March 24, 2017 by Anna Peters
Joanne Meehl knows the rules resume writing and has excellent advice. She is president and primary Job Coach & Career Consultant at Joanne Meehl Career Services. Today Joanne shared her insight with College Recruiter, and you can scroll down to watch a video of our discussion. This is Part 1 of 2 of Joanne’s resume writing tips. A week from now Joanne will join us again to share more about applicant tracking systems and common mistakes that college students make when writing a resume.
Joanne is part of College Recruiter’s Panel of Experts, which is made up of professionals around the country with top notch advice for recruiters and HR professionals, or for entry level job seekers.
When writing your resume, you should know a few solid rules
- Think of your resume as a database, not a regular document. It’s not a term paper with a beginning, middle and end. It’s like a database that holds your all projects and experience. From your database, you pull out the skills and experience that fit every job you to apply to. In other words, have a template or master copy, and customize it for every employer you send it to.
- You should repeat key words that you find in the job posting, whether a human or a machine ends up reading it. (Joanne will talk more about the machines that read your resumes in Part 2.)
- Talk about what you can DO, not what you have learned. This means you should unpaid work too. Volunteering at your church or community definitely counts as good experience. Wherever your experience, you are likely to pick up skills that you can apply to another job. (Volunteering is also an answer to job seekers who are frustrated by being turned down for not having experience!)
- Joanne suggests that entry-level job seekers could be more assertive. “Step up and be aggressive about it.” Ask an employer not just once, but twice. If they liked you but end up hiring someone else, go back and learn more. Ask to meet someone who works there to network and become familiar with their culture and possible future openings.
- Review it! When you’re done with each draft, can you look at it and say, “I can tell what this person can DO for me”? If you can’t tell, you need to figure out how to answer that question throughout your whole resume.
Why is it so important to tailor my resume for each job or internship I apply to?
Doing so greatly increases the chances a recruiter (or an applicant tracking system) will pick out your resume from the huge database of applicants. And when you’re picked out, that increases the chance you’ll be called for an interview.
You must tailor your resume every time. Recruiters are extremely busy, so your resume has to speak to only them, and only that job position. Keep in mind that every employer believes that their job is the most important in the world. If you are not a perceived match for their opening, they will screen you out. Joanne says, “Don’t think that they’re sitting leisurely with a cup of coffee, looking over every resume. They’re not.”
About Joanne Meehl, MS, IJCDC, CPPA: Joanne talks directly with hiring managers, internal and external recruiters, and HR directors about what they want. She listens, and makes it her business to get the latest, right from the source. She then translates this knowledge into guidance for my clients, including entry-level job seekers. Learn more about Joanne’s career consulting services at www.joannemeehlcareerservices.com
March 22, 2017 by Anna Peters
If you are a Gen Z job seeker, do you have a dream job? What makes that job so appealing? Do you make a lot of money in your dream? Do you work from home or have office friends around you? What potential employers attract you? What turns you off?
Many employers are still grappling with changes and demands that the Millennial generation brought to the workforce. Now Gen Z job seekers are about to enter the workforce, and it goes without saying that employers may not be ready for them. Help employers understand what you want and how to brand themselves well by telling them who you are and what you expect from employers. One way to make your voice heard is to participate in this SURVEY:
Every survey participant will be entered into a contest to win a complimentary resume consultation and revision session with Career Coach Bethany Wallace. You will also be entered to win one of 50 $5 Starbuck gift cards.
This survey will help companies help you
Transitioning from college student to employee is tough. If you don’t have much experience in the “real” world, it is hard to imagine what is expected of you. Increasingly, companies recognize that their people are their greatest asset and they want to help entry-level employees make that transition during the training and onboarding process. However, without vital feedback from Gen Z job seekers, your new employer (meaning, the Human Resources manager, your supervisor or the CEO) won’t know what you expect. If they don’t understand how to welcome your generation into the workforce, or develop your skills, there will be culture shock and disappointment on both sides.
After compiling survey results from respondents like you, The WorkPlace Group and its constituents plan to share the findings with employers as they plan their college recruitment and onboarding processes. They will publish the results in an e-book, in various news articles, and at conferences and webinars.
If you provide honest feedback, employers will be better prepared to meet your needs. It takes time to develop new strategies for employee engagement, benefits and salary, training and management. Your feedback will give them time to adjust.
What’s in the survey
The survey is meant to determine what attracts you to certain companies while searching for a job. According to Bethany Wallace, who collaborated in developing the survey, “We genuinely want to hear from college students and recent grads about what makes them more or less likely to pursue employment with a particular employer.” The survey asks about what engages you during the application and hiring process and what makes you more likely to accept a job offer.
If you take the survey, give honest feedback. “We expect some surprises,” says Wallace.
As a teaser, here are a few questions from the survey:
- Which employer benefits matter most to you?
- What most impresses you about an employer and their recruiting process?
- Should employers keep asking about your salary expectations?
Who developed the survey
The WorkPlace Group developed this survey with collaboration from Lyon College and Rutgers University.
Specifically, collaborators include:
Dr. Steven Lindner, Executive Partner, The WorkPlace Group
Dr. Domniki Demetriadou, Director and Partner, The WorkPlace Group
Bethany Wallace, Adjunct English Faculty, Lyon College
Sid Seligman, JD, Human Research Management Faculty, Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations
Len Garrison, Manager, Career Services, Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations
March 16, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
Fake email addresses. Copycat web sites. Requests for personal information before a job is offered. Interviews conducted only via instant messaging. Promises of salary that are too good to be true. Requests to submit payment to move to the next step of the job search.
These are just a few of the dirty tactics scumbags use to try and scam job seekers, including inexperienced job seekers like recent college grads and entry-level job seekers. The threat is real, and like any online or cyber threat, the people conducting the fraudulent activity are often trying to gather information to steal one’s identity or money.
The team at College Recruiter takes the threat of job search scams and fake job postings seriously, and has implemented a multi-step process that identifies and blocks the vast majority of identity thieves and other scammers from ever posting a job to College Recruiter. In fact, every single job advertisement placed on College Recruiter goes through an in-depth verification process to prove the job posting is legitimate, and all ads are verified through actual contact with a human with the employer posting the job ad – something not every job board can claim.
“Here at College Recruiter, we take these fraudulent attempts very seriously and work daily to ensure all the jobs that are posted on our web site are from verified employers to protect our job seekers from applying, interviewing, and becoming victims of identity theft,” says Dani Bennett, Sales and Client Services Manager at College Recruiter.
In the article Rise of Recruitment Scams Hurt Both Job Seekers and Employers Alike, the team at global outplacement and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray, & Christmas identified some recent and unfortunately, popular job search scams. What may be surprising to many is that these scams don’t just target small companies. Here are some examples:
- Scammers created a false ad for Rio Tinto, one of the world’s largest metals and mining corporations. When a job seeker responded, the person who received the email asked for additional personal information, such as tax files, driver’s license, and birth certificate. Scammers then used this information to open credit cards and bank accounts. The messages from these so-called recruiters sound legitimate. In the Rio Tinto case, the recruitment email included an application with the company’s name and logo.
Remember, anyone can set up a fake web site or email account, for example through free email providers like Gmail, Yahoo!, or Hotmail. College Recruiter, however, will not accept any job postings that use a free email provider to receive job applications.
- In another incident in Houston, scammers set up an actual interview, via Google hangout, using the name of a reputable company, and then offered a position. The scammers then asked the job seeker to move around large sums of money, in this scenario, up to $3,000. To carry this out, they sent fraudulent checks made out to the job seeker to start a home office, then asked the job seeker to forward that money to a third party vendor.
“Any time a company asks you to pay or hold money for them, you should immediately see red flags,” said John A. Challenger, CEO of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. “A credible employer would never ask their employees to move money through their personal accounts. That’s why companies have accounting departments.”
- In July, Shell Oil, one of America’s largest oil and natural gas producers with over 22,000 employees, posted a notice on its careers site warning job seekers that scammers were using the Shell name and logo to recruit for positions.
Besides the obvious problem for job seekers, the toll these scams can take on a company’s reputation is huge, says Challenger. Most employers don’t know these fraudulent job postings are out there until they are contacted by job seekers who have figured out it’s a scam and contacted the legit company directly. By then, the company reputation is already damaged with those job seekers.
“From a recruitment perspective, once a company’s brand has been associated with these fraudulent ads, it may be difficult to attract the talent needed when a position becomes available,” says Challenger.
College Recruiter Founder Steven Rothberg added, “Some job boards, like College Recruiter, have formalized, proactive, anti-fraud measures in place, but many job boards are more reactive and rely upon their users to complain about fraudulent postings before the job board takes any action.”
Not only do cyber criminals post fake job ads, unethical recruiters also post fake job ads, often on sites where they can post free job ads. Why would they do that? To act like they are “well-connected” and have a long list of candidates to choose from. A recruiter may submit these resumes to the employer for which they are hiring for, to show activity – which employers value when working with recruiters – and that they have an active pipeline of candidates, when they have no intentions of responding to, interviewing, or hiring these employees.
How can a job seeker spot a fraudulent job posting, or job search scam? Follow these tips from the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota:
March 09, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
Dear Matt: I’m a recent college graduate who is struggling to get interviews. I have sent in over 30 resumes and applications but haven’t received one call for an interview. What am I doing wrong?
Matt: I still remember the very first resume I ever sent after graduating from college. I applied for a research position with a local business publication. I never got a call. And I know exactly why. In fact, I am 100 percent certain the person never read past the first sentence of my resume. Why?
Because my opening statement included this language: “Seeking entry-level opportunity that will help me advance my career.”
What’s wrong with that?
First, it made it about me. I get it. You are excited. You worked hard to graduate from college and are now eager to start your career. But if you learn one thing from this article learn this:
A resume is never about you!
How so? Isn’t a resume my career biography? The document that tells employers why they should hire me?
A resume is not about you. It’s also not a career biography. It’s a marketing document that quickly tells the employer that you may have the skills and background that fit their needs. For that research position, a more appropriate summary statement should have been:
Recent college graduate with 3 years of award-winning college newspaper leadership experience seeking opportunity as research coordinator for business publication.
In that summary I would have showed them:
- I had college newspaper experience.
- I had leadership experience (resume would show I worked as an assistant editor)
- I was part of a team that won a few college newspaper awards.
- And that I am directing this resume exactly to this position.
The reality is this:
A resume should show that you have skills, experiences and a background that would fit a specific job opening – their job opening! It’s about how you can help the next employer fill their needs and solve their problems. Their problem is they have a job opening. They need someone to fill it. That person, whether it’s you, or someone else, should use the resume to show the employer that you have the skills, achievements and combination of soft and hard skills that would entice them to bring you in for an interview. Then in the interview, the employer can learn more about you, see if you truly are who you say you are, and most of all, find out if you are the right fit for the position, with the team you would be working with, and within the company culture.
The second thing to remember is this: The resume doesn’t get you hired. It does though, help you get you an interview.
March 07, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
Compassion, patience. A willingness to help. A desire to continually learn. Those are all important traits of a successful nurse, say Dr. Kim Hudson-Gallogly, head of the University of North Georgia’s Department of Nursing.
“The medical field is constantly growing and changing,” says Hudson-Gallogly. And recent college grads pursuing a career in nursing or nursing jobs must be prepared to adapt now, and in their future. Especially when it comes to landing that entry-level nursing job.
Those pursuing entry-level nursing careers should “try and expose yourself to many different areas of nursing so that you can know where your interests truly lie,” says Hudson-Gallogly. “That way, you can have at least a couple of areas you would like to work in, in case your first choice is not available.”
According to the American Nursing Association “Nursing is the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, facilitation of healing, alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations.”
To succeed in a nursing career, college students and recent college grads pursuing nursing careers need excellent people skills with the ability to listen, observe, and communicate with others, says Rhonda Bell, Dean of Health Sciences at San Jacinto College North.
“A nurse is a team member in an ever changing dynamic health care system,” says Bell. “He or she must have the ability to work as a part of a multi-disciplinary team in order to achieve the best outcomes for the patient and family receiving care.”
Nursing can be a stressful career, says Bell. But also rewarding. A nurse must be able to manage stress and deal with emotional situations, as well be flexible and adaptable on short notice. What it comes down to is, a nurse must have a passion for caring for others, says Bell.
Nurses are taught to be unbiased and non-judgmental when caring for all cultures, ethnicities, socio-economic groups, genders and age groups, says Dr. Janet Mahoney, Dean of the Marjorie K. Unterberg School of Nursing and Health Studies at Monmouth University.
“The profession is guided by the code of ethics,” says Mahoney. “Nursing is a highly respected profession and one that the public highly regards as one of the most trustworthy.”
Nurses portray calmness in a sea of chaos, adds Mahoney. As new nurses join the field, they quickly learn how to multitask and delegate appropriately. Each patient’s care experience brings nurses to a new level of knowledge, competency, and confidence. Each experience builds on the other to form a firm foundation.
What are some other skills and traits of a successful nurse? What does it take for current college students and recent college grads to succeed in a nursing career? Nursing industry educators and leaders provide these 10 secrets to success for recent college grads pursuing nursing careers:
March 03, 2017 by Guest writer Walt Capell, President and Owner of Workers Compensation Shop
As college graduates search for internships, there are many options to consider. One option is an insurance internship. The insurance industry is hiring and should continue for the foreseeable future.
The growth in the industry is due to several factors. First, the workforce is aging. By 2018, more than a quarter of the workforce will be above the age of 55. This situation is great for college graduates looking to start their career, because most companies have many experienced professionals who can mentor young employees. In addition, those aging employees will be retiring and their leadership positions will open up. The opportunity for growth is there if a recent college grad wants to find a place in the insurance industry and stay for their entire career.
If you like interacting with people, the insurance industry provides the opportunity to play a critical role in many business owners’ lives. You would help those business owners determine what risks they actually face and then negotiating how best to protect their business can be a juggling act. This will allow you to be able to interact with many businesses from many different industries that allow each day to be different in some way shape or form.
Do insurance companies typically expect entry-level hires to have internships?
While it’s typically not required for entry-level employees to have had an insurance internship, it is something many companies really appreciate. Through an internship, you will learn appropriate workplace interpersonal skills, which is key. You can build these skills through an internship in any industry, or through volunteer work. Volunteering at hospitals, social organizations, fraternities or sororities, or fundraising for a cause are all activities places where you can develop the skills you will need to succeed in the insurance industry. Continue Reading
February 28, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
Looking for truck driving jobs? There’s plenty of opportunity.
The American Trucking Association reports a shortage of 48,000 drivers.
“The trucking industry is similar to other skilled trades that have difficulty attracting young men and women,” says Ellen Voie, President/CEO of The Women in Trucking Association, a non-profit organization with the mission to encourage the employment of women in the trucking industry, promote their accomplishments, and minimize obstacles faced by women working in the industry. “From electrician to welder to diesel technician, these jobs do not seem to be attractive to the next generation.”
Women in trucking
Truck driving jobs were attractive to Abby Langan, however. Langan made a successful career change and is now thriving as an over-the-road truck driver for Schneider, a transportation and logistics company that has a fleet of 10,000 trucks and delivers almost 19,400 loads of merchandise and materials per day. Its customers include two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies. Langan’s story is unique – and inspirational for both men and women seeking truck driving jobs – or a career change in general.
Langan has two associates degrees and was about to attend a four-year college when she landed a job as an internet marketing manager for an automotive dealership. She was highly successful – speaking at conferences, publishing articles and eventually landing a senior-level job that she thought was her dream job. But that life wasn’t for her.
“The fancy office, leather chair and large desk didn’t matter anymore,” said Langan. “I knew there had to be more to life than spending it inside the same four walls and talking to the same people every day.”
Langan has logged over 31,000 miles on the road in 14 months with Schneider.
“Being a truck driver allows you enjoy the freedom of the open road and the ability to see the country – and get paid for it,” said Mike Norder, Director of Marketing at Schneider. “The transportation industry plays a critical role in the economy. Truck drivers are in demand nationwide.”
In addition to a wide variety of truck driving jobs, women are also working in the industry in roles as dispatchers, managers and safety directors.
Truck driving salaries
February 23, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
College is expensive. And student loan debt is on the rise. While many believe the only way to graduate from college debt free is by receiving an academic or athletic scholarship, there are actually several strategies one can implement to graduate from college debt free – or with much less debt than the average college student graduates with – which is just over $30,000.
It’s not easy and it could make the path to graduation more challenging, but it can be done. It starts by planning in advance and digging deep to find ways to accomplish this goal.
“The days of going to college without any real pre-planning or self-evaluation are over,” says Bob LaBombard, retired CEO of GradStaff, a company that helps college students and recent college grads identify where there skills fit in the job force “It’s just too costly and risky.”
Consider these facts: More than half of college students change their major at least once. Further, recent data shows that only about 56 percent of students entering college graduate within six years; almost half drop out.
“Clearly, lack of a clear-cut plan often causes students to waste time, precious tuition dollars and, ultimately, interest in completing a degree,” says LaBombard.
There are many strategies that can help college students cover the high costs of obtaining a college degree, and if done correctly, graduating debt free. We highlight those strategies here:
February 21, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
It’s no secret that college tuition is expensive. And it’s no secret that student loan debt is an issue because of this. In fact, nearly seven in 10 seniors who graduated from public and nonprofit colleges in 2015 had student loan debt, with an average of $30,100 per borrower, according to the Institute for College Access & Success.
But there are surefire ways to lessen student debt load, while gaining valuable job skills and experience at the same time.
By finding a part-time job that offers tuition reimbursement or tuition assistance. As defined by Salary.com, “tuition reimbursement is a contractual arrangement between employer and employee that outlines specific terms under which the employer may pay for the employee’s continuing education.”
Numerous employers (we list 10 below) offer tuition reimbursement programs for part-time employees. This is an attractive recruiting and retention tool for employers – they help support employee education goals, pay for part of it, and get a educated employee in the process. The employee/college student gets help paying for the cost of college, and is loyal to the company because they invested in their future. It can be a win-win for both.
But forward-thinking college students should take it a step further. The right part-time job could provide not only tuition reimbursement opportunities, reducing the costs of college, but also a chance to secure an internship with that company, or perhaps, participate in a training program, or learn additional skills beyond what is required in the part-time job. In other words: Take advantage of both the opportunity to earn tuition reimbursement, but also seek ways to learn and add a combination of soft skills, and real-life work experiences that employers will covet, while working this part-time job. Take on new challenges and opportunities. Learn about operations, management, marketing, distribution, merchandising, sales, e-commerce, technology, how the company uses data and analytics, and much more.
“Students should seek a variety of experiences during their college career-including part-time jobs and internships,” said Mike Caldwell, Director, Business Careers and Employer Development at the Cohen Career Center at William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. “These opportunities help build skills, networking contacts, and professional experience. Part-time jobs that offer additional benefits, such as tuition assistance, also offer an opportunity for employers to identify and develop prospective talent while helping employee’s complete academic requirements along the way.”
Ask yourself: What else does this company do that I could learn about, that would add additional skill sets needed for me to succeed in securing an internship or full time job after graduation?
Below are 10 companies that offer tuition reimbursement or tuition assistance for part-time employees:
February 16, 2017 by Matt Krumrie
Robin Rectenwald has a full-time job working for WordWrite Communications a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania public relations firm, that she absolutely loves. But that hasn’t stopped her from finding unique side jobs to help pay off her student loan debt. Rectenwald graduated from Duquesne University in 2012 with 20 different student loans and $100,000 in loan debt. Now, in 2017, she only has five loans left, and is quickly whittling down the amount she owes.
Before landing her first full-time job in 2012, Rectenwald worked part-time as a customer service representative at Gateway Clipper Fleet, a Pittsburgh sightseeing organization. She worked in the ticket and sales office, where she learned about marketing, sales and customer service – all valuable skills in her current role – and for any future opportunities. She worked for Gateway Clipper Fleet for four years, using that money to make extra payments towards her school loans. Rectenwald recently switched to a new part-time job as a customer care representative at ShowClix, a ticketing software company. For this job, she works from the comforts of her own home answering phones and responding to emails from customers looking to buy tickets to international events.
“Even though I’ve grown as a professional in the PR field and have had a number of promotions that increased my salary since starting out as an entry-level professional, I continue to work a part-time job because I’m trying to save as much money as possible,” says Rectenwald. “With this part-time income, I’ve been able to pay off several student loans and I’m currently using this extra money to pay tuition out-of-pocket for grad school.”
Rectenwald takes these part-time jobs seriously, and puts in maximum effort – something her managers have noticed. She was offered a full-time job in the marketing department at Gateway Clipper Fleet, and is writing a crisis communication plan for ShowClix as part of her grad school program.
“These part-time jobs have not only expanded my network and presented additional career opportunities, it has also given me a unique perspective on marketing and communication strategies.”
And it’s also helped her greatly reduce her student loan debt, and time it would take to pay the loans back.
That’s what Eric Hian-Cheong is also trying to accomplish. He works full-time for a public relations firm in McLean, Virginia, but also has two, unique part-time jobs. He makes $11 an hour as a part-time rock climbing instructor at a local fitness center, and also works as a second shooter/assistant to a local wedding photographer.
“Why limit yourself to just one other part-time job?” said Hian-Cheong.
He works up to 8 hours a weekend, and nets up to $400 a month as a rock climbing instructor – which is right around what he pays each month for his student loans. That job also provides a free gym membership – saving him another $95 a month in gym membership fees.
These jobs have helped Hian-Cheong improve his self-confidence, he says, and also provides an incredible social life outside of the 9-to-5 job.
“I have several friends whose social lives revolve around their 9-to-5, which can get a little unhealthy at times,” says Hian-Cheong.
It’s also helped him network and communicate with a wide variety, and diverse group of people, helping him develop communication, interpersonal, critical thinking, and speaking skills, as he must provide instructions, detail, and clarity, when instructing individuals and a class.
Rectenwald and Hian-Cheong are among the many recent college grads supplementing their income, and paying off student debt with the help of a unique side job. What are some other unique part-time job opportunities one can pursue to help make extra cash to pay off student loans? Consider some of these options: