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.

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.


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!

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!

What Happens To Your Resume After You Submit It

What Happens To Your Resume After You Submit It

If you’re in the throes of a job search, you might find yourself wondering what happens to your resume after it has been submitted. Sometimes it feels like it goes into a black hole of despair – never to be seen again. Other times you’re left wondering if you just missed something, and the recruiter looked right over it. The truth is, there are a few different things that could happen to your resume after you submit it. We’re breaking down each scenario and what you can do to increase your chances of getting your resume seen by the right people.

It Goes Through An ATS

Most large companies utilize an Applicant Tracking System (ATS). This is essentially a database that houses all of the information about candidates, including resumes, cover letters, application history, and even interview schedules. There is a lot of talk about “beating the ATS,” but it’s really nothing to be intimidated by. In actuality, it’s just a method for organizing information.

That being said, there are a few ways that you can help your information rise to the top in an ATS. Keywords are essential. The internal hiring team will most likely be using keywords from the job description to sort through resumes and float some to the top. (Especially in this candidate-saturated market when they are receiving hundreds of applications for each position!) However, loading your resume up with keywords doesn’t guarantee you’ll get the job or even the interview. Further demonstrating your knowledge of such keywords and putting them into context with your real-world experience will.

Additionally, be sure to keep formatting simple. There are a lot of cool visual templates out there today. Unfortunately, these could actually cost you when it comes to an ATS. Because it’s a computer program, it has a tough time reading images and graphics. So, stick to something simple – created in a text format using Word, Pages, or Google Docs. (We recommend converting to PDF for ease of reading across different systems. Just make sure to create the original in a simple text format!)

It Joins A Pile In The HR Department

If companies don’t utilize an ATS system, their internal HR department is probably in charge of screening, scheduling, and potentially even hiring new employees. This is common with smaller companies that don’t hire hundreds of people every year. There actually isn’t a massive difference between this process and a company that utilizes an ATS.

The biggest thing to note is that you’ll want to make your qualifications clear right off the bat. The HR department might not be as familiar with acronyms or abbreviations, so you need to spell everything out. Again, a clean format with bold headings will help your resume stand out and rise to the top of the list.

Your Resume Gets Delivered Directly To The Hiring Manager

Does this option sound too good to be true? Well, it’s not. When you partner with a recruiting firm like Johnson Service Group to take the next step in your career, your resume will be delivered directly to the hiring manager. What’s more, it will be accompanied by a quick summary of why you’re the best candidate for the job. And because we have an established relationship with our clients, they trust us to deliver someone qualified, in the correct salary range, and willing to work in that location.

Don’t believe me? Browse our open positions for one that fits your future, or contact the office closest to you directly! You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to have a recruiter go to bat for you.

8 Ways To Refresh Your Job Search For Spring

8 Ways To Refresh Your Job Search For Spring

Spring has always been a time for renewal. But this year as the weather warms and vaccines roll out worldwide and the job market stabilizes, there is more hope on the horizon than ever. It’s the perfect time to get your job search on track and reassess your long-term career goals. From networking to resumes to tips for every kind of interview, we have a blog for everything you need! Here are just a few to get you started on refreshing your job search just in time for spring.

How To Get Noticed By A Prospective Employer

Do you feel like you are failing to get noticed by your target companies during your job search? It can be challenging to earn the attention of competitive companies when the job market is so tight. If you are looking to make a splash with your job search this year, here is how to get noticed by a prospective employer.

How To Address Salary Requirements During An Interview

One of the most panic-inducing parts of an interview is addressing salary requirements. To best tackle this question, you need to prepare ahead of time! Here are three steps to take in order to share your salary requirements with confidence.

Five Video Interview Mistakes To Avoid This Year

As employers begin their return to the office or working onsite, virtual interviewing is here to stay. Even when the virus is in the rearview mirror, most employers will rely on video interviews to streamline the hiring process, cut hiring costs, and expand their talent pools. With this newly adopted interviewing format, here are five video interview mistakes to avoid this year.

How To Answer Interview Questions About Remote Work

If you’re interviewing in 2021 and beyond, chances are, interviewers will ask you questions about remote work. The modern workforce is rapidly changing, and many managers are rethinking their previous aversions to working from home. So, how do you address it during your interview? First, there are two different situations we must examine: if you have experience working remotely and if you do not.

Four Activities To Master During Your Job Search

Searching for a new job is much more than just scouring online job boards and refreshing your inbox every five minutes. There are many ways you can bolster your search in the background of your job hunting journey. If you are looking for better results, here are four activities to master during your job search.

How To Evaluate A Job Offer In 2021

Receiving a job offer is one of the most exciting feelings imaginable, especially if you have been unemployed for an extensive amount of time. However, before you sign your name on the dotted line, you must review the offer; this is a major decision, and you must understand if this is a good fit. Here are three aspects to consider when you evaluate a job offer in 2021.

Interview Questions For Every Stage of The Interview Process

If you’ve spent any time on our blog at all, you know you need to ask questions during your interviews. However, it can be challenging to determine which questions to ask at which stage. Modern interviews feature anywhere from one to eight different interviews for one job. And the questions you ask during the initial phone screen should be different from the questions you ask at a final interview. Today, we’re breaking down the differences and laying out interview questions for every stage of the process.

Should You Include References On Your Resume?

If you are currently searching for a new job, you may be wondering if you should include references on your resume. Should you put your references directly on your resume, submit them as a separate file, or not have any at all? The answer depends, and here is what you need to understand about including references on your resume.

The Single Best Way To Submit Your Application Materials

The Single Best Way To Submit Your Application Materials

While many companies utilize ATS to acquire applications, it’s also popular to email them directly to the hiring manager or recruiter. If you are lucky enough to have the opportunity to submit your application materials via email, it’s essential that you get it right! Here are the things you need to keep in mind to email your application materials successfully.

Nail The Subject Line

Hiring Managers get a LOT of emails. That’s why it’s imperative that you include your name and the title of the job you’re applying for in the subject line. This will catch their attention and allow them to categorize your application correctly.

Kick It Off With A Proper Introduction

In the past, it was considered proper to address emails with “Dear Sir or Madam” or “To Whom It May Concern.” However, the job process has modernized quite a bit lately. Hiring teams prefer to have a little more of the human element in their hiring process. Jump on LinkedIn to do a quick search for the hiring manager’s name. If you can’t dig up a name, go with something personable yet professional like “Dear Hiring Team” or “Hi JSG Accounting Team.”

Reference How You Heard About The Position

Candidate source is a very valuable metric for recruiters. It will earn you instant brownie points if you mention how you heard about the position! Additionally, if you were referred by someone who works there, it will establish that connection right off the bat.

Show Your Excitement

Enthusiasm is extremely underrated. Don’t be afraid to share your excitement when you submit your application materials! For example, state, “When I came across this position, it immediately caught my attention because I’ve admired your company for a long time!”

Close Strong

In your closing paragraph, explicitly state your interest in the next steps. Keep it simple and confident. For example, “Thank you for taking the time to review my application. I look forward to hearing from you and learning more about this opportunity.”

Don’t Forget Your Contact Information!

This may seem like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised at how often people forget it! Just because your contact info is on your resume or cover letter doesn’t mean it’s enough. If a hiring manager wants to contact you, their first stop will be your submittal email! Be sure to include your full name, email address, and phone number.

Your application materials speak for themselves, so keep your submittal email simple. Stick to these guidelines when you submit your application materials via email, and you’ll exponentially increase your chances of hearing back from the hiring manager.

Interested in more job search advice? Explore the rest of our resources here!

3 LinkedIn Features To Take Advantage Of Before The End Of The Year

3 LinkedIn Features To Take Advantage Of Before The End Of The Year

LinkedIn has always been a cornerstone of the professional world. However, they are making updates daily to help you step your professional game up even further. Today we’re sharing three LinkedIn features you need to take advantage of before the end of the year, especially if you are in the market for a new job!

Stand Out To Employers

With everything that has happened this year, LinkedIn has really stepped up to help job seekers. Let employers know that you are open to a new job by adding a #OpenToWork photo frame to your profile picture. Additionally, head to your LinkedIn Settings to signal your interest to recruiters at companies you’ve created job alerts for. Last but not least, take the #OpenToWork feature to the next level by sharing your resume and including the hashtag.

Step Up Your Networking Game

Networking is now easier than ever on LinkedIn. You can create group chats to talk with groups of professionals and peers. Additionally, you can now streamline your conversations with emoji reactions. If you’re familiar with Facebook chat or iMessage, this is right in line with the type of communication you’re used to. Lastly, you will soon be able to launch face-to-face talks. Later this fall, look for the opportunity to switch the conversation to Microsoft Teams, BlueJeans, or Zoom.

Put Yourself Out There

Finally, LinkedIn is following in the footsteps of your favorite social media sites, Facebook and Instagram, by implementing “Stories.” Via the mobile app, you can now upload a short video for 24 hours – allowing you to share quick, professional updates. You can mention other users, add fun stickers or text, and even upload an image. This feature is perfect for sharing that you just completed a certification, an uplifting, professional story, or that you’re #OpenToWork.

If you’re interested in more tips for using LinkedIn features or updating your profile, explore our advice here.

5 Things To Do For Your Career This Fall

5 Things To Do For Your Career This Fall

Going into the fall and holiday season, many people feel like taking some time off until the new year. However, this downtime can actually be the perfect opportunity to make some serious advancements in your career. Don’t wait until the new year to make changes; here are five things you can do for your career this fall.

Take An Online Course

With all of the time we’ve spent at home lately, it’s the perfect opportunity to add some new skills to your professional portfolio. There are plenty of free and paid sites that will provide education on any skill you’re looking to add. From software development to diversity hiring, you can find an online course for it.

A few online resources: LinkedIn LearningCoursera, and Udemy.

Absorb Professional Development Content

Fall is a great time to cozy up and absorb some professional development content. So, no matter your favorite platform, find some professional development content that fits your future goals. Whether it’s a book, audiobook, podcast, YouTube video, or even a mastermind group on social media.

Some of our recent favorites: Atomic HabitsThe GaryVee Audio ExperienceWork It Daily,

Find A Mentor

A mentor is one of the best ways to build connections and open doors for your career. Examine your current network. Is there a manager, professor, or family friend that has a career you admire? They don’t necessarily have to work in your industry or your field of work. Simply find someone who you can turn to for advice and professional guidance.

LinkedIn is our favorite place to foster networking relationships.

Refresh Your Resume

Even if you’re not actively looking for a new position, fall is an excellent time to refresh your resume. Add any new skills you’ve acquired during the quarantine period, elaborate on recent positions, and make sure the format looks clean and organized.

We recommend starting with a template like these from Microsoft Word and Google Docs.

Reset Your Goals

By reassessing your goals starting now, it sets you up for success in the future. Start thinking about your intentions and priorities. What will be most important to you through the fall leading into the new year? Is there anything you can accomplish before the end of the year? Maybe even start prepping for goals you can achieve next year.

We like this article about How To Set Ambitious Career Goals You Can Realistically Accomplish.

Final Comments

Keep in mind; fall is a perfect time to make significant strides in your career. For more ideas and inspiration for career advancement, explore our candidate resources.

3 Ways To Ensure You Get The Salary You Deserve

3 Ways To Ensure You Get The Salary You Deserve

It may seem like an odd time to talk about salary with everything else going on. However, we believe that there is no wrong time to broach this subject and pursue your true value. That doesn’t mean that salary conversations are all smooth-sailing, though! You need to prepare ahead of time, and these three steps will give you the confidence to ask for the salary you deserve.

1. Know Your Worth

Whenever you’re searching for a new job, you should first and foremost know your worth. This is based on a variety of metrics, including your past salaries and experiences. Additionally, you need to do your research. Estimate and compare your salaries on sites such as PayscaleLinkedIn, and Once you have collected a few different numbers, choose a range in which you’re comfortable. What is your preferred number? What is the absolute lowest you will accept?

Also, you should have a big picture view of your desired benefits. Sometimes, you may accept a lower salary for full health insurance, additional vacation time, or a matching 401k. Understanding what’s most important to you will allow you to make an informed decision when the time comes.

2. Be Prepared To Negotiate

There are few times that salary will be offered without room for negotiation. If the offer comes in a little less than you expected, don’t be afraid to ask for the salary you deserve. As mentioned above, make sure you have a solid list of non-negotiables and minimum requirements. If the employer is unwilling to budge or meet you halfway, and you feel that you have accurately estimated your worth, you can turn the offer down. Even in today’s tumultuous market, your work is still valuable!

3. Partner With A Recruiter

One of the best ways to ensure that you’re getting the pay you deserve is to partner with a recruiter. We have been trained to go to bat for you. We understand market trends and have built relationships with hiring managers. A recruiter literally lifts these burdens off your shoulders.

Are you ready to take the next step in your career and get the salary you deserve? Explore our open positions or collect more job search tips here.