Your Next Career Awaits
Exciting Job Opportunities
Resume Resources
Interview Tips
Job Search Advice

WE WORK HARD. WE WORK TOGETHER. WE WORK FOR YOU.

Your Next Career Awaits
Exciting Job Opportunities
Resume Resources
Interview Tips
Job Search Advice

WE WORK HARD. WE WORK TOGETHER. WE WORK FOR YOU.

Your Next Career Awaits
Exciting Job Opportunities
Resume Resources
Interview Tips
Job Search Advice

WE WORK HARD. WE WORK TOGETHER. WE WORK FOR YOU.

Your Next Career Awaits
Exciting Job Opportunities
Resume Resources
Interview Tips
Job Search Advice

WE WORK HARD. WE WORK TOGETHER. WE WORK FOR YOU.

Your Next Career Awaits
Exciting Job Opportunities
Resume Resources
Interview Tips
Job Search Advice

WE WORK HARD. WE WORK TOGETHER. WE WORK FOR YOU.

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This is your one-stop-shop for resources to help you prevail through your job search. Whether you’re looking for interview advice, job search tips, or an outlook on the labor market, JSG has you covered. We have tons of resources to help guide you to a successful job search. We work hard, we work together, and we work for you.

3 Post-Pandemic Resume Essentials

3 Post-Pandemic Resume Essentials

As we try to get back to some semblance of normal, everyone’s resume needs a refresh. And it’s no surprise that things are different now! As a result, your resume needs to reflect the changes and advances you’ve made over the past year. Here are three post-pandemic resume essentials you need to add.

Job Details

The pandemic upended a lot of jobs in a variety of ways. Typically, we discourage candidates from including details about why previous employments have ended. However, after everything that happened, it can be beneficial to provide some additional clarification. There’s no need to dive too deep; simple parentheses after your dates of employment will suffice. Here’s an example:

ABC Company | June 2018 – April 2020 (Furloughed)

An Updated Skills Section

Even if you have been unemployed recently, you can still have a place to show off your quarantine skills. So, whether you practiced some self-education, took online courses, or engaged in mentorship to expand your horizons, it’s essential to revise your skills section. Depending on how much space you have on your resume, you can list them out in paragraphs separated by commas or a multi-column bulleted list. Here’s an example:

Adobe Photoshop, Email Marketing, Digital Content Creation, Graphic Design, Hootsuite Social Media Scheduling

Keywords From The Job Description

It’s more important than ever to fit your resume to the job description. In a candidate-saturated market, you’ll be more likely to stand out from the competition if your resume lights up with keywords in an ATS. So, make sure you only include keywords or skills that are actually in your repertoire. Sprinkle them organically throughout your job summaries, skills section, and even relevant volunteer opportunities. And yes, you do need to do this for every single job you apply to!

In the end, you must make sure your resume is up to date. These three resume essentials will help you get started and on your way to your next job! Looking for more resume and job-search advice? Explore our candidate resources here.

What Are Work Samples and Are They Ethical?

What Are Work Samples and Are They Ethical?

Depending on your line of work, employers may ask you to submit a work sample with your resume and the rest of your application materials. Samples of work are typical for more creative fields, such as marketing, communications, or even research roles. Sometimes, employers ask you to submit examples of your previous work from past or current companies. However, in a candidate-saturated market, employers may ask you to develop a sample according to the employer’s instructions. So, here’s a brief description of what a work sample is and if they are ethical for employers to ask.

Why employers ask for writing samples

Essentially, employers ask for writing samples for two reasons

  • To see if you are capable of performing the duties of the job
  • For employers to get a taste of your abilities and skills

Work samples are an opportunity for applicants to show prospective employers their skillsets and prove that they can perform the job successfully. These samples give candidates the platform to illustrate why they are the best fit for the role and can give them a leg up on the competition.

Employers also use work samples as a vetting process. Sure, you can say you are an excellent writer on your resume. However, submitting a brief writing assignment is a way for an interviewer to vet whether or not you are qualified for the position. Basically, it’s another screening for the employer to see if you are a good fit for the role. You can talk up your skills and responsibilities in your resume. However, work samples are where applicants need to put their money where their mouths are.

Are work samples appropriate to ask?

There is some debate whether work samples are appropriate or ethical. Work samples, like the ones described above, are entirely appropriate if the assignment relates to the position. However, if the interviewer asks for an assignment or sample that is completely beyond the job scope or one that will take you hours and hours to complete, that is when this request becomes inappropriate.

When the sample crosses this line, this is when it becomes a work product. A work product is when an employer asks you to complete a ridiculous task that takes you all day to compete or violates your intellectual property. For example, it is reasonable to ask a candidate to create a mock press release with some provided information about an announcement. But if they ask you to complete an entire business plan full of new ideas, that is when it is considered a work product. Basically, an employer should never ask you to create anything that the company can turn around and utilize in their business. The work sample should demonstrate your skill sets, not be an opportunity to steal your intellectual property.

So, are work samples ethical?

So, work samples are excellent means for employers to identify those with the right skill sets in this candidate-saturated market. It’s also an opportunity to illustrate why you are the right applicant for the role. Just be conscious of employers asking for intellectual property that they can utilize without compensating you.

If you are looking for some guidance on completing a work assignment, here is how to tackle them.

How to Tap Into the Hidden Job Market

How to Tap Into the Hidden Job Market

Over the last couple of years, there has been a lot of hype about the hidden job market. No, this is not an underground job market where employers list their jobs in secrecy. This market is all of the jobs that employers are not publicly promoting on their websites. These are jobs that can be executive-level roles, jobs for internal candidates, openings to replace a current employee or jobs that are private for other reasons. It’s hard to pin down the total number of jobs in this “hidden” market; however, a survey from Jobvites reveals that 35% found job postings on social media, 50% of respondents heard about jobs from friends, and 37% say they also learn about jobs from professional networks.

In other word’s there are tens of thousands of jobs on this market, and we are going to help you tap into it to find your next career opportunity.

How can you tap into the hidden job market?

There are a few different ways job seekers can access these hidden jobs.

Reach out to your professional network

The first thing you should do to access the hidden job market is leverage your professional network. Head to LinkedIn and let recruiters know that you are open to new job opportunities. You can turn on a setting that signals to recruiters looking for candidates that you are interested in new positions. Once that game-changing setting is active, start reaching out to your network. Have conversations with your current connections, reach out to new people at your dream companies, and engage with others on LinkedIn. Actively post on LinkedIn as well as comment on other’s posts. Join professional groups on LinkedIn and other social media sites to meet professionals in your industry.

Once you start connecting with new people and re-engage with your connections, you will quickly discover some of these “hidden” jobs that you can only find through networking and social media.

Do your due diligence

Besides networking, you can uncover jobs on the hidden job market by doing a little research. Start following companies you are interested in working at on social media, subscribe to their newsletters, and introduce yourself to people at these companies. Employers often share they are hiring on their social media sites and newsletters to help get the word out about new openings. If you are following companies that fit your career goals, you can quickly identify brand new jobs. These aren’t advertised on traditional job boards because they are costly and take time to publish.

Also, once you find a job that sparks your interest, do some research on the hiring manager or others on that team and reach out to them. Send them a personalized LinkedIn request or email and briefly introduce yourself. If you go straight to the horse’s mouth, you can bypass an ATS and get your resume in the hands of those that matter most.

Work with a recruiting firm

Probably the most effective way to tap into the hidden job market is working with a recruiting firm. Recruiters often have exclusive job opportunities – jobs that are not available anywhere else. Employers work with a select group of recruiters that they trust to fill their positions with excellent candidates. Partnering with a recruiter is a sure-fire way to learn about opportunities that are hidden to the public.

At JSG, our recruiters have cultivated strong relationships with our clients. We pride ourselves on our industry expertise and our emphasis on customer service. So, if you are ready to take the plunge, reach out to us today or take a peek at our job board. We want to partner with job seekers like you and help you find the next step in your career.

Why Your Job Search Isn’t Producing Results

Why Your Job Search Isn’t Producing Results

Do you feel like you are stuck in a rut with your job search? If so, you may be one of the 25% of Americans who believe there are no suitable employment opportunities. If you are sitting there scratching your head and wondering why your job search isn’t producing results, it may be time to rethink your strategy. Here are four reasons why your search is not generating the results you are working hard to achieve.

Your job search is too vague

Is your job search broad enough? Many job seekers make the mistake of looking for a similar role with a different company in the same industry. In the post-pandemic labor market, this strategy is not as effective as it once was. Sure, it’s easy and comfortable to transition to a very similar role with a new company. However, some industries are performing better than others in today’s market. In other words, you may need to broaden your job search and tap into industries and employers that are thriving. Use your transferrable skills and apply them to a new position. If your job search isn’t producing results, it’s time to look at expanding your career pursuit.

You are not tailoring your resume

When was the last time you took a deep look at your resume? In today’s market, you cannot simply update your work experience and fire it off for every application. You must tailor your resume for every application. We get it; that sounds like a ton of work. But truthfully, it’s not as challenging as you may think. First, craft an updated resume with all of your latest experiences, achievements, certifications, and skills. Once you have a solid foundation, it’s pretty easy to tailor your resume.

Carefully review the job description and note the most important qualifications or skill sets the employer is looking for. Once you have identified the crucial qualifications, you want to reflect them in your resume. Tweak how you phrase your responsibilities and other details to beat the resume bots (aka an ATS) and land on a hiring manager’s desk. If you aren’t investing in the time to tailor your resume, you likely won’t yield the results you want.

Your networking isn’t effective

If your job search results are a little lackluster, it’s time to kick your networking into high gear. With the lack of in-person networking events, it’s time to turn to LinkedIn and other social media platforms to build your professional network. First of all, head to LinkedIn and let recruiters know you are open to new opportunities. (Work smarter, not harder!) Next, start building connections with those in your desired companies. Connect with people at your targeted companies on LinkedIn by sending them a personalized connection request. Briefly introduce yourself and explain why you wish to connect with them. They are more likely to accept your invitation if you send them a personal message introducing yourself.

You are not tapping into the hidden job market

The hidden job market is essentially all of the jobs that employers are not advertising online. In fact, only 40% of jobs are estimated to be advertised online. You can tap into the other 60% by networking or partnering with a professional recruiting firm, like JSG. Employers often give recruiters exclusive job orders, and thus, you won’t find these jobs on the employer’s website or anywhere else. If you are tired of your job search not producing results, let’s work together. We have hundreds of exciting opportunities across North America. If you are ready to take the next step in your career path, explore our jobs or reach out to us today.

3 Ways To Assess A Company’s Culture During Your Job Search

3 Ways To Assess A Company’s Culture During Your Job Search

Now more than ever, it’s essential to understand a company’s culture before joining their team. According to a report by SHRM, in the last year, one in five Americans left a job due to poor company culture. Additionally, consumers are holding brands accountable. In a recent COVID-19 brand trust report, 90% of people believe brands must do everything they can to protect their employees’ and suppliers’ well-being and financial security. So, it won’t cut it anymore to simply provide a competitive salary. But how can you determine the company’s culture during your job search? Start with these three ways.

Do Your Research

Now, with the presence of social media, it’s easier than ever to get a picture of a company’s culture. Check out their LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Don’t forget to explore employee profiles too! Additionally, browse company reviews on Glassdoor or Google to get an idea of what past and current employees think. (Just remember to take reviews with a grain of salt!) And, if any red flags come up, be sure to address them during your interview.

Observe

If you go in person for an interview, be sure to observe everything around you. Do the other employees seem friendly and happy to be at work? What does the office look like? You want to keep an eye out for how people are dressed, office cleanliness, and updated equipment. As you observe, try to picture yourself as an employee. Does it seem like a place you could see yourself working?

Ask The Right Questions

When the interviewer turns it back around to you, have a couple of great questions at the ready. You want to go beyond the obvious, “what’s the company culture here?” in order to paint a complete picture of the team and company culture. Here are a few of our favorites (and what to listen for in an answer):

Tell Me About A Recent Team Win.

When the interviewer answers this question, you want to hear them celebrate wins, both big and small. Additionally, a hiring manager should give recognition to the team members involved.

How Does The Department Handle Conflict?

Conflict is bound to come up in team environments. However, it’s all about how the leadership handles it. Ideally, they will have a process in place to address inner-team conflict. The answer you don’t want to hear is, “we don’t have conflict.” Chances are, they are avoiding it, or team members don’t feel comfortable sharing any conflicts with their manager!

Are There Opportunities For Development?

Development opportunities are a great indicator of a supportive and encouraging work culture. If companies give their employees the chance to grow their skills and move up in the company, they will invest in your success.

In the end, there’s actually quite a bit you can learn from about a company’s culture from the outside. You just have to know what to look for! Another great way to understand company culture is to partner with a recruiting firm like Johnson Service Group. We have exclusive relationships with hiring managers and get all of the insider information that you need. Ready to get started? Explore our jobs or contact a recruiter today!

How to Find A Recruiter That's Right for You

How to Find A Recruiter That’s Right for You

As of February 2021, job openings rose to a two-year high. As we proceed to recover from the toll of the pandemic, job creation will continue to boom through 2023, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. CEO Jamie Dimon. With the U.S. economy adding 916,000 jobs in March, the market is quickly becoming competitive. To beat out your competition and secure a job that satisfies your career goals, it may be wise to partner with a recruiting firm. If you are looking to make a move over the next couple of months, here is how to find a recruiter that can make it happen.

Ask for recommendations

If you are wondering where you should look to find a recruiter, ask for recommendations. Do you know anyone that recently worked with a recruiting firm? Ask them about their experience! If nobody comes to mind, ask your professional network on LinkedIn or even your more personal connections on your other social media profiles. Asking for recommendations is a simple way to get some advice from those that you know and trust. Hopefully, this will lead to some solid suggestions and help you avoid some of the not-so-great recruiters.

Search online and check online reviews

After you requested some recommendations, it’s time to do your own due diligence. Head to Google and do a few searches of recruiting firms that specialize in your industry or area of expertise. Once you have found a few that look like a good fit, check out some of their reviews. There are a handful of reliable sites to read reviews on potential recruiting firms. Glassdoor, Indeed, testimonials on the company website, and even Google are all easy places to research different recruiters. Checking online reviews is a surefire way to get some input from others’ experiences and make an educated decision yourself. Just remember, like any other product or service, to take some reviews with a grain of salt.

Let the recruiters come to you

If you want to work smarter and not harder, let the recruiters come to you! Head over to your LinkedIn profile and ensure you are letting recruiters know you are open to new opportunities. There is a setting you can activate on your profile that signifies that you are open to hearing about new jobs. If you have this setting turned on, recruiters can easily find your profile to share new opportunities with you! Plus, you can add a nice profile picture banner that visually shows you are “#OpentoWork” and actually lets you pick your ideal positions. It’s that easy! If you want to find a recruiter, turn on this fantastic setting and let them come to you.

If you want to show recruiters that you are open to work on LinkedIn, here’s how to turn this on.

Ready to get started?

These are the three easiest ways to find a great recruiter that can help you make a career transition happen. If you are ready to get started, we are here to help. JSG has over 35 years of industry expertise with thousands of happy candidates across North America. If you are looking for a solid recruiter that cares about your career success, reach out to us today or take a quick look at our job board.

5 Ways To Prep Your Social Media For A Job Search

5 Ways To Prep Your Social Media For A Job Search

Social media has become an essential part of our modern-day lives. It’s how we express ourselves and connect with others. Additionally, it can be a make or break factor in your job search. According to Careerbuilder, more than half of hiring managers have found content on social media that has caused them not to hire a candidate. While this statistic can be intimidating, don’t let it deter you from social media altogether! Forty-seven percent of hiring managers say they are less likely to call a candidate for an interview if they can’t find them online at all. So, it’s all in how you navigate it. Start by prepping your social media for a job search in these five ways.

Privatize your non-professional profiles

Any social media account that you use exclusively for personal use should be private. Go through each profile and make everything private while still keeping them active. Pick an appropriate profile picture so that if they search for you, your potential employer can match a face to a name. To test out your privacy settings, try Googling yourself in an incognito window.

Update your professional profiles

Your job search is the perfect time for your professional social media profiles to shine. As a result, it’s essential that you have them updated. LinkedIn is an obvious first stop. Detail your current skills, past positions, and career goals. Then, consider other social networks that may be beneficial to your job search. These could include professional portfolios on Instagram, Google reviews, or any other sites relevant to your industry.

Engage with the right content

Now that you have your professional profiles up to snuff, it’s time to put them to work. Find and share relevant industry content, posts from prospective employers, and examples of your work on social media. This will ensure that when an employer sneaks a peek at your profiles, they’ll see that not only are your qualifications a match but also that you are engaged and passionate about what you do.

Add relevant social media links to your resume

Finally, add any relevant social links to your resume. You should do this for professional profiles only. Your future employer doesn’t need a link to your (now private) Facebook profile! Include links to your LinkedIn, Instagram portfolio, or other professional sites right along with your contact information. Be sure to make these active links as most resumes are reviewed online nowadays!

Grow your network

Last, but not least, grow your professional network. Seek out people who work for your dream companies and send them a personalized connection request. Let them know who you are and why you’re seeking connection. It’s key to avoid asking for any favors upfront. Instead, lead with what you can offer.

Make social media work for you, not against you during your job search. Partner with a JSG recruiter to find your next position, and we’ll help make sure you are poised for success on and offline!

How WFH Will Change the Office

How WFH Will Change the Office

Is heading back to the office after working from home for over a year making you feel a little anxious? For the last year and some change, we have discussed in great detail how the pandemic is altering the workforce. But as offices begin to open back up, it’s time to discuss how working from home for the last 12+ months will change the office environment. Here is how WFH will affect working in the office.

More flexibility

Most people WFH have experienced more flexibility: flexible working hours, more accommodations, and less direct supervision. As we transition back to work in the office, this additional flexibility isn’t going anywhere. Giving employees more space and freedom has fostered better work-life balances, more creativity, and better overall work satisfaction. If employers want to keep their workforce happy, they cannot just brush this flexibility under the rug.

Managers will be more accommodating moving forward to fit the needs of their staff better. A typical 9 to 5 isn’t the ideal schedule for many workers. As we continue to adjust to our new “normal,” companies will be more supportive of individual needs. For example, if you need to work remotely once a week to be present for your kids, chances are employers will be more supportive and understanding. More flexibility will help employers better manage hybrid workforces and offer equal leniency to all their staff members.

Relaxed dress code

How many of you enjoyed working from home in your lounge wear or shorts and a t-shirt? It’s really nice to ditch the formal business wear and enjoy a more relaxed dress code. As we return to the office, you can expect a more casual dress code. And I am not just talking about casual Fridays – I am talking about a permanent dress code change. Employees can be just as productive in blue jeans and a shirt instead of business casual. It may be a small change, but this is one that workers will appreciate and feel more comfortable at work.

Employers taking better care of their staff

One thing that will separate good employers from excellent ones is how they take care of their staff. Besides additional flexibility and dress code changes, employers are actively looking for ways to support their teams. One example of this is LinkedIn closing up shop the week of April 5th for a paid vacation for their entire workforce. In an effort to recharge and avoid burnout, LinkedIn is providing this paid week off to take care of their employees during a stressful time. Other companies are also offering mental health days to keep their employees happy, healthy, and productive.

Interested in exploring new opportunities?

These are just three of the fundamental ways WFH will change the office. If you are looking for a new opportunity with an employer that takes better care of their team, check out our job board. We have hundreds of exciting roles across North America with fantastic employers!

Areas Prospering in the Post-Pandemic Job Market

Areas Prospering in the Post-Pandemic Job Market

It’s been just over a year since the pandemic flipped the job market (and our lives) upside down. Some industries navigated these challenging times better than others, and some are still on the road to recovery. However, as of March 2021, a dozen different industries are hiring above pre-COVID levels, according to LinkedIn. Here are the areas prospering during the post-pandemic job market and locations where job creation is blossoming.

Industries with the largest year-over-year hiring growth

Hiring in the U.S. was up 15.2% last month from March 2020, a strong indication that we are well on the path to recovery. In the March 2021 Jobs Report, the BLS reported that the U.S. economy added an impressive 916,000 jobs last month as the unemployment rate fell to 6%. This growth is excellent news as we are only a million jobs below pre-pandemic hiring levels.

Here are the industries with the most significant year-over-year hiring growth:

  • Healthcare +20.1%
  • Wellness & Fitness +29.5%
  • Transportation & Logistics +28.4%
  • Consumer Goods +19.9%
  • Education +18.4%
  • Software & IT Services +16.4%
  • Recreational & Travel +26.2%

Locations on a hiring spree

Last month, there were only two metro areas at or above pre-COVID hiring levels. The month before that, there were zero metro areas. However, as of this month, seven different metro areas are at or above their pre-pandemic hiring levels, according to LinkedIn’s Workforce Report. These cities include Atlanta (3.3%), Austin (6.0%), Boston (0.5%), Denver (1.5%), Miami (1.7%), Nashville (1.3%), Phoenix (1.4%).

Those are just some of the significant metro areas that LinkedIn regularly tracks for hiring figures. But which states have a strong job market? Several notable states have more confidence in job availability than the number of active job seekers. These states are South Carolina, Idaho, New Hampshire, Alabama, and Iowa. The five states above all have more jobs available than people actively searching for new roles.

States with more competitive job markets

As some states have a surplus of job opportunities instead of active job seekers, other states are much more competitive. The states with the most challenging job markets (based on the same metrics above) are Maryland, Washington, New York, Oklahoma, and Nebraska.

As a result of these more competitive job markets, people are starting to flock to states and metro markets with more opportunities (and fewer restrictions). Austin, Nashville, Tampa-St Petersburg, Charlotte, and Denver have the highest population gain, according to LinkedIn. So, even as we near the light at the end of the tunnel, workers are still migrating to chase better opportunities, more favorable work-life balances, and fewer COVID restrictions.

Need help navigating the post-pandemic job market?

We are so close to overcoming this virus that flipped our world upside down. Whether you are ready to get back to work or looking to make a career transition, we are here to help. JSG has hundreds of opportunities across North America with clients looking to hire great candidates like you. If you need help tackling the post-pandemic job market, reach out today. Or, if you are more passively searching for a new role, take a look at our job board!

Questions to Ask During an Initial Interview

Questions to Ask During an Initial Interview

The initial interview, often over the phone, is one of the most critical stages in the hiring process. It is typically your first interaction with the hiring team, and a solid first impression is crucial! Thus, you must prepare for this interview like any other – research the company, know the job description like it’s the back of your hand, practice answering common interview questions, and prepare a list of questions to ask your interviewer. Here are some of the best questions to ask during an initial interview to leave a firm first impression and gain insight into the position.

When are you looking to make a hiring decision?

Asking this question will give you a better understanding of when the company is looking to make a hiring decision. This question can help if you are entertaining multiple job offers and looking for a timetable when you can expect them to decide on a candidate. Understanding the hiring decision timetable also provides insight on when to follow up if you have not heard back yet. If you a decision is expected to be made by a specific date, this will help you determine when it is appropriate to follow up with the hiring team on their decision.

What changes has the company made during the pandemic?

This question is vital to ask during an initial interview. It will reveal how the company acted during an uncertain time and what changes they made to keep their employees safe. Understanding how the company reacted to this challenging time will help you determine if this is the right match for your needs in a future employer. This question can also give some insight into how this position or company has changed during the pandemic. Will you be working onsite 100% of the time? Or are there work-from-home days to offer added flexibility?

What will mark success in the first 90 days?

Another excellent question to ask during an initial interview is how they will measure success in the first three months of your employment. The hiring team’s answer will help you determine if their expectations are realistic and understand what they anticipate from you. If the company has unrealistic expectations for the role in question, it may be a red flag. On the other hand, the answers to this question can allow you to speak on some of your past accomplishments; you can explain how these achievements can help tackle these benchmarks at the beginning of this new position. Basically, this gives you an opportunity to run for the hills or sell yourself on why you are the right person for this job.

Who will I work with most closely within this position?

If the interviewer doesn’t provide any details on the team makeup or who you will be working with, this is a great question to ask. Asking who you will be working with will help you know how collaborative this role is. Will you have a ton of independence and autonomy in this role? Will you be working with teams across different departments on projects? Learning about the team dynamic will help you determine if this role is a good fit for your working style.

Ready to take on a new job opportunity?

These are a few of the questions you can ask in an initial interview to clarify any unknowns about the position. Are you ready to put your interviewing skills to the test? Browse our latest job opportunities and partner with us today! We have hundreds of exciting positions across North America. If you are not ready yet, here are some more resources to help you excel through the hiring process.