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Stay Connected to Your Job Networks Without Being a Pest

February 15th, 2016

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Networking is a crucial component to getting a job. Hands down, who you know is going to make a difference in if you get the job, or not. Sometimes, even the most determined HR executive is going to choose someone they know over someone with a stellar resume. However, there is a fine line to cross. Asking friends and family, or other connections, for a job on a regular basis gets annoying. How can you stay in the back of their mind without pushing yourself on them?

Use the Right Networking Tools the Right Way

When networking, stay connected using the right tools and methods. You can do so without overwhelming your network. Here are a few key ways to keep the connection without burning the bridge.

  • Take a few minutes out of your day to use social media. Using websites like Facebook and Twitter keep your name and information in from of those you want it to be in front of. However, you are not pushing yourself on that recruiter. He or she keeps your name in mind but your message does not have to be an asking-for-a-job message.
  • Be social without just throwing your name around. Sometimes you will need to put yourself out there. You will want to schedule a meeting with a top recruiter or HR manager to discuss options and let them know you are looking for a position. What you do not want to do is to push the envelope too often.  Going out to lunch once every few months is enough.
  • Talk to those who like you. There is no benefit to talking, working with or trying to network with people who do not like you for some reason. They are unlikely to hand over your name in a discussion with an employer. Rather, spend your time building networks with those who do like you.
  • Become a resource for the other person. In other words, you will want to ensure you are offering them something. You may become their go-to person for industry news, for example. They learn something or better themselves by talking to you. You become valuable and they keep you in mind because of it.
  • Do ensure you are not overdoing it by watching the way the person reacts to you. If you notice, he or she stops responding to you or is not willing to meet your eye-to-eye, take the cue.

Networking is a critical component to building a successful career. Those who are looking for a job may easily overdo it, though. This happens when people get into positions where they simply need a job. However, pull it back and use networking effectively. It will make a significant difference in how successful you are with finding a job as well. Get your name out there and keep it in the back of the mind of the right person and you will land the right job if it is out there.

For more support with your job search, be sure to check out the resources at Concorde Personnel today! We welcome your comments below.

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Small Business Web Design Tips That Appeal to Customers and Attract Job Seekers

February 8th, 2016

July 21st HR Managers

Designing a website for your company is more than just creating one that attracts the right customers. It also has to take into consideration the job seekers you are hoping will apply. Candidates should benefit from visiting the site to learn about your corporate culture and any career opportunities available as well. It is possible to create a website that serves the needs of all of these potential visitors, but doing so requires more than just putting up your average three-page website.

Attracting Customers with a Website 

Most businesses need to use their website as a tool for attracting customers – this could be your first and primary tool. If this is important, use these tips:

  • Stand out with your design. Ensure your site is different from everyone else’s.
  • Use images and lots of them. You do not want the website to load slowly, but you do want to use images to attract customers.
  • Make sure the site is easy to navigate. One of the biggest drawbacks of a website can be making it hard to find products or services.

If your website has personality and properly markets your brand, it will do well with customers. This makes it easy to meet your business goals.

A Website Focusing on Job Seekers

A business website can also appeal to those who are looking for a job. If you are hiring and are seeking employees to fit key roles, or just want to make sure you are accessible when the very best applicant is looking, design your site with job seeker benefits. Here are some tips.

  • Do not just say you are hiring. Most applicants will not apply unless there is potential in getting hired. If your site does nothing more than say you are hiring, it is not doing enough.
  • Provide information about the positions available. You should list information about the skills, experience and even the pay for the potential employee.
  • Ensure there is a way for candidates to apply to you. Provide a specific email address. Some companies allow applicants to apply for positions on the site by submitting resumes.
  • Use a hiring page to convey your needs, but also to encourage those with skills to apply. You will want to ensure the best apply, not just anyone. A hiring page can provide all of the information an applicant needs to answer the question, “Should I apply?”
  • Use your company blog to discuss working aspects of your job. This is the ideal place to discuss what it is like to work with your company. It is also a good way to get traffic to your hiring page if you are looking for candidates.

For applicants, finding a hiring page that lists positions and hiring requirements is like getting all of the information they need to know if they should apply. Hands down, this is one of the most effective ways to ensuring you get the best applicants.

Your business website needs to meet the goals and needs of any person visiting it. Just as you do not want to lose that value customer who stops by, you also don’t want to lose the top notch employee who is looking for a position. Make it work for all.

 

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How to Have a Winning Employment History

April 13th, 2015

August 29th

One thing that people struggle with most when completing a resume is the employment history section. You have to think, on some level, that it’s also the most boring aspect of the resume for people reading it too. Unfortunately, it’s a section that’s somewhat necessary. But that doesn’t mean you have to follow the ancient formula of the 1950’s. This is one area where you can really shine by offering something a little different than the rest of the job seekers out there.

Read on to learn how to present a winning employment history to recruiters.

Focus on Skills Rather than Duties

Everyone and his or her brother is going to put down a not-so-exciting, but incredibly detailed list of duties performed as part of the job description. It would be so much more interesting for the person reading your resume to read about the skills you mastered as a result of the job instead.

Be sure to relate those skills to the job for which you’re applying as well. This is the perfect way to prove your worthiness and abilities for the job in question. It will also help you reaffirm some of your skills and capabilities before you go through a rigorous interview and exclusion process.

Point Out Your Accomplishments – Lead with Them

One thing you want to do is include the things you’ve accomplished in your current position. Focusing on achievements and outcomes rather than a dry list of skills and talents is a great way for potential employers to view you as someone who gets things done.

If you don’t believe anything else you read here, believe this: employers want people who will get results. The best way to show that you’re the best one for the job is to show them a long line of results you’ve achieved for previous employers.

In the world of business, more often than not, the one who gets the job is the one who looks best in black and white. Meaning, you need to present yourself in a way that looks really good on paper. Don’t be afraid to highlight your accomplishments; be proud to have been part of those accomplishments, as they have helped to refine your skills and shape your abilities for future opportunities.

Be Truthful

It’s one thing to use the truth about what you’ve done to help paint yourself in a favorable light. It’s something else entirely to tell tall tales about your experience and involvement or be less than truthful in the resume writing process.

It’s much better to deal with being honest now and missing out on a potentially great job, than to land the perfect job – until they find out you weren’t honest during the resume and interview process.

Writing a resume will never be an easy task. Too many things rely on the power of the resume you create for you to take it lightly. But, when you apply these tips for writing a winning employment history, you should see a marked improvement in your resume’s power to attract the attention of possible employers.

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How to Find What Your “Passion” Is

January 26th, 2015

August 23rd

You have probably been told since you were very young that you need to find out what your “passion” is and then make it the focus of your life, especially your working life. And if you are like most people, you are still searching for the answer, and fairly convinced it has nothing to do with your current job.

It’s a big question, and the answer is undeniably elusive, but you should never give up trying to find it. Below are some practical strategies that can help you get a deeper, truer sense of what you’re meant to do with your life.

Don’t be Afraid to Quit

For most people, finding their passion is a process of trial and error. That’s why it’s so important to know when something is just not the right fit, and be willing to leave it behind. It’s rare to hear someone encouraging quitting, but the longer you do something you don’t feel passionate about, the more you’re stuck doing it. Remember that you can’t find out what you truly want to do if all your time, energy, creativity, and focus is being sapped away by something you hate. Once you leave that dead end behind, there is nothing left to do but find a different, better path to follow.

Scrutinize Your Curiosity

What would you do if you had a billion dollars? Answering this question helps you think about what you would do with your life if you took away all limits. And it’s only by thinking in these terms that you can figure out what you are genuinely curious about. Setting aside all fears, hesitations, restrictions and expectations reveals your true interests, the things you would ideally dedicate your life to if you could. They may not be as unattainable as you realize.

Make Money a Secondary Concern

You might be rolling your eyes, but the simple fact is that finding and pursuing your passion often requires sacrifice. And if you are concerned first and foremost with making the most amount of money, you are severely limiting your options, and probably doomed to end up on a path you don’t want to follow. If you put those instincts on hold for a while, you are more likely to uncover your true passion and turn that into a lucrative and personally satisfying endeavor down the road.

Invest yourself in these strategies and you are well on your way to discovering your passion. Once you know where you’d rather be, it’s time to turn the dream into a reality with the premier boutique staffing firm in Westchester County. Find resources to help make you more agile and mobile in your professional life by relying on the team at The Concorde Group.

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5 Good Interview Questions to Ask Job Candidates

December 30th, 2014

Temporary Staffing Agency NY

Interviews give you a limited amount of time to gather a huge amount of information about a job seeker. And, in most cases, you will only have the impression from one interview to help you differentiate a large pool of candidates. That’s why it’s so important to pick your questions carefully, strategically, and for maximum effect. Here are a few questions that work in any job interview setting:

How can You Make a Contribution to this Company?

Ultimately, you’re not just trying to fill a vacancy, you’re trying to improve the way your company does business. This question clearly asks the candidate to define the skills/experiences/qualities that will most benefit your mission.

Why Do You Think You’re a Good Fit for this Company?

You will probably interview at least several candidates that have similar skills and experiences. Use this question to help differentiate them. Look for candidates that have studied your company, made an effort to understand your present and future needs, and done everything possible to align their professional credentials with what they know about your operation.

Where do You See Yourself in Five or Ten Years?

This question helps you judge how committed a candidate will be to your company. Someone with lofty goals might be more tempted to jump ship or leave to seek out more education, but don’t penalize candidates that vocalize their ambition. The best candidates are the ones you can imagine hiring for this position, and then promoting to something higher.

Tell Me about an Unexpected Situation You Adapted to.

The unexpected is inevitable, but, unfortunately, flexibility and adaptability are not skills that are easy to measure. Asking candidates to give you an anecdote helps you judge what kind of pressures they have worked under in the past and whether they have the professional agility to continue thriving when the job description suddenly evolves.

What is Your Ideal Working Environment?

When vetting candidates, it’s important to consider how they will fit into your existing company culture. This question helps you create a prediction. If the work environment the candidate describes sounds like the one already in your office, it’s a good sign. Just be sure to consider all the factors – coworkers, boss, workspace, office atmosphere etc.

These are some good general questions, but be sure to ask more specific questions based on information from the candidate’s resume. Also, it helps to create a simple form or checklist to record candidate’s answers to make it easy for you to do side-by-side comparisons later. Find more resources to help you build a strategic workforce by working with Concorde Staffing Group.

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6 Ways to Integrate New Hires Into Your Team

October 20th, 2014

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In the past, it might have been enough to show a new hire to his desk, hand him an orientation package, and wish him luck. But as the field of human resources has evolved, it has become clear that this kind of hands-off approach does a disservice to both the new hire, because it takes them longer to get up to speed and feel comfortable, and the employer, because they have to wait longer for new hires to contribute and may face higher turnover rates. Luckily, effective strategies have been devised to help you onboard new team members faster.

Give Them the Big Picture Perspective

Your new hire has a specific responsibility meant to serve a much larger goal. Make sure they know what that larger goal is and you frame their position in a much more accessible way. This is also a great way to help introduce new hires to your company culture.

Make Your Expectations Clear – And Give Feedback

One of the largest sources of anxiety in a new workplace is that you are not working as hard, or as effectively as you are expected to. Make sure your new hires know exactly what is expected of them using clear metrics, and offer constructive, supportive, and ongoing feedback.

Affirm Their Value

You hired this person for a reason. Make sure they know what it is, and find ways to remind them from time to time. If a new hire feel like they are in a unique position to make a contribution starting from day one, they will feel much more confident about joining a new team.

Assign an Employee Mentor

There is nothing like having a coworker to show you the ropes. Pair up all your new hires with someone that you think they will connect with, and make sure both parties unederstand how important the relationship is. Then, if the new hire has questions, concerns, or simply needs to vent, they always have someone to turn to.

Don’t Withhold Information

You told your new hire about their day to day responsibilities, but did you also let them know about casual Fridays, the company softball league, or the great deli around the corner? Lay all this information out upfront, and your new hire will feel like a part of the office sooner.

Keep Your Orientation Brief

The orientation process tends to be overly long and packed with lots of non-essential information. When a new hire is stuck in a conference room watching videos and working through packets, it keeps them from diving into their responsibilities and meeting their coworkers. Keep the orientation process short and efficient to that new hires can settle into their real workplace sooner.

Finally, remember that you can’t make judgments about an employee’s future based on their performance over the first few weeks, so be supportive when mistakes and issues inevitably arise. For more tips on strategic staffing, work with the team at The Concorde Group.

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Proper Employee Benefits for the Position You Are Filling

August 15th, 2014

June 16

Offering an appropriate employee benefits package is a necessity if you want to recruit the best of today’s talent and keep them in your organization over the long term. And it is important to realize that benefits packages can and should include more than just medical coverage. Use these tips to better configure the benefits you are prepared to offer.

Health Insurance

Employers have two options when selecting a health insurance provider – traditional and managed. Traditional health insurance plans typically come with higher premiums but offer a wider selection of doctors and hospitals. Managed plans, by contrast, have lower premiums, but also fewer choices. Keeping your employees happy obliges you to find a plan that offers the widest array of benefits at the lowest cost to your employees, but that is often cost prohibitive for the business. You will have to scrutinize your finances to determine how much you are able to pay, and what level of health insurance benefits you can realistically offer. You can keep your costs down by adding a “wellness component” to your benefits package that encourages fitness and preventative medicine.

Retirement

Even with rising levels of career mobility, appealing recruits will be looking for retirement benefits. Most companies these days choose of to offer a 401K rather than a traditional pension. You can make these plans more appealing by offering matching contributions to the employee’s 401K. It is common for businesses to make a 3% contribution when an employee contributes 6% of his paycheck to his retirement plan, so consider offering a higher matching contribution. Again, it’s important that you scrutinize your finances before settling on an specific number. It’s not worth it to compromise the financial stability of your company just for the sake of recruitment.

Specialty Benefits

Specialty benefits include things like disability insurance, life insurance, and dental and vision coverage. This is one of the areas where you can really differentiate your benefits package from the package being offered by competing companies. Even if employees never or rarely take advantage of these benefits, it is a sign that the employer is making strides to cover them against any possible contingency, which is important for morale and loyalty. Most experts agree that disability insurance should cover at least 60% of an employee’s salary and that life insurance should pay out at least $20,000. You can increase these numbers to help your recruiting efforts, just make sure you educate potential employees about the details. There is a lot of information flying around during the recruitment process, and it is easy to overlook the details of a specialty benefits package.

Learn more about employee benefits and effectively recruiting the very best talent out there by working with the experts at the Concorde Group.

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5 Benefits of Hiring Temporary Employees

July 16th, 2014

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In the ever-evolving business world of the 21st century, traditional notions about staffing, recruitment, and employment are quickly becoming irrelevant. In addition to full and part-time workers, a growing number of companies is turning to temporary and contract workers to give their workforce the dynamism it requires.

Temporary employment is nothing new, but it is being used in ways that it never has before. Prestigious companies in a wide variety of industries are eager to add these professionals to their ranks, and their forward-thinking attitudes are paying off. These are some of the greatest benefits of hiring temporary employees:

Vet Potential Hires

If you need to fill a full or part-time position, consider hiring a temporary employee and carefully monitoring their performance. You make a much smaller commitment, but you still have the opportunity to analyze their fit for the job. No matter how carefully you vet a potential hire, no indicator is more revealing than his on-the-job performance.

Fill Gaps in Your Workforce

With an increasing number of highly-skilled workers becoming open to temporary employment, it’s easier than ever to fill a short-term gap in your workforce. That keeps your day to day operations running smoothly, and gives you the freedom to offer you permanent employees maternity and paternity leave, sick leave, or other extended absences.

Enhance Your Intellectual Capital

Lets say you get a new contract that requires you to work with a technology, process, or set of regulations that you are unfamiliar with. Specialized temporary employees can bring their expertise into your office for as long as you need it, and then move on when the contract or project is complete. That is much more cost-effective than permanently expanding your workforce.

Keep Your Costs in Check

We just mentioned cost effectiveness, and the simple fact is that temporary employees cost you a lot less in the long run than any other kind of employee. You only have to pay them for as long as they contribute value to your company, and you don’t have to offer them the same perks as more permanent employees.

Unburden You HR Department

The time and money you spend recruiting even a single employee is significant. Temporary employees, by contrast, are typically recruited by a third party and supplied to you based on criteria that you establish. You don’t have to dedicate resources to the recruitment process, but you still end up with exactly the employee you were looking for.

Temporary employees are more than just temps. They are a highly educated, impressively experienced, and unwaveringly professional part of today’s employment pool that can bring a lot of value to any company. To get expert help recruiting the very best of today’s temporary employees, work with the team at The Concorde Group.

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Why Candidate Attitudes Should be Valued Over Job Skills

February 22nd, 2012

May 5th

Surprisingly, the attitude a candidate has is very often more valuable than the actual technical skills he or she may have. It used to be that those with skills and training were almost a guarantee to get a job. Things are changing, though. Things have changed because of the recession and because of just how global the economy has become. Now, many people possess the same technical skills and employers are expecting the best attitudes from those they bring in.

How to Hire with Attitude in Mind

For those approaching candidates for today’s employers, it is critical to factor in the qualities of an individual from a whole new prospective. How does one hire for attitude not just technical skills on paper? In order to hire a candidate based on his or her attitude, job recruiters need to change their interviewing skills around to center more on gathering this information.

No longer is it necessary to ask questions such as, “what are your strengths.” Rather, you should be asking more pointed, deliberate questions that help to bring out people’s views. These interview steps, such as “tell me about you” no longer deliver enough information. In addition, people have no problem delivering a canned response they have learned to perfect.

Tailoring Questions to Analyze the Problem Bringer or the Problem Solver

When hiring a candidate, one of the things you want to learn is if the person is going to be a problem solver or a problem bringer. In short, it is easy to know who you want on your team but it is not so easy to ask the right questions to get these answers. Here is why.

When you ask an attitude related question, you’ll need to string it together properly to get to the meat of what you are asking and to draw out attitude. For example, the simple question, “Let’s discuss a time when you adapted to a difficult problem.” The problem here is the word adapt. It lets the candidate know you want to learn what they did to overcome the problem, but that does not provide you with enough attitude information.

The Problem Solver

If a problem solver is the people you are interviewing, chances are good he will have many examples to provide in which he can show you how he adapted to the situation. However, if you used the word “faced” instead, not only will you learn about the solution to the problem but also what the problem was and how they reacted to it initially. That is the attitude portion.

The Problem Bringer

For the problem bringer, asking about adaption is a deal breaker. Most problem bringers do not have stories of adaption. They may have canned responses to provide, though. Rather, they may be willing to tell you all about the problems they have had without providing a solution. This is a good indication that these individuals may not be the best for the job.

Hiring for attitude is a critical step in protecting your long-term success. However, it is important to draw out that attitude through the right interview questions. For help with hiring your new staff members, be sure to get in touch with Concorde Personnel today.

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9 Employment Laws That Will Impact Your Business in 2012

January 24th, 2012

As most of us are flipping our calendars to 2012 to start a brand new year, there will be many changes for the small business world – including many human resource and employment laws that will impact the way small businesses operate. Being aware of these changes in employment and hiring laws is critical to your success. To help you get a jump start on the year ahead, here’s a brief rundown of 12 regulatory changes that may impact your business, to help you stay out of legal hot water.

  1. Employee Classification – Now is the time to review your employee classification system, because several US states are enacting stricture guidelines and fines for companies that misclassify workers. This includes actual job descriptions, salary vs. non-salaried, employee vs. contractor, work hours, and overtime.
  2. Immigration Reform – This is a big one with many states and the federal government, that will be cracking down on the hiring of illegals and employers who don’t pay minimum wage or provide benefits to green-card carrying immigrants. More use of E-verify will become mandatory in the USA as a way to identify illegals.
  3. Job Creation – As President Obama continues to focus on bringing tax credits to small businesses as well as tax cuts to ordinary working citizens, we will keep seeing legislation geared towards job creation in America. Consider making some of your temporary workers into permanent employees to see these benefits. Also, there will be more funds available for those who wish to start their own businesses in 2012.
  4. Employment Laws – Many states, supported by the US Department of Labor, are looking into creating new employment laws that will clarify and set standards in the overtime and minimum wage requirements on the part of employers so they can help workers understand these laws. Good time to update your minimum wage and overtime posters on the company bulletin board.
  5. Debt and Deficit Reduction – Going into 2012 be aware that Congress has a focus on reducing the national debt in big ways, starting with tax reform for businesses and individuals. While the recent extension of payroll-tax cuts for an additional two months  benefits many, expect that some of the tax credits you enjoy now may be gone by the end of this election year, and plan accordingly.
  6. Business Security and Privacy – With  cybercrimes on the rise in recent years, many businesses are ramping up privacy and security in a big way going into the New Year. This means you may need to review your current safety and security policies to make sure they comply with state and federal laws, including the way you store data about your employees.
  7. Health Insurance Reform – The Affordable Care Act of 2010 started the ball rolling in terms of how health care insurance works in the USA, including how businesses provide access to group benefits. Be aware of these laws by visiting http://www.healthcare.gov/ for updates on these laws. This includes the new dependent care laws that require insurance coverage for young adults up to age 26. Additionally, employers filing 250 or more W-2 forms in the past year will need to include the cost of employer-sponsored health coverage on the 2012 W-2 form.
  8. Unemployment Insurance – Congress is working on reinstating the federal unemployment surtax, which could cause businesses to see increases in unemployment taxes going into 2012. This is to offset the burdens of a national average of just under 9 percent unemployment nation-wide, and to cut down on unemployment insurance fraud.
  9. 401(k) Retirement Savings – In 2012, employers will also have to provide additional fee disclosures to employees who participate. Reforms in 401(k) laws will also restrict how many loans employees can take from their funds for emergencies and hardships. Look for alternatives to 401(k) plans to give employees more options when it comes to saving for retirement.

Want more up-to-date information and resources on various HR and career topics? Be sure to come back often to Concorde Personnel’s blog, and be sure to add your questions and comments below. We love feedback!

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