• Leading Businesses Launch Training Initiative to Prepare U.S. College Students and Young Professionals for the Workforce

    October 29, 2010 by

    Today, Business Roundtable and HR Policy Association announced the release of JobSTART101: Smart Tips and Real-World Training, an online course for college students and recent graduates that introduces the professional skills necessary to succeed in the workplace. Even in a time of soaring unemployment, a survey revealed that 61 percent of U.S. employers report difficulty in finding qualified workers to fill vacancies at their companies. JobSTART101 addresses the gap between employers’ needs and workers’ skills by helping students understand the real-life challenges and expectations of the workplace.

    The United States needs a well-equipped workforce that is prepared for the challenges of today’s job market. However, many college graduates do not have an opportunity to learn what employers expect and have not developed the professional skills that will help them succeed after they are hired.

    “While our nation remains focused on job creation, it’s equally important to focus on ensuring that our workforce has the skills and training needed to succeed in today’s economy. Business leaders are concerned that many entry-level employees lack the communication and analytical skills that are necessary for sustained job success,” said William D. Green, Chairman and CEO of Accenture and Chairman of Business Roundtable’s Education, Innovation and Workforce Initiative. “JobSTART101 helps prepare new employees meet the challenges of the job market which is essential to building a competitive workforce.”

    JobSTART101 is a first-of-its-kind course that’s free and available to college students and recent graduates nationwide. The course includes interactive components such as videos and course workbooks that cover topics ranging from how to communicate and solve problems to how to develop a professional persona that helps drive a career for long-term success. It is designed to be engaging and fast-paced, with the option for students to complete the entire course in approximately 90 minutes or tackle the six topical modules one at a time.

    “A student or young professional who spends 90 minutes with this course will be a more productive employee and experience greater satisfaction in his/her first job without having to undergo extensive – and expensive – coursework or training,” says Alexandra Levit, an expert on business and workplace issues and the online instructor for JobSTART101.

    Prior to today’s release, a group of college students provided feedback on the course. Six institutions participated in the pilot evaluation: California State University at East Bay, Coppin State University, DeVry University, Duke University, Northern Virginia Community College and University of Michigan. The majority of students reported that the course engaged their interest and included useful information and relevant examples that would help prepare them for situations they would face at work.

    The need for JobSTART101 was identified by The Springboard Project – an independent commission of thought leaders convened by Business Roundtable – who recommended specific actions that would help Americans get the education and training they need to succeed in the evolving economy. The experts urged employers to better communicate workforce needs and expectations to students and increase American’s workplace readiness and competitiveness.

  • ERE offers real solutions by real practitioners

    October 28, 2010 by

    Today is my last day in Fort Lauderdale. I have been here for meetings, the International Association of Employment Web Sites fall congress, and ERE conference.

    Last night vertical job search engine and CollegeRecruiter.com partner Indeed.com hosted a reception. One of the people with whom I spend a fair amount of time commented on his first ERE conference by saying the speakers were great as they were real practitioners and offered real solutions. I don’t think that David Manaster, CEO of ERE, could have said it any better.

  • The Power of Cell Phone Text Messaging

    October 25, 2010 by

    CollegeRecruiter.com has been delivering targeted cell phone text messaging (sms) campaigns on behalf of our employer and consumer marketing clients for about five years now and we’ve learned a lot in that time. For example, it used to be that we’d send the text then follow up with an HTML (graphical) email a few days later and the open and click through response rates would be far higher than if we just emailed the same people.

    Now we are seeing comparable open and click rates but the real response rate — applications for employers or leads/sales for consumer marketers — are much higher than you’d see with just an email.

    We also continue to see far higher response rates than other types of media such as banner ads. Our numbers are consistent with those published by the Direct Marketing Association in its 2010 Response Rate Survey. It saw click through and conversion rates of 0.76 and 4.43 percent for banners, 6.64 and 1.73 percent for email campaigns, and 14.06 and 8.22 percent for sms campaigns.

    So what does this mean to you if you are marketing employment or consumer marketing opportunities? Well, a click is not a click is not a click. Clicks from sms campaigns convert better than those from emails but banners outperformed both. On the other hand, banners grossly underperformed both sms and emails in generating the clicks in the first place. At the end of the day, sms campaigns are proving to be very effective and efficient sources of clicks and, more importantly, applications or leads/sales.

  • Human Capital Supply Chain

    October 21, 2010 by

    Human Capital Supply Chains book coverOne of the people that I hoped to meet with at the recent HR Technologies conference in Chicago was Tim Giehll, CEO of Bond Talent. Tim has over 30 years of experience in the staffing industry with an emphasis in technology and manufacturing. He’s drawn on his years of experience of managing workforces at IBM, Manpower, Sequent Computers, Chen Systems and Control Data in which more recent work with helping over 800 staffing firms automate their operations.

    Tim wanted to discuss the new book that he co-wrote with Sara Moss, co-founder and CEO of The Code Works Inc.. The book, entitled Human Capital Supply Chains, initially put me off because I really, really hate the term “human capital.” I find it, quite frankly, dehumanizing and therefore demeaning. I wanted to talk with Tim about his ideas for the workplace and also see if I couldn’t persuade him to move away from the use of terms like human capital but the meeting just couldn’t happen due to my schedule. Tim was very understanding and even reached out to me after the conference to offer to meet back in our hometown of Minneapolis. He also sent to me a copy of the book.

    I’ve read through the book and really like what Tim and Sara have written, even though I still wish they had used a term like “talent” or “human resources” rather than “human capital.” But if you can get past the “human capital” phrase or perhaps not be bothered by it at all, the points that Tim and Sara make in the book are excellent. As stated on the introduction page of their web site, “Corporate leaders who are able to react to market improvements with agility are best positioned to hire the best human capital faster than their competition. Human Capital Supply Chains explains how companies can link their strategic workforce planning and staffing functions more tightly to their business planning functions to optimize workforce productivity and decrease the total cost of human capital, while maintaining or increasing the overall quality of their workforce.”

    When I first read that and also watched their YouTube trailer for the book, I was prepared for a cold, bottom line, who cares about people kind of approach to staffing. But that wasn’t the case. Instead, Tim and Sara make the case in the book that when we head into recessions — even terrible ones like we’re coming out of — business leaders should have a more fluid approach to managing their workforces. If the leaders had done a better job of understanding that their businesses were slowing, they would have done a better job of gradually ramping down their staffing levels such as through attrition. Instead, many and perhaps most business leaders reacted in a state of panic and engaged in massive and far more painful layoffs. Organizations of all sizes and the people who work for those organizations would be better served by leaders who “calibrate and fine tune their workforce, quickly responding to changing market conditions in small steps rather than in painful mass layoffs or mass rehire campaigns where workforce quality is likely to suffer.”

    If you’re a leader of a large organization, a procurement manager, or a staffing leader, this is a book that you should read. The massive layoffs of this recession are still very fresh in our minds yet I suspect that few organizations have really sat down to de-brief what they did and what they should have done instead. This book will help them with that reflection and planning. We have an obligation to our organizations and shareholders to survive and thrive but we also have an obligation to our employees to treat them as human beings and that means with respect and compassion. Massive layoffs caused by panic in the executive halls is not respectful or compassionate. So whether your focus is on doing right for the bottom line or doing right for your fellow workers, this book will help you.

  • Twitter Handles for Fast Company’s List of Top On-line Influencers

    October 20, 2010 by

    Steven Rothberg of CollegeRecruiter.comList of Twitter handles created for many of the most influential people on-line as ranked by Fast Company’s Influence Project.

    Minneapolis, Minnesota (October 20, 2010) – Who are the most influential people on-line in 2010? Hint: you may never have heard of many of them.

    Months ago, Fast Company magazine created its Influence Project in an effort to find out who was the most influential. Would it be media darlings like Oprah and Shaq? Or would it be more ordinary people whose influence may not be as great with more traditional media outlets but who exert significant influence over their Twitter followers, Facebook friends, and LinkedIn connections. More than 32,000 people registered with Fast Company to find out where they stood along with a chance to get their photo in the magazine this November.

    The top 10 on-line influencers according to The Influence Project were:

    1. Jeremy Schoemaker
    2. Shefqet Avdullau
    3. Tod Sacerdoti
    4. Cory Boatright
    5. Greg Clement
    6. Frank Kovacs
    7. Sebastian Saldarriaga
    8. James Dunn
    9. Richard Lee
    10. Pace Lattin

    “I was surprised and pleased to see that I was ranked as the 43rd most influential person on-line in The Influence Project,” said Steven Rothberg, founder of CollegeRecruiter.com job board. “I’ve been an avid user of social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn almost since they came out and they’re integral to our efforts to market our college job board to students searching for internships, recent graduates hunting or entry-level jobs, and employers looking for top talent. In fact, between just those three sites, we’re able to reach about 170,000 friends, followers, and connections within seconds. As the person at CollegeRecruiter.com who manages our social media efforts, I get my photo in Fast Company but my efforts would be futile if it weren’t for the stellar work put in by our writers, developers, and other employees.”

    CollegeRecruiter.com has set up a link for those who want to follow many of the other Fast Company top influencers on Twitter, including Steven.

    About CollegeRecruiter.com

    CollegeRecruiter.com is the leading job board for college students hunting for internships and recent graduates looking for entry level jobs and other career opportunities. CollegeRecruiter.com features hundreds of thousands of job openings and tens of thousands of pages of employment-related blogs, articles, podcasts, and videos. For more information, please visit https://www.collegerecruiter.com.

    Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, CollegeRecruiter.com was founded in 1991 by Steven Rothberg, who remains its President and ranked as the 43rd most influential person on-line in the Fast Company Influencer Project. To receive regular updates about new and interesting data and reports, visit the CollegeRecruiter.com Blog or follow CollegeRecruiter.com on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter. For more information about partnering with CollegeRecruiter.com, email Steven@CollegeRecruiter.com.

  • “I don’t let my daughter text or go on SpaceBook.” — Brett Favre


    Jenn Sterger when she was at Florida State UniversityMinnesota Viking fans like me have been a little preoccupied over the past couple of weeks after allegations surfaced that future Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre texted several female employees of the New York Jets, his former team, in an apparent effort to entice them into having an affair with him. Favre, a married grandfather, hasn’t really addressed the allegations publicly and instead keeps changing the topic to the efforts by him and his Vikings teammates to continue to improve upon a very slow start to a very promising season.

    The scandal seems centered around an explicit text message that Favre allegedly sent to Jenn Sterger, who gained national attention when an ABC camera spotlighted her in the stands at a Florida State University football game back in 2005. She later appeared in Playboy and as a sideline TV personality on New York Jets telecasts. It was when she was doing TV work for the Jets that she apparently caught Favre’s eye and he decided that more than anything else, a young woman would love to receive a text message showing the penis of a grandfather who works for the same organization. If Favre actually engaged in such sexting, that’s pretty gross and could earn him a suspension from the National Football League. Yes, even the NFL would regard such actions as being beneath its standards.

    Perhaps the only amusing thing to come out of this controversy is Favre’s statement about how he is bewildered by technology. He was quoted during an interview at his farm by a reporter as having said, “I don’t let my daughter text or go on SpaceBook.” Where do I start? Does he prohibit his 11 year old daughter from texting because older men might want to send to her lewd photographs? Hmmm. That’s a little like the pot calling the kettle black. I can just hear the conversation. “Honey, I don’t want you texting. Men will likely send you photos of their penises. I know that will likely happen, dearest, because I’ve done that and I’m a man.” Or should we focus on SpaceBook, whatever that may be. Could Favre have confused MySpace and Facebook and mashed them together? “I’m sorry, your honor. I don’t think that I should be held responsible for sending obscene photographs to that young woman. You see, I just don’t understand technology well enough to do more than take a photograph of my penis and send it as a picture message to her.”

  • Career Experts And Bloggers Unite To Help Job-Seekers In Third Annual Job Action Day

    October 19, 2010 by

    Job Action Day 2010 LogoAs the unemployment crisis slogs on, it’s clear that the new world of work involves far fewer full-time, permanent jobs with benefits than in the past. Job Action Day 2010, the third-annual initiative spearheaded by Quintessential Careers and being held this year on Nov. 1, addresses this new world of work by exhorting job-seekers to look at innovative ways to create opportunity. A cadre of career experts and bloggers are joining QuintCareers in helping job-seekers confront the new realities of the workforce on Job Action Day, held annually on the first Monday in November.

    Some key indicators of this new world of work include:

    • Fifty percent of the workforce added in 2010 will be made up of one form or another of contingent workers, says the report The Emerging New Workforce by Littler Mendelson, P.C., which provides employment and labor-law solutions. “As a result,” the report states, “approximately 25 percent to as high as 35
      percent of the workforce will be made up of temporary workers, contractors, or other project-based labor. The numbers of professionals working in temporary or alternative work arrangements will continue to rise. Flexible work schedules and telecommuting will increase as companies turn towards practical solutions to efficiently complete tasks while retaining talented individuals.” [Similar sources: Freelance Nation: Why Permanent Jobs May Not Come Back by Charles Hugh Smith, DailyFinance; Need a job? Contract work could be new normal by Eve Tahmincioglu, MSNBC; One-in-Five employers to hire full-time, permanent staff in Q4: survey by International Business Times]
    • A looming skills mismatch is preventing some workers from obtaining jobs even as employers increase hiring. During the recession, employers had to make do with fewer workers, and those workers took on more functions. “Now, someone who hopes to get those jobs must meet the new requirements,” reports Christopher S. Rugaber in an Associated Press article. Technology has also added to the skills mismatch. [Similar source: The Stagnating Labor Market by Arjun Jayadev and Mike Konczal, The Roosevelt Institute]

    “The workforce as we’ve come to know it will probably never be the same,” said Dr. Randall S. Hansen, founder and publisher of QuintCareers. “Job-seekers must develop a whole new mind-set to thrive in this new world of work. That’s why our 2010 Job Action Day theme is ‘Create Opportunity,'” Hansen said. “The theme has a double meaning; not only must job-seekers create opportunity, but we encourage employers and the government to find ways to create opportunity, as well.”

    Adds author Jay Block in an article published on QuintCareers.com that sets the tone for Job Action Day 2010: “A finite number of jobs may be available, but an infinite number of opportunities are waiting for people to tap into.”

    On Job Action Day 2010, Quint Careers will disseminate information from experts on how to create opportunity*:

    • The Proteus Solution: Surviving and Thriving in a Transformational Workplace, by Jay Block, executive career coach and author, West Palm Beach, FL.
    • Create Opportunity by Targeting Companies, Not Jobs, by Laura Levine Labovich, chief career strategist, Aspire! Empower! Career Strategy Group, Bethesda, MD.
    • How Temp Workers Can Creating Opportunity for Full-Time Hire, by Maureen Crawford Hentz, U.S. manager of talent acquisition, development and compliance at OSRAM Sylvania, Danvers, MA.
    • Creating Opportunity in the Nonprofit Sector, by Heather Krasna, speaker and author of Jobs That Matter: Find a Stable, Fulfilling Career in Public Service, Seattle.
    • Breakthrough Belief Strategies to Bust Up Limiting Beliefs, Bolster Confidence, and Bring Opportunity to Your Doorstep! by Susan Whitcomb, author, as well as founder and president of The Academies, including Career Coach Academy, Job Search Academy, and Leadership Coach Academy, Fresno, CA.
    • Creating Opportunity by Financing and Budgeting for a Career Reinvention, by Randi Bussin, founder and president, Aspire!, Boston.
    • Career Myopia: A National Epidemic, by Kristin Cardinale, PhD, author of The 9-to-5 Cure: Work on Your Own Terms & Reinvent Your Life, Milwaukee, WI.
    • Getting Paid What You Are Worth — Especially in Today’s Recession, by Don Orlando, career coach and owner, The McLean Group, Montgomery, AL.
    • Are You a S.M.A.R.T. Worker? Five Compelling Career Strategies to Make You More Valuable, by Billie Sucher, Billie Sucher Career Transition Services, Urbandale, IA.
    • Accelerate Executive Job Search With Personal Branding: A Personal Branding Worksheet, by Meg Guiseppi, “the C-level executive job coach,” Andover, NJ.
    • Outsiders On The Inside: Creating A Winning Career … Even When You Don’t Fit In, by David Couper, author of a book of the same title, Los Angeles.
    • Creating Opportunity with Your Entrepreneurial Mindset, by Nancy Miller, LifeWork coach and director of the Center for LifeWork Design, Sacramento, CA.
    • Career Assessments: Tools for Lifetime Career Management, by Susan Guarneri, “the assessment goddess,” Three Lakes, WI.

    Bloggers who plan to support Job Action Day 2010 with posts on or around Nov. 1 include*:

    *subject to change

    In addition, the Quintessential Careers family of blogs, including the Quintessential Careers Blog, Career Doctor Blog, Quintessential Resume and Cover Letter Tips Blog, and A Storied Career, will feature Job Action Day entries.

  • How to Make an Impact on Twitter

    October 18, 2010 by

    Dave Uejio of the National Institute of HealthDave Uejio, the Special Assistant to the Director Office of Human Resources at the National Institute of Health, and I were two of the panelists at the International Public Management Association for Human Resources (IPMA-HR) conference in Seattle. The topic was how local, state, and federal government recruiters and other human resource professionals should use social media tools such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

    One of the many excellent pieces of advice offered by Dave has really stuck with me. He said that there are four basic keys to making a significant, positive impact through Twitter:

    1. Deliver quality content;
    2. Be an expert whatever you tweet about;
    3. Be lethally generous; and
    4. Be social!
  • Traffic to CollegeRecruiter.com Up 173 Percent

    October 15, 2010 by

    In an effort to re-launch our site during the slower summer months, we made some hard decisions about what features we needed to have in order to go live and what features could wait. One of the features we decided we could do without temporary were job detail pages. Those are the pages that you see after running a job search and clicking on the job title in order to read the description, requirements, and other details. In other words, as strange as this sounds, we were a job board without jobs. Sort of.

    Like most high traffic sites, we’re always making changes and enhancements. We modified our site a few days ago so jobs posted to our site again have their job detail pages on our site. We also have jobs which are back fill in that they appear at the bottom of our search results and help guarantee that any user will find multiple jobs that appeal to them. If you click on those, you’ll continue to go to the employer’s site or whatever third party site is the source for those jobs. But the jobs posted to our site now click through to the job detail page on our site. The effect on the number of visitors to our site was huge: an increase of 173 percent from Thursday, October 7th to Thursday, October 14th.

    We’ve got some other big changes in development and they should roll out within a week or two. They may not have the same huge impact on visits, but they should have a huge, beneficial impact on the number of pages that the average visitor sees and the average time on the site.

  • 36% of College Grads Wish They Had Picked a Different Major

    October 14, 2010 by

    A tight job market may have some workers pondering their educational paths and heading back to the classroom. According to a new survey, 36 percent of workers with college degrees said they wish they had chosen a different major in college. More than one-in-four (26 percent) said the market for jobs in their chosen field worsened from the time they entered college and when they graduated. This survey was conducted among more than 2,000 workers with college degrees between August 17 and September 2, 2010.

    While more than half (56 percent) of all workers with college degrees reported they found a job in their desired career path within one year of graduation, others’ pursuits still haven’t come to fruition. Nearly one-in-five (19 percent) of all workers with a college degree still have not found a job in their desired field.

    More than one-in-four workers (27 percent) who graduated from college ten years ago or longer reported they still haven’t found a job related to their college major. Twenty-one percent said it took them three years or longer to find an opportunity in their desired career path while one-in-ten (12 percent) said it took five years or longer.

    “The job market has been challenging for all workers, regardless of degree level, and has prompted many to think about learning skills for high demand and emerging jobs,” said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder. “Many employers, particular in areas such as healthcare, engineering, IT and communications have open positions and can’t find skilled candidates to fill them. College students and workers considering going back to school should take note of areas with growth opportunities and more abundant hiring.”

    Building new skill sets is a priority for more than one-in-ten (13 percent) workers who said they have plans to go back to school this year to make themselves more marketable.

    Haefner offers the following tips for workers who want to pursue more education:

    • Talk to HR – If you’re currently employed, many organizations offer some type of learning program. Whether it’s classes taught on-site at your company, courses and seminars across the country or reimbursement for graduate school programs, your HR department can help you decide what is the best fit for your goals.
    • Leverage the Web – Sometimes, you don’t even have to leave your home to hone your skills. Many sites offer a wide variety of learning opportunities, such as CBInstitute.com, or consider applying to an online university.
    • Take advantage of local resources – Many local libraries and community centers offer classes in everything from basic Internet skills to foreign languages. Ask around your community to see what opportunities exist.