All Articles Tagged "human resources"
For all you college-graduates and career-changers out there, I feel your pain. You mostly likely have finished your four-year education enlightened and in a world of debt, thinking that your prospects for employment in your field are highly unlikely. You might be thinking that it’s too late for you and that you’re too under-/overqualified to switch careers and start anew. It may take you longer than anticipated to find your dream job, but that does not mean that your chances to find an entry-level job are weak.
There are entry-level jobs to get your professional life started and to gain priceless experience, while you plan for future. Some of those popular jobs include being a pharmaceutical sales representative and working in software development. You may think that because you don’t have experience in these areas, that you are doomed. Well, think again! You’re about to discover a list of 10 fabulous entry-level jobs that pay well and require very little experience to start.
These days, the first step towards getting your foot in the door is making it past the “applicant tracking system,” or ATS, that HR pros are using to flush out the best resumes from a mountain of candidates. Notice how we said the best “resumes” rather than the best “candidates.” These computer systems are using a number of scanning tricks to pick and choose people who move on to the next round. On paper, at least, they’re the most qualified of the bunch.
AOL Jobs has pulled together a few tips to help you get past this first digital stage of the application process. At the top of the list, they suggest using appropriate keywords. How do you determine the right keywords? They’re in the job description. If you’re applying for a managerial position at an insurance company, be sure to include the words “manager” and “insurance” in your resume. They don’t necessarily have to be at the same company, but your resume should reflect that you have the desired experience somewhere in your background.
As a matter of fact, you should include those most important words in your cover letter as well. ICYMI, here are a few tips to make that portion of the application even better.
Another piece of good advice: “Demonstrate flexibility and adaptability.” AOL makes the point that experienced employees sometimes have a hard time convincing potential employers that they’re capable of learning new tricks. Also worth keeping in mind is the fact that, unfortunately, more companies are working with fewer employees these days. It’s possible, if not probable, that you’ll be asked to step in when a colleague is out of the office on vacation or maternity leave. Or called upon to step in if there’s an abrupt job vacancy. Using your resume to demonstrate that you can roll with the punches is a positive.
Finally, the article advises that candidates “highlight results.”
“When you create bullet points that draw direct connections between what you did and what the employer wants you to do, it will be easier for the reader to envision you in the job,” the article says. Another way of putting it, and a great tip that we once heard from a college employment center specialist, is to use “action words.” Verbs describe what you did and what you’re doing; the work that you’re accomplishing. Someone who gets things done is someone that employers want around.
Separately but related, AOL Jobs also has a story outlining the things that a modern resume does and doesn’t need. We’d like to call special attention to the “Objective,” something that no resume should have. Every “objective” says the same thing and says it poorly: You want a good job that will help you build the career of your dreams. That’s obvious and there’s no need to re-state the obvious. We have never, ever, ever, ever, never, ever read a worthwhile “objective” so just avoid it altogether.
Over the past few years, with the growth of social media and other digital technologies, we’ve seen lots of new titles. “Chief Innovation Officer,” for instance. Or “Social Media Community Manager.” Now we can add “Chief Culture Officer” to the organizational structure.
Since the economic meltdown in 2008, companies have suffered because, internally, they also meltdown. A disorganized brand that doesn’t have a clear sense of itself, or a business that is trying to grow but, in the process, is losing the qualities that made it successful in the first place are two examples of a cultural failure. The chief culture officer is charged with making sure this doesn’t happen.
In this role, the executive is kind of a liaison between employees, customers, and top executives, monitoring the ways in which the company needs to change and overseeing the evolution of the corporate culture. In some cases, the job also means finding ways to hang on to key aspects of the company culture even as the business changes.
“ [A] company’s culture changes constantly, which makes it a challenge for companies trying to define it and make sure it’s progressing the way they want,” writes Fortune magazine. It’s a job that mixes business with HR with elements of branding and communications.
Does your company have a “chief culture officer”? Is it a job you’d be interested in?
(Entrepreneur) — “If a CEO looks at his function as [finding the employees] to achieve business goals, spending a significant amount of time hiring the very best people for key positions is a great way to run abusiness,” says Reese, who spends as much time searching for–and getting to know–potential interns and recent grads as he does looking for industry leaders. “Great things come out of a culture that combines experience with youth and enthusiasm,” he says, citing Bill Gates, who hired a similar mix of “kids” and “veterans” in the early days of Microsoft, as an example…Jared Hecht, co-founder and CEO of New York City-based GroupMe, says a company’s core idea is one of its most valuable assets for recruiting–and retaining–talent. It doesn’t matter how many great people you hire if you can’t keep their attention, he says. Launched in July 2010, Hecht’s mobile group-texting and conference-calling service has raised more than $11 million from investors, has partnerships with Bon Jovi and MTV and sends more than 100 million messages a month.
When it comes to finding a new job, there are a few obvious things that you must make sure are on point and represent you in the best possible light. Your checklist must include a flawless resume spell checked, on quality paper, with an updated and professional email address (no–email@example.com), along with informative job descriptions; a black and grey suit for interviews and your overall appearance – well groomed hair and nails. While these items are a no-brainer, there are a few things that are not so obvious. What most people forget or just do not take into account when making job moves, is–their current or past employer.
(Fast Company) — The surest way to thwart a fast-growing company is to let the wrong employees on the bus, as Jim Collins, the author of Good to Great, would say. During Method’s explosive growth years, we would hear things like “I just need a warm body to fill the seat” — code for “We are about to compromise the talent level.” No matter how you may rationalize it at the time, simply finding a warm body to fill the seat is never okay. We often talk about “kicking A$$ at fast,” but when it comes to hiring, we like to take things slow, by adding a number of speed bumps to the process that give us a chance to assess the applicant on a number of levels. Prospective employees may get all the way to the end of the process, but if no one stands out, we’ll start the selection process all over again with a new group. At Method, we think of an interview as an audition, to borrow from other fields such as the performing arts or sports that are purely talent based. For us, this takes place in three stages: cross-functional interviewing, the homework assignment, and on-boarding, where we place candidates with the people they’ll actually work with.
(Inc.) — It’s a speech we’ve heard time and time again: A corporate CEO or entrepreneur will take the stage and proclaim “Our greatest asset is not in our inventory or our sales or our products—but in our people.”
True, but times have changed. In order to fully realize—and leverage—an employee’s full value, a successful company needs to find creative ways to tap into its employees’ networks (both online and offline). Brand ambassadors, or employee evangelists, are becoming an increasingly common way for brands to leverage their biggest asset—their workforce, of course—to reach new markets, generate buzz, and put a real face on the company. They can be tweeters, bloggers, Facebookers—or they could just be the people you send to corporate events. More than your firm’s logo or an actor in your company’s commercial, your customers will come to know your ambassadors as true representatives for your business’s mission.
“The use of workers to humanize corporate entities has been a time-honored marketing tradition, of course,”writes Noreen O’Leary in AdWeek. “But in an era of Web 2.0 transparency, their visibility takes on greater meaning, signaling the higher importance of customer service in the marketing mix…staffers offer a kind of peer credibility as corporate advocates.”
(Businessweek) — Every leader thinks his or her employees have some special reason to resist change. In one organization I worked with, the justification was long tenure: “You just can’t change the behavior of 8,000 good ole boys who’ve been doing it one way for 27 years.” In another, it was education: “I’ve got 450 PhDs who can intellectualize you into a coma.” In one it was organizational trauma: “We’ll be doing so much downsizing in coming months that no one will even pay attention—much less change.” I’ve heard it all. Leader after leader lowers aspirations, believing employees have a highly evolved capacity to repel new ideas and habits. For anyone who sympathizes with this modest view of influence, I invite you to join me on a trip to the toughest prison in the U.S.: Louisiana State Penitentiary, aka Angola. For many of the 5,000 inmates, who are serving average sentences of 93 years, Angola will be their last residence. All are violent offenders: murderers, rapists, and armed robbers. Since most have no hope of parole, there is little incentive for pretensions of personal reformation. Which makes Angola a unique testing ground. That is why I was so taken with what has happened at Angola every May for the past five years.
(New York Times) — Q. Do you remember the first time you were somebody’s boss?
A. I was 22, and I was recruited out of college to work as a production supervisor for Polaroid on a manufacturing floor. And the interesting thing was that I didn’t know anything about the production process. I was in charge of about 20 men, and most of them were about 10 to 15 years older than me.
Q. So how did you do it?
A. I decided they were going to become my new best friends. I needed to, first of all, defer to them on almost everything. It was out of respect and it was real. And, second, I tried to figure out what we had in common. I found out that one guy’s family was from South Carolina, and my family is originally from South Carolina, so we really bonded over that. The other guy was a former marine who had spent time in Vietnam. We kind of bonded over the fact that I’d gone to military school. And so I relied on those guys to teach me the business. I didn’t come in saying, “I’m the college guy, I know what I’m doing and you’ll listen to me.”
(Washington Post) — Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s former chief of staff made several attempts to find a city job for Sulaimon Brown, eventually placing him in an agency with oversight over how the District spends funds on local and federal health-care programs, according to testimony from a D.C. Council hearing Monday probing the administration’s hiring practices. The hearing, the first of two scheduled to try to unravel how several controversial hires were made, offered the most detailed picture to date of how Brown was hired as a $110,000-a-year special assistant despite six run-ins with law enforcement, including three charges in the District and one in Chicago. Gerri Mason Hall, who was Gray’s chief of staff until her dismissal two weeks ago, instructed the Department of Health Care Finance on Jan. 31 to find a position to match Brown’s qualifications, the agency’s former chief of staff, Talib Karim, told the council.