January Contractor of the Month-John Santaguida

posted by Megan Hari |

January’s Contractor of the Month is John Santaguida, a Business Analyst at one of Swoon’s social media and mobile application clients. During a typical day, John checks the workflows he has set up and runs project requests. He also works on building these workflows for ad products and started a targeting incubation program where he and his team run new target requests and monitor the results.

Swoon recruiter Tyler Parks connected with John and helped him to land this role that he says he otherwise would not have applied for because he didn’t know he had the required skillsets. John loves working at Swoon and with his current company. He said he is never left out because of his contractor status and he loves the open-book, cross-functional nature of his team.

John hopes to become a product manager with the company down the line and continue to grow with the team. There have been conversations about converting him to a permanent employee this year.

Fun Fact: John knows how to make balloon animals!

Congratulations on being our Contractor of the Month. We wish you continued success!

empty office space

The Human Element: Why Do People Ghost?

posted by Megan Hari |

And why is it more accepted, even normal, today?

Recently, there have been many publications on “ghosting” which, according to Dictionary.com, is “the practice of suddenly ending all contact with a person without explanation.”  Most of these articles are about ghosting in the dating world or leaving an event without saying goodbye. However, ghosting is present in the workforce as well in relationship-driven industries including B2B and B2C. Therefore, it makes sense why ghosting is happening more frequently than ever in the recruiting and staffing industry.

“A total of 48% of 600 polled by LinkedIn have seen an increase in ghosting since the beginning of 2018.”

This leads me to question, “Why has rudeness become more accepted with highly professional and generally decent people,” and set me on a path to find connections between the many publications, blogs and podcasts discussing “ghosting,” “icing,” etc.

Here are a few reasons people are ghosting in the recruiting world:

  • It is currently a candidate’s market, where there are more jobs than there are qualified individuals to fulfill them, so candidates can be pickier on the roles they want to accept.
  • Unfortunately, recruiters are sometimes guilty of ghosting candidates. I like to think that most industry professionals are above this, but there are recruiting and staffing professionals that are either overwhelmed with their workloads or are not thinking long-term when they forget to follow up or decide not to follow up with a candidate.
  • Hiring managers are ghosting staffing agencies. From an agency perspective, if the candidate is not right for the role after an interview, we see more ghosting of feedback as the clients are simply moving on to the next candidates.
  • Managed Services Programs (MSPs) have been no strangers to ghosting, as recruiting agencies often work with the end-client via a vendor management system and little to no human interaction with the decision makers. This makes ghosting sometimes the norm for MSP recruiting scenarios.

Many human interactions are through email, social media, apps and other communication portals powered by technology which makes it easier to dehumanize these conversations.

Being “too busy” has also become an acceptable reason for ghosting. However, when we make human connections with other people, one would think the propensity to ghost is decreased, and yet an article from HuffPost suggests that there is a common fear of conflict.

There are many psychological reasons why someone ghosts, but at its core, ghosting is avoidance and often stems from fear of conflict.” HuffPost

Fear. This is causing us to avoid commonplace decorum in our personal and professional relationships. We make ghosting okay in our minds because we want to avoid conflict and/or negativity. The reality is; however, when we “ghost,” we are essentially kicking the conflict can down the road to deal with later.


For the recruiting and staffing industry, when a…

  • Candidate ghosts an interview or pulls a no-show, this is likely tracked in a CRM, and the recruiting company/potential employer will probably not want to interview them for any other roles in the future.
  • Recruiter ghosts it may ruin their reputation down the line and their company’s. This is a small industry and reputations are built over time, with Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Yelp reviews, etc.
  • Hiring manager ghosts on feedback or establishing next steps, reviews of the company on sites like Glassdoor will likely not be as desirable for other potentially quality candidates if news of their ghosting gets out.
  • Employee ghosts…references are still relevant! And the unemployment rate will not likely stay below 4% nationally forever. It’s the lowest it’s been in 50 years.

The Golden Rule of treating others as one’s self would wish to be treated is highly applicable in interpersonal relationships, and as of recently, the dilemma of “ghosting” in the workplace. Don’t hide behind technology as an avoidance vehicle. In today’s connected world, reputation and “reviews” go a long way.

Author: Quyen Pham Regional Director, West Coast
contractor and swooners posing with chuck the duck

October Contractor of the Month – Nirmit Rungta

posted by Megan Hari |

Swoon’s October Contractor of the Month is Nirmit Rungta, a Business Analyst for a large healthcare client in Richmond, Virginia. Nirmit was on a one-year contract with the client, and because of his hard work, it was extended into 2019.

He applied for the position online and was quickly in contact with Lisa and her team. He was then introduced to Sonya and Ashley and had nothing but wonderful things to say about them.

“Swoon has been wonderful. Ever since I joined, everyone has been great when they come to meet with me. They make things comfortable with the right combination of formal and informal in our meetings,” he explained.

Nirmit’s future goals are to expand his knowledge within the company to become a project manager. In his spare time, he enjoys staying fit by playing soccer and volleyball, hiking, and cycling. Fun fact: In his past, Nirmit was a drummer in a metal band!

Congratulations on your hard work paying off, Nirmit. We look forward to watching your career grow!

Swooners working together

The Advantages of Using a Staffing Firm for Your Company’s Hiring Needs

posted by Megan Hari |

Some companies think that using their own recruiters will be enough to find the best talent needed to help their company grow. However, there are several advantages to using a staffing firm to help fill these roles that many do not consider. When you find a trusted business partner in the staffing world to work alongside your internal recruiting team, you can multiply your chances at success. Here are just a few reasons staffing firms can help:

An Extended Network of Potential Employees

The September jobs report announced that the unemployment rate is at 3.7% which is the lowest it has been since 1969. Thus, it can be difficult to find the right talent to fill your roles. The top talent for most roles are currently employed. When you partner with a staffing firm, you expand the talent network available to you.  Recruiters have established relationships with candidates and with that rapport comes referrals. Firms also take the time to convert “passive candidates”; these candidates aren’t actively looking for a new position but once properly informed about your company’s exciting opportunity, they may realize it is too good to pass up.

Market Knowledge

Staffing firms work with other clients in your industry and they know what your competitors are offering respective to the same roles you are looking to fill. Recruiters become experts within the industries they staff and can provide you with market trends and candidate expectations. This intel will help you to be competitive in the marketplace and ultimately win the rockstar candidates.

Time is Money

There are many job boards with “easy apply” options and mobile apply options that job seekers can quickly navigate to apply for several jobs with a few clicks. Therefore, many applicants are glancing at job descriptions and applying for roles they are unqualified for; adding time for the hiring manager to review the applications for a suitable candidate. Staffing firms do all the hard work for you; they carefully review each applicant with a fine-toothed comb, creating a “short list” of the best-fitting talent, saving you time and resources.

Contract Employees

Staffing firms often recruit on roles where clients need multiple hires within the same position. These resources become a team and learn to work well together on the project at hand. Companies do not usually hire contractors with niche skill sets on a full-time basis because their skill-set is desired only for the specific duration of the project. However, these “teams” are often redeployed as a unit to partner on future projects.  This means that once hired for your job, there is more time spent on the task-at-hand rather than getting to know each other’s work styles. Internal hiring teams miss opportunities to onboard teams of individuals who’ve worked together previously; whereas, the staffing firms have better capabilities to deliver Statements of Work.

Brand Ambassadors

Especially for smaller companies, staffing firms can help to market your brand and your company values. They will get to know your company culture and the ins and outs of how you operate, allowing them to “sell” your brand to potential candidates. By building a relationship with your staffing firm, you are helping to make sure they hire the right culture fits for your roles and are expanding the number of candidates that will learn about your company values and opportunities.

If you are ready to take the guesswork out of the recruiting experience and hire top talent for your next open job, reach out to me today. I would love to show you all the ways Swoon can assist you and take your company to the next level.

Chris Jensen
Senior Major Account Manager
chris.jensen@swoonstaffing.com

 

September Contractor of the Month – Alan Robinson

posted by Megan Hari |

Our September Contractor of the Month is Alan Robinson, Technical Support Specialist at one of Swoon’s largest pharmaceutical clients in Indianapolis. Alan was on a one-year contract with the client, and we are happy to announce he was converted to a full-time employee with them this month! A few fun facts Alan shared with us included that he is a U.S. Navy Veteran (12 years), a private pilot, and has three wonderful grandchildren.

Alan said the hiring process through Swoon was great! “It was smooth, personable and I had good interactions with Ashley and Mark,” he said. For him, communication is key, and he said that Swoon’s team was very proactive and remained in constant communication with him, even after the onboarding process was complete.

“I was treated like a number in the past, but not with Swoon,” Alan said of his experience with staffing firms. Alan was self-employed when a Swoon recruiter reached out to him about this opportunity through his LinkedIn profile. He had worked with this client in the past and was excited at the chance to work there again.

Congratulations on your hard work paying off, Alan. It was our pleasure working with you and we wish you nothing but the best on your full-time venture!

 

Wellness Wednesday Banner

Wellness Wednesdays- Chapter 2: Healthcare and Benefits

posted by Megan Hari |

There is a common saying that goes, “to best know how to use something that belongs to you, you must know everything about it.” This idea applies so well to Swoon’s Wellness Wednesdays chapter two topic: healthcare and the benefits offered by one’s company.

Most companies, if not all, currently have specific benefits allotted to their employees. These benefits are based on the intention to preserve the health and stability of a company’s employees as, truly, if you think about it, what is a company without the employees within it?

The one fault of the employee, when offered these benefits, is that they may not have the information to best utilize them. Therefore, here at Swoon, we have created a guide on how best utilize the advantages you work so hard for!

The Guide

  1. Make a customized plan that fits one’s individual and family needs: According to Entrepreneur.com, forty percent of employees say having a large selection of benefits strengthens the loyalty between them and their employers. Therefore, it is best to use this advantage to account for the typical needs/patterns of yourself and family.
    couples therapy
  2. Ask the right questions: On Trinet.com, we found a lot of questions that could very be useful during open enrollment and throughout the year. Check’ em out!
  • Has the prescription drug coverage changed?
  • Will I be able to get coverage for my family in the coming year?
  • Are the doctors and facilities I want to use in-network?
  • Have we changed benefit plan administrators or insurance carriers?
  • What’s new in the benefit options that might be beneficial to me and my family?
  • Are there any new voluntary benefits?
  • How often can I visit my doctor on this plan?
  • Do we have a wellness program that could potentially save me money?
  1. Know how to get specialized care if need be: There are so many types of doctors, and when enrolling for benefits, it is important to check your plans coverage options. Fun fact, according to Aetna, there are over 60 types of medical specialists! Most insurance companies have benefits one can use for these specialists visits such as Dermatologists, Chiropractors, and Psychiatrists.
  2. Don’t be afraid to utilize your healthcare benefits! Some people don’t want to miss work to go to the doctor or simply think they will get better from a sickness on their own. However, there are times when going to the doctor is necessary. The more physically and mentally well employees are, the less likely they are to have to miss multiple days of work. According to an article by U.S. News, “Health benefits keep you out of the hospital, and make you a better employee all around… the business wants happy, healthy employees and the employees want to be happy and healthy as well.”

 

Overall, we hope that you will utilize the benefits that are available to you at your employer. It is important when enrolling to make sure you are getting the best plan not just for you, but also for your family. Here at Swoon, we take employee health very seriously and pay for all internal employees medical, dental and vision insurance, as we want everyone to come into work feeling their best each day!

https://money.usnews.com/money/careers/articles/2012/08/28/7-reasons-to-take-advantage-of-employee-healthcare-benefits

https://www.macmillandictionary.com/us/thesaurus-category/american/branches-of-medical-science

http://www.faqs.org/ologies-isms/Lie-Mem/Medical-Specialties.html

Written By: Osoranna Mojekwu

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.

 

 

Contractor of the Month (August) – Chris Arceneaux

posted by Megan Hari |

August’s Contractor of the Month is Chris Arceneaux – a Customer Success Manager and Implementation Consultant at Swoon’s client that helps grow businesses through employment-oriented services. Chris spoke to us about his involvement since becoming a part of their Chicagoland team. During the discussion, he was ecstatic to speak on how he helps people become better candidates every day, thus placing them one step closer to the jobs of their dreams!

Contractor of the Month

 

“The company that I work for has amazing core values and they truly invest in their people. There is a focus on empowerment, and one thing that is often heard around the office is to ‘Act like an owner,’” said Arceneaux.

 

“Work Is Never Boring

Chris shared his appreciation of how involved Maggie Wall, his relationship manager, was on focusing and aligning his personal talents and passions with a company whose culture would uplift them. Chris can be the best version of himself through the ‘positive communication’ at the company he works for as according to him, “It has helped [him] build incredible relationships.”

“A fun fact about me is that I have a strong love for public speaking and am pursuing more opportunities to follow this passion within my company,” he said. Chris looks forward to the potential opportunity of becoming a full-time employee later this year as a few roles have opened! Amazing job Chris!

 

 

 

Written By: Osoranna Mojekwu

 

technology robots

NEW JOBS OF THE FUTURE: ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE / ARE MORE JOBS BEING LOST OR CREATED?  

posted by Megan Hari |

With the emergence of new-aged artificially intelligent technology, professionals have noticed a decline in the need for primary, non-degree required jobs and occupations that solely require manpower compared to intelligence or innovative efforts.

Due to the never-ending chase towards improved efficiency, the essence of technology has warped into a phenomenon that has and will continue to produce boundary-shifting machinery. This materialization of technology has already had adverse effects on our economy at large and is expected to transcend our reality soon; especially through the workforce and labor force where artificial intelligence is expected to totally run its prior occupiers out of work in the next 50 years.

Look at it this way, what we are talking about has already begun to happen! In downtown Chicago for example, when you go to a McDonald’s, it is more than likely you will place your order into a machine where the food requests go straight to the kitchen after direct payment. Now, just imagine how many jobs those machines took from the United States economy since their introduction to McDonald’s branches across the city.

The people who 10 years ago, would manually insert your order into their slower, less efficient processors have been disqualified and therefore left looking for a new job or, jobless entirely. Unfortunately, this is just one example and there will be several similar advancements in the future.

Our Research

A recent Forbes article offers a different perspective on AI’s penetration within the job market. Although we share similar beliefs that AI destroys jobs, alternatively, the article illustrates how it also, creates them. Gartner, the renowned research firm, showcases through a job market study that artificial intelligence creates more jobs than it takes away as according to their research, the United States economy will surge a net increase of two million jobs by 2025! Clearly, from this study, Artificial Intelligence needs humans.

Moving forward, it is supposed the follow-up question would be, “What’s next? For humanity, for the economy and for the people who strive every day to maintain it?”

The key takeaway is that because Artificial Intelligence is still in its infancy, it is difficult to estimate how it will redefine our economy and the workplaces within it.

What do you think on the matter and what do you think is next for the era of Artificial Intelligence? Be sure to find us on social media and share your thoughts!

Photo: https://www.wsj.com/articles/mcdonalds-table-service-fast-food-redefined-1479481171

 

 

 

Written By: Osoranna Mojekwu

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