Infographic: What Job Seekers Today Expect During the Hiring Process

posted by Megan Hari |

The national unemployment rate remained at 3.8% through March 2019, meaning job seekers still hold the advantage in the market. There are more open jobs than there are talented candidates to fill them. Because of this, job seekers can be pickier in their searches and can usually expect to see more than one offer when interviewing.

The following infographic from Clear Company lays out some of the concerns and successes candidates are seeing throughout their hiring processes. Some common frustrations include lack of communication/feedback, intensive, time-consuming applications and not feeling their experience is personalized.

“69% of candidates will give up on an application if it takes more than 20 minutes to complete and 20% will give up after 10 minutes.”

Swoon’s goal as a recruiting firm is to alleviate the frustrations of finding a new job, and instead provide individual support and advice throughout the process and afterward. Our recruiters work with a team of relationship and sales managers to ensure they know exactly what our clients are looking for in each position. Not only are we well-versed in the skillsets necessary to succeed in each role, but we also take the time to learn the company and team culture. This helps us make a perfect match for each candidate we place.

We live by our company mantra “Listen. Place. Care.” This means that we truly listen to each person’s wants and needs, place them in a role that fits what they are looking for, and continue to check in and answer any questions they may have throughout the duration of their project.

If you are tired of filling out long job applications, writing your resume into every site after already attaching it, and not hearing back from the roles you apply to, reach out to Swoon. One of our recruiters would be happy to help you through your journey with a goal of ulitmately finding you your dream role. Our team will do the application and submission for you and will help you format your resume to highlight your skills for the role.

What Job Seekers Today Expect During the Hiring Process [Infographic]

What Job Seekers Today Expect During the Hiring Process [Infographic], courtesy of ClearCompany

resume on desk

Three Resume Tips from Our Expert Recruiters

posted by Megan Hari |

Here at Swoon, our recruiters see hundreds of resumes a day and are aware of what makes a resume stand out to hiring managers. While each company and position are unique, these three resume tips are relevant for any role in any industry.

The Simple Things Matter

It is important to have a clean, crisply designed resume that is easy to skim through. You can make your resume easy to read by choosing a simple, standard font. You may stand out if you choose a unique font, but not in a good way. If someone cannot easily find the keywords they are looking for, your resume will be dismissed.

You also want to remain consistent in your layout. If you are putting a range of dates on your resume and you spell out the months on one position, do not change this and use abbreviated months in a different position. The same thing goes with bolding and italicising If you bold one job title, bold them all.

Grammar and spelling errors can ruin your chances of getting hired from the start. In most cases, your resume is your only chance at a first impression. Make sure you have triple-checked your resume for mistakes. There are online services such as Grammarly that help explain why certain things are incorrect on your document and what you should do to fix them. Also, it never hurts to have another set of human eyes review your page for anything you overlooked.

PRO TIP: It is a myth that resumes must be only one page in length. If you have a large amount of experience to share, it is okay to continue onto more pages, but remember, nobody wants to read a nine-page resume either.

Keywords

It may seem obvious if you are a designer that you know how to use the Adobe Creative Suite. However, no skill should be left out of a resume, especially if it is a program or certification. Many times, hiring managers will do a search function on resumes, typing in keywords to be sure the resume has them listed. Even if you are a great candidate, you may be overlooked if you are not focused on including these common industry keywords. If you are experienced in Adobe, add the specifics. Do you know Adobe Photoshop, or are you only familiar with Adobe Illustrator? The more specific you can be in these cases, the better.

Tailoring your resume to each individual job description is another great tip. Look for keywords in the job description that you have experience with. Then, be sure to format your resume to include these words. A great perk when working with our team at Swoon, is that we do the tailoring for you. We will make sure that your resume is customized for each role we submit you to. As a bonus, you will get a leg-up on the competition, because we know what the individual hiring managers are looking for in each candidate’s profile.

Quantify Your Successes

Although it will take some extra work, quantifying your efforts is a key tip to getting your resume noticed. Instead of including a bullet point that says:

  • Created and implemented a social media plan that grew the company following on all platforms

Say:

  • Created and implemented a social media plan that grew the company’s Instagram following by 500 followers, Facebook likes by 40% and Twitter followers by 95

Including these numbers shows that you can quantify your work and gives a more accurate story of your success. Be mindful not to include numbers that are insignificant, or do not add value to a statement. You want to highlight your biggest successes in each of your roles, and then mention the day to day functions that can be transferred to the work you would do in the new role you are applying for.

If you are ready to start looking for a job, or simply want to update your current resume, these tips are sure to get you headed in the right direction. As always, we are here to help, so reach out with any questions or apply for one of our open roles today!

Written by: Jessica Henry

February Contractor of the Month – Stacey Hou

posted by Megan Hari |

February’s Contractor of the Month is Stacey Hou, a Financial Analyst turned Data Analyst at one of Swoon’s clients, a consumer credit reporting agency in Boston.

Stacey started her Swoon journey when she applied to a role online and started working with Beth Suchocki. Beth and team offered advice, provided sample questions to ask during interviews, and checked-in throughout the process. In fact, Stacey was deciding on concurrent offers and Beth negotiated a more favorable package, ultimately sealing the deal for Stacey.

When starting as a Financial Analyst, a typical workday for Stacey included data entry and reporting, financial journaling, auditing and transactions. As she became more familiar with her role, Stacey realized due to her background in coding, that she was able to automate a lot of her work. Her boss was very supportive and began to assign Stacey additional tasks in business intelligence, coding and data analysis fields.

Stacey was then offered a full-time position with the client as a Data Analyst and her new position started this month! She now supports the business in quantitative data and coding to improve efficiencies.

“My favorite part about the job is the flexibility to identify the optimal way of doing a project and being able to run with it. I am not set to doing everything by a certain set of rules, and this empowers me to go a more creative and passionate route,” Stacey said.

We at Swoon would like to congratulate Stacey on her success and wish her well in her new, full-time role!

picture of Stacey outside

Fun Facts: Stacey has a three-pound toy poodle named Luna and a rescue Chinchilla named Bubbles! She loves music and works as an event pianist and church organist in her spare time.

nervous interviewer

What’s Your Biggest Weakness?

posted by Megan Hari |

You have taken all the right steps to prepare for your interview and you are ready to give it your all. You have written down notes about the company and questions you have for the interviewer, you know the job description like the back of your hand, and you have your suit jacket back from the dry cleaner.

The interview starts off great, and you are nailing the questions the interviewer asks. But then, they ask about your weaknesses. You panic. You wonder, “how am I supposed to answer this without hurting my chances at getting the job? Should I say I don’t have any career-related weaknesses?” Take a deep breath.

There are many ways to talk about your biggest weakness that can actually improve your chances of winning the role rather than hurting them:

  1. Be Specific – Don’t throw out a general trait like being lazy or messy. Instead, choose to talk about a software, certification or other skill sets that you have not yet mastered (Excel, foreign language, Adobe Photoshop) and be sure to explain what you are doing to become better at it (online classes, meet-up groups, etc.).
  2. Don’t Give an Example Directly Related to the Role – Of course you may not be as good at Excel as you hope to be, but if you are applying for a data analyst role, this would not be a good weakness to bring up as it is a skill you would often use in this job. You want to make sure you do not make the interviewer question your ability to perform the tasks they need this person to do. Instead, focus on something that is still business related but not something that you would be doing daily in the new role.
  3. Stay Composed and Focused – Do not let this question throw off your confidence. For some interviewers, the whole point of asking about weaknesses is to see how the candidates react to the question. Remain calm and answer just as you would any other interview question.
  4. Don’t be Arrogant – Claiming you don’t have any weaknesses or trying to make a good attribute into a weakness is not a good idea. For example, saying you are a perfectionist or that you are just too well organized may come off as insincere. If you want to focus on something like this, be careful how you phrase it, you might say something like, “Sometimes I am so focused on keeping myself organized and making sure that everything is in its place that I lose sight of the greater goal of a project and the creativity needed to finish it.”

To best prepare your answer to this question, list out your weaknesses ahead of time so that you can choose which weakness is right to discuss at which interview. Interviewing can be a scary and overwhelming process, but it doesn’t have to be. Working with a Swoon recruiter will help you to get your resume recognized, help you prepare for your interviews and the type of questions you will be asked and ultimately easy your interview worries.

 

 

locked cell phone

What to Do Vs. What Not to Do In an Interview

posted by Megan Hari |

Honesty vs. Lying

It goes without saying that indeed, honesty is the best policy, and with interviewing, that fact cannot be truer. Many recruiters, HR specialists and interviewers are trained to see through lies while conducting interviews. So, to stay on the person’s good side, it is best to come into the interview with the most honest approach in speaking about your experiences and answering any other questions they may have. According to CareerBuilder.com, 66-percent of applicants who are caught lying are immediately removed from consideration by hiring managers! This is because it reflects poor traits of character and lack of experience. Here at Swoon, we advise you to stay in the clear by sticking to the truth!

Turning Your Phone Off

Sixty-four percent of hiring managers say that answering a phone call during an interview shows an unfocused, disrespectful candidate as it is one of the fastest ways to lose a job opportunity. Therefore, to avoid this, we advise you to remove the temptation completely by turning your phone off before the interview commences and not turning it back on until the interview is over and you have left the building. This will show that you are taking the interview process seriously – a reflection of your character and what you will bring to the table if given the opportunity to work there.

Dressing Prepared to Score the Job

men shaking handsAlthough judging a book by its cover may be wrong, interviewers do just that; they judge the cover of your resume, the cover of your cover letter and the outfit you use to represent yourself during the interview. Coming to an interview looking too informal, or too over-the-top may leave a bad impression of your understanding of their company culture. We recommend that candidates take the time to research the culture of the company they are interviewing for to decipher an appropriate outfit to use in the interview. Many candidates do not realize that hiring managers are looking for individuals with a key sense of detail as a part of the interview process itself is making sure you dress to impress!

Coming in Unprepared Vs. Being Ready

According to TheMuse.com, many hiring managers detest commonly asked questions revolving around the basics of the company, what it does and how it is organized. This is because they feel such primary company information should already be known and should be a part of the reason why the applicant wants to be with them. Hence, we advise that the candidate does research ahead of time, allowing an interview to transform into a conversation between two individuals who understand the company.

Being ready for the interview can also refer to being able to showcase your skills in accordance with your resume, and that takes practice! Make sure you are up to date on what you listed on your resume and be prepared to talk about your experiences (both the ups and downs of them) and demonstrate your skills through a test or live demonstration. Employers notice that when candidates come to interviews well prepared, there is a certain confidence the person possesses, while inversely, they also can tell when candidates are not prepared due to little displays of internal confusion, timidity and lack of dialogue.

Being Punctual Vs. Coming in Late

It’s 10 a.m. and you are at home about to leave for your interview that starts at 10:30 a.m. Apple Maps says the meeting is about 25 minutes away so you think you will make it with time to spare! Nope. Before you chose to leave so late, have you considered that inevitable traffic jam on the way downtown, where to park or even the time taken to get to the right floor? These little events take time and ultimately, could make you late for your interview!

Hiring managers in a recent survey on Forbes said that one of the first components of a candidate’s success is how punctual he/she is. Therefore, it is advised that arriving 10-15 minutes early allows you to use the restroom, locate the office and focus on the task at hand – acing the interview! Additionally, being on-time shows employers how you conduct yourself in a typical work environment. Also, when you are rushing to not be late, the adrenaline in your body may hinder you from mentally getting ready moments before the interview. Being punctual will help when it comes to your overall consideration – much more than you think.

With these tips on how to conduct oneself in an interview using good preparation and attention to details, you really can land the opportunity of your dreams. Observing these steps is the easy part. Now, go and use them to ace the interview!

All the best!

Written By: Osora Mojekwu

 

 

 

https://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/outside-voices-careers/articles/2018-05-15/is-your-networking-strategy-falling-short?hootPostID=aee7dd3d767f067092da44f75162f430

https://www.inc.com/rhett-power/13-things-not-to-do-before-amp-during-a-job-interview.html

https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikaandersen/2014/06/03/please-dont-do-these-9-things-in-an-interview/#220655057a34

https://www.impactbnd.com/blog/why-interview-based-blogging

interview, jobs, job search, recruiting

Job Search Tips To Help You Achieve Your 2018 Career Goals

posted by Megan Hari |

With the end of each year comes a list of goals and resolutions for the coming year. Everywhere you go, there is someone talking about what they are going to do differently this year and how they are going to fulfill new goals. In the spirit of the new year, we have compiled a list of advice and tips on job searching from some of our top Swoon recruiters. So, for all of you who have “get hired” on the top of your resolutions list, read on:

  1. “When looking for a job, I believe the culture, opportunity for personal and career growth, vacation time, and volunteer initiatives the company pursues should outweigh your salary. Yes, you should make enough to cover your monthly expenses and enjoy life, but when a company takes care of you, your performance and overall health, that’s priceless.”
    Kelly, Professional Recruiter
  2. “Do your research. Check out the company website and research the people you will be speaking to. Take notes and come prepared with at least 3-5 questions to ask.”
    Sara, Director of Recruiting
  3. “The biggest piece of advice I can give to job seekers is to be communicative. Open and honest communication about what you are really looking for in your next position, what is going to make you happy, where you are in your job search, etc., will be the most helpful to your recruiter and those helping you land your next gig. We promise to always do the same!”
    Lisa, Recruiting Lead, Major Accounts
  4. “When looking to make an employment change, I always tell the candidate it’s important to research a company but even more important to research what your role will be in that company. If you do not know how this opportunity will play out over your career, you may limit future advancement. More importantly, don’t be afraid to ask questions about job duties in interviews. You want to come out of the process feeling that this opportunity is the one!”
    Jim, Lead Technical Recruiter
  5. “Referrals increase your chances of landing a job, so don’t forget about the network you’ve spent years creating. You never know who could help you along the way, so put in the effort to spread the word that you are job searching and be sure to let your recruiter know you’re actively looking for a job.”
    Ryan, Major Accounts Support Specialist
  6. “Focus more on hard technical skills than soft skills and be able to speak about your specific job duties for each of the roles on your resume. Also, don’t be afraid to call the recruiter or HR department to follow up on your status.”
    Anna, Recruiter

Check out our current client openings here or if you are interested in recruiting and sales, and want to join our awesome flock, learn more here.

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How to Answer Dreaded Interview Questions

posted by Megan Hari |

When you’re in the hot seat, you’re bound to be asked a question that you can’t answer without some deliberating. Dreaded interview questions can catch us by surprise and we often forget it’s okay to pause and think in order to deliver an answer we feel confident in. If you find yourself fumbling for words, repeat the question, take a moment to turn it over in your head, and answer with conviction.

Whether you didn’t prepare or haven’t quite nailed down your answer, here’s how to field these questions with ease.

Why did you quit your last job?

Be honest. Focus on how your position wasn’t contributing to your growth, was no longer fulfilling your career goals, or simply wasn’t the best fit any longer. It’s okay that it didn’t work out and you had to move on, but remember, put a positive spin on any negative experiences. Don’t dwell on the bad and emphasize on how you’re excited to move forward.

Why is there a gap in your work history?

Sometimes previous jobs don’t reflect relevant growth in our careers. Whether you left a past position off of your resume or personal reasons prevented you from staying in the workforce, you can easily justify why there are a few months, even a year, of unaccounted time. Highlight freelance work, valuable experiences, or certifications you gained during that time, if applicable.

How much money did you make at your last position?

First and foremost, you are not obligated to reveal past numbers. Money can be an uncomfortable topic, so when it arises in the interview, the pressure to tell all can skew your judgement. Rather than giving salary information, you can offer a salary range that you are comfortable with and currently seeking. Ask for what you want and know you deserve and don’t let past numbers be a benchmark for your current value.

What is your biggest weakness?

Turn negatives into positives. Reveal your weaknesses and include how you’ve worked to correct them or how you think this job will help you better yourself. Think about qualities that can convey strengths as well, such as being too chatty (people-person) or not asking for help (self-reliant).

Why are you the right person for this job?

Is this your passion, is this the next step in your career? Are you as valuable to them as they are to you? Reread the job description and understand how your experience aligns with their needs. Do you have extraneous skills that you think would be appropriate? Are you a culture fit, can you speak to agreeing with their values and social goals? This is a chance to sell yourself, not sell yourself short. You don’t have to be modest, but be honest if you truly believe this is a fit.

About Swoon

We are recruiters with an unorthodox method and a proven track record of temporary and direct hire placements. Through an approachable method to recruiting we get to know our clients and candidates then connect the best and the brightest with Fortune 1000 companies nationwide. Are you ready to be Swoon’d?

Selling Yourself in an Interview

posted by Megan Hari |

Finding a job that you do well and enjoy can be a tall task. It may seem like your search will continue indefinitely or you will have to settle for a job that you won’t enjoy that much. The key to success is selling yourself. Start thinking about your own wants and needs from a job and the things you excel at. Here are some ways you can sell yourself during your next interview to get the job you really want.

Ask the Questions

Interviews can quickly feel like intense interrogation sessions when you forget that it’s supposed to be a back and forth dialogue. Take a more active role in your interview and ask relevant questions for a more productive and insightful exchange. Ask pertinent questions about the specifics of the job and the workplace culture so that you can get a complete idea of what the job entails.

Research

Thoroughly research the company before you go into an interview. This will make your questions regarding the job and workplace that much stronger, and it will show them that you have an understanding of what the company does and how you would potentially function in your role.

Preparation

Preparation is more than just making sure your suit is dry-cleaned and that you arrive on time. It is important that you are professional and on-time for your interview, but you should also be prepared to discuss why you want the job you are applying for. If you know the answer to this question it will help you give stronger answers to your interview questions and help you give a stronger interview all-around.

About Swoon

We are recruiters with an unorthodox method and a proven track record of temporary and direct hire placements. Through an approachable method to recruiting we get to know our clients and candidates then connect the best and the brightest with Fortune 1000 companies nationwide. Are you ready to be Swoon’d?