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!


How To Leverage LinkedIn To Get A New Job


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

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.

Setting realistic expectations will boost your job hunt

E is for Expectations: Setting Realistic Expectations Will Boost Your Job Hunt

Setting realistic expectations will boost your job hunt

Almost all of us, including myself, have been turned down for a job that we’ve applied for. It’s part of the wild game we call the job hunt. It can be really discouraging when we get that dreadful email saying something to the effect of: “Thank you for applying. We had dozens of fantastic candidates for this position, but unfortunately, we have decided to pursue other candidates.”

This can be devastating news. But it doesn’t have to be if we set realistic expectations during our job search. Here are four tips on how to establish realistic expectations, and ultimately, setting yourself up for a successful job search.

Be patient

Unless this is your first time on the job hunt, you are probably aware that the job search is anything but a short and sweet process. If you want the perfect opportunity, you need to be patient. That’s easier said than done, but you must accept it to have realistic expectations during your search.

Keep in mind, not all employers are looking to instantly fill their job vacancies. Some employers are looking to immediately fill an open position while others may not be in any rush to find a replacement. For example, an employer may want to wait a few weeks or even a month before calling on candidates for an interview. Open positions don’t always need to be filled right away.

Additionally, every employer has different hiring processes. The length of the hiring process may depend on the size of the company, whether the employer is using an internal or external recruiter or the type of position. It will likely be a longer hiring process when a company is searching for an executive level candidate vs. an entry level candidate.

Have you ever heard “patience is a virtue?” Being patient on the job hunt will help you establish realistic expectations on when you’ll hear back from employers during this onerous process.

Applying for the right positions

Recruiters and hiring managers post thousands of jobs each day. You may be tempted to apply for each job vacancy you come across online, especially if you are an active candidate. In reality, you are not a great fit for every employers’ needs.

By applying for every single job vacancy you find online, you are likely to face many rejections. Don’t set yourself up for failure! Over time, applying for too many jobs will start to extinguish your motivation and leave you with a negative attitude during your job search.

Do your due diligence on compensation

This one is very important. You need to do your due diligence on different salary ranges for the type of positions you are applying to. When offered a job, it is totally okay to negotiate your salary. However, you need to have realistic expectations on what you are worth.

Keep in mind, salary ranges are determined by various factors, including education level, work experience, location, and the industry of the employer. It is essential to get online and do some research on what you are worth, as well as to see what other people in your location with a similar position is earning.

Jump on the computer and do a quick Google search. There are dozens of different salary calculators that are completely free to use. For example, Glassdoor allows you to calculate an estimate of what you should be making, based on your education level, location, and years of relevant experience.

Knowing your worth will allow you to establish realistic expectations of what you should be making, and ultimately, will help you effectively negotiate your salary without facing disappointment.

You can’t completely rely on a recruiter to find you a job

When working with a recruiter, you cannot expect them to do all the work for you. Remember, they are ultimately working for their client (the employer). You are not the one paying them, so don’t act like they are solely working for you! However, many recruiters, including the recruiters at Johnson Service Group, will go out of their way to help you land an interview!

Remember, recruiters, are not career counselors. They cannot hold your hand through the entire hiring process. They’re there to help place qualified candidates for their clients, not give you career advice or help you draft your resume.

Moreover, recruiters have no control over the hiring process. Even if they believe you’re a perfect fit for the job, they don’t have any input on the hiring decision. So, don’t act like you are guaranteed the job if a recruiter thinks you nailed your interview. Keeping your expectations realistic during the recruiting process will help you move on if you get the unfortunate news that you were not a great fit for the position.

How blogging will help you get noticed by recruiters

B is for Blogging: How Blogging Will Help You Get Noticed By Recruiters

How blogging will help you get noticed by recruiters

It’s a candidate-driven market. The national unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in 17 years. Employers are filtering through hundreds of candidates. You need to find a way to stand out to hiring managers and recruiters if you even want to be given the opportunity to interview.

But how will you stand out in a sea of qualified candidates? Blogging is a fun and relatively easy way to rise to the top of your fellow job applicants. Here are four benefits of blogging that will help you catch the attention of recruiters.

Increase online visibility

Showing up on LinkedIn is simply not good enough anymore. You know why? It’s finally 2018, and everyone has a LinkedIn page! But do you know what not everyone on the job market is doing? Yup, you guessed it. Blogging.

Writing blog posts is a great way to be found by recruiters on LinkedIn. If you are sharing your blogs on LinkedIn or posting your blog posts natively to your LinkedIn profile, recruiters and hiring managers will notice you.

You can create your own blog using one of many free blogging sites (WordPress, Medium, or Blogger, just to name a few). Or, to make your life easier, you can just post blog posts directly to your LinkedIn page. All you need to do is log in to LinkedIn and press “Write an article.” Choose a header image, a title, and start plugging away. It’s that simple.

When searching for new candidates, recruiters will check out your LinkedIn page. If you have published blog posts on your profile. it will increase your chances of standing out in the crowd of candidates.

Demonstrate your passion and expertise

You don’t have to be an accomplished author to write a blog post. Just start writing about your industry or something you are passionate about. Show recruiters that you are an expert in your industry. Discuss new trends or issues within your industry and propose solutions on how to address them. Or you can even talk about a complex problem that you were faced with in the workplace and how you overcame it.

Blogging will help demonstrate your communication and writing skills to potential employers. Sharing your thoughts with your professional network will get you noticed by recruiters searching for applicants. Recruiters love to see you doing what you do best.

Showcase your unique personality

Writing and publishing blog posts will help you illustrate your personality and your personal brand with potential employers. As we all know, it can be difficult to show your personality on a resume or even a cover letter. However, writing blog posts provides a medium to showcase who you are and how you communicate with others in a professional manner.

When recruiters or HR read through your blog posts, they will be able to get an idea of who you are before they even bring you in for an interview. This is great because potential employers can assess whether you would be a good culture fit for their organization before you even step foot into their building.

Provide talking points in your interview

When you are fortunate enough to get offered an interview, your blog posts may provide valuable talking points during your interview. You can reference one of your blog posts when answering a question that the hiring manager is asking you. Or you can even discuss an applicable accomplishment that you are proud of.

The interviewers may even bring up your blog in the interview and ask you about it! Blogging will help you not only stand out during the recruiting process but will make you memorable in the eyes of your interviewers during the decision process.

3 Problems With The Traditional Job Search (And How They're Keeping You From Getting Hired!)

3 Problems With The Traditional Job Search (And How They’re Keeping You From Getting Hired!)

3 Problems With The Traditional Job Search (And How They're Keeping You From Getting Hired!)

It’s not an easy decision to commit to searching for a new job. It takes you out of your comfort zone, it’s a huge time commitment, and the possibility of change is on the horizon. But did you know that you are probably wasting your time with a traditional job search? There are 3 major problems with doing it the old-school way:

1. Your resume is getting stuck in an ATS (Application Tracking System)

Application tracking systems have become pretty standard in the job market. When you submit your resume to a company online, it most likely goes through an ATS and gets screened based on certain keywords. This means that if you don’t have the right keywords, or even if you use abbreviations vs. the whole word or phrase, your resume might not even be making it to HR.

2. If your resume does get through, you’re being judged by a piece of paper, not your whole story

Sure, your resume shows your work history, but does it really tell your story? HR and Hiring Managers receive hundreds of resumes for each position, and they only have a short amount of time to judge if you’re qualified or not. So if your resume contains things that need further explanation like gaps or ambiguous titles, you’re missing an opportunity to sell yourself by just submitting a resume.

3. You don’t have someone championing you through the process.

There’s nothing that will sell your qualifications more than someone who is invested in your career and landing you this new position. When you submit your resume straight to a company online (the traditional way), you don’t have that cheerleader on your side.

Before you get discouraged by these major job search obstacles, consider partnering with a recruiter for the next step in your career. Recruiters have a direct line to the hiring manager and will ensure your resume will be front and center on their desk. Every time we submit a candidate, we tell a story. We address any potential issues up front and highlight your exemplary qualifications. And because we’re invested in you getting hired with our clients, we champion you throughout the whole process – maintaining a steady stream of communication, answering questions as soon as they arise, and scheduling interviews that work for both parties.

To find out more about what it’s like to be a JSG Candidate, click here.

'Tis The Season To Find A New Job!

‘Tis The Season To Find A New Job!

'Tis The Season To Find A New Job!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. There’s Christmas music wafting through the shops, tons of yummy comfort food crossing family tables, and busier schedules than most people can manage. It can be tempting to push your job search off until the new year, but trust us when we say that is a huge mistake! There are so many reasons November and December are actually the perfect time to find a new job, so read on to get a jump start and land that next step in your career.

  1. Companies are hiring.

Many departments have annual budgets that they need to use before the end of the year. That means they may be making a push to hire during November and December. For many companies and industries, this is also a slow time in production, allowing them to focus on the year ahead and growth.

  1. Competition is less intense.

Other job seekers who don’t follow JSG or read our awesome blogs lay off the job search this time. Lucky for you, because in this candidate-driven market, the competition for top positions can be fierce. Keeping up with your search during this busy time will give you a leg up when it comes to landing that dream job.

  1. Who wants to be unhappy during the holidays?

Why are you open to a new position in the first place? For most candidates, it’s because they’re unhappy in their current role. Maybe you’re overloaded with tasks, or you don’t get along with your boss, or you’re not feeling challenged enough. No matter the reason, you know that there are better opportunities out there, so go after them! If you land a new position during the holidays that is more closely aligned with your vision or values, it will be easier to actually relax and enjoy the season.

  1. It can be easier to take time off.

As mentioned before, for many industries, things slow down a bit this time of year. Many companies take a few extra days off to celebrate, and even if yours doesn’t, it’s a great time to use a couple personal days to hit the job search (and the Christmas cookies) extra hard.

  1. It’s the best way to start the new year off on the right foot.

“New year, new me!” Around 40% of Americans make New Years Resolutions, but only 8% of those people follow through on them. So instead of waiting until the new year to do something good for yourself, start now. That way, you can check off three resolutions: find a new job, be more productive, AND be happier all in one fell swoop, all before Christmas!

Impostor Syndrome

Impostor Syndrome: The Not-So-Obvious Roadblock To Your Dream Job

Imposter Syndrome

If you continually get to the interview stage without receiving an offer, there’s a really good chance that the culprit is Impostor Syndrome. According to Merriam-Webster, “Impostor syndrome is commonly understood as a false and sometimes crippling belief that one’s successes are the product of luck or fraud rather than skill.” And some estimates state that around 70% of people have impostor syndrome, so you’re definitely not alone! But the good news is that it is TOTALLY possible to overcome. Doing these three things will help you conquer those feelings of inadequacies and land that dream job:

  1. Fake it til you make it

As Tina Fey once said, “just say yes and you’ll figure it out afterwards.” This requires a heavy dose of bravery, but it will be worth it. Most likely, you already have what it takes, it just FEELS like you don’t. So jump in feet first and gather the tools to master it along the way.

  1. Meditate

No matter how you feel about meditation, job interviews are the prime place to practice. Multiple times before the interview (the night before, the morning of, while you’re in the car, even in the lobby) take a moment to close your eyes, and slow your breathing.  Just taking a second to bring mindfulness to yourself will increase your confidence, slow down those negative thoughts, and give you the strength to not only get through an interview, but totally rock it!

  1. Positive affirmations

It may sound cheesy, and feel incredibly silly, but positive affirmations have proven to work time after time. Words are extremely powerful and have a way of manifesting greatness. Whether you say them out loud in front of a mirror like the kiddo in the video above, or write them on strategically placed sticky notes throughout your home, come up with a few positive, encouraging reminders. They can be anything from things you’re grateful for, your personal strengths, or even goals you want to realize. (We love this list from Rachel Gadiel!)