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interview

This Is Not Your Parents’ Interview

2020 has been an interesting year, to say the least. “Change” has been a constant and given fact. On a personal level, many people have a hard time with change. We are creatures of habit and like our routines – like our daily Starbucks coffee and breakfast muffin. However, our personal lives are not the only things experiencing change. With travel restrictions, and mandated state-level quarantining and social distancing, on-site interviews have become a challenge for many companies, particularly in the mining industry. Suddenly, this is not your parents’ interview.

As a recruiter in the industry, I immediately noticed a change in interviewing trends: they pretty much stopped. It was a hard push on the breaks, and then, silence. Interviews were canceled or put on hold and hiring temporarily halted. It seemed that companies were not sure how to proceed in the new landscape. 

The Interview Evolution

But then – slowly – phone interviews were scheduled; then video interviews started. While for some companies, video interviewing has been a mainstay in their interviewing portfolio, the mining industry was not one that has embraced it – until now. 

What I am seeing is excitement and total adaptation of video interviewing. I am now hosting video interviews for my clients. I even hired an incredible candidate without the candidate and client ever meeting in person! The scalability of the product and clients’ adaptability to embrace the technology has gotten interviews flowing again.

The change in 2020 has been challenging, but good things have come from those challenges. Life goes on. Clients, candidates, and yes – even recruiters – have risen to the occasion.

I think interviews of old are fading, and a new interview landscape is emerging. Change is good.

Johnson Search Group stays on top of current changing trends in the industry and job market. If you are looking for a new opportunity or need help finding that ideal candidate, reach out and let us help you.

4 Next-Level Tips To Help You Rock Your Video Interview

4 Next-Level Tips To Help You Rock Your Video Interview

With so many professionals working remotely in 2020, hiring processes have changed significantly—one of the most prevalent changes being the migration towards video interviewing. If you are looking to take the next step in your career sometime in the near future, you will likely encounter a video interview. You probably know that you should dress professionally and sit in a quiet, uncluttered room. However, these four tips will help you launch your video interview to the next level.

Prep Some Small Talk

Video interviews are awkward enough without scrambling to throw together small talk on-screen. Oftentimes, a hiring manager will kick off a meeting with “So, how’s it going?” Don’t get caught off guard! It will give you a boost of confidence to have a couple of classic small-talk conversations ready. Even if it’s as simple as a podcast you enjoyed recently, a funny anecdote, or something you’re looking forward to. Pro tip: Do your research on the company ahead of time. Scour their website and social media for any stand-out talking points.

Get Comfortable With Downtime

There will be downtime throughout a video interview, whether it’s due to technical difficulties, interviewer transitions, or while they’re jotting down notes. You mustn’t let these awkward silences throw you off. Embrace a slow period and use that time to prepare for your next question, write down notes yourself, or simply to recenter.

Prepare Situational Examples

Chances are, your interviewer will ask some behavioral interview questions. Your answer should include a recount of past experiences. One of the benefits of video interviewing is that you can prep ahead of time and keep notes right next to you to reference. So, you would be remiss not to brainstorm some of the biggest moments over your career and have them on hand. Think of things like your most significant accomplishment, a time you faced conflict at work, a time you had to work together as a team, etc. For more common behavioral interview questions, check out our post here.

Keep It Candid

With millions of people suddenly thrown into working remotely, we are all in uncharted territory here. And with kids participating in remote learning, animals running rampant, and Amazon delivering limitless packages, there are bound to be some interruptions. Simply be candid about this at the beginning of your interview! Full disclosure is best, and it actually provides an opportunity to show your human side. You do miss out on the face-to-face interaction with a video interview. So, a touch of humanity during a video call allows your interviewer the opportunity to relate to you. Additionally, it helps to break down the professional barrier just a bit.

For more video interviewing tips, head over here and explore the rest of our candidate resources.

hiring process

The 2020 Hiring Process Revolution

This year has forced many, if not all, employers to think outside of the box with their hiring efforts. Over the past six months, I have been extremely impressed with companies rapidly adjusting their interviewing practices to adhere to social distancing and safety protocols. As a recruiter in the mining and heavy industrial industry, I have witnessed my clients create creative new interviewing and onboarding tactics to fill their critical positions. Some companies are more resistant to change than others, but I think the following hiring process innovations will forever change how companies operate.

Phone interviews are no longer an initial screening

While the phone interview has always been an initial screening of candidates, they have become a much more integral part of the hiring process. Phone interviews are essential to determine if the candidate has the skill set needed to be efficient in the role. Gone are the days when a hiring manager or HR professional calls you up to ask you a few basic questions. Phone interviews are now typically the first round of interviews and should be taken as seriously as an in-person interview. Here are a few pointers on how to prepare for these interviews.

Many of my clients that traditionally do onsite interviews at the mining facility or job site have now switched over to phone interviews. My clients and I are even working together to make job offers to candidates over the phone instead of flying them in to tour the facilities. However, for some of the more technical or collaborative team-focused positions, the video or Skype interview can give you a better understanding of the candidate and how they may fit in with the team.

Video interviewing is the new norm

Video interviews have skyrocketed this year. Zoom Meetings, Microsoft Teams, Skype, and even Face Time interviews have become a mainstay in the hiring process. I have found these tools excellent for employers that want to see how a candidate interacts with the team. I still believe the face to face interview is ideal for both candidates and employers, but when circumstances make these interviews difficult, I found these video interviews to be the next best thing.

Onsite interviews during the pandemic

Nothing compares to the good old fashion in-person interview. But getting into the facility has proven more difficult due to health and safety concerns. If you have an onsite interview, you can almost guarantee someone will check your temperature at the door. Also, you will be asked a series of health questions to ensure you are feeling well. Most importantly, don’t forget to wear your mask! When going to a facility to interview, my advice is to follow the company’s safety guidelines. Resistance to safety guidelines can most certainly affect the company’s decision to hire you no matter your qualifications.

Need help navigating this hiring process revolution?

My biggest take away from this year regarding interviews is that clients are still hiring. While processes may have changed, companies are actively interviewing and onboarding qualified candidates. If your company is currently struggling to find candidates to fill your roles, reach out to me. We can work together to streamline your hiring process and get the talent you need today. Or, if you are a job seeker, I have dozens of opportunities that might be a great fit for you!

simplify your hiring process

How to Simplify Your Hiring Process in Today’s Market

Today’s labor market is unlike any market we have witnessed before. The unemployment rate is currently sitting at 11.1%, and the employment-population ratio is 54.6%, meaning nearly half of the U.S. adult population is without work. If your team is hiring right now, there are a ton of stellar candidates on the market looking for new opportunities. However, the best candidates won’t last long and will likely find new employment quickly as more companies continue to restart their hiring efforts. If you want to secure top talent in today’s market, here are a few tips to simplify your hiring process.

Consider contract staffing solutions

Thousands of companies across the country have urgent staffing needs but are skeptical about pulling the trigger. If this is the position your organization is, have you thought about utilizing contractors to supplement these vacant positions? Contract workers are an excellent solution for bringing in talented workers to complete a project or fill an employment gap.

Contractors are flexible – you can hire them for a select time that fits your budget and timeline. So whether that’s three months, six months, or a year, you can hire professionals NOW and keep production moving along. And if you’re happy with their work, you can convert them to a full-time staff member! It’s a win-win.

Don’t be afraid to hire over video calls

If you want to simplify your hiring process, you must be ready to extend a candidate an offer over a video call. Long gone are the days of flying in a candidate for a “final interview” or to “meet the team.” With everything going on in the world, it just isn’t financially feasible or safe. Why spend weeks trying to coordinate a candidate for an on-site interview, clear everyone’s schedules, and put on a big show? Instead, all you have to do is get people to commit to a few minutes for a brief video “meet and greet.” It is much more efficient to coordinate a video interview than a physical in-person meeting.

Many employers out there are hesitant to make this change. However, if you don’t, one of your competitors will. And in the process, they’ll scoop up the talent your team needs just as badly. So, shift your hiring process to make offers over video calls to save both time and money.

Work with a recruiter

The easiest way to simplify your hiring process is to partner with a recruiting firm. You undoubtedly have a lot going on. You are making changes daily to keep up with what’s going on in the labor market and economy. Partner with a recruiter specializing in your industry to streamline your hiring process and attract the best talent. To learn more about how a professional, award-winning recruiting firm can impact your hiring process, reach out to us today.

Hiring insights from industry experts

Hiring Insights From Industry Experts

Interested in more insights on today’s labor market? Hear from some of our industry experts at Johnson Search Group! Hear from two of our best recruiters on how you can take advantage of today’s market.

job interview killers

3 Common Job Interview Killers

With over 44 million Americans filing for unemployment benefits over the last 12 weeks, there will soon be literally millions of workers hitting the job boards. That means, if you’re on the job market, the competition will be heating up for the top positions in your industry. As a result, you cannot afford to make any interview mistakes while on the post-pandemic job market. Here are three common job interview killers that you must avoid at all costs to secure a job in today’s challenging economic climate.

Arriving late or not at all

This is one of the worst job interview killers. If you arrive late or completely ghost your interview completely, it will put a bad taste in the hiring manager or HR professional’s mouth. With so much competition right now, they might simply pass on you for your lack of prudence. We get it; things happen unexpectedly. However, to mitigate this, plan on arriving 15 minutes early. That way, if you run into some unexpected traffic or construction, you will have enough wiggle room to make it on time. And if you’re early, use that spare time to go over the job description, the company’s social media, or their website.

Because of the pandemic, there’s a good chance your interview will be in a virtual format. Ensure your equipment is ready to go, you have a strong internet connection, and that you are in a clean, quiet space. Startup the application early as your interviewers will likely be waiting for you a few minutes early.

If you, unfortunately, have to cancel your interview, call your contact who set up the interview immediately. The sooner you tell your interviewers, the better the outcome will be. Do your best to peg down a new date and do it as quickly as possible.

Failing to answer common interview questions

If you were laid off because of the Coronavirus, you might not have had a job interview in a while. Don’t fret – you just need to shake the rust off! Go over common interview questions and prepare an answer for them. Write your answers out as it will help you remember what you’d like to say (muscle memory!). Read your answers out loud, and it will help you answer these questions in person with confidence.

Here’s a collection of some of the most common interview questions with tips on answering them successfully!

Not armed with a few questions

At the end of almost every job interview, you will be asked, “So, what questions do you have for us?” If you really want to make a good impression, you must come with some questions to ask. Hopefully, as your interview goes on, you will be able to come up with some questions to ask later. However, if your meeting is more conversational, you may have already asked them. That’s why it’s imperative to have questions prepared beforehand.

These can be questions about the role, the company culture or team dynamic, the organization’s volunteering opportunities, or mentorship – the list goes on and on. The important thing is to ask thoughtful, relevant questions to show your interest in the role and the company.

Ready to put your skills to the test?

These are just a few common job interview killers; however, if you take the time to prepare for your interview and arrive punctually, you will be in good shape! If you’re ready to put your skills to the test, check out our job board! We have dozens of exciting job opportunities available across the country.

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.

Job Market Guide for the COVID-19 Crises

Your Job Market Guide for the COVID-19 Crises

Whether you are a job seeker or an employer, now is a trying time for us all. The workplace is looking different for many Americans across the country as they work from home to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Others, are not so lucky, and are, unfortunately, out of work as some states remain in lockdown to keep their citizens safe from the pandemic. This has forced over 30 million hardworking Americans to file for unemployment claims over the last six weeks. This is uncharted waters for the majority of us, and as a result, there are people struggling to make the best of this situation. To help aid both job seekers and hiring managers, we have compiled some helpful resources to help you navigate today’s market. Here’s your job market guide for the COVID-19 crises.

What to do if you’ve been laid off

What to Do If You’ve Been Laid Off

The BLS reported today that another 5.2 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance in the week that ended April 11. So, since mid-March, over 22 million Americans have filed for initial unemployment benefits, shattering the previous record from 2009. If you’re unfortunately one of these millions of hardworking professionals out of work due to COVID-19, it can be discouraging. However, we have a few easy suggestions for you to make the best of a rough situation. Here’s what to do if you’ve been laid off because of the coronavirus pandemic.

How employers are hiring during the COVID-19 pandemic

hiring during the COVID-19

Over the last three weeks, I have had hundreds of conversations with some of my clients and hiring managers. We have discussed their strategy for hiring during the COVID-19 pandemic and how they are weathering this unprecedented storm. Although the impact varies for each company based on their industry and location, they’re falling into one of two camps: it’s either business as usual or they’re pumping the brakes.

How to nail your video interview

Video Interviews May Be The New Norm – Here’s How To Nail Them

The recent global pandemic has changed how we interview and hire, not only during these uncertain times but perhaps forever! As COVID-19 sweeps the globe, employers are finding themselves scrambling to hire essential employees in order to keep their business running smoothly. But with social distancing, stay at home orders, and travel bans, that’s not as easy as it once was. Enter video interviews.

As a result of the increase in remote communication, telecommunication apps such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams have seen increases of up to 500%. All this to say, there’s a good chance that you may have a video interview in your future. And while many of the same principles apply as in-person interviews, there are a few virtual-specific things to note to ensure that you nail your video interview.

The job description that will get you a great candidateThe Job Description That Will Get You A Great Candidate Post COVID-19

Today’s age will make a significant change in how companies recruit and hire employees. In fact, it will probably be easy to look back and see a clear definition of pre-COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 hiring practices. But just because the hiring landscape is changing, doesn’t mean you have to be left behind. Get a head start on the competition by revamping your job descriptions TODAY. Incorporate these three things into your job description to secure top talent in this uncharted hiring territory.

How COVID-19 will shape the future workplace

COVID-19 Will Shape the Future Workplace

There is no disputing that the coronavirus has shaken up the workforce. The viral pandemic has made working from home the new norm for millions of workers. Thousands of employers have been encouraging or mandating employers to work remotely the last two months or so, and with the virus still hitting the labor market hard, working from home may last a few more. As a result, this shift in working environments is going to have a permanent impact even after the virus is no more. Here are three ways COVID-19 will shape the future workplace.

post-covid-19 job interview

The Post-COVID-19 Job Interview

The coronavirus is undoubtedly having a significant impact on the workplace. Millions of Americans are currently working from home and trying to adapt to their new working environment. And while some of these changes are only temporary, this worldwide pandemic is establishing a permanent impact on the interviewing and hiring processes of employers. Here are a few ways the post-COVID-19 job interview will change in the future.

More remote opportunities

Millions of us have been working from home over the last few weeks. Some of us might even continue to work remotely after the virus is no longer a concern. In fact, remote job postings are surging across the country. According to Indeed, searches for remote jobs have over doubled since February. LinkedIn job postings are also seeing this influx in remote opportunities and searches. This trend illustrates that people are currently searching for work from home options, and even after “stay at home” orders conclude, workers will continue to search for opportunities to work remotely. Therefore, if you’re a hiring manager and the position you’re hiring for can be done in a flexible environment, it’s time to start advertising that in your job descriptions.

More video interviews

And while we’re all getting used to hiring for more remote positions, video interviews will increase in popularity post-COVID-19 as well. It’s challenging to schedule group interviews with everyone, especially during the summer months, when many people are out on vacation. Well, now, with technologies like Microsoft Teams and Zoom, it’s no longer necessary to push interviews out weeks at a time to get everyone in the office. And for interviewees, you no longer have to take personal time or leave the office early to rush and make it to an onsite interview. Now, you can quickly jump on a video interview outside of work, or even on your lunch break. Video interviewing will allow companies to conduct interviews in a much more efficient manner.

The end of the handshake?

Handshakes have been a sign of respect and friendly greeting for centuries. But with people across the world being more conscious about their personal space, this customary greeting may be dead. In other words, when you walk into a job interview, the shaking of hands may no longer be the proper and respectful way to introduce yourself. Forgoing a handshake will make other non-verbal cues even more important when going in for an interview in the future.

Faster hiring decisions

Since we can facilitate interviews more efficiently now, hiring decisions will be much more effective. Instead of taking weeks or even months, hiring managers will be able to make decisions quickly because much of the slack will be removed from the hiring process. As an employer, this saves you tons of time and money because your department won’t have to worry as much about the cost of vacancies and loss in production while you wait to onboard new staff members. And as a job seeker, you’ll have the opportunity to start your new job quickly, which makes every worker happy! It’s a win-win situation.

There is no doubt that the post-COVID-19 job interview will look different than a typical interview in the past. But as you can see, that doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing! For more resources on how COVID-19 is shaping the workspace, check out our blog here.

Video Interviews May Be The New Norm – Here’s How To Nail Them

Video Interviews May Be The New Norm – Here’s How To Nail Them

The recent global pandemic has changed how we interview and hire, not only during these uncertain times but perhaps forever! As COVID-19 sweeps the globe, employers are finding themselves scrambling to hire essential employees in order to keep their business running smoothly. But with social distancing, stay at home orders, and travel bans, that’s not as easy as it once was. Enter video interviews.

As a result of the increase in remote communication, telecommunication apps such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams have seen increases of up to 500%. All this to say, there’s a good chance that you may have a video interview in your future. And while many of the same principles apply as in-person interviews, there are a few virtual-specific things to note to ensure that you nail your video interview.

Have a backup plan

We all know technology doesn’t always go the way we plan. There’s a chance that your internet could go down, or your microphone randomly stops working, or your computer might start an update that takes 3 hours to complete. As a precaution, make sure your interviewer knows your cell phone number and that you have your phone next to you just in case!

Set the stage

Before your interview, pick where you’ll sit for the duration of the meeting. Choose somewhere with lots of natural light and a neutral, clean background. Sit in front of your computer and turn your camera on. If you’re using a laptop, tilt your screen so that there is about a hand’s distance between your head and the top of the screen. Check out how everything looks and make adjustments as needed to lighting, what shows on the screen, and positioning. (Pro tip: run a clean microfiber cloth over your camera to get rid of any smudges – you’d be surprised at how dirty those things can get!)

Run a test

The biggest culprit of virtual meeting malfunctions is unchanged settings. It may seem obvious, but make sure your volume is turned up, and your microphone is on. If you can use good quality, discreet headphones, that often produces the best noise-canceling sound. If possible, have a friend run a test run with you! Be sure to use the same software that your interviewer has set up. After all, practice makes perfect!

Dress for success

Just because it’s a video interview doesn’t mean you get to wear pajama bottoms (sorry!). Dress for success from top to bottom. Make sure that none of your outfit elements make too much noise like bracelets or a swishy jacket. Try to limit distracting clothes or accessories, and keep your hair and face neat and clean. Not only will this ensure you look great on camera, but you’ll also feel more confident.

In the end, treat your video interview like you would any other. Be yourself, answer questions thoroughly, and always show your interest in the position and company. Interested in more interview tips? Explore more career resources here!

Video Interview? Here Are 5 Ways You Need To Prepare

Video Interview? Here Are 5 Ways You Need To Prepare

Video Interview? Here Are 5 Ways You Need To Prepare

In this day and age, video interviews are becoming more and more standard practice. As the competition for hiring increases, managers are looking to streamline the hiring process however they can. If you get scheduled for a video interview, don’t fret! Follow these 5 preparation tips and you’ll be well on your way to landing that next step in your career.  

Practice, practice, practice 

One of the most difficult things about a video interview is the propensity for technological issues. From slow internet to software slipups, there are so many tech obstacles that can arise. The best way to head these off is by practicing ahead of time. Make sure you download any necessary software and try to run through a trial connection. Hardwire your computer, if possible. The stronger your connection, the better! 

Prepare like it’s an in-person interview 

A video interview is between a phone interview and an in-person interview. Thus, you should be prepared for anything. Your interviewer may ask some more in-depth questions. One advantage of a video interview is that you can have some quick notes up on your screen.  Just be sure to keep them concise, so you’re not spending the entire interview reading! 

Dress for success 

Just because you’re able to do a video interview from the comfort of your own home, doesn’t mean you’re off the hook. You still need to dress in full professional attire, from head to toe. Stick with neutral colors and plain patterns. Not only will this help you look sharp on screen, but it will also give your confidence a boost! 

Clear the background 

It’s absolutely essential that you have a minimalist background for your video interview. Make sure there’s no clutter and that you are in a professional setting. Interviewers don’t want to see bed pillows behind you! If you can, try to set up in an office or at a kitchen table with tasteful décor. 

Send a thank you note immediately 

This one stands true for all interviews, but is definitely worth repeating! After your video interview, you’ll already be settled at your computer. Take the opportunity to type of a quick thank you note to your interviewer. Don’t forget to include details from your interview that will help set you apart and leave a memorable impression.