Posts tagged StartWire
Posts tagged StartWire
If you have never received unemployment benefits, you may not be aware that all 50 states require most claimants to maintain a weekly record of their work search to remain eligible for unemployment benefits. The specifics vary slightly by state, but you generally need to record where and when you have applied and the results of your application. This can be a great way to stay organized and remain motivated in your work search, but it can also present significant challenges.
We talk to job seekers all the time, and one of the biggest complaints during the job search from StartWire users who are unemployed is a concern about completing the work search records required by state unemployment offices.
Everyone wants to find work, but even after applying to numerous positions it can still be difficult to adequately complete a work search record. On the surface, work search reporting might seem like a simple requirement and for many it is, but for some it can become a daunting challenge. Why? In order to verify the work search records, many states require contact information for employers that includes a phone number. In some states, such as Montana, the name and contact information of the hiring manager is required.
When looking at online job postings, this information can be hard to come by. Job seekers are often unsure who will be viewing their application, and don’t know what contact information to put down. Today, we’d like to provide you with a few of our favorite strategies for finding this information. We hope it will make your life easier, and allow you to spend more time finding a job and less time worrying about your work search record.
Where to find contact information for those listings (even if the name and phone number isn’t listed in the job description)
· Google. (We recommend searching company name, city, and “human resources” or HR – you should find a name in the search results)
· Superpages (www.superpages.com), this site is an online phone directory. Try searching the White Pages by company name. You will at least get the main phone line for the company.
· The company voice mail directory. (If you don’t want to talk, call at night and access the departmental directory – once you get transferred to a voicemail, you’ll also frequently get a name.)
· LinkedIn.com (Use the Company pages feature to see employees at a company. Connect your StartWire account to LinkedIn and any related connections to your account will be recommended to you automatically.)
Just a quick reminder - StartWire is not certified to provide legal counsel on these matters, and cannot guarantee that these strategies will provide you with adequate information for your work search record. If you have questions related to your unemployment benefit eligibility status, or creating a work search record that meets your state’s requirements, we urge you to contact your state unemployment office. These are simply suggestions based on our experience to aid you in finding information in your work search.
Use these resources and take heart – we’ve got another new tool coming your way very soon — it should help ease the pain of keeping and submitting these records!
At StartWire, we like to address the pesky problems in job search and unemployment that many sweep under the rug. Here are two of the big problems we’ve already tackled.
StartWire provides a way to get updated on the status of your job search at over 7,000 companies.
We’ve streamlined our job listings to only show you jobs that have been posted within the last two weeks.
For the next few weeks, we’re going to pull the rug up, and talk about areas of job search that are rarely discussed—the process of living and searching for work while on unemployment. We’ll be talking about how to deal with unemployment and the unemployment benefits process, with the goal of addressing challenges and issues not often addressed.
You finally got that coveted interview, and you’re excited about the position and company, but now what?
Despite given the green flag to interview for the position, remember that there is a reason they call it an “interview”. You will need to prove that the job should be yours. The confidence you need to approach the interview is realizing that there is a reason they want you for an interview. Your resume and skills seem promising to them, and there is a high chance that they find you the best match for the position. Now you need to take this assumption on their part, and turn it into a concrete belief.
So how do you make this happen?
1. Be Human
The term “Interview” stands for a discussion, meeting, a DIALOGUE. The most important step is to have a dialogue with the employer. People mistakenly see the interview as a one-way conversation where the employer asks the questions, and the interviewee needs to respond with the “right” answers.
Instead, it’s enlightening to realize that the employer is another person—a very human person who enjoys a good conversation like any other person. When they interview a prospective candidate, they want to see that the candidate is personable and relatable. The interview will be looked back on in a brighter light if the conversation was less about answering questions and more about forming a connection between two people.
2. Research and Prepare
Interviews are like exams. If you walk into an exam unprepared, the chances of failing the exam increase. Similarly, you need to study for an interview as well.
First, do any basic research on the company. What industry are they in? Are there any recent press releases or news related to the company? This may be a great talking point with the interviewer.
Next, your job is to figure out what type of interview will be conducted. By knowing what to expect, you can refine skills suited for that interview type.
Different types of interviews:
· Behavioral Interview- This interview type gauges how you react to or “behave” in situations and will ask you for “real life” examples.
· Case Interview- This interview tests your problem-solving skills and employers want to see how you’ll rationalize and think through a problem.
· Group Interview- The group interview is designed to see how you interact with others, and your ability to make your input heard in a group setting.
· Lunch and Dinner Interview- These interviews show the employer how a candidate behaves in a social setting, and whether they can maintain their professionalism over lunch/dinner. Mainly, these interviews gauge whether you are qualified to hold lunch or dinners with future clients.
· Public Interview- This interview is more casual, but shows the employer how you react in a public setting.
· Panel/Committee Interview- This interview type involves being interviewed by more than one interviewer. There may or may not be other candidates simultaneously being interviewed in the same room. This interview is designed to test your group management and group presentation skills.
· Stress Interview-The stress interview shows the employer how you react under stressful situations. The employer will deliberately react in ways to test how you respond or recover.
After prepping for the appropriate interview type, don’t forget to find out an important piece of information—directions to the interview room!
3. Be Confident, Smile
You can’t convince the employer to be confident in your abilities if you aren’t confident in yourself. Know that every person is different, and your own unique experiences offer something promising to their plate of candidates. Take your strong points, and let them shine.
Hold your head up, smile, and be yourself. Walk into that interview room confident because you have exactly what it takes to make that job yours.
Like dating, interviewing for jobs is a ritual in which there are often unspoken social conventions. On both first dates and interviews: appearances are important, the topic of money is generally taboo, and conversation matters – since the larger issue is always “do we want to spend more time together?” and there’s often an unspoken (short) time frame in which the decision is being made.
In short, the stakes are high.
Here are five strategies you can use to prepare for interviews and ensure that you are putting your best foot forward for the job.
1. When invited to interview, ask for details:
Who, what and where will you be meeting? (Just as it’s important to know how to dress for a date, you want a sense of how to get your game up for an interview.)
If you have more than one interview appointment, ask for information and a schedule of who you will meet with and when? This will help you prepare – and provide clues on what’s most important for the job. If, for example, you’re meeting with a team leader for an hour and a CEO for 15 minutes – it’s likely you’d be working more closely with the team leader if you get the job offer. (So you may want to study up on the team leader – check out his or her LinkedIn profile before you head into the interview.)
Make sure you confirm the address and location. If the interview requires driving more than 100 miles, air or train travel, you may want to ask (politely) about whether or not you will be reimbursed for the travel.
Success Tip: Plan your travel arrangements to accommodate any potential scheduling challenges – make sure you can be there at least 30 minutes in advance if travel over public transit or crowded roadways are required. It’s bad form to show up late for a first date; it could cost you a job to show up late for a first interview.
2. Print out and bring extra copies of your resume – and review the job description.
In interviewing as in dating, you always want to be prepared to take an alternative road if the conversation veers in a direction you hadn’t expected. Just as your date may know your long lost cousin, your interviewer may ask you about skills or experience that don’t align with the job title!
Don’t assume the same person who you are interviewing with is the same person that recommended you be invited to interview. Often human resources staff members take care of advance work for hiring managers: Hiring managers may have different perspectives on what’s needed most in the position than HR does, an aspect of the job description that hasn’t come up before may be important to the hiring manager
If you sit down for the interview and the person you are meeting with doesn’t have a copy of your resume, offer to provide them with one on the spot.
3. Anticipate the questions you’ll be asked.
One of the greatest differences between dating and interviewing is the balance of power: While both the job candidate and the interviewer get to make a decision about fit, the interviewer often has more power because they often have a greater number of other potential candidates to consider! (In dating, you are each making the same decision.)
To make sure you interview well, study up on what you may be asked in advance of the hiring process!
Check out Glassdoor.com, a site that provides employee reviews, salary information, and actual interview questions asked by companies.
If you haven’t worked in the type of job that you’re interviewing for before, find a friend (or friend through friends) who does that type of work and inquire about the most important skills and qualities required for the job.
Research the employer as if you are researching an important purchase – check out the company website, take note of any news releases or announcements, compare the website of the company where you are interviewing with other companies in the same field. Understanding the differences between the company you are applying for and competitors in the field, can help you understand challenges or concerns your interviewers may have in mind. Doing your research will better prepare you to demonstrate an understanding of their problems, and how you can help.
4. Be prepared to be as interested as you are interesting.
No matter how one-sided the process feels, interviewing is always a two-way street in dating and job search: you pick your employer and your employer picks you just as you pick who you want to date and they pick you,
Employers at world-renowned companies face the same challenges as some single celebrities do: They want to be with people who want to be with them as they are – not just because of their fame and fortune.
One of the greatest challenges employers face is hiring employees that truly want to work for them – they want to know you’re interested. In fact, they are more likely to hire you if they think it’s quite possible you will say yes when offered the job.
Never go to a job interview without a full list of questions you can ask in the interview. All of the questions should demonstrate your interest in working for the company. Example: If hired for this job, how would I work with you to get work done – and what would my first priority be on the job.
5. Practice your best poker face – and prepare to address any lemons in your background.
In dating as in job search, we often seek out new opportunities because the last experience was less than perfect or ideal. Most people have something in their resume they’d rather not talk about – an unexplained gap in employment, a short period of time, a “former boss” not willing to serve as a reference, etc.
If you’ve been invited in for the interview, chances are good that the interviewing committee may ask you about it – and how you respond will potentially influence whether or not you get the job offer.
A good way to handle questions on awkward topics is to avoid using any adjectives or negative tone of voice. When someone asks you a challenging question, don’t say, “Here’s the stinky situation I was in. My boss was out to get me.” Say “Here’s what happened” and describe only what can be seen: Example, last year the company brought in a new supervisor from Finland. He reorganized the department by cutting 15 jobs and redistributing the workload to 5 people. I left shortly after that happened; I’m told he left two months ago.” Note: This approach works well in both interviews and dates! Just like no first date likes to hear you trash your ex, potential employers don’t need to hear the emotional details of a previous job gone wrong. Stick to the necessary facts and don’t let old resentment ruin a good first impression.
Prepare for the interview using these tips and you’ll be well positioned to receive top consideration for the role.
Want to leave with an even stronger impression? Follow up quickly with a custom thank you email to each participant. Just as you’d thank a good first date for a nice time and you’d like to see them again; it’s important to let your interviewer know that you appreciated the time they took to speak with you and you’re interested in the position. If you have information on their job titles, include a sentence or two that shows you are thinking about how you would interact with them on the job. This is a great opportunity to revisit any particular topics you may not have nailed in the interview — example: You asked my opinion about X; here’s a more complete answer to your question.
If you don’t have email addresses for each participant, Google *@companyname.com — this will show you how companies assign email addresses — you can figure it out from there.
Don’t forget the blind spot — think about whether you want the job the same way you’d decide whether or not to have a second date. Make sure you want it! You may be so focused on answering their questions that you don’t take time to assess whether or not the job is a fit. If you receive an offer — and still haven’t figured out whether the job is a fit or met all the players in person, you can always ask for a second date before you accept!
You’ve done your job search homework. You’ve adopted the 5 Habits of an Effective Job Seeker. It’s time to reap the rewards of your hard work and move on to the next step – the phone interview.
To help get you through this crucial step, today we’re sharing three simple must-do steps to prepare for the phone interview.
1. Put the right phone number on your resume and in your contact information. This is not just a correct phone number, but the best number for a potential employer to call. Make sure you think it through.
Because many employers call – rather than e-mail – to set up a phone interview, you want to make sure that you use a phone number on your resume where you can be reached – and that will reflect well on you.
Choosing the right number to list on your resume can be tricky:
If you are currently employed, never list your work phone number on your resume. Even if the best place to reach you is at work, the impression you will leave is that you are comfortable using your current employer’s resources to look for a job – and that doesn’t sit well with most hiring managers.
Only list your cell number if you experience good reception at least 90% of the time. That sounded like an interesting job but I couldn’t hear what it was through all the static.
Landlines can be great as the reception is always clear, but coach anyone in your household on the way you’d like them to handle a call from a potential employer for you. If a child regularly answers your phone, you may want to use a different number.
Alternative option: Create a Google Voice number that will ring where – and when – you tell it to.
2. Invite people to leave you a voice mail.
You know how it important it is to look good on paper; you also need a great greeting for your voice mail.
If an employer calls you and receives a generic “this party is not available right now – please leave a message” response, they may wonder if they have the right number and choose not to leave a message at all.
Create a simple message with your first and last name. Invite people to leave their contact information, and – ideally – give a window of when they can expect a response.
“Hi, this is Jane Clarke. I’m not available right now, but please leave me your name, phone number, and your email address and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours. Thanks for calling!”
Make sure your message is clear and that your tone sounds friendly and professional.
3. When the phone rings, don’t be afraid to say you can’t talk.
Even if a hiring manager says, “this isn’t an interview” – all phone conversations are part of the hiring process, and many “first conversations” are also the last.
If you’re in an active job search, don’t answer calls from strangers in sports arenas, bars, or other crowded venues. As soon as you say hello, you need to be able to respond in “hire me” mode – and if you’re not in a position to do this, you need to postpone.
It’s always okay to say, “I’m not in a quiet place right now, can we set up a time to speak?” Make sure you have a pen and paper close at hand to get the details down. Even if your iPhone is amazing, you should never put your potential interviewer on hold so that you can take down details while you are talking!
Give folks the right number, convey your professionalism on the other end of the line, and put our upcoming tips for phone interviews to work – and you’ll be all set to start talking about how you can do the job!
Our 5 part series on “The 5 Habits of Effective Job Seekers” aims to shed light on 5 important habits that will help job seekers become more effective in their job search. Ultimately, StartWire is a tool you can use to adapt these habits.
So to conclude our 5 part series, we’re spending some time on the question: How does StartWire work?
For those who want a better understanding of what StartWire offers, we compiled a visually appealing and easy way to grasp StartWire’s cool functions!
TWO: Visual Organization
We know that combing through jobs after jobs to find good matches can be very time consuming. So we make this process easier for you by providing actual recommendations! We base these recommendations from positions you’ve applied to and previous positions you’ve searched for.
FIVE: Networking help
We’re here as a service to all of you job seekers. Let us know your thoughts, opinions, and how we can help you anytime you want. Feel free to have a dialogue or join us on Facebook or Twitter. We love talking to you! (And figuring out how we can ease your job search process!) -The StartWire Team
And the fifth habit of highly effective job seekers is (drumroll please)… they use StartWire. Naturally, we say this tongue-in-cheek, as StartWire hosted this series – but we also mean it: We designed StartWire to help you streamline your job search and get found.
Habits by nature are tough to form without structure – research shows that – on average – it takes anywhere from 21 days to 66 days for a habit to become routine. And – as we all know, it’s harder to form a habit without also having the support to make it easy to put that habit into place.
StartWire was designed and built from the ground up – with the intention of providing job seekers with the support they need to form good habits. Here’s a quick overview of how you can use StartWire’s free tools to get support in each of these areas:
Habit #1: Don’t Post & Pray
Apply to jobs that you are qualified for – and seek out a way to get referred or recommended for every job that you apply to. (Don’t apply for lots of jobs and then sit back and wait for the phone to ring.)
The StartWire fix:
Share your information on what you want to do and where you want to work, and StartWire will send you job leads by e-mail through StartWire’s Job Search Planner. And check out our tips on the best way to make sure employers read your resume.
Habit #2: Apply Early
To get to the front of the interviewing line, apply early– or as soon as you see a job opening. (In our study of 6,600 hires –50% of successful applicants applied within one week of the time the job was posted.)
The StartWire fix:
Apply to jobs listed on StartWire. All of the jobs we post on our site have been advertised within the past two weeks.
Habit #3: Get Referred
Your chances of getting hired for a job go up exponentially if you can get a referral in for the job. To get recommended, seek out connections inside the company – and make sure you ask for help privately.
The StartWire fix:
Connect your LinkedIn and Facebook accounts to StartWire and you’ll see icons of friends and connections when you look at jobs. To request a referral from any of these connections, click on the “Get referral” tab inside StartWire. Then follow the links to send a confidential request for an introduction – we even pre-populate your request for assistance. Your invitation will be received – and you can all rest assured that no trace of your request will be posted on the “wall” of any social network. (Need to get a referral from a “friend you haven’t met yet?” Check out these tips.)
Habit #4: Get Found
You can get called to interview for a job even if you haven’t applied. Thousands of employers search for resumes with the right skills everyday.
The StartWire fix: Share your resume with StartWire and we will distribute it to employers on your behalf. To optimize your chance of success, follow these tips to help employers find you.
Habit #5: Let us know how we can help!
Do you have additional suggestions on tools you can use to organize your job search? Share your ideas today, we regularly upgrade StartWire to include user suggestions: startwire.uservoice.com
Put these 5 Habits to Work and let us know how they work for you! We look forward to celebrating your success…
Don’t have a StartWire account yet? Sign up now. It’s free and takes less than five minutes.
We’re at the last part of our 5 part series on “The 5 Habits of Effective Job Seekers”!
The aim of this concluding part of our series is to tie together all the habits we’ve uncovered together in the past weeks. To refresh, the habits of effective job seekers are:
1) They Don’t Post and Pray
2) They Apply Early
3) They Get Referred
4) They Get Found
5) They Make Use of America’s #1 Job Search Organizer
Now that we know the habits necessary for effective job seekers, the important question to ponder is what then does StartWire do to help job seekers adopt and practice these habits (this is the StartWire blog after all!)?
StartWire does in fact offer solutions to these problems. StartWire was built from ground up to make the process of job search more manageable, less stressful and, of course, more effective! What this means is, for each of the habits that we’ve talked about, StartWire has resources in place to help you adopt the habits of an effective job seeker. Some of you may not be aware of all that you can do with StartWire, so we wanted to take some time to highlight how StartWire can help you with these specific and effective habits.
We’re more than just advice here at StartWire News - we’re constantly working to build and improve tools that can help you execute on the advice we give.
This week, we’re on tip #4 of our 5 Habits of Effective Job Seekers: They get found.
There’s a lot of talk right now about social media and how many employers use LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook to find and connect with job seekers. While social media is a great place to meet employers, it’s important not to neglect other places employers go to seek out great talent. And one of the places employers go to look is job boards that have resume databases. So today, we’re spotlighting job boards and the reason why so many companies still use them to find talent.
Why? When a company needs to hire an employee “right now,” they may not take the time to advertise widely. They may also be looking for a specific skill that isn’t easy to find.
And one of the best tried and true places to find those skills is a database of resumes. When you stop by a job board, you may search for jobs. But when employers login to job boards, they search for resumes. And when they find the resume they want, they follow up directly with the candidate.
They don’t have to jump through hoops, they just get in touch. Bottom line: Resume databases help employers make hires.
Want to get found this way? Yesterday we shared some basic tips for formatting your resume. Here are three additional things you can do to increase the likelihood of getting found.
That’s all there is to it. Try it out, and let us know how this works for you!
It’s week four of our 5 part series on “The 5 Habits of Effective Job Seeker”!
The fourth habit of effective job seekers is: They Get Found!
What does that mean? 80% of companies are now searching resume databases to find their next hire.
With many applicants applying with unqualified credentials, employers offset this by turning the search around. Instead, employers are doing the searching. Knowing this, what can you do? Take the initiative to be found.
The benefit of posting your resume online is the increase in eyes that your resume will be receiving! Instead of sending your resume to a specific number of job postings and restricting your resume to be read by the HR manager behind those postings, posting your resume onto a job board allows a larger pool of employers to review your resume. Do make sure your resume is in the right databases by searching for and placing your resume in job boards that cater to your industry, function, or geography.
A quick tip to posting your resume online: format it to be posted online.
Follow us throughout this week for more tips on getting found!
Earlier this week, we shared strategies to avoid four mistakes job seekers commonly make when asking for a referral. Today, we’re sharing information on ways you can ask for that referral — even when you don’t have a direct contact.
A final note: Apply for the job and follow-up – even if you have a referral.Here’s a secret not often shared: Employers can’t call you a candidate until you’ve submitted a formal application. If you get referred in, but haven’t formally applied – many HR offices may delay or hold up the process – until the paperwork is submitted. So go ahead and apply for the job, even if you’re assured it’s “just a formality.”
Make yourself easy to hire, and it will be easier for everyone to recommend you – and extend an offer.
This week we’re focusing on Habit #3 of our series on the “Five Habits of Effective Job Seekers”: They get referred.
As we mentioned yesterday, a referral can increase your chances of getting hired by up to 300% – that’s an easy way to increase your odds of having a shorter job search. You’re also more likely to have a happier landing: On average, people who are referred for positions through employee referral programs stay longer in the job once they are hired – in fact they are 3.5 times less likely to be terminated.
Just as you can exponentially increase your chances of getting a job with a referral, you can kill your chances if you play your cards wrong. Here are four common mistakes job seekers make when asking for a referral – and how to avoid them.
1. Asking someone you don’t know to refer you – without introducing yourself or establishing common ground.
Ever gotten a message that says “Because you are a person I trust, I’d like to add you to my LinkedIn network” from a person you’ve never met?
Don’t ask to be referred into any job this way: it will likely only result in a weak recommendation. Many years ago, a private citizen asked U.S. President ______________ if he could recommend him. The result, a short letter that essentially said nothing at all: “I recommend this young man for whatever job YOU think he is qualified for.”
A better approach? Express interest in the other person. Get to know them. Share interests. Ask later – when you have a relationship.
2. Not letting a referral know you are using their name. Many job applications have a referral box you can select if you have an inside connection.
If you check the box but don’t let your connection know you’ve applied, they may be caught off guard – and may not be able to speak to your strengths. They may also be annoyed with you for not sharing information.
Bottom line: Tell anyone who has offered to help you in a job search that you’ve applied – before you give their name out as a referral and point of contact.
3. Not educating the person who’s offered to help you.
While getting a referral can help ensure your resume gets read, it doesn’t guarantee you’ll make the interview list. If someone’s offered to vouch for you by serving as a referral, make sure they have a copy of your most recent resume – and know why you’d be a good fit for the job you’ve applied for.
4. Asking for a referral from someone who would not recommend you.
Never list anyone as a source of referral if you’re unsure as to whether they would actually recommend you.
As the late Ambassador – and founder of TV Guide – Walter Annenberg once said, “It’s not who you know…it’s who knows you back that matters.”
Are you currently in the job market or know someone who is? Check out our webinar on the 5 Habits of Highly Effective Job Seekers, a StartWire exclusive presented by our CEO Chris Forman. Last week, we focused on Habit #1: “Don’t post and pray.”
This week we’re talking about Habit #2 - “Apply early.” It’s more important than you might think. A StartWire survey of over 6,600 successful job seekers across ten industries revealed a stat that startled me: A majority of job seekers who got hired applied early – 50% applied within a week of a job being listed, and 75% within three weeks. The earlier you apply, the better chance you have of getting full consideration for the position.
The importance of applying early is a dirty little secret you rarely hear discussed in job search forums – and by employers: Many companies don’t make a second review of job applications after they’ve made their first “short list” of who to interview for a job. The reason? Most recruiters at large companies hire for 20 or more jobs at one time. If you’ve got a short list of good applicants, you don’t spend time going back through the queue after you’ve got the interview process started. It’s second nature to recruiters and hiring managers to focus on the batch of applicants that have applied first – and the ones that have come recommended.
Fortunately, it’s relatively easy to land on this short list – you just need to apply early. Here are five easy ways to make sure you know about and respond to openings as soon as – or before – they are listed. (No inside track required.)
1. Find out about new jobs before they are listed.
Pay attention to the business news in the location where you want to work. Economic development agencies, politicians, and your local Chamber of Commerce often tout new job openings and anticipated hiring by companies positioned to grow. Want to be among the first to know? Attend public meetings, pay attention to local news, and look for announcements that contain information about jobs, funding, and tax breaks – all are harbingers of potential job openings.
2. Talk to an Admissions officer for your local community college – even if you don’t have any intention of signing up for classes.
Why? Local companies that are growing fast and have specific hiring needs often partner with community colleges to create training programs and offer courses to potential and current employees. Admissions officers are generally knowledgeable about these opportunities – and can share with you names of companies who have training initiatives with the school. Once you know who’s hiring, you can follow up with the company and let them know how you learned about them. (Note: This works even if you don’t have the skills a company is training new employees for since most companies hire for multiple positions at any given time.)
3. Create a pathway for leads with friends and former colleagues.
Be specific about your skills but open to hearing about jobs from multiple organizations. If you say “I’m interested in Marketing Manager positions at these five companies,” you may not come “top of mind” if there’s an opening at a company not at your short list or a job with the same exact title. But if you share your interests and a success story or two of work you’ve enjoyed doing before, you may be at the “tip of the tongue” when someone you know is asked, “Do you know anyone who could?”
4. Sign up for job alerts to receive information about when new jobs are listed.
Many job sites have a feature that notifies you when new jobs that match your career interests and locations are posted to the site; StartWire now only lists jobs that have been posted within two weeks – and send job alerts on new listings.
5. Be ready to pounce when you hear of an opening.
Have an up-to-date resume with an opening summary that provides an overview of your experience. When you see a listing, customize the bullets in your resume to show how your experience matches the job – then send the resume in and apply. Once your resume and cover letter are ready, you can apply for the job in approximately eight minutes. How easy is that?
We’re excited to announce the release of a new webinar, The Five Habits of Effective Job Seekers hosted by our CEO, Chris Forman. Prior to co-founding StartWire, Chris and our EVP Tim spent years developing training programs that teach recruiters how to find candidates and job seekers. The technologies Chris and Tim worked on are now used by 70% of the Fortune 500. We’d call them job search rock stars, but they are humble guys and won’t let us!
You can watch the webinar here for free, but for the next five weeks we’re going to give you a crash course in all of the five tips. Each week we’ll focus in on one of Chris’s five habits – and expand that with easy takeaways you can use in your job search.
Sound good? Let’s get rolling!
Habit #1 of Highly Effective Job Seekers: They don’t post and pray!
What, you say, is “post and pray?” It’s applying to jobs online and then putting your feet up and waiting to hear back.
Our tough love: Don’t confuse applying for jobs with searching for a job. Only 20% of all corporate vacancies are filled through listings on job boards…
If you apply to a job and do nothing else – it’s a little bit like taking a raffle ticket and then not showing up for the live drawing: In reality, there’s a slim chance you’re going to get a call back – because the interview list is often filled with applicants who’ve taken additional steps to make sure they get full consideration.
We’re not telling you not to apply for jobs online – you don’t want to miss out on opportunities. But when you do, we want you to lean forward and be proactive so that you can get the call back! Here’s how to do that.
Why? If your skills don’t line up with the job, you have a slim chance of getting on the interview list – unless you’ve got an inside recommendation for the job from someone who knows you could do the job.
Additional tip: Don’t apply for more than two types of jobs with one company. If you apply for jobs in Marketing, Accounting and Customer Service at the same company at the same time – it makes you look like you aren’t focused. If you apply for more than one job, specify what makes you interested – and qualified — for each job in your cover letter.
I. Like the company on Facebook, then send a message letting them know you’ve applied
II. See if the company has a Twitter account for recruiting, and send a Twitter @reply letting them know you’ve applied and expressing interest in working more.
III. Call and follow-up. If you’re shy, do this at night or over the weekend. You can almost always find a general company phone number online, use the company directory to find the right department or person – and leave a short message introducing yourself and letting them know you’ve applied. (Mess up and need to re-record? Most corporate systems will give you a do-over if you press the * or # key)
Bonus points: Mention the top skill or experience you have that aligns closely with the job when you follow up.
Studies show that up to 90% of recruiters admit to doing online research on job search candidates: you should expect to be Googled.
If you are in the job market, know what search results will come up if an employer searches for your name. A great way to make sure your professional interests can be found is to develop a public LinkedIn profile.
Create a formal phone message with your first and last name. “Hi, this is _______. I’m not available right now, but leave me a message and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.”
Following these five simple steps can help you transition from “post and pray” to the top of the application pile for the jobs listed online. But remember – job boards are only one piece of the puzzle. We’ll be sharing strategies that can get you faster results for your time in weeks ahead.
Tune in next week when we’ll share with you the number one reason why you may not be hearing back on jobs – and the simple thing you can do to change that! (If you can’t wait, check out our webinar.)
At StartWire, we read every email we get from users. And many of our users have asked us questions about social networking and using StartWire with LinkedIn – especially since we take a slightly different approach to sharing information than other sites do.
You can connect to StartWire and get suggestions on friends who can help you in your job search, but you’ll never see this information posted on your Facebook wall or in a list of LinkedIn status updates.
Why? We’re all about privacy – and think you should get to decide who you want to share with – and where you want to share it. The only messages sent to people you know through StartWire are the messages you have asked us to send.
That said, we love helping our users find great job leads…and want to make it easy for you. So we offer you the option to sign into your StartWire account through LinkedIn or Facebook Connect. And here – this week – are seven of our favorite tips you can use to optimize your presence on LinkedIn.
1. Get Connected with People Who Can Get You the Job
Referrals are the #1 way employers prefer to hire someone they don’t know already.
LinkedIn’s Advanced Search function can help you seek out people and companies you are interested in working with – and get information on how you’re connected.
Want a faster, free way to find contacts?
Sign into your StartWire account through LinkedIn Connect. Search for jobs in StartWire – and you’ll automatically see your connections for each job.
2. Tongue Tied? Get Tips from Others with Similar Experience
Not sure how to write up your most recent job or summarize your work experience? Check out profiles of former colleagues and others with similar work experience. If their results show up in a search, they’ve used the right keywords – and a profile review may give you a few ideas on how to present your own skills and experiences
It’s never okay to copy someone’s work – but it is okay to use it for inspiration and ideas.
3. Make new friends who share your interests.
LinkedIn has thousands of groups; you can search them by interests and location. Try joining at least five groups and participate in discussions where appropriate. It can help you make new connections, showcase your expertise, and keep you in learning mode.
4. Share your skills so that others can find them.
LinkedIn has a relatively new feature that allows you to list your Skills. These skills are searchable by employers and other users – and provide information on how many other LinkedIn users have similar skills. This is a great way to see other people who share your interests – and showcase any unique talents you have.
To add Skills, use LinkedIn’s More Menu.
5. Reserve – and share your own Profile URL. It’s a polite way to network.
LinkedIn gives all users the opportunity to create a public profile URL; you can use this to direct people to your LinkedIn profile. Add this URL to your business card or email signature and people can use it to connect with you later. It’s an elegant solution to share your information without sending a resume when you find yourself asking “should I or shouldn’t I send a resume?”
To get a public profile, use the “Edit Profile” features in LinkedIn and use the option to customize your public profile URL.
The option to customize your profile is at the end of the profile box.
If your name’s not available, use your middle initial, location or profession – example AlexanderHamiltonNY or AlexanderHamiltonCPA.
6. Complete your profile. All of it. It will help you reach employers.
LinkedIn says it’s 40 times more likely that you’ll come up in a search if you complete all of your profile. 86% of employers who use social media for recruiting use LinkedIn as a tool to find potential candidates for jobs.
So fill it all out – unless you don’t want to be contacted! (Worried about what your employer will say? You don’t have to say you are looking for a job, just share your interests and talk about what you like about what you do.)
7. Get remembered with a smile.
Ever been out on a date with someone who only wanted to talk about one person – them? Did you want to go out or connect again?
Don’t make the one mistake thousands of LinkedIn users make every day and send a generic invite to connect on LinkedIn “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.”
Instead, have a conversation. If you know someone, say hi. Ask how they are? If you don’t – explain why you’re reaching out. It will help you build a relationship – and relationships will help you land a great job.
Want more tips like this in the future? Drop us a note on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!