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5 Plan to Achieve Career Excellence Welcome to PACE! This is an e-learning program designed to guide you through a career planning process. For more information please consult your high school guidance counsellor or employment counsellor at the Department of Post- secondary, Education, Training and Labour. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
Welcome to Module 5: Job Search Strategies This represents the fifth step of a five part career planning process; Identifying Interests Researching Careers The Action Plan Workplace Essential Skills Job Search Strategies This module is very flexible in terms of where you complete it in the above sequence. Normally, it would be the final step in the career plan process, but it can be completed at any point in the 5 step process without disrupting your career plan. Once you have finished this module, it is recommended you resume completion of the remaining modules in the order presented © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
Job Search Strategies To find employment in today's job market you need 3 things; 1. A plan 2. The proper job search tools 3. Commitment Each component will be presented and you will be asked to make choices that will build your personal job search strategy. By the end of this module you should have a plan, the proper tools and the commitment to succeed in your job search. If you have completed Modules 1-4, you may have already established a career goal. Everything you do in this module is designed to focus your energy on getting the employment experience you need to get you one step closer to that career goal. If you haven't decided on any career goals don't worry, building a solid job search action plan now will benefit you at any stage in your career. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Plan; A. The employer looks for you (Advertised Job Market) This is the conventional job search method whereby you search posted job ads (newspaper, internet) and respond by submitting a résumé and/or contacting the employer. B. You look for the employer (Hidden Job Market) This is the process of contacting employers through cold calls or networking even though there has been no job posting or indication of job opportunities within the company. The 5 best ways to find work % of people who found work this way Asking employers directly 35% Asking friends, family, and contacts 28% Responding to newspaper ads 14% Using private employment agencies 6% Using government employment centers 5% (link removed) © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Advertised Job Market Some segments of the workforce rely on the Advertised Job Market for their job vacancies. 1. Provincial, federal and municipal government post opportunities open to the public. 2. The private sector also uses the Advertised Job Market for; entry level positions high demand jobs jobs that have a high turnover For the job seeker, this method has the advantages of being less time consuming for finding job leads and it is easier approaching employers when you know you are being invited. It has the disadvantages of being more competitive as well as frustrating for seasoned or specialized workers who can't find many opportunities that match their skill sets. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Advertised Job Market Local newspapers: Website for all provincial newspapers Government Job Banks: NB Jobs (local and provincial listings) Careers in the federal public service Careers in the provincial government https://www.ere.gnb.ca/ Private Sector Job Banks: Job Bank for the Atlantic Provinces Indeed (Canada) © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Hidden Job Market Most jobs are waiting in the hidden job market. These positions are filled by (or created for) candidates who come to an employer's attention through employee recommendations, referrals from trusted associates, recruiters, or direct contact with the candidate. It's less risky for an employer to hire someone who comes highly recommended. Often, positions are created for people who can offer a solution to an employer's business problem or can improve a company's profitability. In effect, you can create your own job within a company! Did you know? Statistics say that over 80% of all job vacancies are not advertised. These opportunities are accessed through the "hidden job market". © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Hidden Job Market How do you access the hidden job market? 1. Develop a skills inventory. You have a product to market - yourself! You should know your best selling points before talking to potential employers. The good news? You have already completed this in Module 4: Workplace Essential Skills. 2. Target employers. Focus on those jobs you want to do and what companies you want to work for and make a list of targets. Concentrate most of your job search on this list. 3. Network. Try to meet people who work for your targeted companies. Do you have friends or family who work there or know people who do? Try to meet the employers through cold calls, meetings at social events or volunteer. In short, get out there and meet people and let them know you are looking for a job. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The 80/20 Principle When it comes to job search, you can have your cake and eat it too! Why choose one othe the job search methods when you can use both? The Hidden Job Market = 80% Spend 80% of your job search actively networking, cold calling, handing out resumes, pursuing job leads and conducting follow-ups. The Advertised Job Market = 20% Spend the remaining 20% reading classified ads, searching job boards and researching companies. Many job boards and private employment agencies allow you to create a profile to let them know your skills and what types of jobs you are seeking. When a job meets your criteria, you will be notified of the match and you can apply for the job. This can be a real time saver! © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
Job Search Tools There is a ton of information in the form of books, websites and videos on how to conduct a proper job search and what tools you may need to be successful. The Work Room Career Resource Centres (http://www.careersthatwork.ca/) can provide you with a lot of this information.http://www.careersthatwork.ca/ You will require the following: 1. Cover Letter 2. Résumé 3. Portfolio (which could include); References Samples of your work Skills Inventory Research on the company Certifications/Diplomas © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Cover Letter The cover letter is your introduction to an employer. It allows you to talk in your own voice, link your experiences to the specific job opening, share your special abilities and show that you can write cohesively and effectively, which is important in any job. In short, it helps you sell yourself. A good cover letter is short, concise, and lays out exactly what you are looking for and why you are qualified. Here are some common mistakes you should avoid; Skipping the cover letter altogether Using a generic cover letter Not referencing the position to which you are applying Spelling mistakes Addressing it to the wrong person or company Using an unprofessional address (example: Joe Sample 123 Main St. Saint John, NB XXX XXX July 23, 2009 Jane Doe Human Resource Manager ACME Industries 1 First St. Saint John, NB XXX XXX Dear Ms. Doe: I am sending you this letter and attached resume to apply for the position of customer service representative (competition number : CSR ). I am very well suited for this position as I really enjoy working with people and helping them make informed purchasing decisions. As you can see by my attached resume, I have been received many top salesperson awards with my past employer and I believe I can bring the same success to your organization. If you have any questions or would like more information I would welcome the opportunity to meet with you. You can reach me at (506) or by at Thank you for your time and consideration. Sincerely, ___________ Joe Sample © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Résumé There are three main types of résumés; Chronological Résumés present information in a timeline approach. Typically, the most recent work experience is presented first followed by the next most recent and so on. This format works best for candidates with a strong work history related to the target job. Functional (or Skill-based) Résumés allow a candidate to play down gaps in their experience since they emphasize abilities and accomplishments without providing detailed background information on where and when they were acquired. This format is best suited to candidates who lack employment experience or are changing careers and has transferrable skills and experiences. Combination (or Targeted) Résumés are the best of both worlds. They allow a candidate an opportunity to demonstrate the skill sets they possess that are directly related to the job AND provide a detailed background information on where and when these skills were acquired. Which format is the “best”? The combination résumé is a blend of the traditional resume that is most familiar to employers and the functional résumé that allows you to emphasize your best skills sets. This tend to have the best success in most situations. However, it is not the best format in all situations. That is why there are alternatives that may act as a more effective medium to sell your skill sets to a potential employer! © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Chronological Résumé Use this format if; You are pursuing a position in a field in which you have a solid and consistent record of progress. Do not use this format if; Your most recent work experience does not relate to the job for which you are applying. You have worked exclusively in one field and are applying for a job in a different profession. You are seeking an entry-level position and have almost no work experience. You have been a chronic job hopper and held most of your jobs for less than one year. Your employment history has large gaps. Joe Sample 123 Main St. Saint John, NB XXX XXX (506) ______________________________________________________ Objective: To apply my sales experience to increase profits for your company and to enhance the experience for your customers. Employment History: Customer Service Representative Val-U Mart Saint John, NB 2005-present + Regional sales leader for 5 consecutive years + Earned 3 awards for customer satisfaction Telemarketer TransCan Mobility Saint John, NB Sold long distance packages and cellular phones to new customers + Met all sales quotas Volunteer Experience: + Chairperson for the Young Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow Society Education: Bachelor of Business Administration program UNBSJ Saint John, NB Graduated at the top of the Dean's List References: John Jones, CEO Val-U Mart (555) Sally Brooks, President of TransCanada Mobility (555) © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Functional Résumé Use this format if; You are an entry-level job seeker with no significant work- related experience. You are re-entering the workforce after a lengthy absence and little of your work history has bearing on the kind of job you are trying to find. You have held several jobs, but those jobs do not demonstrate professional growth. Be very careful if you use this format! One disadvantage of functional résumés is that many employers view them with suspicion because they do not detail a work history. While your strengths and accomplishments are important to a potential employer, most want to know what specific job you held that enabled you to demonstrate the skills you're describing. They also want to know how recent that experience was and, if possible, see some continuity. Joe Sample 123 Main St. Saint John, NB XXX XXX (506) __________________________________________________________ Objective: To apply my sales experience to increase profits for your company and to enhance the experience for your customers. Related Skills and Personal Accomplishments: + Ability to meet/exceed sales quotas + Excellent customer service skills + Team player + Marketing expertise + Entrepreneurial approach to job duties + Actively involved in many business mentoring programs for students + Awarded many distinctions for sales and customer service Volunteer Experience: + Chairperson for the Young Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow Society Education: Bachelor of Business Administration program UNBSJ Saint John, NB Graduated at the top of the Dean's List References: John Jones, CEO Val-U Mart (555) Sally Brooks, President of TransCanada Mobility (555) © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Combination Résumé Use this format if; You are looking to change careers and want to highlight general skills that relate to your past jobs. You have had no luck in getting past the screening process with a chronological résumé. You are applying for a job that interests you and that you think you can handle, but the connection between your work history and that particular job is not particularly strong. The principal advantage of a combination résumé is that, like a functional résumé, it enables you to establish early on what you have accomplished in your career and what skills and attributes you can offer a potential employer. But because you also will include a description of your work history, you can diffuse the suspicions that may arise when the information is omitted. This is a really versatile marketing tool that is quickly gaining popularity with job seekers and employers alike. Joe Sample 123 Main St. Saint John, NB XXX XXX (506) __________________________________________________________ Qualification Highlights: + Ability to meet/exceed sales quotas + Excellent customer service skills + Team player Recent Employment History: Customer Service Representative Val-U Mart Saint John, NB 2005-present + Regional sales leader for 5 consecutive years + Earned 3 awards for customer satisfaction Volunteer Experience: + Chairperson for the Young Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow Society Education: Bachelor of Business Administration program UNBSJ Saint John, NB Graduated at the top of the Dean's List References: John Jones, CEO Val-U Mart (555) Sally Brooks, President of TransCanada Mobility (555) © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
Common Résumé Mistakes No matter which résumé style you choose, there a few things you should never include on your résumé or cover letter; Social Insurance Number Personal Attributes (height, weight, age, race, etc.) If you have children (or are pregnant) Religious Beliefs Photograph Inaccurate (or false) information Banking information (or a fee to apply for a job) © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Portfolio A portfolio refers to your entire collection of tools you have prepared for your job search. It includes your; Cover letter Résumé It can also include things you may need for your interview; Copies of your credentials Samples of your past work Evidence of your past accomplishments Letters of reference Research on the company to which you are applying It is a lot of work to prepare a professional-looking portfolio but it can pay huge dividends. Taking the time to collect this material also prepares you for job interviews. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Portfolio It is important to note that it is not intended that you give your portfolio to the employer as part of the application process. This is your tool to use if the employer requests evidence that you have the proper credentials or is interested in seeing some of your past work. With that said, there are some circumstances in which a prospective employer may request a copy of your portfolio as part of the application process. Examples include the modeling industry, software developers, interior designers, architects, etc.. Some people wrongly equate a portfolio with a scrapbook project. They include personal and family photos and collections of their likes and dislikes thinking it will help an employer to "get to know them better". Employers do not have the time nor the interest for an autobiography. Anything that does not demonstrate a skill, relevant work experience or serve some practical purpose in your job search, does not belong in your portfolio. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
Commitment The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor. -Vince Lombardi Job search preparation is useless if a person is not willing to put all that work into action. Much like a performance athlete, all the training has led to the big event. How will you perform under pressure? Your performance will be measured by the employers you will meet through cold calls, networking and interviews. You will face acceptance and rejection but you must not waiver in the belief in your abilities and the fact that you will get a job that best suits you. Improve your odds by using your support network (friends, family, career resource centres, and counsellors) for moral support and encouragement when you feel your motivation dropping. Stay positive and focused on your goals! Let’s take a few minutes and talk about the interview process… © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Interview and the Art of Networking You've got a plan, prepared a portfolio and now you are ready to start meeting employers. The point of meeting an employer is to determine if any future employment relationship would be beneficial to both parties. What's in it for the employer? Will they be hiring an employee that will be a positive assets for the company? What current business problem will this person help solve? What's in it for the employee? Will this company help me to develop the skills I need for my long term career growth? Does this job meet my needs (wages, benefits, etc)? An interview is nothing more than a structured method to keep your meeting with an employer as professional, objective and time effective as possible. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Interview and the Art of Networking Successful job seekers are those who know how the business world works and can adapt their behaviours to fit those expectations. The expectations most employers have for their employees are; Provide services that benefit the company Positively represent the company in business relationships Add value to the corporate culture (ie: they are team players, bring new ideas, expertise) It is a risky proposition for employers to hire someone who may turn out to be a liability, so your job is to ease those concerns and help them understand how valuable an asset you are to that company. The next couple of slides will provide you with tips on marketing yourself as an asset. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The First Impression Many hiring decisions are made within the first few seconds of an employer meeting a job seeker, so it is important to stack the odds in your favour by; Look the employer in the eye when you speak Shake hands with a firm grip Dress in professional business attire (even if the job does not require a suit/dress) Be well groomed Conceal tattoos, piercings and be conservative with makeup / hair styles. Communicate confidently Be polite and professional Be prepared (research the company in advance) Be punctual (even a little early) Did you know… © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Interview There are six types of interview styles that a job seeker may encounter; Traditional Interview Behavioural Interview Case Interview Situational Interview Stress Interview Phone Interview The traditional and behavioural interview styles are the most common, but we will examine each style so you can be prepared for anything an employer may throw your way. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Traditional Job Interview The traditional job interview uses broad-based questions such as, “Why do you want to work for this company," and “Tell me about your strengths and weaknesses.“ Interviewing success or failure are more often based on the ability of the job-seeker to communicate than on the truthfulness or content of their answers. Employers are looking for the answers to three questions: 1. Does the job-seeker have the skills and abilities to perform the job? 2. Does the job-seeker possess the enthusiasm and work ethic that the employer expects? 3. Will the job-seeker be a team player and fit into the organization? Tell me what you know about my company and why you would like to work here. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Behavioural Job Interview The behavioral job interview is based on the theory that past performance is the best indicator of future behavior. It uses questions that probe specific past behaviors, such as: “Tell me about a time where you confronted an unexpected problem," and “Give me a specific example of a time when you managed several projects at once." Job-seekers need to prepare for these interviews by recalling scenarios that fit the various types of behavioral interviewing questions. Job-seekers should frame their answers based on a four-part outline: 1. Describe the situation 2. Discuss the actions you took 3. Relate the outcomes 4. Specify what you learned from the experience Tell me about a time where you were faced with a difficult situation and how you resolved it. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Case Interview Case interviews are designed to scrutinize the skills that are especially important in management consulting and related fields: quantitative skills, analytical skills, problem-solving ability, communications skills, creativity, flexibility, the ability to think quickly under pressure, listening skills, business acumen, keen insight, interpersonal skills, the ability to synthesize findings, professional demeanor, and powers of persuasion. There are a variety of problem-solving strategies a person can research and practice if they expect they may be asked to participate in a case interview. But generally a person should, Listen to the scenario carefully Ask for clarification if needed Be aware that there is rarely only "one" right answer Identify the most important issues and address those first Don't be afraid to be creative Our company is in the process of creating a new corporate logo. I am going to provide you with some proposed samples and I want you to tell me which one reflects our mission statement best and why. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Situational Interview In situational interviewing, job-seekers are asked to respond to a specific situation they may face on the job, and some aspects of it are similar to behavioral interviews. These types of questions are designed to draw out more of your analytical and problem-solving skills, as well as how you handle problems with short notice and minimal preparation. Situational interviews are similar to behavioral interviews, except while behavioral focus on a past experience, situational interviews focus on a hypothetical situation. The key to preparation and success in situational interviews is simply to; 1. Review your past work experiences 2. Review the steps you took to resolve problems 3. Rehearse examples of past experiences that are relevant to typical employment scenarios. Let's pretend you were about to close the sale on a major account, but for some unexpected reason, the client decides to buy from a competitor. What steps would you take to save the account? © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
The Phone Interview Here are a few tips to help you have a successful phone interview; Know what job you are interviewing for. Practice. Have a friend call you to do a mock phone interview so you get the feel of being interviewed over the phone. If you cannot devote enough time to a phone interview, suggest a specific alternate time to the recruiter. It's often best to be the one who calls back so you can be mentally prepared. Consider keeping some notes in front of you to remind yourself of key points you want to cover with the interviewer. You don't want your responses to sound scripted, but you don't want to fumble for important points either. Also have your resume in front of you so you can remember highlights of your experience and accomplishments. Don't feel you have to fill in the silences. If you've completed a response, but the interviewer hasn't asked his or her next question, don't start babbling just to fill in airtime. Instead, ask a question of your own related to your last response. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
No matter which style (or combination of interview questions) an employer chooses to throw at you, your key to getting through with a good result is; 1. Research. Research the company and the type of job to which you are applying. Your knowledge of these factors is critical to your success. 2. Preparation. While the types of questions differ depending on the interviewing style, job-seekers must plan ahead. A god strategy is to prepare 1-2 minute “stories” that highlight the skills you want to showcase to the employer. Stories of a time you acted as a leader, dealt with a difficult situation and had to complete a task under a tight deadline would be good to have prepared ahead of time. You should also have several questions ready to ask the interviewer. 3. Maintain your cool. Interviews are stressful (even for the employer). Relax, be courteous and remain confident in your abilities. The rest will take care of itself. 4. Follow-Up. It is amazing how many job-seekers skip this crucial step. A good strategy is to send an to the employer to thank them for the interview. Not only is this part of professional etiquette, it shows you are keen and keeps you on the top of their mind when they are making a hiring decision. Keep it brief and NEVER send gifts as part of your thank you. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
Putting it all Together Summary of Module 5: Job Search Strategies Let's take one final look at what you've got packed to start your journey; 1. A plan. It is recommended that most of your job search (80%) should target the hidden job market and the remaining 20% to the advertised job market. You will determine what combination works best for you. 2. The tools. You should have a cover letter, resume and portfolio (with copies of your certificates, company research and interview prep) ready to go. 3. The commitment to know what you want and not stop until you get it. The job search process can be an emotional rollercoaster but maintaining your focus and sticking to a well organized plan will get you through it. So that's it! You are ready to hit the streets and find that job that's out there waiting for you. Check out these websites: Select the “Job Search” icon © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
© The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) 7-16SC Putting it all Together A career planning workbook and career coaching guide for parents are available from a Work Room coordinator as part of the PACE e-learning modules. In the workbooks are exercises that you can complete and track your career plan (an example is shown on the right). No matter how you structure your job search, make sure you stay focused and organized. Establish a routine that you can maintain and always find opportunities to network. Remember that you are a professional that has a lot to offer an employer. Stay positive and believe in yourself! You will succeed.
Congratulations! You have completed Module 5: Job Search Strategies of the PACE e-learning series. You can revisit this module at any time to review the material or visit website links and resources that it contains. If you are working on your career plan with an employment counsellor, guidance counsellor or career coach, you should discuss with them the information contained in this module. © The Work Room (www.careersthatwork.ca) SC
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