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Resume Essentials

8 Essential Elements To A Great Resume

Now, we know that a successful resume relies heavily on which job you’re applying to, what industry you work in, and of course, the experiences you have to fill it with. However, there are a few crucial things you should include, no matter which industry you’re in. A thoughtful resume is absolutely essential to landing your dream job. It’s the first impression your future employer will have of you, so it’s crucial to nail the details. Here are eight non-negotiables that are necessary to create a great resume. 

Contact Info Front and Center

You would be surprised at the number of people who leave the most important thing off their resume—their name and contact information! How can your future employer give you the great news that you scored an interview if they don’t know how to get ahold of you? This should be front and center on your resume, making them remember your name!

Education & Experience

Your education, experience, and specific achievements are what demonstrate to a hiring manager that you are a good match for the job! What you focus on in these areas depends on the job. No matter what, your education should be short and sweet. It should include dates of attendance, where you received your degree, and other details if they are applicable to your job (i.e., Certifications, honors, GPA, relevant coursework)

Your work experience is the main area that potential employers focus on. They want to see if your past work history aligns with what you would be doing in the role you are applying for. This section should include the tangible impacts that you made throughout your work history. Don’t be afraid to brag a little! Be sure to cater your resume to each job to which you apply. Try to use similar words in your resume that you found in the job description.

Awards and Certifications

Displaying your awards and certifications is very dependent on if they apply to this specific open position. Your resume is a great place to show off your accomplishments. However, if you don’t have any that an employer would be impressed by, don’t feel pressured to include anything! While it’s great to include awards and certifications, not having any does not put you out of the running for a job.

List a Balance of Both Soft Skills and Technical Skills 

Soft skills are becoming more and more important to employers. Show what you can bring to a team through examples of your leadership, communication, and adaptability throughout your career. And of course, technical skills are always necessary to get the job done. Highlight your technical skills through your field accomplishments and define what sets you apart from others through numbers and tangible achievements.

Integrate a Healthy Amount of Active Words

Replace passive verbs with active verbs in your resume if you want to stand out. Using active verbs shows the things that you have accomplished in your career. Some examples of active verbs include directed, generated, influenced, etc. The list goes on and on, but these words are much more influential and persuasive than passive ones.

 

Great Formatting

Formatting is everything when it comes to your resume. If it is too loud, it can stray hiring managers away from the critical information about you! Having a resume that is clean, clear, and well organized will always be the most successful.

Exceptional Spelling

Some hiring managers consider just a single typo on a resume an automatic veto and they trash the resume on the spot. Many take any misspellings or grammatical errors as a sign of poor attention to detail and a lack of care. Make sure you proofread your resume multiple times and maybe even have someone else look over it with fresh eyes.

Avoid Clichés

Exaggerating your skills is a cliché that will come back to haunt you after you’re hired. If you feel the need to inflate your skills, this job just isn’t the right fit for you. Another cliché you need to avoid is including irrelevant skills to the job. It takes up unnecessary space, making your resume look less clean and distracting from what’s most important.

With these tips in mind, remember that it is very important to customize your resume for every job. Read the job description and find a way to tailor your skills and experiences to mirror the job description, without exaggerating your skillsets. Stick to these resume guidelines, and your resume will be looking better than ever! 

when you don't get the job

What You Should Do When You Don’t Get the Job

Even in today’s candidate-driven market, it’s possible to be turned down for a job. Getting passed up for a job opportunity is part of life, and it can be a great learning experience along the way to help you hone your interviewing skills in the future. Almost every job seeker will be denied for a job at some point in their career, and it can really be destructive to your job search if taken the wrong way. If you get that dreadful rejection message in your inbox, here is what you should do when you don’t get the job.

Ask for feedback

The first thing you should do, whether it’s over the phone or through an email response, is to ask for feedback. Sometimes, hiring managers or HR will voluntarily provide feedback on why you didn’t get the job. But more often than not, you will just receive a vague email that goes on the lines of:

“Thank you for your interest in <insert company name> for the <insert job title> position. I am writing you to inform you that we have ultimately selected another candidate that best matches the job requirements for the position. We appreciate your time, and we wish you luck on your future career endeavors.”

Pretty unhelpful, right? This is your opportunity to respond thanking them for the opportunity and asking for feedback. This feedback will be crucial because it can help you change how you prepare for interviews in the future. It can also help you identify what hard skills you should add to your repertoire this year.

Ask to connect with the hiring manager on LinkedIn

While you are requesting interview feedback from the hiring manager, ask if you can connect with them on LinkedIn. Express your interest with the company and let them know that you will be open to other opportunities in the future. Connecting with them on LinkedIn allows you to stay engaged with them and the company, so you stay at the forefront of the hiring manager’s mind when they need to add a new team member.

Keep your chin up – it may not be your fault

When you ask the hiring manager for feedback, you may realize that it may not have been your fault. There are dozens of reasons why you may have been passed up for the job, reasons completely out of your control. They may have promoted an internal employee, or your salary requirements were not within their pay range. Ultimately, it may not be your fault and can sometimes be entirely out of your control. However, you won’t know until you ask!

Work with a recruiter

So, now you know a few things you should do when you don’t get the job. If you really want to take your job search to the next level, partner with an experienced recruiter. Our team of dedicated recruiters at Johnson Service Group will champion you throughout the entire hiring process. We will work with you to find a job that suits your needs and skillsets. Reach out to us today, and let’s find you a new career in 2020.

How To Find A Job In 2020

How To Find A Job In 2020

As many of you know, the labor market is extremely tight. That’s great news for all you job seekers out there! There are millions of opportunities available across the nation. So, if you’re ready to find a new job in 2020, here are a few easy tips to jumpstart your New Year job search.

Update your resume 

Before you even start your job search, you must update your resume. Review your most recent copy of your resume and start filling in gaps and making changes. Have a new job? Add it. Completed a successful project or gained some additional responsibilities at work? Make sure you add those, as well. The last thing you want is feeling rushed to completely overhaul your resume right as you found what appears to be the job of your dreams! However, don’t forget to tailor your resume to each position you apply for to beat those pesky ATS. 

Take a look at your LinkedIn 

Did you know that LinkedIn has over 165 million members in the United States alone? And employers have over 20 million job postings on the platform across the globe. That’s a lot of jobs! But what’s even more notable for job seekers is that over 95 percent of recruiters utilize LinkedIn as a sourcing tool. In other words, if you aren’t on LinkedIn, you’re missing out on some great career opportunities! So, if you have a LinkedIn, make sure it’s up to date. Have your most current position on there, any relevant skills, list any achievements or certificates, and update your profile picture to stand out in the crowd! 

Partner with a recruiter 

If you are serious about accelerating your job search, we recommend partnering with a recruiter. Recruiting firms, like Johnson Service Group, have great relationships with hiring managers and HR professionals. If you work with us, we will help facilitate the interview and onboarding process to help you find that exciting new opportunity before the end of the year. So, if you really want to find a job before 2020, let’s work together! 

How To Network In Modern Society

How To Network In Modern Society

You have probably heard some version of the statistic regarding how many open positions are filled through networking. Ranging anywhere from seventy to eighty-five percent, the ratio is significant! However, networking in today’s modern society looks a bit different than it used to. There are certainly upsides and downsides to how technology has transformed the way we make contacts and grow relationships in our professional world. But not to worry, we’re here to help you navigate it all!

Join Online Networking Groups

The internet has cracked the world of professional introductions wide open. You are now able to connect with people from around the world with a quick click of a button. Not only that, but there are also dozens of different ways to do it! Check out industry Facebook groups where your peers are bouncing ideas off one another, sharing job opportunities, and working together. Those with an entrepreneurial spirit can also join a Mastermind group, to meet with like-minded individuals and “create the success you want.”

Check Out Local Societies & Associations

Many local communities have different groups that get together and share a common interest. Do a quick online search for local societies or associations that align with your professional goals. Whether it’s a Young Professionals group that combines people from all industries or an industry-related Association, it gives you the opportunity to build incredible relationships within your communities. Some of these groups may require a membership fee, but they often share exclusive job opportunities, the chance to network with local leaders, and at the very least – valuable education!

Connect With A Recruiter

Even if you’re not currently on the job market, connecting with a recruiter could be one of the best things you do for your professional career. Oftentimes, recruiters have exclusive relationships with Hiring Managers at the top companies in your industry. This means that they hear about jobs before they even hit the job boards. (And did you know that “professionals who are among the first 25 to apply to a role are 3x more likely to land the job?”) And in today’s competitive hiring market, you never know what opportunity might cross a recruiter’s desk!

When it comes down to it, networking is still an incredibly effective way to get your foot in the door, and the benefits are endless. So, what are you waiting for? Put yourself out there and start reaping the rewards!

3 Red Flags To Avoid In Your Job Hunt

3 Red Flags To Avoid In Your Job Hunt

Whether you are actively looking for a new position, or passively keeping your options open, now is a perfect time. The job market is booming, and hundreds of companies are on the hunt for their next great employee. But how do you sort through dozens of opportunities to find that ideal next step? Employers want to ensure that candidates will be a good fit for their teams and organizations, and candidates should absolutely do the same! Keep an eye out for these red flags throughout your job search journey, and you’ll find yourself a great position in no time!

Less Than Stellar Job Descriptions

A job description’s purpose is to describe what the job entails. That way, a candidate can decide whether they’re qualified or not. Lack of details in a job description can indicate a role with an unclear definition. The company could potentially be putting out feelers for what kind of talent is on the market and then base the job around the type of candidate they hire. Or, in a worst-case scenario, the department may be unorganized, signaling that the job may be chaotic.

Asking for bizarre requirements in a job description could indicate a potential scam. Online scams centered around jobs are becoming increasingly more common. If you come across a help wanted ad on Craigslist asking only for date of birth, and if you have a bank account, chances are it’s not real. Most employers will ask for education and experiences – not for your banking information to set up a direct deposit before you’ve even interviewed.

Off-Kilter Titles

Job titles can be a major red flag. If a description includes a mash-up title, they may be trying to cram too many responsibilities under one person’s umbrella.

Additionally, if a title is confusing, it can indicate confusion in the role itself. For example, an “entry-level” position that requires 5-8 years of experience. A mismatch of skill sets could indicate disorganization or simply that a company is trying to hire someone with expert-level skill at an entry-level price.

Last, but certainly not least, you may want to think twice about a job listing with a “fun and clever” title. While “Super Marketing Ninja” may catch your attention, it could be vague to distract from the actual level of seniority. Just be sure to take a more in-depth look into what the job entails and if it’s a good match. (And if you are hired, see if you can change your title to something more universal!)

Long Drawn-Out Interview Process

While a long, drawn-out interview process may be a red flag, it’s unfortunately very common. Companies may take weeks to schedule interviews, which may be an indication that hiring for this role is not a priority at the moment. At every step of the interview process, be sure to ask about what to expect next. That way, you know when it’s appropriate to follow up!

The best way to avoid these red flags throughout your job hunt? Partner with a JSG recruiter! We have personal relationships with the hiring managers, work with outstanding companies, and walk you through each step of the process. We also serve as a guide if you have any questions that may come up along the way. Contact us today to start the search for your next great position!

Qualified Applicants Only

Don’t Be Afraid to Apply to a “Qualified Applicants Only” Job

Qualified Applicants Only

It can be intimidating applying for jobs. That’s just the hard-honest truth. But when you see a job you’re excited about, you read through it, and then see at the bottom, “Qualified Applicants Only.” You start to second guess yourself. The what if’s start swirling through your mind and realize how some of the things that they say they “need,” you may not fully have. But does that really mean you’re unqualified? No, not necessarily!

Here’s how you can read through any job description and still apply to those that only want a “qualified” applicant.

The job market is tight, companies are having a hard time finding the perfect candidate

In today’s job market, clients are struggling daily to fill their job openings. According to February’s 2019 JOLTS report, there are 7.6 million job openings and only 6.2 million people are unemployed. As you can see, this almost leaves a gap of 1.4 million people to fill all the job openings. So, just because a job description is crazy detailed and you may not have everything on it, it’s okay to apply. Because companies do not have the luxury to find that perfect candidate.

Evaluate the importance of the skills and qualifications

Use your better judgment. If you’re reading through the job description and believe you can perform these, you’re probably a close to perfect fit. Companies are having to rely a lot more on soft skills due to today’s labor market. So even if you do not have all the hard skills listed on the job description, your soft skills could make up for it. Soft skills can be your saving grace in today’s job market. If you have the right soft skills for the job, you will probably easily be able to learn the hard skills as you go.

Use a recruiter to help you get past the “Qualified Applicants Only” wall

If you’re working with a recruiter, they are your advocate. They help you get on the hiring managers desks and get your resume seen by the right people. You get to pass the whole confusion on if you’re “qualified” or not. And thus, give you a greater chance to get an interview, and in turn, the job. Using a recruiter can help you in multiple ways but mainly they will help illustrate that you have what it takes to successfully work in that position.

So, say yes, and do yourself a favor! Apply to that job and reach out to one of our recruiters here at Johnson Service Group and see what they can do to help you find your next dream job!

LinkedIn

How To Leverage LinkedIn To Get A New Job

LinkedIn

If you’re thinking about getting back on the job market, LinkedIn is a tool you can’t afford to ignore. There are a number of things you can do on the professional social media site to leverage your way into a new position, but where should you start? Here are four basics that will get you set up for success.

Make sure your profile is in tip-top shape

First things first, is your profile up to date? Are all of your jobs, experiences, and skills listed? Do you have a dynamite summary to attract someone right off the bat? Do you have a professional profile picture and an intriguing cover photo? Once you have all the basics updated – check your settings. Have you selected the toggle to let people know you’re open to new opportunities? This is a fairly new feature from LinkedIn that signals to recruiters that you’re on the market, while still remaining private from your current employer.

Post relevant industry information daily

If you want to be known as an expert in your industry, posting relevant ripped from the headlines news is a great way to start. Don’t forget to add your own thoughts when sharing, people want to know your opinions. To find the latest hot topics, subscribe to Google alerts or use a service like feed.ly.

Connect with local influencers

A quick search on LinkedIn will reveal a wealth of local influencers in your industry. Don’t be afraid to reach out and connect, but do it the right way. Be sure to write customized messages for each connection request you send. Take a few moments to look at their profile and include a note about why you decided to reach out to them specifically.

Be friendly!

One of the best things you can do on LinkedIn is be engaging! If people comment on the articles you’re sharing, comment back. If someone sends you a message – ALWAYS RESPOND. You may not be interested in what they’re selling or an opportunity that they contact you about, but you never know where a conversation will lead.

search for a new job

How to Effectively Search for a New Job

search for a new job

Are you currently looking for a new job? If you haven’t been on the job market in a while, it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start your search. There are thousands of resources at your disposal and it can be difficult to filter through all of the advice and “words of wisdom” out there.

Maybe you are currently in between jobs or maybe you’re just taking advantage of this hot job market with the lowest unemployment rate in 17 years. Whether you’re a passive or active candidate, here are four tips to effectively begin your search for a new job.

Update your resume

The first step to a successful job search is to update your resume. You need to ensure your resume is properly formatted, easy to read, and includes your most relevant experience.

You should definitely tailor your resume to each job you apply for. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t start updating it! This is especially crucial if you haven’t updated your resume in a while. You easily add your current contact information, address (depending on where the job is located), past or current job roles, and any recent certifications you may have completed.

Update your LinkedIn profile

Now that your resume is polished, it’s time to tackle that LinkedIn profile. If your LinkedIn profile is already up to date with your most recent position, then kudos to you!

If your LinkedIn profile needs some love (or if you don’t have one at all), it’s time to get it in working condition. Both employers and recruiters use LinkedIn to find and evaluate candidates for open positions. In fact, 93% of recruiters and human resource professionals check out candidates’ social media profiles (including LinkedIn) before extending a job offer.

Thus, if you are not on LinkedIn, you are already at a disadvantage in this crazy job market. And it’s not good enough to just have a LinkedIn profile; you must have it completely updated and optimized! It only takes you about 30 minutes to do so, and trust me, it will be the best half-an-hour you spend for your job search.

Check out our guide to efficiently leverage your LinkedIn profile to find your next job.

Pro tip: Make sure you have LinkedIn’s feature called “Open to New Opportunities” turned on so recruiters know you’re interested in new positions!

Check out job listings/job boards

Once your resume and LinkedIn profile are in good shape, you’re ready to start searching for open positions. The easiest way to do this is to monitor job boards. This is easier than ever with mobile apps for your phone or email alerts. Now you can sign up for app and email notifications that alert you when a job matching your qualifications and specifications.

All you have to do is check out job boards such as Glassdoor, Indeed, CareerBuilder, LinkedIn, and of course, JSG’s job board. You can even join our Talent Network that will enhance your job search and application process. You’ll receive alerts with new job opportunities that match your interests and be ahead of the game!

Partner with a recruiter

If you really want to step up your job hunt, you can partner with a recruiter. Recruiters have excellent relationships with hiring managers and human resources. They can use these connections to help pivot you to the top of the list of applicants.

When you partner with JSG, you become your biggest advocate. We assist you throughout the hiring process and help you find your next career opportunity that matches your unique skills. Learn more about our recruiting process and why you should partner with JSG.

spring cleaning

It’s Time To Spring Clean… Your Career!

spring cleaning

Spring is on its way (at least we hope) and that means it’s a great time to refresh your resume, brush up on your interview skills, and take a look at what’s out there. Even if you’re not actively looking for a new position, it never hurts to be prepared. Some of the best candidates that we’ve placed have been passive, and they are now in a new position that has completely re-enhanced their career.

With recruiting being JSG’s specialty, we essentially go through the job search process over and over again, and we’ve learned a thing or two on the way. Through the JSG blog, we’re able to share our exclusive expertise on what it takes to get through every stage of a search for a new position, from resumes and references to final interviews and accepting offers. To assist you with “spring cleaning your career,” we’ve gathered some of our best candidate resources:

To help you explain that “gap year” you took to travel…
How To Explain A Gap In Your Resume During An Interview

For when your head is in the clouds dreaming about your next position…
E Is For Expectations: Setting Realistic Expectations Will Boost Your Job Hunt

On the best interview advice straight from your peers…
The Best Interview Advice On LinkedIn

For when you don’t know if you’re a passive candidate…
Active vs. Passive Candidates: What’s the Difference?

To help take the agonizing out of rewriting your cover letter for every job you apply to…
C Is For Cover Letter: How To Write A Killer Cover Letter

On what is keeping you from landing that dream job…
3 Problems With The Traditional Job Search (And How They’re Keeping You From Getting Hired!)

For when you just aren’t feeling inspired…
30 Motivational Quotes To Kickstart Your Job Search

On why it’s okay that you’ve held multiple positions over the last few years…
J Is For Job Hopping: 3 Benefits Of Hopping Job To Job

To keep in mind when you are updating that resume…
3 Phrases To Live By When Writing Or Updating Your Resume

For when you’re wondering if your resume is even reaching the decision makers…
K Is For Keywords: Using Keywords To Get Past An ATS

March Madness

Job Search Madness

March Madness

It’s the second full week of March, which means it’s finally time to get MAD! Even if you’re not a college basketball fan, the effects of March Madness can be felt everywhere. For three weekends in a row, everyone shuts down. Vacation days are taken, and an unhealthy amount of basketball is watched through the first Monday in April.

Here at JSG, we’re here to tell you that the madness doesn’t need to be limited to basketball. Why not take that same passion and excitement we feel while watching basketball and apply it to our success? So without further adieu, I present to you Job Search Madness – your guide to a successful job search this month.

Understand the job search

First, before you get started, you HAVE to make sure you’re up-to-date on how to complete a job search nowadays. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. These days the traditional job search may not work, so check out how the traditional job search is keeping you from getting hired.

Secrets to success

Next, it is crucial that you’re the best at what you’re doing, even if it’s a job search. When it comes to being the best and being successful, who better to model after than Amazon? Luckily for you, we’ve gathered up their secrets to success and put them all in one place. Check it out here so that your job search is as successful as you can make it!

What to look for in your next job

During your job search, you’re going to come across all sorts of different companies. You’ll be thinking “Ooo that’s not for me!” or “Wow I’d love to work here!” While searching for your next position, let us help guide you in the right direction. We’ve put together great qualities every candidate should be looking for in their next company so you don’t have to! (No thanks required!)

Where to start looking

Lastly, there are a few things you absolutely need in your arsenal in order to have the most successful job search. Three of these things are websites. They are absolutely 100% necessary for you to bookmark during your job search. And you guessed it, we’ve got you covered! The other three things are intangibles. Not only will they help you with your job search, but they’ll also help you be successful in your career (It’s a twofer!). Check out these 3 things you NEED to have in order for your job search to be successful.

March is crazy, and we can all agree it is mad. Make your job search mad this March by following the steps above. And be on the lookout for more ways to make your March a little more madly successful.