Posts

beef up your resume

3 Ways to Beef Up Your Resume

Are you actively updating your resume or thinking about updating it soon? If so, you’re not alone with 13.6 million people currently unemployed, as of August 2020. If you are out of work and need a new job or just browsing for a better opportunity, now is the time to get that resume in tip-top shape. There is a ton of competition in today’s labor market, and you must ensure your CV is sublime. Here are three different ways to beef up your resume.

Add your achievements and certifications

Many displaced workers have been honing new skills and earning certifications over the last several months. Have you taken any new courses or achieved a certification? If so, add those to your resume! Don’t be afraid to list out all of our skills and achievements in a nice bulleted list on your resume. Most job descriptions tell you what software you need to know or what skill sets they require. So, if you possess those attributes, spell that out right on your resume. It’s one of the easiest and most effective ways to tailor it to each position.

Quantify your accomplishments

Sure, you probably have a bunch of accomplishments displayed on your resume. However, are you quantifying them? You should try to quantify almost every aspect possible on your resume to really hit home your achievements and experiences. Which one of these examples sounds better to you?

  • Responsible for organizing an annual charity event
  • Led a group of eight committee members to promote, plan, and execute our company’s annual charity event that generated $157,000

Clearly, the second statement is much more impactful. Sift through your resume and find points that need to be quantified or ones that could be improved. This process is an excellent way to beef up your resume and make it stand out to hiring managers.

Add your volunteer experience

Another underappreciated addition to your resume is including volunteer experience. Millions of Americans volunteer their time for various causes every year. But during the pandemic, volunteering is up as people have more time on their hands and recognize that non-profits and other organizations are struggling as well. According to LinkedIn, U.S. members have been adding over 110,000 volunteering experiences and activities per month to their profiles over the last year.

However you choose to volunteer your time, be sure to add these experiences to your resume. It speaks truth to your character and illustrates that you decided to give back during a challenging time. Plus, you never know what kind of a bond or conversation you can have with a hiring manager over a similar volunteering experience. This is especially true if you identify that a company you apply to is big on volunteering. This can help demonstrate that you are a culture fit and kick your interview off on the right foot.

elevate your job search

How to Elevate Your Job Search

The tables have finally turned, and employers are now in the drivers seat. For the first time in nearly half a decade, we are no longer in a candidate-driven market. Just a few months ago, job seekers were entertaining multiple offers, demanding larger salaries, and employers were obliged to accept these terms to secure the best talent on the market. Fast forward to today, and the difference in the labor market is stark. As of the end of July, there are over 16 million Americans out of work. If you are one of them or are just looking for a new opportunity, there is a lot of competition out there. If you are looking to elevate your job search, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Make your job search public

The first thing you want to do to elevate your job search is to make it known to the world that you’re looking for a new opportunity! Many people stay in the shadows and fail to let your network know that you are on the hunt for a new job. Head to LinkedIn and tell the world that you are “open to new opportunities.” There’s a feature on LinkedIn that allows you to declare that you are open to new job prospects, and it helps recruiters and hiring managers identify you when they are searching for candidates. Here’s how you can turn on that feature.

Another cool new feature LinkedIn recently added a new profile picture frame that tells the world that you are open to work. This is an easy way to let your network know that you are searching for a new role! If you don’t share with your network that you are looking for work, how are they supposed to know that you need a little help? You might be surprised how much easier your job search can be if you notify your network.

Have you considered a career shift?

Have you been unemployed for weeks and feel like you are hitting a brick wall? If so, you are not alone. Some industries have been hit harder than others over the last few months. If you are in an industry that is struggling to rebound, it may be time to jump ship. That could me just switching from one industry to another or a complete career pivot. This may seem daunting, but it could be an excellent time to make a dramatic career change.

The problem most workers face in this dilemma is deciding what direction to take. Unfortunately, there is no one right answer. However, one thing you should keep in mind is the outlook of the industry you are researching. If you have decided to make a shift, you must make an educated one. Do some digging to see what the outlook is like for a new job or industry that interests you. Need some help? Here are some of the hottest jobs on the market right now with exploding demand.

Enlist the help of a recruiter

One of the smartest ways to elevate your job search is by partnering with a recruiter. A recruiting firm, like Johnson Search Group, can help pair you with new opportunities that you may not find posted on job boards or social media. Recruiters are here to help you take your job search to the next level by finding you a job that matches your skills, background, and career goals. If this sounds like music to your ears, reach out to us today! We have hundreds of job opportunities with employers looking to hired hardworking candidates just like you.

How To Write A Perfect Post-Interview Thank-You

How To Write A Perfect Post-Interview Thank-You Note

Let’s say you just had a great interview. You nailed all of the questions, you clicked with the hiring manager, and best of all, the job is an excellent fit for your skillset. However, the unthinkable occurs, and you never hear back! What gives? Believe it or not, thousands of candidates are thrown in the “reject” pile for one simple reason: they didn’t send a thank-you note.

While this gesture may seem small and maybe even antiquated, it could be the one thing that sets you apart from dozens of other interviewees. In fact, 57% of job candidates don’t send thank-you notes. So it may be just the thing to help you stand out. And if it’s that important, you want to write one that will knock it out of the park, right? Just follow these guidelines, and you’ll be well on your way to a post-interview thank-you note that just may seal the deal.

Be Timely

It is essential that you send your thank-you note within 24 hours. Ideally, you would send it the same day as your interview and even better if you send one within 1 or 2 hours. You want your email to hit the hiring manager’s inbox when you are still fresh in their minds. That way, they can make a positive association between your interview, your graciousness, and the fact that you’re on top of the ball.

Keep It Short

Hiring Managers have a ton on their plates. As much as they appreciate a thank-you note, they do not want to read a novel! A few short sentences should do the trick. Any longer and you risk them skipping over it entirely. 

Customize It

Your thank-you note should be customized to the person you interviewed with. (Yes, that means if you had a group interview, you need to send separate emails!) So, try to reference specific points from your meeting. You can elaborate on an idea, refer to a personal commonality, or even just share a moment that really resonated with you.

BONUS: Here’s a template for a great post-interview thank-you note:

Hi {Hiring Manager’s Name},

Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me today. It was great to learn more about {Company Name}, and the {Job Title} position. I was particularly intrigued by {new campaign, aspect of the job, or fact about the company mentioned during the interview}. The possibility of joining the {Company Name} team and assisting you in making an impact is very exciting.

I look forward to hearing from you regarding the next steps in the hiring process. Please let me know if I can provide any additional information.

Have a great weekend,

{Your Name}

Looking for more interviewing and job-search advice? Explore our candidate resources!

Are Cover Letters Dead?

Are Cover Letters Dead?

You probably clicked on this article hoping we would say that cover letters are no longer relevant to the modern job search. Unfortunately, that just isn’t true. And if you believe they are unimportant and don’t put any effort into crafting a thoughtful cover letter, you miss out on a huge opportunity. A cover letter is a platform to sell yourself. It’s a chance to explain your qualifications, share your passion for the job to which you are applying, and show a bit of your personality. So, even though cover letters aren’t dead, they don’t have to make you miserable! Here’s how to write a cover letter with as little pain as possible.

Create An Outline

Yes, you need to customize your cover letter to every single job. However, if you have a great outline to start with, customizing it is a breeze! Here’s a good start:

1. Introduction Paragraph

Use the introduction to do just that, introduce yourself! Launch into your elevator pitch with a strong hook. It’s the perfect opportunity to explain why you are applying for this particular job with this exact company.

2. Body Paragraphs

In one or two body paragraphs, describe your skills in experiences in detail and how they relate to this position. We recommend pulling a couple of requirements from the job description that are in your wheelhouse and expanding on your experience with them. Only discuss your most relevant positions and skills in your cover letter.

3. Closing Paragraph

Your closing paragraph is the perfect place to tie everything together and wrap it up neatly. Reiterate your passion for your career, qualifications, and why you want to work for this company. You can also use this spot to address any possible concerns. If you are relocating, want to explain a gap in employment, or re-emphasize any specific qualifications, do it towards the end. However, always be sure to end on a strong, positive note!

Make Connections

Take the job description and print it out. Then, highlight the requirements that you have and can explain in-depth throughout your cover letter. This will help to give you direction as you start to fill your outline with content.

Run A Grammar Check

Even if you’re writing in a program like Microsoft Word with a spell check built-in, you need to call in reinforcements. We love to use Grammarly to check the grammar and flow of a document. You can also recruit a friend or family member to read over your cover letter and look for any possible slip-ups!

There is no denying that cover letters are a lot of work. However, if that is what makes the difference between landing a job or not, how could you skip it?! Even if the job application says cover letters are optional, we recommend whipping one up to set yourself apart.

Now that you’re an expert on cover letters, let’s refresh that resume!

Jobs with the Most Demand in July

The Jobs with the Most Demand in July

Despite surging COVID-19 cases across the country, hiring is picking back up for many employers. Last month, the Labor Department reported +4.8 million job gains and a steep decline in the unemployment rate. However, many people are asking where these job gains are coming from. According to a recent LinkedIn report, many of these job gains are deriving from essential workers. Openings for some of the most critical roles more than doubled from June to July. Here is a brief breakdown of the jobs with the most demand in July.

The need for essential workers is surging

So, what is an essential worker? An essential worker is those who must be physically present at their job to keep society running smoothly. Demand for these hardworking individuals has been steadily increasing over the last few weeks as more employers begin to slowly re-open.

According to LinkedIn, below are the jobs with the fastest growing demand based on month-over-month increases in job posts:

  1. Driver
  2. Software Architect
  3. Cook
  4. Nurse
  5. Customer Service Specialist
  6. Home Health Nurse
  7. Site Reliability Engineer 
  8. Stock Clerk
  9. General Manager
  10. Architect 

Globally, retail and travel/recreational industries saw the most significant boost in job posts. LinkedIn reports that these sectors experienced declines in previous months, so this is an excellent indication of the global recovery from the pandemic.

Jobs with the Most Demand in July

Moreover, the following list is the top ten jobs that are the most in-demand this month:

  1. Salesperson
  2. Registered Nurse
  3. Food Delivery Driver
  4. Store Associate
  5. Software Engineer
  6. Driver
  7. Project Manager
  8. Store Clerk
  9. Certified Nursing Assistant
  10. Licensed Practical Nurse

Some of these jobs were in high demand pre-pandemic; however, the need for some has skyrocketed because of COVID-19. Some of these roles are obvious. The healthcare sector has been one of the largest growing industries for several years now, and the Coronavirus has only boosted this rush. RNs, nursing assistants, and nurse practitioners have been on the rise for years and are one of our recruiting specialties.

Food delivery drivers and personal shoppers, for example, are seeing a massive spike as thousands of people try to limit their exposure. Instacart, probably the most popular personal shopping company, just rose another $100 million in fundraising to expand its services.

These are just a few of the roles that are seeing explosive demand this month. If you are searching for a new job and need a little help, look no further. We have dozens of jobs available with employers across the nation. Partner with a JSG recruiter today to start the next phase of your career.

Working With A Recruiter

What’s it Like Working with A Recruiter

If you’re contemplating a career change or currently looking for a new job, it can be overwhelming. Do you want to make a lateral change and find a company with a better culture or perks (such as working from home)? Or are you looking to shift your career in a different direction? Wherever you land on this spectrum, this is no easy feat. But there is one thing that can improve your job search, regardless of your newfound career goals: working with a recruiter. Here’s what it is like working with a recruiter.

More available job opportunities

Working with a reputable recruiting firm unlocks the door for hundreds of job opportunities you won’t find on traditional job boards. Many of the roles recruiters work on are exclusive jobs, so you likely won’t find them floating around online. Thus, working with a recruiter will allow you to expand your opportunities, and possibly, find the job of your dreams that you otherwise would have never seen!

So, whether you are looking for a contract assignment or a direct-hire job, partnering with a recruiter will take your job search to the next level.

Recruiter have great relationships

Recruiters work hard to establish strong relationships and communication with their clients. We take the time to truly understand our clients’ needs and the type of candidates that will fit their organization. However, through these relationships we have built, we can better serve job seekers like yourself. If you are working with a recruiter, we will submit yours directly to the hiring manager. We give them an overview of your skills, background, and achievements, so they know how great you are right off the bet. Essentially, instead of your resume getting thrown on a digital stack with your competition, we make sure your resume gets in the hands of the hiring manager. That instantly boosts the likelihood of you receiving an interview!

You have someone in your corner

When you are in the middle of the job search, it kind of feels like no man’s land. You are not sure what’s going on throughout the process and constantly waiting for the next step. However, when working with a recruiter, you have someone in your corner to guide you through the entire hiring process. If you have a question about what’s next, they will be right there to answer it and assist you each step of the way. If the client’s hiring process is slow, it’s your recruiter’s job to reach out and see what’s going on and nudge them in the right direction.

When hiccups occur along the way, they work hard to resolve them. All you have to do is bring your A-game to your interviews and the rest is smooth sailing. Working with a recruiter is basically having an ally walk you through the process. They care about your success and want you to receive an offer just as bad as you do.

Ready to partner with a recruiter and kick your job search up a notch? Johnson Search Group has a team of recruiters ready to assist you with finding your next career path. Check out our job board, and let’s get to work!

5 Tips For Getting A Job Through A Recruiter

5 Tips For Getting A Job Through A Recruiter

If you’re looking to take the next step in your career, you may want to consider a helping hand from a recruiter. Partnering with a recruiting firm to find your next job opens a whole world of options. We have strong relationships with hiring managers, and often recruit on jobs that aren’t even listed online! Additionally, we’ve helped thousands of candidates find positions throughout North America in dozens of different industries. However, we understand it can be intimidating! Here are five tips that will help you establish a relationship and land your next job with a recruiter.

1. Do Your Research

It is important to understand that not all recruiters are the same. When you put your career in someone else’s hands, it must be someone you trust. Research their company. Browse their online presence – website, social media, and LinkedIn profile. During your initial conversations with them, ask questions! Find out how many years of experience they have, what kind of tools their company uses, and their strategy for placing candidates.

2. Be Honest

Unfortunately, recruiters are lied to all the time. People are hesitant to share how much money they currently make, whether they are interviewing with other companies, or even if they have applied to certain companies before. Being dishonest about these things can only hurt you! Trust us when we say, your recruiter WANTS you to get the job! They WANT you to get the highest salary possible! Being truthful about anything and everything during the hiring process is absolutely essential to establishing a stable relationship and getting a job that will truly be a great fit.

3. Be Quick

Time is money in the recruiting world. When a company is trying to fill an essential role, they want to do so as quickly as possible. And if they’re working with multiple recruiters, they probably have a couple of great candidates in the mix. Being timely with your callbacks, resume submission, and interviewing scheduling could be the one thing that sets you apart from your competition.

4. Trust Their Expertise

Because you’ve done your research, you should feel confident in your recruiter’s ability and judgment. Great recruiters are continually reading the latest news in the job market and industries they specialize in. They are experts in local costs of living and competitive salaries. So, it’s essential that you trust them and the advice they give you throughout your job search journey.

5. Keep In Touch

Even if you don’t get a job through your recruiter now, you need to stay in touch! Let them know if you get a different position. Having an ongoing relationship with a connected recruiter can only bring opportunity to your door. If they have no jobs that would be a fit now, you never know what may come up across their desk tomorrow. And if you do land a job through your recruiter, give us any updates. We love the success stories! We want to know when you accomplish a massive project or get a promotion. We’ll continue to celebrate your wins for years to come.

Ready to get started? Contact one of our Recruiters today!

 

Red Flags To Look For During Your Job Search

Red Flags To Look For During Your Job Search

There are a few things you want to watch out when you’re on the hunt for a new job. While red flags don’t have to be deal-breakers, they are simply things you should pay attention to and thoughtfully consider throughout the hiring process. Take note of these three things as you search for your next position, and you’ll be more likely to end up in a fulfilling job that meets your expectations.

Bad Reviews

Please read this carefully. Just because a company has a few less than stellar reviews does not mean they are a bad company. However, sites like Glassdoor do offer a glimpse into what it may be like to work there. When you’re reading reviews, simply take everything with a grain of salt. Look for reviews that are fair and balanced and cover positives as well as negatives. Typically, the more in-depth the review, the more thoughtful it is.

If you do see reviews that are concerning, don’t be afraid to bring them up. If you’re working with a third-party recruiter, they can address it with their client. You can also mention it during your interview to gain further insight. Hopefully, the interviewer will address it head-on, including steps taken to either fix the issue or stop it from happening in the future.

A Mismatch In Priorities

Now, we understand that a perfect job situation doesn’t exist. You will more than likely have to compromise some of the items on your “dream job” wishlist. Thus, it is essential to understand your non-negotiables. What are the perks or company culture factors that you must have? Additionally, you want to have a grasp on your desires that aren’t necessarily deal-breakers but would be something you’d consider when taking a new job. If you find yourself having to compromise TOO much, you won’t be happy in the long run.

Your Interview Is Short

When it comes time to interview, your interviewer should want to know everything about you. Is your experience a good fit for the job? Would your personality be a good culture fit? A thorough list of thoughtful questions indicates that the interviewer is not only interested in you, but also finding the right person for this job. A disengaged interviewer is either not interested in hiring you, or merely trying to fill a spot with a body. Of course, there are exceptions. Sometimes an interview is simply to confirm what they already knew – you’re perfect for the job! Just be sure to pay attention to the tone and pick up on cues – both verbal and non-verbal – throughout your meeting.

ultimate guide to references

The Ultimate Guide to References

Believe it or not, there is a lot involved with crafting an excellent group of professional references. If you’re one of the 40+ million workers unfortunately out of work because of the coronavirus, you may be preparing to hit the job market as cities, counties, and even states begin to open back up. So, while you’re sprucing up your resume, updating your LinkedIn profile, and searching the job boards, don’t forget to rebuild your references! Here is the ultimate guide to references, so you have them ready to go when you need them most.

Who to add as a reference

When it comes to assembling your group of references, you must take your time and pick carefully. These are the people that are going to help you seal the deal and get that new job you’ve worked your tail off to get! You can’t just ask anyone – you want to ask professionals that will stick their necks out for you and give you a good recommendation.

Pick former managers, co-workers, colleagues, or even workers that reported to you as a professional reference. If you’re fresh out of school, you can list a professor that you worked with closely.

Always ask for permission

Whoever you decide to add, ensure you ask for their permission beforehand. It’s crucial to ask them for permission and give them a heads up before submitting their contact details to a potential employer. The last thing you want to do is catch a reference off guard when instead, they should be expecting a call or email from a hiring manager or HR professional. Don’t just notify them; give them a brief overview of the job you are applying for, so they know how to tailor their answers. Essentially, coach them a bit on how you would like them to answer any questions.

While you reach out to your contacts, ensure their contact details and titles/employers are current on your list to make sure you are providing the correct information!

What to include on your list of references

You cannot just throw a handful of professional references on a sheet of paper and submit them. You have to organize them neatly and add a little context to each reference. Include:

  • The references name
  • Current job and position
  • Company
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • And a brief description of the reference explaining your relationship and how you worked together in the past

Don’t forget to put your name and contact information at the top, too! You would be surprised by how many people forget to do that.

When to submit them

Typically, you only need to submit a reference list at the end of the interviewing process. If you are working with a recruiter from Johnson Search Group, we will take care of this for you. Send us your list of references, and we will do the rest. We will submit them on your behalf (with your permission, of course) at the appropriate time. We often even reach out to them on behalf of our clients to help the process move along seamlessly.

Hopefully, this ultimate guide to references is helpful in your job search. If you’re on the market for a new job, check out our job board. We have dozens of exciting opportunities across the nation with employers that are looking to hire great candidates like you quickly.

job search must-knows during the pandemic

Job Search Must-Knows During The Pandemic

If you’re currently searching for a new job because you have been laid off or simply want to jump to the next step in your career, the job market right now is looking murky. Many employers are still hiring, but how you manage your job search may be a little different right now. Here are the job search must-knows during the pandemic and a few tips on how to secure your new opportunity.

Prepare for a video interview

If you’re actively searching for a new job during the pandemic, you must prepare for the possibility of a video interview. Even as states are beginning to open back up, video interviews are becoming the new norm. They are easier to schedule, allow for more flexibility for both parties, and are safer during the Coronavirus outbreak.

But just because your interviewers are becoming virtual doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prepare the same way! Do your due diligence on the company and have a good understanding of the job description. Write down some questions to ask your interviewers and dress for success. The only thing that changes is ensuring you have the right space and technology for your video interview. Here is a guide we created to help you ace any video interview.

Don’t forget to do a practice call beforehand! Technology is great when it works.

Don’t be afraid to follow up

We are still in unchartered territory. Companies are busy trying to shuffle their budgets, adjust their second-quarter goals, and address their staffing needs. All of which may be facilitated remotely. In other words, some companies are still trying to shift their processes, and communication might fall off sometimes. If you had an interview and haven’t heard back in a while, don’t be afraid to ask for an update. Send a brief follow-up email to the hiring manager or HR professional you interviewed with and give them a soft nudge.

Here is a template email you can use from career expert Professor Heather Austin:

Partner with a recruiter

If you really want to make a splash in your job search during the COVID-19 pandemic, partner with a recruiter. Working with a recruiting firm that specializes in your industry can dramatically boost your job search results. At Johnson Search Group, we are hard at work to help pair our clients with the best candidates on the market. Reach out to us today, and we can help you navigate this tricky job market.