Blasting your resume will hurt your job search

1 04 2011

You can ask any recruiter, internal or external, if they have a list of candidates who they know by name and will “NEVER CONSIDER FOR ANY OPPORTUNITY” and I’m sure they will tell you they have a list. Our firm has a list of candidates we by heart who apply for every opportunity we post. I’m not sure how they do it but it seems as though they have a program written to apply every time there is an update on our career page. These candidates will never be submitted for any position that I am working on.

Just think about it for a minute. Today’s recruiters are able to store every resume that is ever presented to them. They can then go and conduct a key word search for each job that they are working on, thus producing a list of candidates who may be qualified for the position. If they have your resume then they will call you if you are a match. If not, they will not waste your time.

I suggest limiting your submissions to every 6 months with any company. This is enough time most companies will assume that you have found a new opportunity and would only reapply if you were still looking.

Aside from annoying your potential employer, you are also sending a message that you are not willing to fully read the job descriptions that they have posted, so why should they read your resume. There is no one person who is ideal for every opportunity within any company. While I’m confident there are some CEO’s who could do any job within their company well, there is no way that they would work for the pay offered at each position.

Your resume submission is your first opportunity to meet a company. Make sure that it’s a meaningful conversation and you are only asking for a meeting to discuss a position that you are truly ideal for. Blasting our resume will only help the recruiter recognize your name and associate it with the “Not Interested” stack of resumes in their trashcan.

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Should your LinkedIn profile say you’re a consultant?

27 03 2011

There are a lot of people out there looking for opportunities. Many experienced professionals take consulting assignments in order to pay the bills or keep them active in the industry. This is great and many consultants end up receiving job offers from the companies they work for upon completion of their assignments. Others do well and gain valuable experience that builds their resumes and contributes to landing future positions.

What I often notice as I browse LinkedIn profiles is many people in this situation post their current roles and place “Consultant” in the job title. Unless you are a true consultant who wishes to jump from company to company working on special projects do not put Consultant as your job title on LinkedIn. I suggest using the title that would be assigned to the role that you are filling. I’m in no way suggesting that you be at all misleading. I feel that you should include the fact that you are in a temporary role in the details for your position.

My reason for not using the word “Consultant” in your title is that it’s directly going against your reason for updating your profile, assuming you are looking for future full-time employment, is that when staffing professionals search for you on LinkedIn they will often assume that you are seeking future consulting roles.

As with most web-based searches there are weighted elements that are used for quantifying results. In the case of LinkedIn job title is the most heavily weighted. To prove this try doing a LinkedIn search for someone with your exact job title and I’ll bet that you’ll come up in your search. Further evidence can be seen when you conduct a search and your result yields profiles of people who have only included job titles in their profiles. Surely, with over 8,000,000 LinkedIn profiles, your key words would come up in thousands of completely filled out profiles, yet people with job titles matching your search always come up.

If you want to get hired you must think like the people looking to hire. How will they search for you? What words will they choose to find people doing what you want to be doing? Once you’ve thought about it take a second look at the job titles in your profile.

I’d love to hear your opinions regarding this and other post on this blog.





Are you speed dating or job hunting?

13 01 2011

Speed dating rarely results in long term relationships. How many of us have heard a married couple answer, “Oh, we met at a speed dating night down at the bar”, when asked how they met? Not many of us, I would imagine. With internet sites becoming extremely successful for matching ideal couples and the old tried and true method of old school dating the success rates are much greater. The reason is that the later methods take time establishing the needs of both parties involved and allow each party to get the sense of overall compatibility.

I like to think of the job search as the dating process. While some things are purely chance success if generally a result or an initial compatibility along with communication, effort, and compromise from both parties. If you think of your career search like you do dating, or did for those of us that are already married, you’ll find it much easier to stay focused in your search, gain more from interviews you attend, and ultimately have better results.

RESUME: Asking someone out on the first date

You approach needs to be suitable to match what the other person is looking for… you have to be dressed properly and be able to project yourself as a person worth spending time with. All this must be projected in a quick and to the point way, usually on the first attempt.

PHONE SCREEN:The first Date
This is a meeting that doesn’t take too much work on the part of either party. Both parties have said yes, I”m open to the possibility of investing time in this person. This is where both people typically try to only talk about the positives but sometimes, previous dating experiences, why past relationships didn’t work and so on. Both parties typically end with something like, That was fun we should talk again, regardless of actual intent to follow through.

IN PERSON INTERVIEW: Dating for the long term
This is the moment that we’ve all waited for. A meaning full sacrifice by both parties to go out of their way to spend meaningful time together. You really find out if it’s worth going on or should you break up and and look for a more suitable partner that better matches your needs and who’s current situation and future plans are similar to yours.

OFFER STAGE: Engagement
This is the stage where you decide that you are in it for the long run. You are dedicated to moving forward because you have seen everyone else who’s out there and you are confident enough you’ve found the right person. You then go to the jewelery store to pick out a ring. This decision is based on a lot of factors. Tradition is often taken into consideration (industry standard pay) along with Budget, Payment Options (benefits), and a few other things. You also have to take into consideration how desperately you want this person to say yes. If this person says no, will it crush you or do you think you can find another person who’s a better fit given enough time. If you don’t think you can replace the person you always buy a little bit nicer ring than you can really afford to help seal the deal.

There is always a budget for salary (the ring). This budget can sway sometimes in either direction for many reasons. The Dating (Interviewing Process) is you chance to ask important questions. Make sure you, as a hiring manger or potential employee, get the answers you are looking for throughout the process as well as share with your potential partner. If the answers aren’t going in the right direction take a step back and if they are “deal breakers” walk away in a professional manor.


FIRST DAY OF WORK: Wedding Day.

While you may think that the marriage is the acceptance of the offer, like engagements, we all know runaway brides. The first day of work if the first time you are officially married and you can update your LinkedIn or Facebook status with the great news of your new job. Like marriage each and every day after is based on communication, effort, reward, compromise, loyalty, along with all of the typical requirements to make a solid long lasting relationship.





LinkedIn Groups, Are you using them to your advantage?

27 10 2010

Some people may ask me if my blog is about recruiting of LinkedIn because of my numerous mentions of the great professional social networking giant. This is because LinkedIn is an essential tool for giving you the edge in the job search. Today I’d like to discuss LinkedIn groups and what you may or may not know about them.

LinkedIn Groups are all joined by networkers voluntarily. This means that everyone in any given group is there because they choose to be and are interested in the subject mater of that group. This means that each and every member is in some way connected to the subject mater in some way, thus having a vested interest in preserving the group and its’ goals.

As we all know the value of LinkedIn is based on being connected to people, and more importantly, the right people. The groups feature on LinkedIn is the most effective way to connect with the people that matter to you. The importance of groups is that when you join a group you are given the option to accept messages from other group members even if they are not connected to you in any other way. LinkedIn sets the default option to accept messages. This is great because most people will not deselect this option. Meaning you can search members of the group and send them messages directly without them approving an invite, introduction, or using a valuable InMail.

There are two ways to join a group. You can be invited because someone in the group thinks that your expertise would be an asset to the group. You can also submit a request to join. Some groups allow you open membership where a group owner is not required to accept invitations. Many groups will require the group owner to review your profile and manually approve your membership.

Now that we know how you get in groups and some of the value in being in a group there are some other things you should know about LinkedIn groups. The single most important thing is that you NEED TO BE A MEMBER OF 50 GROUPS at all times. By having membership in 50 groups you get the most out of your LinkedIn account. You always have to remember that the more people that you are connected to, the more potential you have to be noticed by others as well as notice opportunities posted by members of your network, which includes group members.

I would like to mention one last point. Use care in choosing your groups. LinkedIn lets you view the membership numbers of each group prior to joining. You always want to be in the largest group, granting you connections with the most people. Also, use different search terms when searching for a group. For example if you are a scientist working on an Oncology projects within the Biotech or Pharmaceutical industry and you are seeking new opportunities try, Biotechnology Jobs, Biotechnology Careers, Biotech Jobs, Biotech Careers, Pharmaceutical, Biotech, Medical Device, Careers, Jobs, and so on. For a majority of these examples you may even see one of my groups “Oncology Jobs In Biotech and Pharmaceuticals”.

Best of luck and enjoy your groups!





You’ve just been told you’re being laid off! …. Now What?

14 10 2010

It’s very unfortunate to hear that you are going to be laid off. This has been heard by so many in the last few years including myself.

If you are fortunate enough to work for a larger company most of them have support systems in place to assist you in your efforts to seek out a new opportunity. Some of these resources include contracted specialist that will help you prepare your resume, assist in providing you with job search training, and even council you on your career path on issues such as training and ways to utilize your skills in a manor that will open doors to other industries. If you are blessed enough to have these benefits offered take advantage of them. I’ve seen many people gain knowledge and find opportunities as a direct result of these benefits.

If you are not fortunate enough to have these types of benefits you must be proactive on your own. I’ve heard from candidates who follow rumors that many employees will be placed in other departments or if they hold out on unemployment long enough the company will bring them back. Don’t count on this happening.

You must start your search immediately. If your employer invites you back you can always accept and go back to work. If you employer offers you an opportunity in another department you can always accept and go back to work. If they don’t you will be that far behind the competition.

I’ve also heard a lot of candidates who say, “Well, they gave me a nice severance package and so I wanted to take a month off and enjoy myself.” Don’t fall into this trap. One of the first questions that will be asked by any HR professionals is to explain gaps in employment. Although you may have a good excuse it’s not going to look as good as you working consistently and your excuse will be taken as just that, AN EXCUSE.

Gaps in employment are difficult to overcome and to move past. Most employers look at gaps in employment as a huge weakness. One month is easily explained if it only happened once. I have seek candidates who were great candidates aside from gaps in employment be turned down for the interview based on not working.

It may be obvious that the first thing to do when you are told you are out of a job is to look for your next gig, but so many times people don’t get motivated to move forward. This is the single most important thing to do. So when you as asked, now what are you going to do, say “I’m starting my job search right now”





RSS feeds save time in your job search

14 10 2010

To search for opportunities takes a lot of effort. It’s highly unlikely that you will find a job very quickly in the current job climate. The way I see it is that there are only a few ways to learn of new opportunities.

1. Directly visiting target companies websites to see if new jobs are posted
2. Visiting Job boards
3. Social networking to learn of new opportunities
4. Directly contacted by a recruiter who wants to present a job.

In a recent poll that I conducted on LinkedIn a majority of the respondents indicated that they found their current role through a direct application to the company. So, the question comes, “How do I learn about these jobs so I can apply directly to the company?” Looking at the above list of options the only ones that you have significant control over are the first three, with number 3 depending a lot on chance and who you know or are connected to right now.

The first two choices both require diligence on the part of the job seeker. Weather you decide to check the job boards hourly, daily, or weekly is often associated with the amount of time you have and how desperate you are to find your next opportunity.

This is where I’ll be focusing today. I suggest you set up RSS feeds to alert you on daily activity in the job field. Most major employers permit you to subscribe to an RSS feed for their currently open opportunities. All of the major job boards allow you to conduct a keyword search and then subscribe to a search specific job feed. You can then have all of the jobs come directly to you rather than visiting each and every company or job board periodically.

There are numerous ways to check your feeds. If you have a smart phone just conduct a quick search in your application market and you will be given several options for RSS feeds. If you don’t have a smart phone you can always use the computer and countless methods to follow your feeds.

I haven’t gone into great detail about RSS feeds because I’m confident that a simple internet search will be more effective in locating information from more tech savvy professionals than myself. I just thought that I would present another option to help you in your career search.





2 Great FREE job search Apps for your Android Phone

25 09 2010

If you are in your job search or just interested in keeping up with opportunities in your industry or geographic area I have two great FREE apps for your android phone that will help you keep up with opportunities.

Job Search Hire*A*Droid (Bostone Consulting)

This application lets you set your search criteria and search 5 major general job boards used by employers across the country.  While this application doesn’t send alerts to your phone when new jobs are posted it’s a great way spend a few moments a day making sure you aren’t missing your dream job.  With this application you can scroll through LinkUp, Beyond, Simply Hired, Indeed, and CareerBuilder with one query.  I would expect more job boards to be added in the future!

Craigslist (BuzzBox Inc.)

Craigslist is one of the nation’s leading job boards.  It’s free to search and the regional approach that Craigslist uses makes it ideal for job searching.  While some of you will think that craigslist is limited to sales and personals ads you will be surprised if you have never checked out their jobs search.  You will find jobs at all levels on craigslist.  Employers love it because in most areas it’s Free for them to post jobs.  With the Craigslist app for your android phone you can set up alerts to let you know the moment a new job is posted meeting your search criteria.  The craigslist application is not limited to job search functions.  It will also let you keep up on the latest ad posted for anything that you can think of.  Don’t ever miss a great craigslist deal again!

I’m confident that the iPhone has similar apps, if not identical to the ones mentioned here.  There may also be some other valuable apps out there for your search.  If you know of any please let me know and I’ll share them with everyone.