Monthly Archives: September 2017

We Need a Working Plan

All of our employment related institutions are geared to servicing the full time employment model – being employed by someone else and receiving regular pay for the work performed, on a regular basis for a minimum of thirty-five hours per week. Think about it. Consider how employment rates are measured and how the popular press treats these figures. Consider how government employment support mechanisms work. They are based on the number of weeks worked within a certain period, the more you work, the higher portion of available dollars you receive.

Even our social and personal lives revolve around income generated by full time employment. When you meet someone new, they ask what you do, and expect you to be either employed full time with one employer or self-employed. Being employed full time by one employer is, unofficially, a measure of who you are and your value to society.

Growth industries such as social services, health care (due to demographic aging of our population), retail and wholesale trade, hospitality and food services tend to favour contract or part time employment models. Manufacturing and finance are not experiencing growth and some companies, within these areas, are even decreasing in size. Larger traditional industrial employers, such as US Steel and Canada Post have been in negotiations with their unions for changes to the traditional defined benefit type of benefit and pension plans to contribution plans where the employer no longer carries the responsibility for managing these funds.

It is over to the employee to manage their pension and benefit contributions, to take on total responsibility for investing and growing their future nest egg. This is another significant step away from the ‘caretaker’ role previously assumed by the employer for their full time workforce.

The employer is there to service its customers and is seeking more cost effective means to do this, including one of the largest costs, which is the labour force. Pension and benefit plans are expensive on their own merit. Having to employ administrative personnel to manage these plans on behalf of employees is now deemed too costly for employers. So they are seeking to opt out of these plans. Couple this with the view by Generation X and Generation Y, that employers no longer elicit loyalty by this move away from caretaker type of behaviour (downsizing their loyal boomer parents and reducing benefits previously associated with full time employment) and we see the workplace environment of loyalty and caretaker being replaced by one of self-importance and self-reliance.

And then we have human resource, training and development, organization and employee development gurus decrying the loss of employee engagement. Seriously, why do we expect employees to be engaged with their employer’s culture, strategy, customer service, and financial plans when these same employees do not believe employers care about their needs and requirements? Let us keep in mind, also, that approximately 40% of the senior manager and executive positions are held by the boomer generation – the same generation who decries the loss of loyalty and moans about the selfishness of succeeding generations. This is a conundrum, for sure.

So how do we grasp all these differing trends, bring them together in one neat package, and put this package to good use in our need and requirement to generate regular income? How does today’s employee find the type of employment they need to service their income requirements? There are a number of options available but the employee needs to understand that their role is quickly becoming one where they take control of their employment life and build a personal employment plan to make that happen.

How to Craft an Employment Plan

Any plan has to be well researched, well defined, have specific measurable milestones, be time-based, and have realistic actions and tasks built into it. Utilizing the tried and true SMART (specific, measurable, achievable or actionable, realistic, and timely or time-based) method for goal setting applies equally to crafting a good plan.

Your employment plan needs to be considered as part of a journey, with a clear direction, a clear strategy and, a concise marketing plan if you want the end result to be achieved.

Step 1: Scope out your market niche.

Just like any marketing plan developed for a business, your personal employment marketing plan is formal and incorporates actions required to reach your target market. Do you have a clearly defined market niche? What differentiates you from all the others seeking employment who have similar expertise? What are the features, advantages and benefits of working with you? What specific contribution will you bring to your potential target market?

And you need to make a decision about the type of employment model you want. Is it full time, contract, part time, self-employment? Don’t expect recruiters to work for you if you are not clear about your desires and requirements. If a recruiter’s specialty is contract employment, then they are not best suited to help you secure full time employment. Advising recruiters that you will take any type of employment does not send a message of confidence and self-reliance.

Step 2: Research preferences and requirements of your target market.

Your target niche and target markets should be as a result of solid research conducted by you, based on the expertise you are attempting to market to potential employers. Many recruiters, whether in house or external, are looking for that differentiation, someone who stands out from the rest. Remember, recruiters are evaluated on their success in finding the right person for the role, finding the person who fits the company culture so they are just as interested, as their client, in finding the best person for the role.

Step 3: Craft the plan.

Viewing this plan as a project will help you to incorporate all the important components – specific tasks to be performed such as:

  • identifying possible referral partners and the steps necessary to get them on board and performing referral actions on your behalf;
  • determining which media you will use to communicate your expertise, and;
  • identifying the right mentor or coach who will help to remove barriers and obstacles.

Step 4: Review the plan with people whose opinion you value.

Be selective. Seek out those people who know you and your expertise well and, who also know the target market you are seeking to hit. You should utilize your mentor or personal coach as well, but they may not know you as well as past colleagues, family and friends. Mentors and coaches are more objective than colleagues, family and friends but when you are looking for work, a strong support network – provided by family and friends – is absolutely necessary. And many times, these are the ones that provide the right connections that help job seekers to find the right fit.

Step 5: Craft the communication strategy for marketing your services.

There are so many communication media available today that you can easily become overwhelmed by trying to utilize and manage all of them. Deciding on the best media for your search should be as a result of target market research. Find out which media are used most by the employers you are targeting and how they use this media. Plan your communication strategy as fully as you plan your marketing strategy and plan. Your communication needs to be targeted if you expect to get your message to the right people. You may consider using a social media on line support such as Roost to help you manage all your message and network connections.

How Resume Shows Years of Work With Employers

We often hear that employment gaps in a resume can hurt a candidate, but did you know long term employment at the same employer can also be perceived negatively?

Having stable employment is certainly not a bad thing. However, if it is with the same employer and your resume doesn’t show you made progress, it is not an impressive mark for a potential employer viewing your resume.

When a candidate has stayed with the same employer for many years, it can be considered in two ways: 1) You are lucky to have found a good employer and enjoy what you do, or, 2) You are afraid to take on new challenges and do not like stepping out of your comfort zone.

A potential employer may view your long term stay with an employer negatively for several reasons:

1.Questions of Ambition and Motivation. If you have been working with the same employer for several years and your resume shows you have the same title as when you started, it can lead an employer to wonder if you have reached the peak of your career. Employers want people who have the ambition and motivation to progress.

2.Marketable Skills. When you have been with the same employer for a long period of time, your skills may grow stale and an employer may think you only know one way of doing things. Do you have what it takes to be effective and competitive? Are you willing to try things differently and can you learn new skills? How well would you adapt to a new environment, one that may require you to stretch into new and different skills requirements?

Here are ways in which your long tenure with an employer can impress potential employers rather than scare them away.

1.Show Advancement. Whether you received promotions or transferred to work in different departments within the company, make note of these changes and advancements on your resume. Specify the dates you were in certain roles so the potential employer sees that you made advancements in your career.

2.Detail Your Achievements. Rather than group achievements as a whole with the same employer, break it down on your resume. Under each title and the specific dates you held the position, specify the challenge and accomplishments. This will indicate to a potential employer that you have continued to acquire knowledge, achieve new outcomes, and excel in new capabilities throughout your career with the long term employer and that you have taken on new challenges or projects.

3.Advanced Training and Education. If you continued to pursue education or took particular courses or training relevant to the job with your employer, make note of it on your resume. This shows a potential employer that you have a desire to continue to improve your abilities and your job skills have not gone outdated. You also have the initiative to acquire new job skills.

4.Provide a Reason for Leaving Your Long Term Employer. A potential employer always has this question in mind for candidates in these situations. They want to know that you are serious about your decision to move on from your long term employer and that you are not leaving for reasons of a bailout – perhaps your performance has grown stale and you are simply looking for a way out.

Never talk negatively about your employer. Simply indicate you have valued the experience and skills gained from you previous position and you are looking for new challenges where you can apply your marketable skills and continue to grow with new experiences.

Your loyalty and dedication is an impressive sign for potential employers, but they have to know you have grown over the years, and still have ambition, motivation, up-to-date skills, and good intentions for wanting to leave your long term employer. Doubt in any of the particular areas mentioned above can lead a potential employer to pass on your resume and application, so use these tips to make sure you get noticed.

Meet the Needs of Students, Employers and Institutions

Colleges and universities are taking a closer look at the level of career services support they are delivering to students beyond the learning experience. While much of this has to do with the current economy and the need for schools to continually find new and better ways to support students, the end goal for most institutions is regulatory compliance.

STATE OF THE INDUSTRY:

Government intervention in higher education coupled with a decline in jobs over the last few years is forcing colleges and universities to take on greater responsibility when it comes to supporting students through the career placement process. Keep in mind that:

  • Schools that can prove placement rates will be able to retain their student funding.
  • Schools that dedicate more resources to their career services department will have a greater opportunity to connect graduates with employers.
  • Schools that place more students in jobs can expect to see an increase in enrollment and retention as a result of their positive placement results.

Because of Gainful Employment, colleges and universities across the country are looking at career services in a whole new light and acknowledging its growing importance. However, many schools need assistance identifying where to best allocate resources in order to advance their career services support. Colleges and universities need to evaluate and consider the processes and systems that need to be put into place to help them overcome challenges, specifically with regards to management and reporting.

When it comes to career services management, schools need to ask themselves the following questions:

  1. Do we have the right processes in place to communicate with employers and students, as well as connect them and monitor their interaction?
  2. Do we have the data management practices in place that will allow students to proactively reach out to employers to market themselves?
  3. Do we have the data management practices in place that will allow us to create a comprehensive database of qualified candidates?
  4. Do we have the capabilities to allow employers to access student applicants and post open positions?

When it comes to career services reporting, schools need to ask themselves the following questions:

  1. Are we tracking the right Career Services Outcomes in terms of student and placement data?
  2. Can we easily access the data to pull the reports and analytics we need to prove placement and meet compliance?
  3. Do we have the ability to follow-up with alumni and track career results long term?

Colleges and universities need to implement the systems and processes that will allow them to increase placement rates and track the data for accreditation and federal regulatory purposes. Bringing software into the mix can make it easier to connect students and employers, creating greater efficiencies and stronger results. It can also facilitate reporting capabilities so schools can stay competitive and compliant. There are specific things that students, employers and schools need to do, and information they need to access in order to strengthen placement results.

STUDENT NEEDS:

It isn’t enough anymore to simply gain the skills necessary for job success, rather students need to be able to market themselves to employers. Colleges and universities need to provide a place and a process for students to do this.

Build an Online Profile– students need to be able to showcase their academic, personal and professional accomplishments in order to attract employers.

Attach a Cover Letter and Resume– students need to be able to upload and update attachments in order to communicate their career goals, experience and qualifications; they also need to be able to provide viewing access to potential employers.

Search Employer Profiles– students need access to the various employers who are hiring in their field so they can align their skill sets and goals with organizations for which they would like to work.

Search Job/Internship Postings– students need access to as much real world experience as possible in order to get their foot in the door with employers.

EMPLOYER NEEDS:

The shift in the job market has meant that employers have been able to be more selective in the hiring process. As we embark on an economic recovery, that may or may not continue. Regardless, employers also need to be able to market themselves, as well as search for and easily connect with qualified candidates.

Create Company Profile– employers need to be able to communicate their value proposition to future employees in terms of their business model, markets served, mission, culture and goals

Post Job Openings Online– employers need an efficient way to spread the word about job opportunities to a network of students and graduates who will most likely meet prerequisites.

View Student Background and Resume– employers need to be able to quickly and easily learn about and qualify prospective applicants.

Generate Resume Books– employers need to be able to compile resumes from qualified applicants in order to compare skill sets and achievements, and seek out the most appropriate candidate.

COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY NEEDS:

As colleges and universities take on greater accountability in job placement, they need to look for new ways to help students and graduates succeed beyond the classroom on a professional level. They can accomplish this by delivering a higher level of support throughout the education process. They also need to work closely with employers to make sure job candidates are meeting employer expectations, as well as connect these job seekers with their potential future employers.

When it comes to supporting students, schools need to do the following:

Track Student Information for Advising– career services advisors need a comprehensive tool set that enables them to track the student through the job search, assessing qualification and activities, as well as conducting follow-ups.

    • Integrated Academic and Demographic Information– advisors need a centralized place to access the student’s information, from grades to career goals so they can make sure the student is confident and capable in his or her chosen field, as well as on track to meet employer requirements.

    • Contact Management and Communication Tools– advisors need to be able to regularly reach out to students regarding such things as resume suggestions, new job postings and more.

  • Profile Background, Skill Sets and Preferences– advisors need to be able to easily compile a student’s information in order to identify career opportunities that would be a fit for the student.

Track Opportunities and Career Services Outcomes– career services advisors need an efficient way to stay on top of all postings so they can better match qualified students with job opportunities; they also need to manage and measure which postings secure hires.

Track Placement Information, Salary and Employment History– colleges need an easy way to analyze how many students are being placed, what they are earning, the success rate of each student once placed, and the career path each student follows out of school.

When it comes to engaging with employers, schools need to do the following:

Communicate with and Manage Potential Employers– colleges need a tool set that will enable them to build stronger employer relationships in order to better match students with jobs, as well as to secure the school’s reputation as a credible source of qualified graduates.

    • Track Multiple Locations and Contacts Per Employer– schools need to make sure they always have a current database of employers with which they can connect students.

    • Track Multiple Opportunity Types– advisors need to be able to analyze job details, such as full time, part time, hourly, internship, externship and more.

    • Contact Management– advisors need to be able to track current and past outreach with employers to see which relationships are in good standings and where additional outreach is necessary.

  • Communication Tools– advisors need to be able to proactively reach out to employers to reinforce the relationship and stay top of mind.

Track and Manage Job Requisitions– career services advisors need an easy way to follow existing and new job postings so they can match qualified applicants with those employers and opportunities.

Manage Alumni Network at the Employer– the career services team needs to be able to track and report on the number of students working with a specific organization so they can assess the success rates of graduates by employer, as well as determine organizations where their students’ skill sets are the best fit.

What is Heck is Self-Employment?

Self-employment is being employed by ones self. It identifies an individual who manages a company of her own or hires someone to oversee the day to day operations of your online business. Self-employed jobs are for those who don’t receive paid salary from another person or their company. The various kinds of self-employed jobs are: Sole proprietorship, Partnership, Companies.

The reason as to the reasons people choose self-employed jobs is lack of sustainable jobs. Lack of employment may drive one to begin his / her own small business thus being self-employed. One more reason we choose self-employment is flexibility. People will go for self-employed work opportunities so as to become free. Self-employed people do not rely on others for his or her living.

Increased wealth is yet another aspect in self-employment. Self-employed work offer men and women a possibility to increase their prosperity. Being your own personal boss enables one to decide how much money one makes in a month as opposed to salaried people who earn a standard salary monthly. Others create a part-time self employed job to bolster their income.

Why Men and women Prefer Self-Employed Job opportunities

With a self-employed job you decide your individual destiny. Employed persons do not get to choose what they want to do. You choose how much cash you desire and when you need it. Self-employed men and women earn what they desire. They can make more money by adding extra work or earn little money by putting in modest efforts.

Desire to do your dream work is actually a significant aspect in self-employed employment. It enables individuals to discover their aspirations they always imagined. Your passion for individual time is yet another reason. Self-employed men and women manage their own individual time how they like. You’ve got time for close friends and family. Some men and women want recognition. Company owners lovethe recognition that accompanies powerful businesses. They may have their names showing up on merchandise, buildings, and vehicles.

Advantages of Self Employment

Benefits connected with self-employment consist of joining all revenue coming from their businesses. Self-employed people are their own bosses and with that they do not receive orders from anyone. Self-employed individuals organize his or her time.

Job security can be another reason you desire to be self-employed. Once you get set up, you can work as many hours as you would like. Self-employed jobs allow anyone to do what you like accomplishing at your speed so long as you love your job. Furthermore, it allows someone to be inventive and enables one to use their own imagination as they like.

Creating a self-employed job enables anyone to work from the comfort of your house and can set up your work area as you like. Stay at home moms can be excellent candidates for self-employment. They are able to start out part-time and grow it as quickly or as slow as they want.

Disadvantages of Self-Employed Careers

There’s a greater risk of losing funds invested if the company falls flat. When you start off full-time, small business owners do the job for long hours. A number of people say there’s alack of professionalism in self-employment particularly with smaller businesses. Although you can control just how much you make, another drawback is when work gets sluggish without proper preparation, money reduces.

Factors to Keep in mind With Self-Employment

In order to generate profits, you should put in great effort in owning a business. Be determined to get out of bed early and propel yourself to achieve more. You need to be in charge of all of your actions and outcomes that can come. Master book keeping and record keeping.

Acquiring control of finances is very important. Finally, Market yourself along with your business by networking both on the web and off. Being generally known as reputable as well as a hard worker can bring in clients which you normally would not expect to obtain.