27. February 2008 | Show Originial
After two weeks of being pounded by economic news in the media declaring recession, high energy costs, a housing market in the tank and consumer confidence at the lowest level since the outbreak of the Black Death we were inclined to just throw our hands up in the air, give up, and head for the hills.

But wait, companies in Pittsburgh are still hiring. Our business has not tanked. What is going on? How can we be at deaths door economically and still see a hiring level as good as a year ago and better than two years ago?

While it is true that around the country our economy is in or near recession it appears many areas around the country are not going to suffer the kinds of job losses that were experienced after 9-11. There are many reasons for this as we have mentioned in prior posts.

While it is true business is cyclical and downturns happen it is also true that the constant media barrage of bad news and the ignoring of good news, by themselves, drive consumer moods downward more than most individual circumstances warrant. This is not to discount the pain being felt by those who are losing a home or a job but by historic standards the economic picture, especially in the Pittsburgh metro, is not that bad and the near term prospects remain very good.

The incessant recession talk by major media continues the attempt to drive readership and (ironically) sell more soap by sensational headlines decrying doom and gloom. We wonder where we, as an economy, would be if the paradigm of major media was the opposite, where headlining strong job growth areas, good economic stories (yes, they still exist) and proposed solutions to current problems was the norm while relegating “bad news” to the back (web) pages.

27. February 2008 | Show Originial
We spend a lot of time focusing on the getting-the-job aspect of things here at The Employment Guide. (Imagine that.) While the job search is a very important and deserving focus, keeping the job you've worked so hard to get is more than a little important. Of course, actually doing the work is a good chunk of your success at a company, but there are other factors that will also influence just how far you'll go with your company. So here is a list of things you can do to ensure longevity in your position.

1. Show up every day on time. 5 minutes late? Okay, if it's once or twice, here and there. However, repeatedly being tardy can immediately cancel out all of the good work you do on a daily basis. So keep your good work the focus; bonus points if you're 10 minutes or more early every day.

2. Ask questions when you need help. It takes less time to do something right the first time, than to have to do it over again. Asking questions also shows your involvement in the process and doing of things.

3. Be hungry. No, I don't mean you should be hitting the snack machines with all of your spare change. If you've finished all of your projects, ask your manager for more work. The more new projects you take on, the more responsibility and reward you'll be afforded.

4. Be a problem solver. Managers have a ton of administrative duties and other responsibilities in their daily routine. Neither of you will have good days every day. So when you encounter a problem, your manager will appreciate the effort you put into finding a viable solution.

5. Find a Big Brother (or Sister). Remember when you were little and you and your siblings didn't get along at all? I bet you're really close now. The business world is a family, and it helps to know people who know people, and who can show you the ropes. (For tips on networking, check out Kevin Donlin's article on How to Network Like A Pro.) Scope out someone in your office you can connect with, and shadow them. You'll learn more about your company, and your job.

6. Penny pinch. You know, in a way your company's money is your money. After all, it's where your paycheck comes from, right? So it makes sense that you'd want your company to have as much money as possible. Look for your chance to add value to your company every day. Impliment paper saving practices to cut costs on print production. Value shop when buying supplies in bulk. Anything you can do to conserve your company's resources is a huge asset.

7. Be the teacher's pet. It's okay to want to learn. Most adults spend their later years reminiscing about their grade school days anyhow - and learning is a life-long process. Take lunch-and-learns that your company has to offer. Take a night course at your local college. Many companies offer tuition-reimbursement. Learning how to enhance your position helps the company just as much as it helps you get ahead.

8. Say "You're right" on occasion. Knowing how to say you were wrong is something most people never quite get the knack of. But this is your chance to recognize your mistakes and accept responsbility for them. The mistake isn't what will be remembered - your solution is. A mistake is simply an opportunity to demonstrate your problem solving skills.

9. Service with a smile. Whether it's a customer, a coworker, or management you're talking to, it's important to maintain good service. It isn't rocket science to figure out that the quality of work you put out will determine just how far you go with a company. Not every customer is going to be fun. Not every task if going to be enriching. Pushing through with a smile will make the job more enjoyable for you, as well as your customers or clients.

10. Be happy, man. It's easy to get distracted and let things get you down. Even if someone has stolen your favorite red stapler, your ink pen blew up, and you've got one broken wheel on your desk chair, having a positive attitude will help you get things fixed quicker than simply complaining or getting frustrated. Your coworkers will like you enough to lend a helping hand at the very least.

And that's it. 10 easy things you can do to ensure your further development within your company. Have you had any great successes in the last year in your position? We'd love to hear about it - leave us some comments!
26. February 2008 | Show Originial
You can learn a lot about networking to find jobs by asking recruiters how they do it to fill jobs. That's because recruiters, also known as headhunters, have to network every day to locate and place candidates in positions they're hired by employers to fill. And recruiters don't get paid until they succeed. So you'd better believe that successful headhunters know a thing or two about networking. Here are two things, to be exact, you can do to network like a pro and get hired faster...

1. Google and Call Past Employees

Recruiting expert David Perry, author of "Guerrilla Marketing For Job Hunters," shares a unique way to research potential employers using Google. It's this: Find and call people who used to work where you want to work now.

"The fastest way to learn the real workings of an organization is to Google past employees and call them up. This is exactly what I do. Before I take an assignment from a company to place an executive there, I want to know if I'm walking into a hornet's nest," says Perry.

Here's how to do it...

Google the name of your target employer and the word "resume." The search results you get back will include resumes of people who used work there. (You may want to add the word "experience" to "resume" in your search; experiment using Google's Advanced Search options.)

Once you find some resumes, pick up the phone and call. Say: "Hi my name is _________. I'm researching XYZ Corp. and I think you used to work there because I found your resume online. I'm thinking of applying for a job there. May I ask you a few quick questions to see if it's worth my time and effort? I know this is an unusual way to do a job search."

Most people will be impressed by your initiative, flattered to be asked for their opinion and willing to help you out.

"You want to learn about three main areas: the company and its culture, the department you would be working in, and the name of the manager you would be reporting to," says Perry.

Finish your conversation with this all-important question: "If I decide to talk with them, may I say that I spoke with you?"

"You ask this for two reasons," advises Perry. "First, if they left on good terms, you can drop that former employee's name when contacting the company to ask for a meeting. Second, that person may phone his old boss and tell him or her to keep an eye out for the smart person who just called--that would be you."

If you're at all hesitant about this technique, try it on a company you have no intention of applying to. Work out the bugs first, then network your way right into your ideal employer.

2. Make Recommendations On LinkedIn

Tom Stewart, VP of Executive Search at Genesis10 in Minneapolis, advises job seekers to use LinkedIn.com as a way to get found by recruiters and employers.

"I tell people to think of LinkedIn as a sort of 'Who's Who' for the Internet savvy professional. It's a great way to expand your visibility--and the more people who can find you, the better," says Stewart.

Key to using LinkedIn effectively is to give and ask for endorsements, also known as recommendations.

"Writing recommendations for those in your network benefits everyone. I have found candidates accidentally by clicking on the endorsements they wrote for other people on LinkedIn. I can count at least six passive candidates I placed in new jobs this way," says Stewart.

Start with your network of first-level connections at LinkedIn. Pick one person you feel strongly about and endorse them. After you write a recommendation, the system prompts the recipient to endorse you, which leads to reciprocity.

Think of your LinkedIn recommendations as free advertisements you can run on other people's profiles. If they are successful and highly visible in their industry, your recommendation--with your name on it--will be highly visible, too. Which increases the likelihood that a recruiter who sees your endorsement will click on it, read your profile, and contact you.

Now, go out and make your own luck!

Kevin Donlin is creator of TheSimpleJobSearch.com. Since 1996, he has provided job-search help to more than 11,000 people. Kevin has been interviewed by USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, CBS Radio and others. His free report, The Simple Job Search Manifesto, is found at www.TheSimpleJobSearch.com

25. February 2008 | Show Originial

Finding a job is not always easy and can sometimes become a hassle and it is often said that finding a job, is a job in itself. In order for you to win over an employer with a spotlight "Cover Letter", it is extremely important to use all marketing tools at your disposal.

Some job seekers have hurt their causes by overlooking a key selling document: the cover letter. Often times, job applications can be submitted through email and as a result, many candidates forgo the cover letter, offering little more than "Please see the attached 'resume' instead.
-That's a huge mistake.
Following are tips on successfully selling yourself to prospective employers using your cover letter.

Four Tips to Sell Yourself with Your Resume Cover Letter.

Tip #1 -Address for Success.
It is a good idea for you to find out who the hiring manager is instead of writing a generic salutation such as "To whom it May Concern." If you are not sure who the contact person is, call the company and find out the hiring manager's name and title and the correct spelling. Avoid using the following salutations, "Dear Sir or Madam and "To Whom it May Concern. This is very generic and old fashioned.

Tip #2- Customize the Content.
Be creative. Link your skills, work history and biggest professional accomplishments to the requirements of the open position. Base your approach on the information revealed in the job posting.

Tip # 3- Keep it short and sweet.
Write an attention-grabbing introduction focusing on your highlight attributes. Explain why the job interests you, request an interview and then thank the employer for His or Her time. Don't waste valuable space with cliched buzzwords or long-winded anecdotes. It is okay to show off some personality, however be mindful to keep the spotlight on your career instead of meandering off track with irrelevant details about your personal life.

Tip # 4- Offer the Truth.
Be honest. The worst mistake a job seeker can make is is to lie on a resume or cover letter. While you want to make a positive first impression and land an interview, don't stretch the truth in order to do so. Remember that even white lies, and "minor" misrepresentations can come back to haunt you, even after you've landed the position.

Finally, if you meet all of the requirements and think that you're the perfect candidate for a job, understand that there's a fine line between coming across as confident and cocky. Therefore, steer clear of off-putting self praise in your cover letter. Instead of boastfully writing about being the "best" use specific examples of how you positively contribute to your current employers bottom line as a means of selling yourself.
For more helpul tips and resume advice, click on the link for more information. http://www.vault.com/resume/resume-cover-letter-advice.jsp?gclid=clwq9KLN35ECFQOmlgodYgG2fA
22. February 2008 | Show Originial
www.EmploymentGuide.com, the 10th ranked job board on the Internet and the number one job board for hourly recruitment, will roll out a site redesign on Saturday, February 23rd, that will feature employer and job clip videos to help highlight to job seekers the benefits of job postings they are reading.

“Video is a great example of how we constantly improve the user’s experience on www.EmploymentGuide.com,” said Jack Webber, regional manager at The Employment Guide. “We debuted the original video center in April 2007 and, in less than a year; we have expanded its accessibility. Job seekers gain valuable information about employers through these videos,” Webber added.

To help clients develop the best videos possible, The Employment Guide has partnered with a production company to offer four competitively-priced video packages. The basic Job Clip package includes a professionally-produced video of up to 30 seconds in length containing industry-related stock footage and/or photos, a company logo and script, and on-screen contact information. The premier video package, Custom Video, includes an on-site production crew to capture unique company footage for a completely tailored product.

20. February 2008 | Show Originial
We are very excited to present to you our latest video products where recruiters have an opportunity to broadcast their entire organization and also promote their business as well.

Video Products
  • Job clips-Professionally produced video (up to 30 seconds in length.) Each Job Clip contains industry-related stock footage and/or photos, company logo and on-screen contact information. Your script will be generated using your existing online advertisement and read by experienced voice-over technicians.
  • Profile Video-Professionally produced video (up to 45 seconds in length). Profile Videos utilize your company's personal photographs, web site and video footage, to spotlight your entire organization.
  • Premium Profile Video-With the Premium Profile Video, you will own rights to your customized video Profile Video. In addition, www.Employmentguide.com will distribute your video to YouTube, MySpace, GoogleVideo and YahooVideo.
  • Custom Video-Allow www.EmploymentGuide.com to organize the production of your fully-customized video profile. A production crew will visit your facilities, interview your staff and shoot footage for your one of a kind recruitment commercial.
  • Hosting Only-Do you already have a video made and want to see it on www.EmploymentGuide.com? We will host the video for you, promoting your video message to www.EmploymentGuide.com job seekers.

Features and Benefits

  • Well informed Candidates-Video ensures candidates are knowledgeable about available positions, your company's mission statement, values and culture.
  • Capture a Different Segment of Users-This product will attract candidates that may be unaffected by the traditional advertising.
  • Increased Response -On average, there is a 38% increase in job seeker expression of interest after watching a recruitment video.
  • Maintain Your Competitive Edge-Video is a memorable way to differentiate your company in an increasingly competitive job market.
  • Multiple Points of Access-Your video can be viewed through multiple channels on www.EmploymentGuide.com. This includes the Video Center, Job Description and Job Search Results page.

Want to check out the videos? Click below to see different videos that are posted on our website at.http://www.atlanta.employmentguide.com/

20. February 2008 | Show Originial
The Employment Guide is always looking for guest bloggers to share insight into the recruitment industry, job hunting and all things hourly, skilled, part-time and full-time with our readers. If you've got the gift of gab (and a spell checker) we'd love to feature you as one of our guest bloggers. We like to feature one guest blogger per week, and we'll even take care of the editing process for you! Articles can be on any topic relating to the job search or the recruiting industry and should be 500 words or less. Just e-mail for more information, or to submit your article.

We look forward to hearing from any and all writers!
20. February 2008 | Show Originial
The job fair is one of the best tools available to a jobseeker. If taken advantage of properly, they can lead to big opportunities. Many employers are there offering on-the-spot interviews, so there are a few things to keep in mind when attending a job fair.

Before the job fair, it's a good idea to find out what businesses will be in attendance. Get on the internet and research the participating companies. What types of jobs do they have open? What kind of people are they looking for? What skills are they looking for? Knowing as much as possible about the companies you'll potentially be interviewing with will help make the job fair that much more successful for you. Make a list of questions for these companies. And of course, make plenty of copies of your resume. Your resume will ensure that you're remembered well after you've made your first impression with the employer. For some good advice on resume writing, you can visit The Employment Guide®'s Job Spot Blog's archives.

Remember that a job fair isn't a trip to the beach - leave your street clothes at home. You don't have to wear a suit, but presentation is definitely key. "Business casual" is pretty standard with most job fairs. This means slacks and a collared shirt for men, and slacks or a skirt coupled with a blouse for women. Stay away from too much jewelry or too revealing clothing - you don't want anything to distract from you as the jobseeker. How you present yourself to a prospective employer at a job fair will demonstrate how serious you are in your job search, and how serious you're willing to take the position. Not only will it help your physical presentation, but looking good will help you feel as confident as possible when talking to employers. When you're confident in yourself, you're better able to show how serious you are about the job fair - remember to be dedicated, conscientious and attentive.

The most important thing to remember about a job fair is that it doesn't end when you've moved on to the next booth. Once the job fair has ended, follow up with the employers your spoke with. Make sure you got a business card, e-mail address, or phone number for each company you met with, and send a thank you note a day or two later. This will help ensure that you're remembered and reinforce the fact that you're serious about the position with the company.

For a list of job fairs happening in your area, visit www.EmploymentGuide.com's Job Fair Center.

Still not sure what to expect at a job fair? Check out this video!

20. February 2008 | Show Originial

- Forty percent of Americans say they are frequently subjected to stress, and another 36 percent sometimes feel that way, according to a January survey by the Gallup Poll.

Are we really living in stressful times? Atlanta was ranked #10 for the most stressul city based on murders, robberies, commute time, unemployment rates, monthly home payments, etc. I was reading this article from Bizjournal.com and was blown away knowing that I just relocated from Miami, a stressful city also and to find out that they are not even listed as one of the top ten stressful cities. I actually relocated for some of the same reasons that Atlanta is having problems with. Insane!!! The reason that I believe Atlanta was ranked for one of the top ten cities that are stressed is because people from all around the country are moving to this up and coming city and it is becoming a little overpopulated causing the traffic to become an issue as well as other things, but we should not let this get to us. Atlanta is still beautiful and a major attraction as well as a hot spot for tourist, and as far as the monthly home payments being to high, I beg to differ. They are way cheaper than Florida. I'm not complaining. I love it here!!If you would like to check out Atlanta's Stress Profile click below

18. February 2008 | Show Originial

I know that we could all use some Resume Tips to help perfect our resumes. I think these tips truly come in handy. I actually found this website when I was working on perfecting my resume and I came across these very important tips. Hope this helps!!!

1. Start with an attractive layout. Use bold and italics to highlight key points. I do not recommend downloadable templates because they are very generic and dull. Get creative but not crazy. You can use a little touch of color if you are modest.
2. Justify the text instead of using left align. Most people are accustomed to reading justified text. This will make your résumé easy to follow.
3. Choose a common font. Times New Roman, Arial, and Verdana are some of the best fonts for a résumé. Now is not the time to experiment. Most computers do not have 600 different fonts installed so the file will not read correctly if you use your decorative fonts. Do not use cutesy graphics such as candy canes or teddy bears if you want to be taken seriously. (Yes, I have really received a résumé with teddy bears and candy canes on it.) It is NOT appropriate for business correspondence, and I guarantee your résumé will be canned if you do this.
4. Do not use the word "I" in your résumé. Start each sentence with a powerful verb. For example: • Organized annual student symposium by securing speakers and working closely with marketing department executives. • Implemented production bonus incentives and "best practices" matrix for all divisions, raising overall productivity by as much as 40 percent.
5. Write a proper cover letter for each position to which you apply. Do not ever send out a résumé without a cover letter. This is basic business etiquette. Personalize each cover letter directly to the position you are applying to. A generic cover letter will not work to your benefit. If possible, address the letter directly to a person. If you do not know the hiring manager's name, use "Hiring Manager."
6. Print your résumé and read it word-for-word. You can use the grammar and spell check function, but don't rely on it.
7. When you have a degree, list only the year that you obtained your degree. When you list your dates of attendance, many résumé scanning systems will not recognize that you obtained a degree, only that you attended college for a period.
8. Deactivate all e-mail links and Web addresses in your résumé and cover letter. To do this in Microsoft Word, highlight the link with your mouse, go to the "Insert" drop-down menu, scroll down to and click "Hyperlink", and on the lower left-hand side of this screen there should be a little button that says "Remove link." When you find it, give it a little click and voila! Alternatively, you can highlight the link with your mouse, right click on it, and scroll down to "remove link" to deactivate the link.
9. Be consistent! For example, don't list one date as 1/2005 and then list another date as 9/22/2005. List software consistently, too. MS Word and Microsoft Excel are both correct, but not consistent when used together.
10. Adhere to punctuation and capitalization rules. Use a reference manual if you do not understand standard punctuation and capitalization rules.
Jennifer Anthony is the Director of ResumeASAP, offering professional and affordable résumé writing services. If you have comments about this article, or if you are interested in learning more about professional résumé writing, please contact Jennifer Anthony by e-mail at

15. February 2008 | Show Originial
We're kicking off our Atlanta Spring Diversity Job Fair at the Galleria March 25, 2008 from 10am-2pm.

Candidates seeking opportunities in:
  • Professional/Management
  • Sales/Financial
  • Customer Service
  • Clerical
  • Hospitality/Food Service
  • Entry-Level
  • Transportation
  • Career Training
  • Military/Law Enforcement
  • Skilled Trades
  • Warehouse/ Light Industrial
  • And much more.... Click on the flyer for additional details for directions and space availablity if you are interested in being apart of this event and we look forward to seeing you there.

15. February 2008 | Show Originial
Interviews are not always easy, especially when you are nervous and not quite sure if you may make a fool of yourself when answering some questions that are thrown at you during an interview. Here are three questions and best answers that will be helpful for you when you have your next interview. Keep in mind that you can customize these answers to fit the job you are applying for.
  • Why Do You Want This Job?

Best Answer-This job is a good fit for what I've been interested in throughout my career. It offers a nice mix of short-and long term activities.

Best Answer-The work I find most stimulating allows me to use both my creative and research skills.

Best Answer-I want this job because it seems tailored to my competencies, which include sales and marketing. As I said earlier, in a previous position I created an annual growth rate of 22 percent in a flat industry. Additionally , the team I would work with looks terrific.

  • What motivates you?

Best Answer-I've always been motivated by the desire to do a good job at whatever position I'm in.

Best Answer- I have spent my career in sales, typically in commision-based positions, and compensation has always been a strong factor in motivating me to be the top salesperson at my prior employers.

Best Answer- I want to excel and to be successful in my job, both for my own personal satisfaction and for my employer.

  • Why should we hire you?

Best Answer- The best way to respond is to give concrete examples of why your skills and accomplishmewnts make you the best candidate for the job. Take a few moments to compare the job description with your abilities, as well as mentioning what you have accomplished in your other positions. Be positive and reiterate your interest in the company and the position.

Fore more information on the Best Answers for an interview please visit http://jobsearch.about.com/

Good Luck!!!!

14. February 2008 | Show Originial
With all of the talk of recession these days, it's easy to get that shakey feeling in your boots. With the economy on a downward curve, the job market is sure to follow suit, right? Not necessarily. First, it's important to understand a recession: what it is, how it happens, and how it can be fixed. A recession is a decline in a nation's gross domestic product or negative economic growth for two or more quarters in a row. The current threat of recession is due in part to the housing crisis the nation is experiencing. The recession's solution varies from administration to administration and can range from defecit spending to spark economic growth to tax cuts to promote capital investment. Recessions, like most problems, don't have one solution, as they aren't caused by just one problem.

What does this mean for the jobseeker? It may mean very little according to Keith Hall, Commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In a statement to the United States Congress, Hall concludes that the unemployment rate remained basically the same in 2007, and has changed very little since December 2007, staying steady at 4.9%. While some industries have experienced minor decreases in the number of jobs they have to offer, many industries actually were able to increase their positions. Most notably, the retail, food service, and healthcare industries added significant numbers to their job markets. The healthcare industry especially had impressive growth - adding 367,000 jobs, accounting for over 1/3 of all nonfarm employment.

So now is the perfect time to think about a career in healthcare. Most major colleges and universities offer 1-2 year programs for nursing, x-ray technicians, anesthesiologists, and more. These jobs are competitive, and very lucrative for the hourly and skilled worker.

The Employment Guide recognized this growth, and responded by launching the all new HealthCareerWeb.com - an interactive medical community featuring a social networking component, thousands of available jobs nationwide, a user forum, and a video center that highlights specific healthcare jobs. If you're worried about the recession, why not try nursing the economy back to health? Visit HealthCareerWeb.com today to create your profile!
14. February 2008 | Show Originial
Everybody talks about meeting new people and renewing old contacts as a way to uncover job leads. But after you speak to someone about your job search, then what? You follow-up with them later, that's what.

Follow-up is an often-neglected part of networking that can pay off huge in your search for work--as much as $417 an hour, as we'll see. To motivate you to follow up with your network contacts--all of them--here are two recent success stories from my readers. What can you learn from each?

1. Follow-up with old contacts

Lynda H., from Apple Valley, Minnesota, interviewed with a Fortune 500 company in Minneapolis last year. They offered her a job, but rescinded when the departing employee, whose position Lynda was to fill, decided not to quit after all. What would you have done?

Here's what Lynda did: "I included people from past job searches in my current search, including one company I interviewed with a year ago. Getting back in touch with them was as simple as picking up the phone and calling the executive I had talked to last year. It turned out that he had assumed more responsibilities, and the position they were hiring for now reported to him. Because I had developed a rapport with him last year, it was easy to get my resume to the top of the pile, schedule the interview and land the job!"

Today, write down the names of every company you interviewed with in your last job search. Then, make a plan to contact each this week to tell them about your current search, and why you're a more valuable potential employee than the last time you spoke.

What if you haven't looked for a job in five or 10 years? No problem. Find someone in your industry who has. Ask them to contact each company they interviewed with and tell them about a really sharp person they should talk with--you.

Of course, you should buy lunch for each friend who networks for you this way, but that's just another chance to sit down and do more networking!

2. Follow-up with new contacts

By following up like clockwork by e-mail and phone, Michael S., from Los Angeles, turned an employment lead into a new job. And it took all of 23 minutes.

He writes: "I had lunch with the CEO. After e-mailing him my resume and a polite note following lunch, he went silent for a week."

At this point, many folks would be too preoccupied with posting resumes online or reading the classified ads to follow up on a "cold" lead like this. But not Michael.

"Exactly one week later, I sent another polite e-mail and placed a call to the CEO one hour after sending that second follow-up email. He took the call and said things were looking very good. We talked for about three minutes," said Michael.

"He then called this afternoon (four days later) to say it's a go and to explain the terms of the job. That was a 20-minute call. Total time invested to win the job offer following the initial meeting with the CEO was 23 minutes. I would call that a strong return on investment."

And I would agree. One lunch, two e-mails and three phone calls to land a job is a terrific ROI for anyone. All you have to do is stay organized and persistent--because the vast majority of candidates competing with you are neither organized nor persistent.

How much money is a new job worth to you? Let's say $50,000 in salary. And let's say you spend 20 hours a week for six weeks following up on networking contacts before you get hired. That's 120 hours invested for a $50,000 payoff, which works out to about $417 an hour.

So, if you think you "don't have time" to follow-up on employment contacts for 20 hours a week, do you think you could find time, now that you know every hour is worth $417? Once you realize this, other uses of your time, like watching television or adding MySpace friends, suddenly seem less important, don't they?

Now, go out and make your own luck!

Kevin Donlin is creator of TheSimpleJobSearch.com. Since 1996, he has provided job-search help to more than 11,000 people. Kevin has been interviewed by USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, CBS Radio and others. His free report, The Simple Job Search Manifesto, is found at www.TheSimpleJobSearch.com

07. February 2008 | Show Originial
With Pittsburgh’s job growth anemic (900 jobs added December ’06 to December ’07) and little evidence the pace will pick up soon, what is keeping Pittsburgh’s job market one of the hotter markets in the country? Our definition of “hotter” is the demand local companies have for new qualified employees (replacement workers as well as newly created jobs) compared to what we are seeing in other markets around the country.

The answer lies in the median age of our population, ranked as number 1 or 2 in the country (Allegheny County median age as of 2000 according to the Census Bureau is 39.6 years compared with a national average of 35.3). We are in a situation, even with residents working longer into retirement years, where enough of our population is leaving the job market that it is creating vacancies, or opportunities, for those entering the job market.

So far in 2008 we are seeing job market demand in the hourly arena as good as it has been in the past 6 years. Coupled with a housing market that never boomed with many other parts of the country and therefore is predicted to continue slow growth (2007 home sales were up 8% in the Pittsburgh region) and a commercial construction industry entering a multi year period of high demand we have an opportunity to whether the latest storm as well as any metro in the country.

This isn’t to say there will be no pain. Our economy and many jobs in it, of course, are dependent on demand from outside our region. However the demographics that currently exist here will help keep demand for replacement workers high and possibly at a higher rate than job losses created by the recession nationally.

This could be a harbinger of what the national job market looks like as well. Baby boomers are just now starting to hit retirement age and as the number of retirees increases the demand for replacement workers will grow with it. According to an article in the February 4th edition of Workforce Magazine by Gina Ruiz “Recruiters See Strong Hiring Ahead Despite Recession Talk”. The article goes on the quote Human Resource Managers as saying the outlook for hiring demand remains strong.

Staffing firms, always the leading indicator of a coming rise in unemployment rates, have remained flat across the country over the past year maintaining strong numbers from 2006. "We’re not getting a sense that there is an impending jolt in staffing employment," says Steve Berchem, vice president of the American Staffing Association in Washington. The telltale signs of an impending recession are not there, he notes. "We’re living in a very different world," says Francis Luisi, principal at Charleston Partners, an HR executive recruiting firm in Rumson, New Jersey. Factors such as employers with global vision and the millions of baby boomers reaching retirement age could make the traditional recession-related hiring slump less severe than in past cycles, he explains. "It is simply too early to speculate on what will happen," Luisi says.
06. February 2008 | Show Originial
Before sitting down for an interview you need to make sure you are well prepared for it and able to skillfully answer any question the interviewer asks you. There's an excellent technique in the book 60 Seconds & Your Hired! by Robin Ryan that can help you in preparing for an interview. The first step is to create your "5 Point Agenda".

The 5 Point Agenda is a technique that focuses on your top 5 strengths and gets the employer to listen to what you are saying. These 5 points are repeated throughout your interview which will help imprint your image to the employers brain to help you stand out and be remembered.

How to create your 5 point Agenda:

Examine your previous job responsibilities and make a list of any special accomplishments. Next review the potential employers requirements and make note of your own abilities and experience that will be most important to the employer. Now you can create your 5 points to build a solid picture focusing on how you can do the job.

So for a clerical position your five points will be like so:

Point 1: 5 years of customer service experience dealing directly with clientèle making a positive, professional image for the company.

Point 2: Detailed oriented, fast worker that can handle multiple task under stress and complete them according to deadlines.

Point 3: Has recently updated MS Office skills and experience working in company databases such as MS Access and Goldmine.

Point 4: Collaborating with staff to create and manage a thorough schedule to make sure all daily task were completed as assigned to prevent staff from over looking crucial tasks and to help staff meet deadlines for their clients in a timely matter.

Point 5: Assisted with numerous events and scheduled appointments that meet staff and clients needs accordingly.

The above 5 points are things a person interviewing for a clerical position can use to secure a job offer. Maybe the job he/she is applying for requires customer service and data entry experience and this person was able to offer specific examples of his/her expertise in that area. Please keep in mind that you can't use the above 5 points unless you actually have that experience.

These five points are the buildings blocks to answer the interviewer's questions - Robin Ryan
Good Luck and be sure to come back tomorrow for more interview tips!

Happy Hunting Tampa!

Samara Bowling
05. February 2008 | Show Originial
Before you get hired for a new job, you have to get "found" by a hiring manager. That's obvious. But how do you get found? How can you get on the radar of top employers and make them call you for an interview? That's not so obvious.

You could troll the Web and apply for posted jobs, but those are just the tip of the iceberg. For every advertised opening there may be five or more "hidden" ones. To solve this problem, here are three simple ways to get noticed--and get hired--by your next boss.

1. "Temp" is Not a Four-Letter Word

If you've never considered taking a temporary or contract position, you should rethink that attitude, according to Jackie Engmark, Executive Director of the Minnesota Recruiting & Staffing Association. The 75 firms in the MNRSA fill positions ranging from entry-level to executive, with up to 70-75% of those jobs being temp-to-hire positions, according to Engmark.

"Businesses look to staffing firms as a good source for permanent employees. Regardless of whether they need the talent on a temporary, contract, or permanent basis, businesses tap staffing companies for that talent," says Engmark.

Approximately 35% of people who take a temp job end up getting hired full-time, according to Engmark. That's a .350 batting average--not bad. And smart employers will create a full-time job for the right temp worker. "With the current talent shortage, if a company brings in someone who catches on fast and has the right attitude, more often than not they will find a place for you," says Engmark.

She says the secret lies in having the right attitude and work ethic--two traits that can't be taught. "Employers can invest in training you other skills. If you are outgoing, friendly and work hard, jobs will find you." To find staffing and recruiting firms near you, Google the following phrase: "[your state] staffing firms."

2. Get Connected

You may use LinkedIn.com, Facebook.com and MySpace.com, but are you getting all that you can out of these social networking sites? One way to get found faster by employers is to enhance your profile. For a dramatic before-and-after example, take a look at the Extreme Makeover that marketing guru Guy Kawasaki got for his LinkedIn.com profile.

Tip: The more high-quality connections you make on sites like LinkedIn.com, the more likely you are to get found by employers. On his blog, Kawasaki writes: "People with more than 20 connections are 34 times more likely to be approached with a job opportunity than people with less than five."

3. Keep Your Dirt to Yourself

According to NBC news, 77% of employers will search the Internet to check your background, and 35% of employers have eliminated a candidate for consideration after finding "digital dirt" about them online. That means you have to be extra careful about what you post in your profile on LinkedIn, MySpace, Facebook and other sites.

"My advice is to post only information online that you would feel comfortable sharing with your grandmother. If you wouldn't want her to see your photos or learn about your drunken behavior, don't post it anywhere online," advises Steven Rothberg, President and Founder of CollegeRecruiter.com.

One hiring professional, posting on a CollegeRecruiter blog, wrote: "My team and I use sources such as Facebook.com and MySpace.com on a regular basis to screen candidates. We have on many occasions stopped the interview process with candidates based on their online profiles. Think twice before you post anything out there for us to see."

So, to find your next job, you might want to take another look at temping, get connected online, and get smart.

Kevin Donlin is creator of TheSimpleJobSearch.com. Since 1996, he has provided job-search help to more than 11,000 people. Kevin has been interviewed by USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, CBS Radio and others. His free report, The Simple Job Search Manifesto, is found at www.TheSimpleJobSearch.com