• “Brand yourself” sounds intimidating. Two recruiting experts discuss how and why job seekers should care.

    August 21, 2017 by

     

    For students and grads looking for a job, we cannot underestimate the importance of networking. You’ve heard that advice before. However, if you don’t build your personal brand before or as you build your network, you could meet with a million people and still get nowhere in your job search.

    I caught up with two recruiting experts who offered their advice for entry level job seekers. Toni Newborn, J.D., the Diversity and Consulting Services Manager at the City of Saint Paul; and Jeff Dunn, the Campus Relations Manager at Intel, weighed in on how to “brand yourself.”

    Watch part 1 of our discussion here, or read the takeaways in the blog post below. We will publish part 2 next week!

    “Networking” and “personal branding” can be intimidating. Think of it in these terms instead.

    Branding is a marketing term, and I wouldn’t blame any student or recent graduate for feeling put off by the idea that they have to brand themselves. Don’t pressure yourself too much or misinterpret what networking and personal branding really are.

    Newborn suggests that students just think of networking as “relationship building.” And we actually do this all the time, she says. We just don’t label it as such.

    Networking is “expanding the people that you know”, says Dunn, and it “should not be scary.” It’s socializing, making new friends and getting more people to know who you are. “Branding yourself” doesn’t mean you have to be out there smiling all the time, shaking hands, giving out business cards or pushing your resume. Your brand is simply “what you’re known for”, says Dunn, so if you want to be known for certain things, it’s up to you to speak about those things with people you spend time with.

    Grow your network to find a jobAnother part of networking is getting tuned into opportunities when they come up. So when friends talk about their jobs, or your parents talk about their own friends’ jobs, or as you meet recruiters on campus, start keeping track of what opportunities come up and what interests you.

    Another way to think of it, says Newborn, is by seeing your brand as building the plan, and networking as “the execution of the plan.”

    To figure our what your brand is, think about who you want to be, says Newborn. How do you want other people to perceive you? You are the best person to control how people perceive you, so start getting comfortable with the idea of telling people—friends, family, professors, supervisors, recruiters—who you are.

    Where should students and grads start to build their brand and network?

    Newborn says the first place to start is in your classes. Other great places are “at home, with your professors, and volunteer coordinators” of any projects you’re involved in.


    TIP: Make sure to supplement your online job search with networking. Once you get guidance from your network, target your online search to the right job titles and companies. After you apply, follow up with someone who works there. College Recruiter lists thousands of entry-level job opportunities. Would it make sense to start searching?


    Figure out what you’re looking for first, says Dunn, to start building your personal brand. “You may not know exactly what you want to be when you grow up but have some idea.” If your future goals are too broad, people won’t know how to help you. So find some focus “at least to start off with,” he says. Then, when you’re in a networking situation—whether it’s social media, a social event or a meeting—you’ll be able to say “this is who I am and this is what I’m looking for.” That way, people can direct you to certain companies, certain departments or certain jobs they know about via their own network. “The more targeted you, are the easier it is for people to help you,” says Dunn. He adds–and this is important–“Make sure you offer to help them as well.” Human beings are reciprocal, so if you see your networking as a one-way street, sooner or later your street will dead end.

    But if you’re like many students and grads, the future is more fuzzy than focused. To get some kind of focus, Newborn encourages students to start with “a bucket list.” This isn’t a list of things you want to do in the next 30 years, but instead, she says, “create categories of what you’re interested in.”

    This takes time and effort. But it should help to break down branding and networking into these two steps:

    1. Reflect on who you are and who you want to be. Write down your strengths, weaknesses and interests.
    2. Put yourself in places where you’re with people who have similar interests.

    A formula for an informational interview

    What questions to ask in an informational job interviewDefinitely prepare a list of questions, says Dunn. He advises students to start with the question, “How did you get started in the field?”

    This question should put at ease any concern that you don’t have enough experience. Everyone starts somewhere, and you’ll find out what other people’s paths looked like.

    Other questions to ask include:

    “What is the typical week like in the entry level job here?”

    “What is the work culture is like?”

    “What does success look like if you come into the job and you dazzle everyone?”

    “What outcomes have you achieved in your career?”

    “What are the key skills, knowledge and interests that this employer looks for on a resume?”

    Dunn says it’s okay to ask for salary ranges. During the informational interview, “you’re not hitting them up for a job.” Think of it as gathering data. “You’re doing research and you may come back to them a month later and knock on their door. But you get to ask the questions.”

    It can be a challenge to go into an informational interview just to gather information, when what you really want, Newborn admits, is a job. Even if you’re at “a point of desperation,” she says, “you don’t want to put the employer in a position where they feel you’re here to get a job.” You want to just engage in a conversation—that makes it easy for them to help you.

    “The difference between an informational interview and an actual interview,” says Newborn, is that “you’re asking the questions instead of the employer asking you questions about yourself.”

  • Not sure what to major in? See if your passion fits these in-demand degrees.

    August 16, 2017 by

     

    If you haven’t selected a major yet, you are probably getting all kinds of advice from peers, parents, faculty and everyone with an opinion on social media. Many advise that you study what you’re interested in. To follow your heart, because that way you’ll find a job you’re passionate about.

    Considering a major that will actually be in demand

    I agree wholeheartedly that you should study what you care about. But shouldn’t you at least know what degrees are actually in demand, so you can make an informed decision?  Continue Reading

  • Talent acquisition in high volume: Tips for creating a high touch candidate experience

    August 09, 2017 by

     

    Just because you have to hire a cohort of 1,000 entry level employees every year doesn’t mean your hiring process needs to be low-touch or non-engaging. Janine Truitt, Chief Innovations Officer at Talent Think Innovations, offers some excellent tips for talent acquisition leaders who have high volume needs. Truitt is an expert in innovative training and products that arm businesses with the knowledge and tools they need to succeed. Read her advice below on how large employers with at-scale hiring needs can still provide a high-touch and positive candidate experience. Continue Reading

  • Take a vacation to deal with burnout

    July 26, 2017 by

     

    Burnout is more than a catchy word. If you haven’t been in the workforce long, let’s hope you haven’t actually experienced burnout. There are real symptoms to watch out for, and if any of these sound familiar, you are due to take a vacation. Expert career coach Joanne Meehl of Joanne Meehl Career Services advises her clients to watch for “a severe imbalance.” The symptoms of burnout that she has seen are “frustration out of proportion to the problem at hand, a drying up of creativity and increasing reliance on ‘the way it’s been done here before’, increasing isolation or rejection of the team, and micromanaging for control.”

    Sound familiar? Time to take a vacation, and we’ll get to that. If not, we recommend you preempt the burnout and make sure your work doesn’t take over your life.  Continue Reading

  • How to overcome recruiting challenges to fill airline jobs, aviation jobs, and airport jobs

    June 29, 2017 by

     

    The airline and aviation industry is massive. So it’s no surprise recent college grads get confused when trying to understand the different paths to landing aviation jobs, airline jobs, or airport jobs.

    When recent college grads think about airline jobs, they often first think about pilots and flight attendants. That’s not a surprise, as those are the people that travelers see on the front line when traveling by air.

    Airline jobs go beyond pilots and flight attendants

    Becoming a pilot or flight attendant shouldn’t be the only career path college students and recent college grads pursue. And that’s the challenge airline industry employers face as they look to recruit recent college grads to continue to fill the over 700,000 jobs within the U.S airlines industry (according to Airlines For America (AFA), the industry trade organization for the leading U.S. airlines).

    Continue Reading

  • Latest rules for resume writing from career consultant Joanne Meehl [video]

    March 24, 2017 by

     

    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. Continue Reading

  • Millennial and Gen Z job seekers: your chance to tell employers what you expect [survey]

    March 22, 2017 by

     

    If you are a Millennial or 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:

    What do you expect from employers who want to hire you?

    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 Millennial and 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

     

    Want to keep on top of job search advice? Connect with College Recruiter on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and YouTube.

  • Ask Matt: Why your resume isn’t getting noticed – and how to fix it

    March 09, 2017 by

    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?

    Lots.

    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?

    Wrong!

    Why?

    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:

    1. I had college newspaper experience.
    2. I had leadership experience (resume would show I worked as an assistant editor)
    3. I was part of a team that won a few college newspaper awards.
    4. 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.

    Continue Reading

  • Recruitment marketing across social media: Best practices

    March 08, 2017 by

     

    Many employers have embraced recruitment marketing across social media. Here we’d like to share best practices and answer common questions.

    If college students don’t use Facebook as much anymore, should employers even consider branding on Facebook to reach millennials?

    According to Fluent – a customer acquisition platform – in 2016, 41% of millennials use Facebook every day*. That generation was part of the days when you had to sign up with Facebook using your college email address. While the use of Facebook has since changed, millennials are using it to keep in touch with friends and family, as well as receive news.

    The organic reach of brands on Facebook has been reduced dramatically. Nowadays, you have to “pay if you want to play.” Therefore, companies have to allocate a budget to advertise on this platform. Even though organic reach is almost nonexistent, a company should post regularly (2-3 times a week) when advertising. Here is why:

    If your company is sponsoring posts (ads) and candidates click on these posts, they are sent to a landing page outside of Facebook. But candidates can still visit your company’s Facebook page. If that’s the case, your page has to grab the visitor’s attention. If there is no sign of recent content or content of value, the visitor will not likely take interest in the ad or your company.

    One great thing about advertising on Facebook is how granular companies can target candidates. You can focus on certain universities, majors, graduation date and more. It’s easy and relatively inexpensive to brand your company as an employer to the most relevant audience.

    *Note: That same study shared that the older millennial generation (ages 25-34) use Facebook most in comparison to the younger millennials (ages 18-24). 

    Where else should companies invest in social media marketing?

    Facebook may not be the best channel to use for recruitment if you’re not paying to play, but Instagram and Snapchat are two channels that can support your efforts to reach college students and millennials. These social networks can assist with attracting these candidates because both are all about the visuals. Leverage them for your employer branding efforts and tell your company’s story through videos and photos, but don’t forget about Snapchat Geo-Filters.
    Continue Reading

  • Opportunity for growth and variety: Insurance internships

    March 03, 2017 by

     

    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