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A Good Resume Is Not Enough– Five More Things Job Seekers Need To Land A Job Interview

After hiring for thousands of jobs over 20+ years of recruiting, I have seen many different styles of hiring. Sometimes, a company looks at resumes (submitted in response to a job posting or via a recruiting agency), picks a few candidates to interview and hires one person from that process. This is the traditional job search to which too many job seekers tailor all their job search efforts. However, that traditional hiring process is less and less common.

Companies are strapped for time and hiring power, and looking at stacks of resumes takes a lot of resources. I received over 1,000 resumes for a recent HR Director search. Companies know that some of the best talent is gainfully employed and not responding to job postings or even recruiters, so companies need to change their hiring to attract this desired candidate pool. For the most competitive jobs, I am actively building a candidate pipeline even before an opening is finalized.

The net result is that more companies are not selecting candidates from a stack of resumes, but rather identifying them by other means. Relying only on job postings or recruiting relationships to find job openings will not account for all available jobs. Companies are also vetting candidates earlier in the process, well before the first interview. Assuming you only have to drop a resume to get seriously considered will take you out of the running prematurely.

Having a good resume is not enough for today’s job search. Here are five things job seekers also need to land a job interview:

1 – Back door references

Most companies conduct a reference check before they hire someone. Even if you get a job offer, your offer letter might state that is conditional upon receipt of satisfactory professional references. Many job seekers are familiar with this reference check process and prepared to share a list of past supervisors and other professional references (though job seekers are not as prepared with their references as they could be!).

Back door references are different from this reference check process, in that these references are checked before an offer is decided (sometimes even before a first interview is decided). These references are also not supplied by the candidate, but rather dug up by the employer. For example, you list Company X as a former employer on your resume, and I contact a recruiting friend over at Company X to say, “John Smith was referred to me as someone who’s great at branding, and apparently he worked at your place.

Did he do well there?” This is clearly not an in-depth reference, but it’s a pulse check on whether to go any further. I have been involved with searches where my hiring clients would not move forward with any candidate where we couldn’t get at least one positive back door reference.

How would you fare in a back door reference check? Will former colleagues say positive things about you? Will former colleagues even remember you?

2 – Online profile

Even when I worked with Fortune 500, brand-name employers who had a large candidate database in-house, I still relied on LinkedIn research to identify candidates. Remember that employers love passive candidates who are not necessarily looking. These candidates surface because someone recommends them, they are well-known in their industry or they are found online.

Your online profile is not just your LinkedIn profile. It also is your activity, and everything the comes up when you do an Internet search on your name – media mentions, publications, social media activity. I once saw an executive search almost derailed because an internet search brought up a controversial comment by the candidate on a common online community (think Quora or Reddit). Some employers dig deep into your online activity. In addition, if your job or industry entails online activity – e.g., marketing, technology, media – your own online profile and activity is a reflection of your work.

Have you run an Internet search on yourself? Do you have a Google alert on your name? Is your online profile optimized?

3 – Work sample

Your online profile may already include work samples, such as a website you worked on, a report you wrote or a presentation you delivered. If you don’t want to broadcast these so publicly, you should at least have them readily available upon request. More and more employers are asking for a sample of work related to the job opening at hand.

This is partly to shave off time in the hiring process – by looking at samples in advance, employers can make even more cuts before the interview process. Asking for work samples also differentiates candidates who are willing and able to go the extra step to land the job. Candidates unwilling to provide a work sample might not be that interested in the job. Candidates unable to provide a work sample might not have the experience they claim. Better to find out now before investing any more hiring resources into that candidate.

Do you have tangible samples of your work? If you don’t yet have a portfolio of projects you have worked on, start curating now.

4 – Skills test

For a digital marketing job, candidates were sent two sample emails from a direct response campaign and asked to evaluate which was stronger and why. This gave a window into how they might design a direct response email. For a fundraising role, candidates were asked to write an introduction letter to a large donor asking for a meeting. For an executive role to lead a regional office, candidates were asked for a letter of intent to outline their particular interest in the organization.

Unlike the work sample which is something you have already done, the skills test is something completed during the hiring process and directly related to the job opening. Over the years, I have found more and more companies including a test of some kind. Many companies give a test after an initial phone screen, but some companies start with the test before any interviews. Most of these tests don’t take a lot of time, but similar to the work sample, they are effective in weeding out candidates unwilling or unable to go the extra mile.

How would you fare in a skills test for a job or company you want? Do you have the skills to do the job right now? Career changers, you cannot present like you need to learn on the job (a common mistake that career changers make!). Do you know enough about the company to write a letter of intent or outreach to its key customers?

5 – Recorded interview

Even if a company doesn’t ask for any of the above and jumps right to the interview, it still might not be the person-to-person interview you are expecting, but a recorded interview using an online service, such as Big Interview or InterviewStream. With these online services, companies pre-record screening questions and candidates conduct the interview remotely. While this simulates a first-round interview, it still requires extra work on behalf of the candidate.

Video interviews are not the same as live or phone interviews and require different preparation. You will have to learn how to use the specific technology for whatever interview recording platform the employer decides to use. Like a skills test or work sample, you have an extra step to complete before any chance of meeting someone at the company.

Are you prepared for a recorded video interview? For which jobs and companies are you willing to go the extra step?


Companies are asking for more upfront, and you decline at your peril

I once interviewed a marketing candidate who refused to take an Excel-based marketing test that would have taken less than 15 minutes. She said she was insulted to have to take it given her years of marketing experience, but since she initially asked me to send her the test, I wonder if she didn’t think she would do well. Regardless, she didn’t move forward in the process because my client only wanted to look at candidate resumes, along with their marketing test score.

I once recommended a friend to a consulting job, and the hiring company was using a video interview platform and also asked for a letter of interest and work sample. That’s three extra steps, but none of these were particularly hard or time-consuming. Video interviews typically have fewer than 10 questions, if not five.

A letter of interest is a cover letter but focused on interest for that job and company – you should have a template that can be tweaked in short order. Job seekers should always have work samples. Yet my friend refused to comply, stating that if the company were serious about her they would be willing to consider her on her resume alone.

That’s a dare that could cost her an interview. Yes, extra steps take time, but not that much time if you really know the job and want the company – which is precisely why these extra steps are becoming more common. If you are unwilling to go the extra mile, you may not move forward to the interview process.

Follow me on Twitter or LinkedIn. Check out my website or some of my other work here.

As a longtime recruiter and now career coach, I share career tips from the employer’s perspective. My specialty is career change — how to make a great living doing work that you love. My latest career adventures include running SixFigureStart, Costa Rica FIRE and FBC Films. I am the author of Jump Ship: 10 Steps To Starting A New Career and have coached professionals from Amazon, Goldman Sachs, Google, McKinsey, Tesla, and other leading firms. I teach at Columbia University and created the online courses, “Behind The Scenes In The Hiring Process” and “Making FIRE Possible“. I have appeared as a guest career expert on CNN, CNBC, CBS, FOX Business and other media outlets. In addition to Forbes, I formerly wrote for Money, CNBC and Portfolio.

Source: A Good Resume Is Not Enough– Five More Things Job Seekers Need To Land A Job Interview

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If Your Work Lacks Purpose, Make It More Meaningful Through Job Crafting

We spend the vast majority of our waking hours at work. Given just how much time, energy and effort we expend in our jobs, it’s reasonable to want to hold one that offers us a sense of purpose and meaning.

You should strive to pursue a job or career that offers the chance to be challenged. Pursue work that is meaningful, intellectually challenging and spiritually rewarding. Find a job that enables you to help others, promotes positive change and serves a higher purpose. You want to ensure that your work is aligned with your core values and principles and could possibly make the world a better place.

I understand that these are lofty, aspirational goals. It is rare to find work that offers a sense of purpose. In fact, it’s more likely that your job won’t offer intrinsic, meaningful rewards. You may enjoy the fact that your job is associated with a social status that people find impressive or that it helps you earn a nice living, but somehow, you still feel that something is missing.

If you feel that there is a lack of purpose in your career, you can choose to make a change.

This change does not require you to seek out an entirely new role at a different company, especially given the current job climate. Although the U.S. has record-high employment, the trends that we are seeing play out in hiring now are not conducive to favorable outcomes for prospective job seekers. In fact, badly mistreating job seekers has become commonplace 

Instead of taking grave risks by walking away from your current employer, you can simply make waves by crafting your job to find optimal meaningfulness—the degree of significance an employee believes their work possesses. Job crafting is the process of redefining and reimagining your job design—tasks and relationships assigned to one person in an organization—to foster job satisfaction and bolster employee engagement and performance.

As you aim to redefine your purpose within the company, you should focus on your motives, strengths and passions to help you get there. What energizes you? What exhausts you? To add personal touches to your work, visualize your job, lay out its components and reframe them to better suit you.

You can start your journey with small incremental changes that add up over time. Here is what you should do now to start.

1. Recognize that, with any job, there will be monotonous unglamorous tasks. Even the CEO has to deal with canceled flights, late Ubers and surly underlings.

2. Accept that there will always be a certain percentage of responsibilities that may not change and focus on the things that you do have the power to change.

3. Ask to speak with your boss to discuss your goal of  job crafting, with respect to your responsibilities.

4. Work with your manager to create new responsibilities that provide you with purpose and meaning. Take proactive steps to redesign elements of what you do at work. For example:

  • If you are an accountant, you could suggest starting a unit that caters to charitable organizations.
  • If you are an attorney, you could request to do pro bono work to help immigrants.
  • If you are a stock broker, you could offer discounted advice to parents with college-bound students.

5. Offer to mentor junior staffers, or seek out a manager-level role to unlock your untapped potential.

6. Ask to attend meet-ups for people who are unemployed or seeking work, as you could offer career advice—or maybe you have a job for them.

7. Change your mindset regarding your responsibilities. If you are a janitor at a hospital, for example, try and see yourself in playing a role in curing people’s illnesses.

8. Delegate certain responsibilities that don’t fit your skill set and rob you of your enthusiasm, and ask for assignments that you feel are a better match.

9. If you are at a desk all day long and desire interaction with others, ask about opportunities to get out in front of clients.

10. If you feel overloaded with small tasks that take you away from the more important matters you enjoy, request to shift this work to a more junior-level staffer. You may have mastered your job and require more challenging assignments.

Companies stand to gain a lot by enabling job crafting within an organization. Employees are empowered by being awarded the reins to steer their own careers. Job crafting ensures employee retention and will elevate even the weakest of links by molding tasks to their strengths and passions.

Employees who execute job crafting often end up more engaged and fulfilled in their work lives, achieve higher levels of performance in their companies and obtain unrivaled personal gratification.

You will be viewed in a positive light—seen as engaged, re-energized, loyal and dedicated. Your boss will respect your desire to pursue new meaningful work. In a hot job market, management will welcome a person who desires to stay with the company and improve themselves. You could serve as an example for others to follow, thereby making additional employees feel empowered and dedicated to the company.

Ready for the next challenge? Tune in on August 7 for Day 8.

Miss a challenge? Click here for Day 6: Understand how you fit.

Follow me on Twitter or LinkedIn.

I am a CEO, founder, and executive recruiter at one of the oldest and largest global search firms in my area of expertise, and have personally placed thousands of professionals with top-tier companies over the last 20-plus years. I am passionate about advocating for job seekers. In doing so, I have founded a start-up company, WeCruitr, where our mission is to make the job search more humane and enjoyable. As a proponent of career growth, I am excited to share my insider interviewing tips and career advancement secrets with you in an honest, straightforward, no-nonsense and entertaining manner. My career advice will cover everything you need to know, including helping you decide if you really should seek out a new opportunity, whether you are leaving for the wrong reasons, proven successful interviewing techniques, negotiating a salary and accepting an offer and a real-world understanding of how the hiring process actually works. My articles come from an experienced recruiter’s insider perspective.

Source: If Your Work Lacks Purpose, Make It More Meaningful Through Job Crafting

Here Are The Top 23 Companies To Work From Home

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Do you want to work from home?

Here are 23 companies that consistently offer remote job opportunities.

Remote Work: The Breakdown

Each year, Flexjobs ranks the Top 100 companies that offer remote work. Flexjobs says that 23 companies have ranked in the Top 100 for each of the last six years. These companies offer jobs across several industries, including technology, health care, sales, travel, hospitality, education and training.

When it comes to remote jobs, there are several types to consider:

  • 100% remote work: you always work from home
  • partial remote work: you sometimes work from home
  • option for remote work: you may be able to work from home

Remote work doesn’t necessarily mean you take calls in your pajamas and watch television anytime you don’t have a conference call. You’ll be expected to perform at the same standards of excellence as all your colleagues back at headquarters.

How do you know if a remote job is right for you? There are several criteria to consider:

  • You prefer the flexibility to work from home.
  • You may have children or dependents who require you to be at home.
  • You prefer not to commute to an office.
  • You may be more productive working by yourself.

While allure of working from home may seem appealing, there are issues to consider:

  • You may feel disconnected from the company culture.
  • Your colleagues may perceive that you work less than they do.
  • Your colleagues and team leaders may think you are always available since you “work from home.”
  • You may find collaboration with colleagues to be more challenging.

Top 23 Companies For Remote Work

If you decide that remote work makes sense for you, here are 23 companies that consistently hire for remote jobs and have demonstrated a commitment to workplace flexibility:

1. Appen

Overview: Appen is a technology services company.

Sample Jobs: social media evaluator, search engine evaluator, linguist and voice data collector.


2. Kelly ServicesOverview: Kelly Services has been a leader in workforce and staffing solutions, including remote hiring.

Sample Jobs: technical support representative, contracts specialist, and quality assurance tester.


3. UnitedHealth GroupOverview: The diversified healthcare services provided by UnitedHealth Group encompass insurance, healthcare benefits, and technology-based health services.

Sample Jobs: Medicaid care advocate, data science support engineer and community-based case manager.


4. DellOverview: Dell is a global computer and software company.

Sample Jobs: sales compensation analyst, product specialist and senior systems engineer.


5. BCD TravelOverview: BCD Travel is a global travel management company offering travel consulting and services to companies, organizations and individuals.

Sample Jobs: senior corporate travel consultant, Big Data engineer and financial analyst.


6. AnthemOverview: The healthcare services provided by Anthem reach more than 73 million people across the U.S.

Sample Jobs: network management consultant, behavioral health medical director and provider contract specialist.


7. KaplanOverview: Kaplan is a for-profit educational company offering K-12 programs, online higher education, professional training and test preparation.

Sample Jobs: SAT prep instructor, MCAT prep instructor and ACT prep instructor.


8. SAPOverview: SAP provides a range of enterprise software and services, including data and IT management, to clients worldwide.

Sample Jobs: UX/UI architect, enterprise cloud technical lead and senior customer engagement executive.


9. K12Overview: An online educational company, K12 provides learning programs and solutions for youth in kindergarten through 12th grade.

Sample Jobs: high school Spanish teacher, PE/health teacher and special education paraprofessional.


10. ADPOverview: ADP is a global provider of business outsourcing and human capital management, including human resource and talent management, payroll, tax and benefits administration solutions.

Sample Jobs: senior application developer, talent acquisition sourcer and client relationship manager.


11. HumanaOverview: Nearly 14 million people use the health, wellness, and insurance products offered by Humana, one of the nation’s largest insurance providers.

Sample Jobs: As an employer, Humana recently offered remote jobs such as medical sales representative, mail operations pharmacy technician, and senior pharmacy sales executive.


12. PearsonOverview: An international learning company, Pearson offers content, tools, products, and services for educators and students worldwide.

Sample Jobs: technology adjunct teacher, special ed operations consultant and elementary teacher.


13. VMwareOverview: VMware is a global software company and subsidiary of Dell that specializes in cloud and virtualization software and services.

Sample Jobs: senior systems engineering manager, PSO consultant – cloud and technical project manager.


14. EXLOverview: EXL provides solutions that help companies streamline operations, prepare for change and create opportunities for growth.

Sample Jobs: commercial insurance inspector, pivot auditor and premium auditor.


15. SalesforceOverview: Salesforce is a technology company offering customer relationship platforms and solutions designed to help organizations connect with customers.

Sample Jobs: senior front-end software engineer; account executive (public sector) and strategic account manager.


16. PAREXELOverview: PAREXEL is a global biopharmaceutical services company that serves the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries.

Sample Jobs: clinical research associate, clinical site manager and principal consultant.


17. Grand Canyon University Overview: Grand Canyon University is a faith-based institution of higher learning offering both campus-based and online undergraduate and graduate programs.

Sample Jobs: elementary student teacher supervisor; adjunct instructor, probability and statistics; and adjunct instructor, enterprise security.


18. SodexoOverview: Sodexo is a leading hospitality company that serves markets including sports and leisure, corporate education, healthcare and government organizations.

Sample Jobs: project manager; director, strategic account development; and human resources manager.


19. CVS HealthOverview: One of the nation’s leading healthcare companies, CVS Health manages more than 9,500 pharmacy stores and fills more than 1 billion prescriptions a year.

Sample Jobs: account manager, regional pharmacy auditor and pharmacist/clinical advisor.


20. XeroxOverview: A longtime leader of document technology and business support services, Xerox provides business services and document management products and solutions.

Sample Jobs: Recent job titles at Xerox with remote options include information manager – real estate, production sales specialist and field service technician.


21. Western Governors University – WGUOverview: Western Governors University is a leading accredited online university serving more than 40,000 students nationwide.

Sample Jobs: physical science course instructor, business/accounting evaluation faculty and course instructor – secondary education.


22. American ExpressOverview: American Express is a global financial service company.

Sample Jobs: senior account executive, customer care professional and executive administrative assistant.


23. HD SupplyOverview: HD is a leading wholesale distribution company.

Sample Jobs: field sales representative, installation field project manager and field sales supervisor.

Zack Friedman is Founder & CEO of Make Lemonade, a personal finance comparison site. Read his Forbes columns. Contact Zack for speaking engagements.

Source: Here Are The Top 23 Companies To Work From Home

Five Steps to Improving Online Group Work Assignments | Online Marketing Tools

Online Group Projects — Yikes! You can hear the moans and groans of students echoing through your computer monitors as you start the first week of your online course.

The reasons for requiring a group project vary from one discipline to another, but there are educational and career motives for requiring group projects.

Students will have an opportunity to develop team skills, improve communication skills, and leverage their own personal interests and experiences to contribute to a group project.Read more…

 

Source: Five Steps to Improving Online Group Work Assignments | Online Marketing Tools

 

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