miller, Marketing Manager

If you’re seeking a job, standing out and capturing the attention of hiring managers and recruiters can be a challenge. This means that you have to cut through all the noise out there, online and offline, in order to make yourself easy to find.

Here are a few suggestions:

Upload your resume to job boards. Hiring managers and recruiters often rely upon sites such as Career Builder, Monster, and Indeed to find candidates who aren’t in their internal applicant tracking system. These job boards are a gold mine for trying to find the perfect candidate for a role. Large career sites such as Career Builder will ask you upload your resume into their database at no charge. Resumes stored into their database are then available to hiring managers and recruiters who pay for access to search their bank of resumes.

Keep your resume up-to-date. Make sure you update your resume every few months and make it stand out. Tailor your resume to your desired job title you’re seeking and show how you’re different. For example, every time you have an achievement or are recognized by your company or industry, brag about it. This is not the time to be humble. You need to showcase the stuff that hiring managers and recruiters are looking for.

Develop online presence at beBee.com. beBee is a new personal branding platform. The network was created to allow people to showcase and share their personal brand and market themselves to employers, clients, customers, vendors and media in their respective industries. beBee allows users to network with each other through common personal and professional interests, uniting their personal and professional lives in one place.

Beef up LinkedIn profile. It’s no longer enough to just build a LinkedIn profile. You need to include the most relevant keywords used in your industry, highlight your skill sets, keep your accomplishments up-to-date, quantify achievements whenever possible, such as “increased productivity by 25%” or “doubled sales quota” and make sure your personal settings are allowing hiring managers and recruiters to view your profile. Double check by clicking on Settings, then click the Privacy header, you’ll see a Job Seeking section. Set it to the mode that allows hiring managers and recruiters to know that you’re open to opportunities.

Add Google+ to social media efforts. In addition to your LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter profiles, add Google’s social media channel, Google+. It’s definitely worth exploring. Google+ offers great chances for professionals to showcase their work through online portfolios. Check out the Google+ communities and you’ll discover a number of Google+ users are from various industries and job levels. Remember to keep your profile updated in Google+ including your current location so hiring managers and recruiters can easily find you.

Be seen in the right places. Never miss an opportunity to connect with key influencers and leaders in your field. Networking at industry events is the perfect environment to approach these people and have a discussion. Too often people shy away from the trade show exhibit hall at conferences. They fear that they will have to talk to salespeople, but these industry suppliers are some of the best people for you to get to know and learn more about the current business climate. Approximately 85% of jobs are filled through networking.

Volunteer in the community. To fill time between jobs or explore new opportunities and careers, many people are finding that a volunteer job especially in the nonprofit sector can sometimes lead to permanent, salaried employment. For example, each October, there’s the “Make a Difference Day,” one of the largest annual single-days of service nationwide. People from all walks of life, professions and industries come together with a single purpose…to improve the lives of others. On a day like this, you never know who you could meet or work alongside.

If you are in the job market, let us know what other ways you’re using to grab the attention of hiring managers and recruiters. Please post below.

3 Helpful Tips to Beginning Your Job Search

April 20, 2016

By Christy Fox, Marketing Specialist

Are you looking for a new job opportunity?  Will you be graduating soon without a job lined up?  If you are, you may be experiencing a range of feelings- excitement, fear, or happiness to name a few.  Job searching may be a brand new experience for some, while others are constantly looking for that perfect career opportunity so job hunting is very familiar.  Regardless of who you are, it is important to know how to navigate your job search process effectively.

Below are three tips that I found helpful in preparation for landing a new job:

Networking is key.

You have heard it a thousand times; “It’s all about who you know.”  You may think that your connections are not relevant to the jobs you want, but your network is still one of the most valuable tools in your job search.  Even if you send 200 resumes out online in a month, you’re more likely to get an interview or conversation from the one resume that someone you know passed along for you.  The following contacts are just some who could be a vital piece in finding your next job opportunities:

  • College professors
  • Alumni from your college
  • Past employers
  • Previous coworkers
  • Contacts from networking events

Whether you are making short phone calls, writing e-mails, attending networking events, or connecting on social media such as LinkedIn, be sure to update your contacts on your job status.  If possible, let them know you’re looking for jobs.  Even if your network can’t directly help you land a job, their network may have opportunities that you can be connected to.  Always keep the lines of communication open and be candid about what you are looking for.

It’s easier to find a job when you already have a job.

Picking up a temporary position or even an internship can be beneficial in the process of finding a full-time gig.  Many employers show concern when seeing a gap of time on your resume since your last job.  While it’s commonly known that job searching can seem like a full-time job in itself, it is important to find a way to continue working.  For example, substitute teaching jobs are available for anyone with a Bachelor’s degree and are welcomed in many school districts, along with seasonal or temporary retail jobs, or get creative and start your own side business to fill in the time gap.  Added bonuses of working while searching are the opportunity to continue networking with different people in different fields and a way to make income while you continue to job search.  Additionally, it is likely that your future employer will be impressed that you stayed occupied and continued to build your resume even during a transition phase.

Be prepared and proactive.

Job opportunities and the chance to share your professional information can show up at any time.  For that reason, it is safest to keep these job searching and interview materials up-to-date and current:

  • Resume
  • LinkedIn and any other social media profiles
  • Reference Sheets
  • Cover letter template
  • Business cards

Keep in mind to be organized with your materials and keep them on hand (or at least saved on your phone) to be able to send anytime and anywhere.  Whether you are at a job fair, having coffee with an old friend, or even at a family function, there’s always a chance to make a connection to a job opportunity.

Not only do you need to make sure all your documents are up to date, but it is important to stay current on the market you are looking in.  Following relevant industry news, job opportunities available and companies you are interested in will help to prepare you and give you an edge in interviews.  It is also helpful to follow employers or job seeking social media sites that can be beneficial to you.  Make sure to have a clear vision of what type of positions you would like, or at the very least, what job functions you are interested in so you can relay that to your network.

Job searching can be a long and exhausting process.  Just remember that networking, staying busy, and being prepared will be extremely helpful over the course of your job search.

What other tips have you found helpful while job searching?

New Type of Job Candidate Emerges

March 2, 2016

By John Yurkschatt, IT Director, DCA

Today’s job seekers are savvier about their searches and available resources including how to use a number of social media platforms to enhance their success rate.

Moreover, in 2016, the power has shifted back to the job seeker. It’s definitely a candidate-driven market. That means candidates can afford to be picky and many are being down-right demanding.  What else should you know about today’s job seekers?

-Always looking for their next opportunity. Career exploration has become the norm. In fact, candidates in their 20’s, will have a dozen or more jobs by the time they hit their 30’s.  They don’t like staying in one place too long. They not only change jobs, but often changes industries as well.  They believe there’s always something better out there.

-Want more purpose in their work. Today’s candidates are looking for meaningful work, something that is bigger than themselves or the job. There are not necessarily accepting a job based on the size of a paycheck but rather a worthwhile mission and promising team to join.

-Attracted to companies having a great social media reputation. Candidates are more apt to accept a job offer from a company that has positive social media practices, beliefs and reviews. In fact, a study cited by Fortune Magazine showed that 72% of job candidates trust what they read about employers on Facebook.

-Interviewing the company as much as the company is interviewing them. During interviews, candidates are evaluating the company and whether they really want to work for you. Therefore, an interviewer needs to be mindful that someone with the right qualifications, experience and attitude may have other offers to consider.

-Want a shorter hiring process.  The most in-demand people usually have other offers.  Great candidates won’t wait around or put up with a long hiring process. Many employers land the best people simply by interviewing them quickly rather than making them wait weeks before setting up a meeting or second interview.

-Want to be contacted through mobile platforms. After referrals, no recruiting channel is more important than the mobile platform. Prospects and candidates must be able to do everything from applying to accepting jobs directly and seamlessly from their mobile devices including smartphones, iPads, etc. Because it has the highest message response rate, all recruiting communications and messaging must migrate to the mobile platform.

-Thinking about starting own business. Today’s candidates have a strong entrepreneurial spirit and may consider dabbling in an outside endeavor such as app development or graphic design.  While most companies still frown upon “working on the side”, it is not stopping them from researching if there’s a need in the market for their product or service and acting on it.

If you’re in the job market, can you relate to the bullet points?  Are there any candidate expectations that we missed?

What to Consider Before Changing Jobs

By Matthew Cohen, Energy Management Practice Leader

Today’s companies are as aggressive as ever to recruit and retain strong individuals and they are shelling out big bucks and signing bonuses to get the best talent on their teams.  For even a passive candidate, there is certainly a wide range of opportunities to choose from, but what I have seen as a disturbing trend are candidates who take positions that they think will be the right fit and then leave two, three or six months later for a better position.

There is nothing wrong with upward mobility and there are those organizations that don’t put much stock in employee tenure.  However, many candidates who take positions just because it is in front of them may not be fully exploring their options or asking the right questions during the hiring process.  This can lead to poor tenure and a reputation for being a “job hopper” which in most industries is looked upon as a negative when reviewing a resume.

If you are considering a new position or are interested in exploring new opportunities, these are the five questions you must ask yourself before making a decision.

Am I just chasing Money?- In the war for talent, companies are doing what they need to in order to get the best people, which includes pay much high than the market rate.  There is nothing wrong with making more money, but compensation should be only one aspect of considering a position.  If it’s just about the money, it’s possible to simply ask your boss for a raise and if you are a valuable member of the team, you just might get it.  Also, if money is the only factor for changing jobs, the next position that comes along that offers you a higher salary will be very appealing. However, it might not be the best fit.

Have I told my boss I’m unhappy? For some reason, employees have a difficult time discussing their frustrations with their current employer.  In many cases once an employee shares their issues, they can be worked out or solved.  If a boss hears your grievances and does not solve them that would be a good time to start looking.

Am I leaving my job just to leave?  Often times when someone finds a new position that they are interested and they are fed up with their current employer, they will simply take a new position just so they can leave their old one, this can be a recipe for disaster if the new position they took does not fully meet their expectations or a better opportunity comes along.  This can cause your resume to have brief employer history which can have negative long-term effects on your career.

Will I be happy every day to go to work?  It may sound odd but happiness is and should be the determining factor when taking on a new position.  If there is any, even a small amount of hesitation on whether someone will be happy in a position, it may be time re-evaluate.

Have I seen all that is out there?  There are a plethora of different avenues for discovering new opportunities.  LinkedIn, job boards, recruiters, industry events and personal network can all lead to job opportunities.  Before pulling the trigger on a new position, it is important to exhaust all resources.

Before you rush to change jobs and accept a job offer, take some time to really evaluate the situation. You need to determine if leaving your current company is the best decision and if the next role is going to be the right fit for you.

Please post your thoughts and comments below.

6 Mobile Job Search Apps Every Job Seeker Should Know About by Sydney Arnett, Marketing Specialist, DCA & DRI

Looking for a new job? In today’s competitive job market job seekers have to be connected, organized and prepared. To stay ahead of the curve, tech-savvy job seekers are taking advantage of mobile job search apps.

According to glassdoor.com, 9 in 10 job seekers search for jobs via their mobile phones, which is consistent with Direct Consulting Associates’ analytics that say the number one way people come to our website is via the iPhone. In addition, 77% of job seekers use mobile job search apps. Job search apps are becoming increasingly popular as they give job seekers constant access, both at home and on the go, with up-to-date job postings.

Given 59% believe they have a better chance of being considered for a job if they apply as soon as the job is posted online, speed and having access to the latest job listings is a top priority for job seekers. Apps are also popular because many company’s career sites are not mobile-optimized, making it difficult to apply to jobs using a mobile device.

Looking for a job is undeniably one of the most stressful hurdles in one’s life. Whether you’re out of a job or not satisfied in your current position, mobile job searching app can definitely make your hunt a little easier.

Here are 6 mobile job search apps every job seeker should know about:

Job AwareJob Aware
JobAware is an app that allows you to search jobs in cities near you and helps you organize and track your progress throughout the job application process. The app also offers salary comparisons for hundreds of occupations, LinkedIn account integration to help you take advantage of your network, and job search advice from top career experts. And that’s not all. There’s also an autofill feature that allows JobAware to automatically fill out job applications, rapidly speeding up the application process. The app also allows you to find the top cities for any job search term or company.This app can be used to search for full-time, part-time, contract, freelance jobs and internships.

Get HiredGetHired
Just enter what you are looking for and getHired will provide job listings from 8 different job search engines (Indeed, CareerJet, JuJu, LinkUp, SimplyHired, CareerBuilder, JobServe and USAJobs.gov) across more than 60 countries.  getHired is like job classifieds on your phone and is extremely easy and simple to use. However, it’s best used to simply search positions while on the go as it is unable to directly submit your resume. getHired is also only available on Windows phones and tablets.

Job CompassJob Compass
JobCompass is the first application on the iPhone or iPad that searches millions of jobs, locating and plotting them on a map showing you exactly where the jobs are in relation to a specific address or zip code. This app in addition to providing job description information, also allows you to apply directly from your phone.

SnagSnagAJob
SnagAJob is a top-ranked search engine for full-time and part-time hourly positions throughout the US. This app allows you to search and apply to over 350,000 jobs across a variety of industries, including restaurant, retail and customer service.

Switch
SwitchSwitch is a new job hunting app that lets you search for a job the same way you’d swipe for a date on Tinder. Switch allows you to quickly browse through available job listings. You swipe right on jobs you’re interested in and left on jobs you want to pass on. Hiring managers do the same on anonymized candidate profiles and when there’s a match both users are notified. However, Switch is currently exclusive to tech, media, and startup companies in NYC.

LinkLink-Up
LinkUp’s unique search engine, updated daily, lists only jobs that are found on company and employer websites. This helps you uncover the hidden job market of opportunities not publicly advertised on the major job search engines. An additional upside is that as positions are filled and company websites are updated so are LinkUp’s job search listings – so no more applying to outdated job postings.

2015 Job Seekers Have the Upper Hand

According to Forbes Magazine, 86% of workers in North America say they plan to actively look for a new job this year and for good reason…the job market has opened up. That means those who stayed in their current job roles for years due to a lack of choices and the security of a paycheck, now have the upper hand.

In fact, The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics just announced that 2014 was the best year for hiring since 1999 and that the unemployment rate fell from 5.8% to 5.6% (employers added 252,000 jobs in December). Better still, 36% of employers plan to increase their full-time staff in 2015, according to a CareerBuilder survey.

What does this mean for you? For the first time in 6 years, the job market is strong.  Job seekers now will find a greater number of opportunities available that will most likely offer better pay.  The hottest industries for hiring are information technology, financial services, manufacturing, and healthcare.

What hasn’t changed are the strategies you need to get noticed and considered for these opportunities. In DRI’s recent blog “Your 2015 Job Search”, I mentioned 8 ways to get noticed. Here’s 6 more strategies for you:

1) Update your resume in ways to capture attention.  You will be especially attractive if you expertise in those hard to fill positions.  Include all your specialty areas on your resume.  Remember to include any quantifiable results you have achieved. For example, if you increased customer retention by 20% over the years, make sure to highlight this accomplishment.  Also, add your social media links especially to LinkedIn so employers can find out more about you.

2) Get insider information.  The best job opportunities never get advertised especially if they’re high level.  You need to network and reach out to people who you know who work at the companies that are of interest to you. If you don’t know an insider, tap into your LinkedIn contacts or try to connect with someone in the know who can help you get considered for open positions.

3) Set up “Google Alerts” for companies of interest to you.  Be in the hiring loop by setting up Google Alerts for 3 to 5 companies at which you would like to work. This way, you’ll be on top of breaking news, job postings and business opportunities long before your competition without having to devote hours to research.

4) Download mobile job apps.  Mobile apps allow job seekers to search discreetly for positions anytime and anywhere and respond to postings quickly. There are apps that help with career planning, organize the job search process, alert job seekers to compatible positions, and can even upload and send resumes to recruiters.

5) Raise your profile and presence.  In and above being active in professional organizations, nominate yourself for speaking opportunities. This will raise your profile and capture the attention of employers.  Also, think about blogging on a regular basis to display your passion and knowledge.  You just may land a new job by being discovered digitally.

6) Be open to recruiters.  If a recruiter contacts you, be open to a discussion. They may be working on an active search that’s right in your wheelhouse and meets most of your “must haves”. But even if it’s not the perfect fit, recruiters also know about other available career opportunities. It doesn’t hurt to entertain a conversation. Also, help out a colleague if you can.  If you pay it forward, one of your colleagues might pay it back at a later date.

Are you among the 86% that are looking to make a job change this year?

I Found the Perfect Job Online. What do I do Now? By Chris Hesson, Guest Blogger, DRI Plastics Division

BLN469_CHRIS HESSON_C WEBYou’ve found it.

After months of browsing online job boards, you finally see that one role that combines your past roles, industry experience and passion.  And…it’s local!

What do you do now?

This is a scenario many job seekers face.  Unfortunately, most take the worst possible next step: they apply online with the same generic resume they have sent out to so many other companies.

This will most certainly ensure that your resume enters the black hole of corporate HR, never to be seen again!

So, what do you do now?

HINT: Do NOT apply!

Step 1: Customize your resume.

Go through the job description bullet-point by bullet-point.  If they are looking for a software developer with ABC experience, your resume should highlight your experience with ABC.

Your resume should mirror the job description.

Similarly, if you have experiences or skill-sets that are not relevant.  Leave them off or at the least keep them few and simple.

Step 2: Network.

Before you submit a resume online or to HR look through your network.  Do you know anyone that works for the company?  Do you know anyone who knows anyone who works for the company?

Do not be afraid to tap your connections for introductions, no matter where they may be within the organization.

For example: If you are interested in an engineering role, but have a 1st or 2nd connection to someone in finance or sales, reach out to them!  They may go golfing with or park next to the engineering manager

If you have no connections into the company, you can always coldly reach out to someone on the sales team.  Sales professionals are great to network with.

REMEMBER:  Networking is a 2-way street.  Yes you have the goal of being able to make inroads within an organization, but try to find out where you may be able to provide value to them as well.  Networking is all about deposits and withdrawals.  You may even be able to return the favor by providing them with a lead!

Step 3: Repeat Step 2!

Connect with multiple people: develop rapport with them, learn about the company’s philosophy and culture, use them to connect you to other people within the organization.

Step 4: Leverage your network.

Use your old or new-found connections to introduce you to the hiring manager (or worst case – HR), or at the very least pass along your resume, and strongly recommend that they reach out to you.

Step 5: Repeat Step 4!

Having multiple people within an organization championing you increases your chances of having that first conversation with your potential new boss!  A job search is like sales: it is all about pipeline.  (Some people choose to focus on pipeline by sending their resumes out to every company hiring.  But I would recommend honing in on those perfect roles and increasing your pipeline towards them).

Step 6: Talk to a recruiter.

Try to find recruiters who have done business with that company before.  Some recruiters highlight who they work with on their website, or you may see that the hiring authority (or multiple people within the company) is/are connected to several recruiters.  Reach out to them.  Tell them that you are interested in connecting with a company they already know about and a position where they may already know the manager!

At the end of the day, nothing will guarantee you an interview, offer, or even a conversation; but increasing your exposure will decrease the odds that you end up in the resume black hole!