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The latest news, trends and information to help you with your recruiting efforts.

Posted May 14, 2018 by

Graduated but don’t have a job yet? Tips and words of wisdom from VP at Robert Half

 

If you’ve graduated from college and the reality of the job search has sunk in, you’re not alone. We spoke with Kathleen Downs, who is Vice President with Robert Half Finance & Accounting. She has advised many entry-level job seekers and professionals in launching their careers, and we offer her advice here. There is definitely light at the end of the tunnel–there are jobs for grads out there–and Downs has concrete tips for fixing some possible mistakes you might be making in your job search. (more…)

Posted April 04, 2018 by

Job search advice: What to audit on your social media, and how to use recruiters’ tactics on themselves

 

The recent movie everyone’s watching about Facebook data and Cambridge Analytica should make job seekers hyper aware of the information they post online. Political analysts might build psychological profiles, but what do you think recruiters do to find the right candidates?

Some entry-level job seekers are surprised when they discover that recruiters search online for information about them. Steven Rothberg, President and Founder of College Recruiter says he finds this interesting. Some candidates get uncomfortable “when they discover that potential employers have looked at social media, talked with people not listed as references, and more.” But think of it this way, says Rothberg: you likely “have no qualms about looking at social media, talking with people who aren’t recruiters or hiring managers about that potential employer.” (more…)

Businesswoman interviewing candidate for a job. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Posted May 11, 2017 by

Ask Matt: How to respond to the 5 most basic interview questions [video]

 

Dear Matt: I recently completed an interview, and realized, I wasn’t prepared to answer the most basic interview questions. I spent more time preparing for that odd, or unique question that may come up, and not enough time on the basics. What are some answers or responses to the most basic interview questions every recent job seeker should be sure to master before the next interview?  (more…)

Posted October 18, 2016 by

Beyond the hammer and hard hat: Don’t overlook unique career opportunities in construction industry

jobs in the construction industry

Photo courtesy of Stockunlimited.com

Are you an entry-level job seeker looking in accounting or finance, information technology, human resources, project management, engineering, customer service, or administration? Are you a woman or minority seeking an industry with career growth and upward mobility?

Then look no further than a career in the construction industry. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts the construction industry to see an employment growth of 13.6 percent, or almost 520,000 new jobs by the year 2024. Companies across the country are seeking recent college grads to fill open positions, but old school stereotypes about the type of jobs and skills needed to succeed in the construction industry still exist – and that causes many recent college grads and entry-level job seekers to overlook careers in the construction industry.

Tim Mayer, Director of Talent Acquisition for Kraus-Anderson Construction Company (KA), understands those challenges and stereotypes, and he and other industry professionals are working diligently to change the perception and awareness about opportunities in construction.

Breaking down construction industry stereotypes

Kraus Anderson has about 500 employees, is based in Minnesota, and has a wide variety of divisions, but is primarily known for its commercial building division. When recruiting for open positions, Mayer and team face many of the same stereotypes as other construction companies across the country.

“The biggest misconception is one of men in hard hats swinging hammers and providing other labor,” says Mayer. “This is obviously a big part of what is needed in the industry, but also neglects the need for highly-educated and trained people in the construction and support roles listed above. In actuality, the construction industry is really a service industry with a focus on building and maintaining relationships.”

Tips for recent college grads seeking a career in the construction industry

Mayer says current college students and recent college grads seeking opportunities in the construction industry should research a company where they are interested in working at to find out about internships, and current job openings. The Kraus Anderson college recruiting program focuses on project and field engineer internships, and has also hired interns in accounting and HR role, pending on need. The company has developed relationships with about 13 colleges and universities to help fill internship roles throughout the company.

“I think there are some major misconceptions about careers in the construction industry that I have seen proven wrong time and time again in my over five years in the construction industry,” says Mayer. “I think most people would be surprised to learn that construction is also a very well paying industry, with an entrepreneurial spirit, where development and increased responsibility are readily available to those willing to learn and stretch their skills.”

Mayer is the prime example. He works in the construction industry, but he fills an important human resources leadership role in that industry. He received a B.A. in History from Saint John’s University in Collegeville, MN., and an M.A.in Human Resources and Industrial Relations from University of Minnesota’s Industrial Relations Center at the Carlson School of Management. Prior to KA, Mayer worked at Mortenson Construction, where he served as senior talent acquisition specialist.  He was also a senior professional recruiter for Manpower Professional.

“Even though I have never built a project, I take great pride in pointing out landmark projects that the company has built,” says Mayer. “There is a real pride with the tangible and long lasting nature of our end products. The value of our work to society can never be underestimated as it is always visible.”

Women and minorities encouraged to apply

As for those seeking opportunities to wear the hard hat and swing a hammer – those opportunities are also available, and KA and other construction companies are working hard to attract more women into construction opportunities. There are many local and national organizations that partner with construction firms to help promote opportunities for women in construction and the trades. The National Association of Women in Construction is a network for professional women in the field of construction.  The Washington Women in Trades Association was created for women working in the trades to gather and share information. Tradeswomen, Inc., is one of California’s first organizations for women in the trades and one of its goals is to recruit more women into construction and related non-traditional trades. Just about every state has an organization that supports careers for women and minorities in construction and the trades. Kraus Anderson is active in sponsoring and partnering with women’s campus organizations, as well as growing their partnership with the Society of Women Engineers (SWE).

“We have a variety of initiatives to continue to build diversity into our workforce with recruiting efforts targeted toward women, minorities, veterans, and others underrepresented in our field,” says Mayer. “These efforts not only target recent grads and experienced hires, but build deeper foundations through community involvement and support of organizations that reach students in elementary school to continue to build the notion that construction is a great field.”

Mayer continued: “I think old stereotypes persist, because there was some truth to them for such a long time. We realize that different educational backgrounds, skill sets, approaches, and life perspectives bring great value to our ability to deliver projects now and into the future.”

Soft skills crucial to success in construction industry

What do recruiters look for when hiring recent college grads in the construction industry? Soft skills stand out, says Mayer.

“Relationships are the cornerstone of our business, and because of that we seek candidates that can effectively communicate and coordinate/lead/manage large groups to foster these lasting relationships focused on solving problems,” says Mayer. “It is a given that a candidate needs to have a core set of construction skills to work in this industry, but the soft skills are the true differentiators that we seek. In today’s market, the candidates that have these skills are typically well taken care of and happy where they’re at. To get these candidates in the mix we are focusing on leveraging employee referrals and building a strong employment brand.”

Recent college grads, don’t overlook careers in the construction industry. It’s a great place to build a career. Get a jump start on learning about careers in the construction industry by signing up for personalized construction industry job alerts here. We’ll send you new job leads tailored to your interests and preferences and save you the trouble of searching for them on a regular basis.

For more job seeker tips and advice visit our blog and follow us on LinkedInFacebookTwitter, and YouTube.

 

Featuring Tim Mayer, Kraus Anderson, on careers in the construction industry. Jobs in the construction industry.

Tim Mayer is Director of Talent Acquisition for Kraus-Anderson Construction Company.

About Tim Mayer
Tim Mayer is Director of Talent Acquisition for Kraus-Anderson Construction Company (KA) where he is responsible for creating and leading the company’s end-to-end hiring strategy. Mayer is strategically implementing a proactive strategy to attract top talent for KA’s immediate needs and build a pipeline for future needs, as the company grows. He applies a big-picture approach to provide an excellent candidate experience, while recruiting managers, grooming company leaders and providing a seamless transition as long-time employees retire.

 

Posted September 20, 2016 by

What’s the difference between diversity and inclusion?

Ted Bauer

Ted Bauer is a contributing author to College Recruiter

By Ted Bauer, contributing author to College Recruiter

Diversity is a complicated topic, especially in this modern political climate where it seems like many are trying to define other groups as the enemy. It’s also semantically complicated — it means many different things to many different people. Some think of it as skin color, some as gender, some along socioeconomic lines. It varies.

What’s more — diversity and inclusion are actually very different concepts, although they’re not often treated as such. Your efforts at diverse recruiting need to differentiate between the two ideas. (more…)

Posted August 26, 2016 by

Biggest networking mistake you can make

Asking photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

For many college students and recent graduates, networking is likely to be part of their job searches. Their success or failure when interacting with recruiters and hiring managers will depend on their approach. While securing internships or entry-level jobs is a priority, college students and recent grads don’t want to come off as too aggressive when asking about career opportunities. Job seekers should not assume that just because they are eager to work that employers will automatically tell them about job opportunities, including those in the hidden job market.

When networking, students and graduates can inform professionals about who they are and what interests they have. At the same time, they can ask questions to learn more about potential employers and what they have to offer. Marc Prosser, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Fit Small Business, discusses a key mistake to avoid when networking and shares helpful tips for a better experience.

“The biggest networking mistake is asking people if they know of any open jobs. It’s good to be aggressive and show you’re looking for work. But why should anyone recommend you, especially if they don’t know you or your work ethic?

The best way to network is showing curiosity about what people do. Ask them and tell them you’d like to learn more about their profession; establish an interest in them. They may recommend you and say “This person is interested in…and may be good for the position.” Asking employers if they’re hiring won’t be as effective as “Hey, what do you do?” Avoid that mistake and you’ll be better at networking.”

Want to improve your networking skills? Visit our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

Marc Prosser, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Fit Small Business

Marc Prosser, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Fit Small Business

Marc Prosser is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Fit Small Business, a site that provides reviews and articles for small business owners. Prior to starting Fit Small Business, Marc was the CMO of FXCM for 10 years. He joined as FXCM’s first employee and grew the company to more than 700 employees.

Posted August 19, 2016 by

Networking isn’t all about you

Business photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

How do you handle networking opportunities? Is it a one-way or a two-way street? The mistake you can easily make is that networking is all about you. Because you’re so focused on landing an internship or an entry-level job, no one else seems to matter. Having that perspective is a mistake.

Networking is about communicating with professionals or other job seekers and building relationships with them. If you’re not just talking but taking the time to listen to someone else, you can learn valuable information to benefit your career. Michael Moradian, Executive Director of HonorSociety.org, explains why networking isn’t all about you and offers good networking tips.

“We live in a culture obsessed with personal branding, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The problem occurs when the only thing professionals focus on is themselves. Don’t attend networking events to tell your story alone; focus on listening, as well. After all, networking should be a dialogue, not a monologue.

It all comes down to authenticity. Are you joining professional groups and meeting people to only serve your career and to be the loudest, most talkative person in the room? If so, you will get nowhere fast.

Show a genuine interest in meeting new people, sharing ideas, asking questions, and developing strong relationships. Nobody wants to associate with selfish, egotistical blowhards who try controlling every conversation.

Being authentic also requires gratitude. Many young professionals forget to thank whoever takes time to talk to them. Express how much you appreciate each person’s time and energy. This leaves them with a positive impression of you and solves another common networking mistake, which is failing to follow-up.

Most people assume their contacts will seek them out on their own. Don’t leave it to chance. Instead, be proactive, and connect online and schedule follow ups with a simple email or a request for a lunch meeting. Take charge, be humble, and maintain a level of professionalism.”

Find more networking advice on our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

Michael Moradian, Executive Director of HonorSociety.org

Michael Moradian, Executive Director of HonorSociety.org

Michael Moradian is the Executive Director of HonorSociety.org, an honor society that recognizes academic achievement and provides valuable resources and tools to its members. Connect with Michael and HonorSociety.org on Twitter at @HonorSocietyorg.

Posted August 16, 2016 by

Absence of genuine networking discourages job seekers

Business photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

As recruiters and hiring managers search for top talent, it is important they understand how to approach potential job candidates. Employers should think about treating candidates the way they would want to be treated when searching for internships or entry-level jobs. Recruiters and hiring managers can’t assume just because they arrive on college campuses that they will make connections. Taking time to speak with college students who attend networking events shows sincere interest in them and create a favorable impression of an employer. Michael Moradian, Executive Director of HonorSociety.org, explains the importance of connecting with candidates in a genuine manner.

“Networking is a way to build professional relationships on a personal level. But many recruiters fail to connect with potential candidates in a meaningful way. Communication is the most important tool in a recruiter’s toolkit. If you can’t explain expectations and describe opportunities in a clear, straightforward way, candidates will go elsewhere. Job seekers aren’t interested in vague, unclear information. They want to know if an opportunity is right for them so help them see if they can fit into the role.

It’s easy to spot common offenders when you’re at networking events. Keep an eye out for card spammers, people who throw their business cards around attempting to reach as many people as possible in a short amount of time. This is not just unprofessional; it’s also offensive.

You can’t build relationships by skimming the surface and trying to get your information in as many pockets as possible. Why would I want to build a trusting relationship with you when you can’t seem to take the time to fully engage with me?

Instead, start a conversation and express a genuine interest in connecting. Being inauthentic and focusing only on the result is off-putting. Don’t force anything; sometimes, there just isn’t a fit. Express what you can offer and how you can help potential candidates.

Follow-up if you sense some interest, but don’t be pushy. There is a human side to business, and talented candidates appreciate when they are treated as a person, not a commodity.”

Want more networking tips? Make your way to our blog and follow us on LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook.

Michael Moradian, Executive Director of HonorSociety.org

Michael Moradian, Executive Director of HonorSociety.org

Michael Moradian is the Executive Director of HonorSociety.org, an honor society that recognizes academic achievement and provides valuable resources and tools to its members. Connect with Michael and HonorSociety.org on Twitter at @HonorSocietyorg.

Posted August 09, 2016 by

Common networking mistakes to avoid

Dishonesty, moral dilemma, liar photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

As college students and recent graduates enter the workforce, they will likely meet people who can assist them with their job searches. When these opportunities arise, job seekers be prepared to take advantage of them. While some job seekers may not be the most outgoing in terms of personality, they can still be effective when networking. However, if students and grads don’t understand how to network, they can hurt their chances of building important relationships that can advance their careers. So as job seekers attend networking events, they must be mindful of what not to do. Mike Summers, Director of Employer Relations at Wake Forest University, highlights common networking mistakes to avoid.

“Blindly reaching out without knowing basic information about a person, the kind of details usually found through a quick Google or LinkedIn search, is a red flag signaling a bad start to the networking experience. A wishful connection will be less likely to engage if college students or prospective hires don’t bring any background knowledge to the table.

Expecting a networking connection will “tell me what to do.” Before reaching out, know the information you want. It’s helpful to have an informal script handy. “My name is Sue Smith; I’m a business major and art history minor interested in an entry-level job working in the cosmetic industry in New York. I’m hoping to secure a summer internship. Could you share with me how you got into the industry and any suggestions or recommendations you might have?”

Thinking the number of connections matters. Networking is about relationships, not numbers. Targeted outreach to people who share common interests makes networking effective. Two people may connect in an unlimited number of ways, such as graduating from the same school, being from the same hometown, choosing a similar academic path, or by an interest in a particular career. Whatever it is, a real connection matters.

The first outreach is inappropriate or unprofessional. Treat networking opportunities as professional conversations. It’s easier to move from formal to casual than vice-versa. Having good manners and dressing appropriately (which is very different if you’re interested in a career in journalism versus a career on Wall Street) is critical in creating the first impression that builds your reputation.”

Want to learn more about networking mistakes? Head to our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

Mike Summers, Director of Employer Relations at Wake Forest University

Mike Summers, Director of Employer Relations at Wake Forest University

With more than 25 years of experience in the private sector, nearly half assisting organizations with recruiting, interviewing, and hiring top talent, Mike Summers, Director of Employer Relations at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, has an insider’s understanding of what employers are seeking and helping students and recent grads showcase their academic skills and personal experiences. Wake Forest’s one, university-wide employer relations team means Summers has experience with and supports the employment search for students in all academic areas, teaching and empowering them to articulate the value of their education for today’s employers.

Posted July 21, 2016 by

Social media helps students and graduates build relationships

Social, connection, laptop photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

Today, social media provides us with the chance to communicate personally and professionally. For college students and recent graduates who are more interested in the latter, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook are all popular platforms to market themselves. They are places to build valuable relationships with professionals, employers, and fellow job seekers. Andrea St. James, Director of the Career Development Center at Western New England University, discusses how students can establish relationships on social media sites, and Michaeline Shuman, Director of Career Development at Susquehanna University, shares how social media sites can connect students and recent grads to college alumni.

“Social media works best as an initial contact or follow-up to solidify a new relationship. When connecting first (through social media), though, students should explain who they are. When you first pursue a connection, share how you are connected with the person (i.e. went to the same school, or common connections). Then share information about yourself that starts to put a face to a name, i.e. major, experience, direction, goals, and finally what you are looking to gather from that person.”

“(Social media) is great for connecting students with their university’s alumni and asking them for advice. By asking for advice, alumni are put in a position to say yes rather than no. All professionals have stories about how they got into their current roles, strategies for students on the job market, etc. Once a rapport is developed, students can ask their new networking connections about job opportunities or additional resources.”

Students and recent college graduates seeking opportunities to help build their professional network can connect with employers, career specialists and other motivated professionals through the many different social media channels College Recruiter uses to engage with both job seekers and employers. Check out our College Recruiter LinkedIn group, our College Recruiter LinkedIn page, and follow College Recruiter on Twitter. Also, don’t forget to leverage resources like the College Recruiter YouTube page, which offers additional career insight. When you find content you like, share that with your social media channels to help create discussion and engagement, which can help build your professional network and create those coveted relationships that can help students and recent college graduates advance in their career.

While students can use social media to begin the networking process, they shouldn’t end there. Don’t be afraid to invite connections to connect face-to-face for coffee or lunch. Ask connections for an informational interview to learn more about your desired future careers. Take relationships to the next level.

Using social media to network? Get more advice on our blog and don’t forget to follow us on our various social media channels, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

 

Andrea St. James, Director of the Career Development Center at Western New England University

Andrea St. James, Director of the Career Development Center at Western New England University

Andrea St. James is Director of the Career Development Center at Western New England University in Springfield, Massachusetts, where she assists students and alumni with career planning, occupational exploration, job search strategies, and graduate school applications. She has a BSBA in Marketing and an MBA, both from Western New England University.

 

 

 

 

 

Michaeline Shuman, Director of Career Development at Susquehanna University

Michaeline Shuman, Director of Career Development at Susquehanna University

Michaeline Shuman is Assistant Provost for Postgraduate Outcomes and Director of the Career Development Center at Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, where she helps students identify internship and job opportunities through networking and preparation programs, on-campus recruiting programs, and career and graduate school advising. She received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Social Work at Albright College and a Master of Science Degree in Education from Alfred University.