Tag Archives: Jobs

Hate your job? Should you just “Stick it Out”?

Here’s an interesting question: how bad does a job have to be for you to simply quit? We spend 8 hours or more a day at our jobs, which is a significant part of our days. Add in commuting times and the extra overtime hours and you start to realize how large an impact your job can have on your life. If your work makes you unhappy, causes stress, makes you anxious, depressed or even suicidal – it’s time to get out.

The tough part for many people who may want to leave their job, is that they have few or no other options lined up. Do you feel stuck at your job? How unhappy do you need to be to quit no matter what?

Read the article from Recruiter.com here.

time-to-switch-infographic-01Even if you don’t hate your job, there are benefits to keeping your eyes open for new opportunities. If you think it might be time for a change, but aren’t sure you should leave your current job, see our infographic showing the best times to switch jobs. It might be sooner than you think!

 

Best jobs for the near future

If you are trying to decide on a career path or looking to change careers, this list is for you. Kiplinger has compiled some of the best, high paying and low stress jobs that will be in demand in the next few years. These professions are all expected to expand, meaning high employment rates and job security.

In the skilled trades professions, Brickmasons are in high-demand to keep up with the growing housing market. Start with a paid apprenticeship, and work your way up to being self-employed in a few years.

Personal Finance Advisor. This career path involves a little more education, but is very well paid. Financial Advisors are particularly needed by the baby boomer generation who are starting to retire.

The baby boomers are making Physical Therapy a popular profession as well, as aging bodies require more therapy and rehabilitation after injury, strokes or heart attacks.

See Kiplinger’s full list here.

The #1 Problem with Your Job Application

Here it is, the answer you’ve been waiting for, why your resume and job application isn’t getting you anywhere. After screening candidates for several job postings and interacting with users on our job board, I’ve determined the major problem with most candidate applications:

You aren’t tailoring your application to match the job.

That’s it. In our experience, that’s the single largest issue – and unfortunately it’s a doozy.

So what’s the fix?

There’s no quick fix here, you just need to put in a few more minutes making sure your application shows you are a great fit for the specific position. It’s going to take a bit more time, yes. But this is the best way to make your application as strong and compelling as it can be. Here’s where you can start:

  • Read the job description (this is the easy first step). Look closely at the mandatory requirements and make sure that they are covered in your cover letter or resume. Consider re-wording parts of your resume to better match what the company describes.
  • Instead of a general work experience, use more specific examples that fit with the job description. For example, instead of “supervised several projects” write that you “supervised [research] and [data gathering] projects which were used by the company to [improve our services].” This will show success and achievement in a specific area.
  • According to our recent job seeker survey, 70% of people ‘always or sometimes do more research before applying to a job’. This shows you care about what the company can offer, whether the job is right for you, and whether you should apply at all. It’s just as important to use this research in your cover letter and resume.
  • Based on our survey, more than three quarters of job seekers spend less than two hours a day searching and applying for jobs. It’s clear that time is precious, and it’s important to make the most of what you have. Spend this time applying less, but with a higher quality of application, and you will see better results.

The best way to tailor your job application is to make sure that you have written as much of the mandatory requirements into your application as possible. This is for the benefit of the recruiter or automated system screening your resume. Your applicable qualifications can be shown in your list of skills, your summary, your cover letter or your work experience, but if a mandatory requirement isn’t listed in your application, how is a recruiter (or computer system) supposed to know you possess it?

 

Job Application Follow-ups: What NOT to do

Our last post was 5 rules for following up after submitting a job application. But knowing what NOT to do when following up is at least as important. After all, a serious misstep will cost you the job instead of gaining you an interview.

As the On Careers article notes, following up is about being ‘politely persistent’. It involves asking for more information, confirming your application was received, and stating your continued interest in the position. Based on our own experience with job applicants and job seekers, we’ve come up with our own rules on what NOT to do when communicating with an employer:

1. If the job description specifically states ‘do not contact us regarding your application’… don’t contact them. This is usually the case when an employer expects to receive a lot of applications – the hiring team is simply too busy to respond to individual requests for information. Unfortunately, following up in this case is impossible.

Instead, if you know someone at the company, the best thing you can do is contact them to let them know you submitted an application, and attach your resume. If they think you are a good fit for the job, they will put in a word for you.

2. Do not say you “are the best candidate for the job”. While you may be a strong candidate, this is too aggressive and arrogant an approach. There is no way of knowing who else applied, or of judging your fit within the company culture itself.

Instead, ensure your resume and cover letter address the key points in the job description and follow up by saying you are very interested in the job and believe your particular skills and/or experience will be an asset to the company.

3. Give it time. Do not follow up right away – give your application 5-7 days to reach a hiring manager. Give the hiring manager a week to respond before politely following up again. If they do not give a timeline for their decision (ie “you’ll hear from us in 2 weeks”) then wait a week before your next communication. The key is to let them know you are interested in the job, without being overly desperate or annoying.

4. Do not mention why you need the job. We all need a job for the same reasons: to make money, or to gain experience to land a better job. Detailing your financial hardships will not make you a better applicant. An employer is looking for someone with the right skills and potential to perform well in a specific role – and as compelling as your story may be, you cannot expect an employer to take a risk on someone who is unqualified. Do not try and guilt your way into being hired, gain it on your own merits.

Instead, apply only for jobs you are qualified for. Be interested in the company, and what you can bring to the position. Instead of focusing on your own hardships, tell the hiring manager or recruiter why you will excel at the job.

When following up is an option, it is a great way to help your application get noticed. Be polite, professional and concise and your follow-up communications will work in your favour.

 

Job Application Follow-Up

You’ve found a great job opportunity, you’ve tweaked your resume, written a cover letter and submitted your application. You want to do everything you can to get this position, and not be just one more resume in a pile. A good way to do this is to follow up.

Following-up can be tricky: you never want to come across as pushy or desperate, but you want to make it clear that you are interested in the job and you are a good fit. If you are professional and polite in your communications a good follow-up can help give you a better stance in the hiring process.

On Careers has 5 rules to follow after applying for a job. For the most part, these rules revolve around finding out more information about the hiring process, and showing your continued interest in a position.

Read the 5 Rules of Employment Follow-up here

Stay tuned for our next post, where we list some of the things you should not do when following up.

Less is More – Why applying less helps get you hired

How many jobs have you applied for that you knew were a shot in the dark? You weren’t quite qualified enough, or experienced enough, or had the specific education. You knew your chance for an interview was slim, but sent in the application anyway, because “eventually, one of these companies has to call”. Well, I have some bad news: they won’t. Continue reading Less is More – Why applying less helps get you hired