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Job Search Strategies in a Tight Economy
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Job Search Strategies in a Tight Economy



Workshop presented at IPFW on 3/11/10

Workshop presented at IPFW on 3/11/10



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    Job Search Strategies in a Tight Economy Job Search Strategies in a Tight Economy Presentation Transcript

    • “ Job Search Strategies in a Tight Economy” Spring 2010 Jill Parker, Director of Career Services Karen Obringer, Career Counselor in Career Services
    • Overview of Workshop
      • Job Search Strategies in a Tight Economy Workshop
        • Resumes & Transferable Skills
        • References
        • Cover Letters
        • Networking
        • Job Searching
        • Interviewing
        • Coping with Job Loss
      • Discussion / Questions
    • Why do we need a resume?
      • The purpose of a resume is to get an interview , not a job.
      • Once you get in the door, it's your personality and discussion of your education and lifetime of experiences that will get you the job.
    • Two Types of Resumes
      • Chronological
      • This format is good for people with extensive work experience either with one company or a few companies, usually in the field in which they are seeking employment.
      • Work and educational experience is listed in reverse order of occurrence, beginning with the most recent dates and working back.
      • Combination
      • This format is good for career changers, those with gaps in employment and those who want to clearly sell specific skills paralleling the needs of the employer. (Page 25)
      • This focuses on skill clusters, rather than describing the jobs as you list your work history.
    • Formatting / Appearance
      • NO Templates!
      • Make your name stand out with a bold, larger font size (usually 14-20 point font)
      • Use standard fonts such as Times New Roman, Arial, or Courier
      • Type Size: 10 – 12 point font
      • White, beige, or light gray quality bond paper
      • Length should generally be one page unless you have extensive experience or graduate school work. If you go to a second page, put your name and p. 2 at the top right
      • Don’t use “fun” or “cute” graphics or logos
    • Formatting / Appearance
      • Make it “reader friendly” (15-30 seconds)
      • No high school information – Keep things current!
      • Only go back 10 years, UNLESS it is relevant—then, the dates can be listed as “prior to 2000”
      • No personal information (family, hobbies, date of birth, etc.)
      • Don’t use first-person language (I am seeking a job, my education…)
      • Use action verbs
      • Adhere to the Rule of Thumb
    • Sections of a Resume
      • Contact Information (appropriate email address)
      • Objective or Summary of Qualifications
      • Education
      • Relevant/Work/Professional/Volunteer Experience
      • Honors/Awards/Activities
      • Professional Affiliations
      • Professional Development (Workshops / Conferences)
      • Skills (Languages / Computer)
      • **Please note that this is for a typical chronological resume. The order may differ for a combination resume.
    • Contact Information
      • Name
      • Address (Present and Permanent when appropriate)
      • Phone Number
      • Email Address
      • EXAMPLES:
      • JANE M. SMITH
      • 123 Any Street
      • Fort Wayne, IN 46835
      • (260) 555-1212
      • [email_address]
      CHRIS SMITH 83 Prospect Road  Fort Wayne, IN 46807  (260) 432-8975  csmith@gmail.com
    • Objective
      • Avoid vague statements- be specific
      • Keep it employer-focused
      • No first-person language
      • Sample Objective:
      • Special Education position with Fort Wayne Community Schools
    • Summary of Qualifications
      • Summary describes your qualifications
      • Tailor to the job description
      • Example:
      • Career Guide example, pgs. 10 & 25
    • Education
      • List colleges and universities beginning with the most recent first
      • Name the institution(s) including city and state (i.e., Indiana University - Fort Wayne, IN)
      • List degree and date anticipated
      • List GPA if 3.0 or above
      • If it has been more than 5 years since you graduated, you can delete the date
      • Example:
      • Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education , May 2007
      • Indiana University, Fort Wayne, IN
      • Concentration: Adolescent/Young Adult
      • Minor: Language Arts
    • Work / Professional Experience
      • List all significant experience that pertains to the job you are seeking
      • Begin with most recent or relevant experience (see Career Guide)
      • Categorize your experiences in a way that pertains to the job you are seeking (i.e., Student Teaching Experience, Coaching Experience, Related Experience, skill clusters on a combination resume, etc.)
    • Work / Professional Experience, cont .
      • Action Verbs
      • Quantify and Qualify (i.e., how many)
      • Bullet points should answer WHAT and WHY
      • Go to the Occupational Outlook Handbook:
      • http://www.bls.gov/oco/
      • Look at an old job description
    • Volunteer Experience
      • Hospitals, Non-Profits, Fundraisers, etc.
      • What was your role?
      • **** Just make sure that it is relevant!
    • Sample – Work Experience
      • Example:
      • Fort Wayne Community Schools, Wayne High School, Fort Wayne, IN
      • Student Teacher, Fall 2006
      • Assisted in educating culturally diverse high school students (9-12) in the area of English
      • Effectively used comic books and other unconventional resources to build grammar and punctuation skills
      • Demonstrated organization and planning in preparing daily lessons
      • Adapted teaching style to meet the needs of all students’ learning styles
    • Skills Clusters in a Combination Resume
      • Transferable skills (p. 14 & 15)
      • Examples: Customer Service Skills, Communication Skills, Management Skills
      • Within each skill cluster:
        • list the relevant job duties
        • don’t have to mention to which job it applies
    • Professional Development / Activities
      • List the name of the organization along with your status (treasurer, member, etc.) and year of membership (since 2006) in reverse chronological order
      • List activities you have done or are doing that would be of interest to the employer
      • Example:
      • Activities and Honors
      • National Council for Exceptional Children, member 2006- present
      • Educators for Excellence, IPFW, member, 2005- present
      • National Collegiate Education Award Winner, 2006
    • Skills SKILLS Language: Conversant in Spanish Computer: Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint
    • Additional Resume Resources
        • Occupational Outlook Handbook
        • www.bls.gov
        • IPFW Career Services Website- Sample Resumes / CV’s
        • http://www.ipfw.edu/career
        • Resume Critique Appointment with a Career Counselor (Express Lane)
    • References
      • Typically 3-4 people who you know professionally
      • Not friends or family members
      • Give references a “heads up” that you are job searching so that they are prepared when they get phone calls, and send them a copy of your resume
      • Use a separate page for your references—don’t make it part of your resume (see Career Guide)
    • What is a Cover Letter?
      • Personalized introduction of yourself to a specific employer
      • Demonstration of your written communication skills
      • Explanation of how your skills and experience fit the requirements of the position
    • Should I always send a cover letter?
      • Strongly encouraged by some employers, downplayed by others.
      • Bottom line: It doesn’t hurt to send one.
      • Address the specific ways in which your skills and experiences match the needs of the position. Pick out what the ad says and address it in the letter.
    • Cover Letter Format : Paragraph 1
      • Name the position for which you are applying, and how you learned about it.
      • Mention the name of a person (if any) who referred you to the organization.
      • If no position is currently open, indicate that you’re interested in learning more about opportunities with their company. ( Letter of Inquiry)
    • Cover Letter Format : Paragraph 2
      • Explain how your skills/experiences match their needs.
      • Give examples of skills and achievements and how they will transfer to the position.
      • Comment on your knowledge of the company, and why you’re interested in working for them.
    • Cover Letter Format : Paragraph 3
      • Refer to the enclosed resume.
      • Tell the contact person that you will call on a specified date, and that you are available for a personal interview at her/his convenience.
      • Make it easy for the person to contact you. Re-state the phone number and email listed on your resume.
    • Cover Letter Tips
      • Be specific, target and tailor your letter for each position! Never address a cover letter with “To Whom It May Concern.” Do your research, and address the letter to a specific HR person. Spell names correctly!
      • Have someone read through a draft of your letter to make sure it’s concise and error-free.
      • Follow-up as specified in your letter.
      • For an example of an email cover letter, see p. 39 in the Career Guide.
    • Before You Begin Your Job Search…
      • You need to start dealing with the loss of your previous job.
      • Not dealing properly with the job loss can negatively affect your new job search.
    • How Employers Hire
      • Recruitment (job fairs, word of mouth, and internal posted positions, advertisements – page 47)
      • Screening – narrow the pool of applicants (desired / preferred)
      • Selection – get interview = you are qualified…looking for a “fit”
      • The Hiring Structure – varies depending on company size and industry / # of people you meet with and hiring timeline
      • Today’s Job Market = More Structured & Selective. Online databases
    • New Tactics!
    • Tapping ALL Resources
      • A job search is like a full-time job…
      • Job Fairs (NICE Expo – April 15 th @ Ivy Tech)
      • Yellow Pages
      • Newspaper
      • College Career Offices
      • Workforce Development Offices
      • Community Agencies
      • Employment Agencies
      • Social Networking Sites (e.g., LinkedIn)
    • Tapping ALL Resources Cont’d
      • Professional Associations / Listservs
      • Volunteering
      • Online Websites:
        • www.ipfw.edu/jobzone (JobZone)
        • www.indeed.com
        • www.ipfw.edu/career/students/exploring/major.shtml
        • Websites that allow you to post your resume: www.ipfw.edu/career/students/job/JobBoardWebSites.shtml
    • Tapping ALL Resources Cont’d
      • Chamber of Commerce
      • www.fwchamber.org
      • Write a “Letter of Inquiry” – Page 37
      • * You never know whose desk your resume may land on when you send it in…
    • Networking
      • The MOST SUCCESSFUL way to get a job!
      • Tell people that you are looking for a job and ask them to keep their eyes and ears open.
      • Networking Events / Social Clubs
      • * Cc: Me, YLNI, http://gconsult.us
      It’s not what you know, but who you know and who knows you.”
    • Informational Interviews
      • Informal way of getting to know someone in a particular career field
      • Way to learn more about their career and how to break into the field
      • It’s an opportunity to NETWORK – this is not a job interview!
    • How do you get your foot in the door… One Door! Many Doors!
    • Job Search = Frustration = New Techniques
      • Make sure your technical and communication skills are as strong as possible
      • Engage a "kind critic" to honestly assess your image as a job candidate
      • Become an active user of LinkedIn.com (a social networking website)
      • Play up your assets, whatever they are
      • Don't ever put yourself – or your age – down
      • Networking = conferences, workshops, seminars, etc.
    • Tips for the Job Search
      • Think of your job search as a job: Get up, shower, get dressed, go to a place where you can “work” on the job search.
      • Plan, set goals, and use a spreadsheet to track your activities and progress.
      • Stay positive…if you really want to work for a particular employer, check back with them every few months.
      • Always follow up.
      • Be polite to the receptionists / clerical staff.
    • Tips for the Job Search
      • Target an industry
        • What kind of job do you want?
        • Does it match your values?
    • Researching Companies
      • Read their mission statement, goals, strategic plans, etc.
      • Read the “about us” on the web site and see what degree/ background people have
      • Look over the annual report.
      • “ Google” the company, or check the local online newspapers ( www.fortwayne.com ) to see if there have been any recent news articles about the company.
      • Check out www.glassdoor.com for company information, insider info about interviewing process, etc.
    • Interviewing!
      • Preparing for the job interview:
      • * Know yourself—be prepared to talk about anything on your resume.
      • * Market yourself—they want to know if you’ll be a good fit with their organization or program.
      • * Practice answering questions with a career counselor, trusted family member/friend, mirror
    • Professional Dress
      • Professional Dress vs. Casual Dress
      • Tips: Coat, purse, keys, folder, etc.
      • Jewelry, perfume…
      • “ Dress one step up!”
    • Before the Interview
      • Practice, practice, practice! You don’t want to sound rehearsed, but you want to have practiced enough to feel confident that you can answer the questions well.
      • Bring extra copies of your resume.
      • List of your top “selling points”
    • The Interview
      • Make sure you arrive a few minutes early.
      • Greet the recruiter by Mr./Ms./Dr. and his or her last name.
      • Offer a firm handshake and a smile.
      • Make eye contact with the recruiter and answer questions in a clear voice.
      • Work to establish a rapport with the recruiter—engage in small talk to break the ice.
      • Don’t Bad-Mouth Anyone (including the company that laid you off):
        • This will only make YOU look bad—your goal is to always remain professional.
        • Answer all shaky questions honestly. Employers can find out what is and if it is not the truth—don’t risk your reputation because you don’t know how to handle a difficult question.
      The Interview
    • Techniques & Tips
      • Rephrase the question
      • Say, “That is a good question…”
      • Ask them to repeat the question
      • Go “full circle”
      • Maintain eye contact comfortably
      • Mirror them
      • Do NOT ask about salary or benefits
      • Mention your “selling” list
      • Say, “I noticed on your website…”
    • Behavioral Interview Questions
      • What you did in the past will predict how you act in the future
      • SOAR Model – Page 65
    • Questions to Ask the Employer
      • Remember that you are also interviewing the employer.
      • Bring a list with you (usually 3-5 questions) = interested and prepared!
      • Hint: Ask what the next step is in the hiring process
        • gives you an idea of how quickly they will make the decision, and allow you to restate your interest in the position
    • Final Interview Advice
      • Reiterate your interest
      • Show your excitement
      • Thank them for their time
      • Ask them when you can expect to hear from them
      • Sell yourself….your skills, education, experience
      • Send a thank-you letter (24 hours)
    • Coping with the Loss of a Job
      • Talk to a counselor, pastor, etc. to vent and process the feelings resulting from your job loss.
      • Set daily or weekly measurable goals to ensure that you are making progress with your job search.
      • Take a break from your job search to regroup and stay positive. Engage in activities you enjoy (working out, cooking, etc.) to keep a positive outlook.
      • Keep a journal.
    • Expectations
      • Expect rejection…Don’t take it personally. Call and ask for feedback. Maybe they hired an internal candidate.
      • Expect the process to move SLOWLY.
      • Take the initiative, follow up, etc.
      • Expect to expand your search outside of Allen County, or even outside of northeast Indiana.
      • Expect to become frustrated (if you aren’t already), but have a plan / goal to keep you focused and moving forward.
      • Questions?
      • Office of Career Services
      • www.ipfw.edu/career
      • 260-481-0689