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How to Combat Ageism During the Pandemic

How to Combat Ageism During the Pandemic

Recently, conversations around ageism have surfaced as we continue to learn how the pandemic affects generations differently. The last year-and-a-half has been challenging for most workers as we all navigate this unforeseen job market. Some people are thriving while working remotely, while others are anxious to get back to the office. And others are taking a different approach. According to The New School’s Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis, more than 2 million people retired than what was expected (from March 2020-2021). Although some of these early retirements were voluntary, many were due to older workers struggling to find new opportunities.

In fact, 63% of unemployed people aged 45 or older have been out of work for longer than a year. That’s compared with 52% of job seekers ages 35 to 44 and 36% of those ages 18 to 34. So, what can you do to combat ageism during the pandemic? Here are a few tips to help you secure a new job during these challenging times and overcome age-related stereotypes.

Overcoming ageism stereotypes and perceptions

Every generation has certain stereotypes; however, Baby Boomers, roughly aged 57-75 years old, have two bitter (and often inaccurate) stereotypes.

  • Older workers are technologically inept
  • They are unwilling to learn and won’t get along well with younger workers

Of course, these are just stereotypes and don’t apply to most older workers. However, you can leverage your application materials to help combat these ageism stereotypes.

Beef up your resume

If you are an older job seeker, you can overcome these stereotypes by beefing up your resume. First of all, you can add a skills section to your resume to showcase all the technologies you know how to use. In the pandemic-era job market, employers are placing a significant emphasis on technologies that we embraced while working from home. Also, if you have any certifications that prove your knowledge of particular technologies or tools, make sure you add those to your resume, too. If you don’t have any certifications, there are plenty of inexpensive or free courses you can take online to beef up your resume.

Make yourself more discoverable

Secondly, it’s essential to make yourself more discoverable online so hiring professionals can easily find you. The best platform to accomplish this is LinkedIn! Job seekers in younger generations have the advantage of learning about new roles because they are more likely to be active on LinkedIn. Sure, most of you have a LinkedIn profile, but that’s not good enough. If you just make one and let it sit there, you cannot expect recruiters to find you and reach out to you about potential opportunities. Just like your resume, you have to regularly update your profile to reflect your latest skills, experiences, and certifications.

Additionally, LinkedIn has some great features to help you let recruiters know you are open to new opportunities. Turning on LinkedIn’s “open to work” feature will trigger that you are open to learning about new jobs and encourage hiring professionals to reach out to you.

If you want to take your LinkedIn to the next level, here’s how to craft a perfect LinkedIn summary to snag a new job.

Partner with a recruiter

If you feel that you are struggling to combat ageism during the pandemic, try reaching out to a recruiter. Recruiters can be your job search’s best weapon. We take the time to understand your background and skills to match you with opportunities that fit your career goals. If you are interested in learning more about how a professional recruiting firm can take your job search to the next level, reach out to us today! At JSG, we work hard, we work together, and we work for you.

4 Basic Job Search Mistakes To Fix Immediately

4 Basic Job Search Mistakes To Fix Immediately

Searching for a new job can be overwhelming, especially if you have been on the hunt for a while. If you are one of the millions of people gaining confidence in your career prospects and you’re ready to make a move, it’s time to brush off those cobwebs. Here are four job search mistakes you must fix immediately to secure your next job opportunity.

Your LinkedIn profile is MIA

Did you know that 90% of recruiters use LinkedIn as their primary recruiting tool? With over 6 million jobs currently available in the United States, and over 180 million users, LinkedIn has a plethora to offer. Even if you are not a “social media person,” LinkedIn is a must-have job searching tool! You can create job search alerts, connect with hiring managers, and filter job search results to find the exact opportunity you are looking for.

If you are not on LinkedIn, how do you expect hiring managers to find you? Sometimes the best opportunities are the ones you don’t even have to look for.

Furthermore, you must update and optimize your LinkedIn to make the most of this powerful tool. Update all your work experience, add your skills and certifications, and craft an eye-catching summary. If you want to attract hiring managers, you must get your LinkedIn up to date before starting your search.

Your resume and application materials are stale

Secondly, if you’re applying for jobs with stale application materials, you’re guilty of one of the biggest job search mistakes. Spend some time tailoring your resumetweaking your cover letter, and refreshing your references. Even if you are working in the same position since you last updated your materials, it’s essential to include your most relevant and newest qualifications. So, take an evening to add your quarantine skills, latest accomplishments, or projects, and ensure your references are accurate and ready to vouch for your candidacy.

You aren’t showing off your personality

Your experiences and your qualifications are vital when searching for a new job. However, if you fail to inject your personality into your candidacy and application materials, you likely won’t get far in the hiring process. Hiring managers are looking for more than just your skills; most hiring professionals want to see a glimpse of your personality. Of course, you have an opportunity to do that during an interview. But if you can give hiring managers an idea of who you are outside of work before your interview, it may help you get over the hump. You can easily do this by sharing your hobbies on your resume or having a little fun with your LinkedIn profile.

Thank you notes are lackluster (or non-existence)

Are you one of the 13% of job seekers that never send thank-you notes after your interviews? If so, this is one of the biggest job search mistakes you can make. Sending a brief thank-you note is an effective way to showcase your gratitude, reiterate how excited you are about the position, and remind the interviewers how well you align with the role. If you do send thank-you notes, make sure you are making the most out of them to really leave a strong impression.

Here are some thank-you note best practices to help you seal the deal after your next job interview.

Looking to avoid more job search mistakes?

So, if you are ready to make a career move, avoid these four job search mistakes. If you are interested in reviewing more advice to take your search to the next level, take a look at our blog! We have tons of helpful job search, interviewing, and resume advice to help you stand out from the competition. Or, if you are ready to get started, review our jobs here! We have hundreds of exciting opportunities across North America.

How Your LinkedIn Summary Can Snag You a Job

How Your LinkedIn Summary Can Snag You a Job

When looking for a new job, one of your priorities is getting your application materials up to par. You probably focus on your resume and cover letter, but have you considered your LinkedIn profile? A recent study revealed that 122 million people had received an interview through LinkedIn, and over 35.5 million have been hired by someone they connected with on the site. So, it’s imperative that you don’t overlook this job search tool! But where do you start? Well, your LinkedIn summary is right at the top of your profile; it’s an open text opportunity for you to give a potential hiring manager a little sneak peek into you as a candidate. Follow these steps to utilizing your LinkedIn summary to snag your next job.

Keywords Help You Show Up in Searches 

Your LinkedIn summary is a great place to give an overview of your essential experiences. If written correctly, this will trigger your profile to appear in all the right searches! So, be sure to include the highlights of your qualifications and the job title you are aiming for in your next role.

For example, if you are a Project Engineer looking for a new role in the same profession, you want to include this title in your summary.

It’s An Opportunity to Address Any Resume Gaps/Misconceptions 

When a hiring manager reviews your resume or LinkedIn profile to examine your work history, it doesn’t always tell the whole story. Utilize the space in your LinkedIn Summary to fill in those gaps. Maybe your last job title didn’t accurately describe your role at the company, or you took some time off to head back to school and expand your skillset. Save more complicated conversations for an interview, but this is an ideal space to expand on your experiences.

Your LinkedIn Summary Is the Perfect Place to Showcase Your Personality 

Last but arguably most importantly, your LinkedIn summary is an incredible spot to showcase your personality. Depending on your role and industry, you can have a little fun with it and appeal directly to prospective employers. So, use this space to give a glimpse into your personality and set yourself apart immediately from your competition. Some ideas you can include are hobbies, why you’re passionate about what you do, or a favorite project you’ve done in your career.

If you still need some inspiration to put together an excellent LinkedIn summary, spend some time exploring the site. Look at industry leaders or mentors and what they include in theirs for guidance! For more LinkedIn advice, explore our blogs here.

How To Inject Your Personality Into Your Job Search

How To Inject Your Personality Into Your Job Search

When you are applying for a job, you must stand out amongst the rest of the applicants. But how? The best way to make a great impression is to let your personality shine in multiple ways throughout the hiring process. Here are four spots perfectly primed for you to inject your personality into your job search!

On Your Resume 

Showing a bit of personality on your resume can be tricky, but it is possible! (Keep in mind, this is all relative to your industry. If you’re in a more stiff professional sector such as banking, you might want to skip this one!) If you’re in a creative field, try showing a subtle and tasteful color into your headings or try out a more artistic layout. One of our favorite ways to highlight who you are is to showcase some of your passion projects or relevant hobbies. We find that often, your hobbies can benefit your professional life in a variety of ways!

In Your Cover Letter

If you’re required to submit a cover letter, it’s a great space to show a bit of your personality naturally. You can use the introduction to kick it off with a bang to grab the hiring manager’s attention right away. Then, in the meat of your cover letter, let your personality shine by highlighting some of your favorite projects and recounting your relevant work history. Finally, leave a lasting impression with a confident conclusion.

Throughout Your LinkedIn Profile 

With how accessible social media is these days, LinkedIn should be an active part of your job search strategy. Furthermore, it’s the perfect spot to give the hiring manager a glimpse into who you are. You have more creative freedom to inject your personality into your job search on LinkedIn than you do with any other step in the process. From your cover photo to your summary to your activity feed, you can show off your best professional self. Brush up on some of our best LinkedIn tips here.

Inject Your Personality During Your Interview 

Last but certainly not least, the interview. Chances are, you’ll have numerous opportunities to highlight your personality throughout an interview. Keep in mind that when an employer is hiring, they don’t just want a skillset; they also want you! Don’t be afraid to discuss how you got where you are today, inspirations, passions, and more. And if they ask you what your hobbies are or what you like to do for fun? Have a couple of go-to answers that extend beyond “watching Netflix and hanging out with friends.” Share something unique and insightful that will help you stand out from other applicants.

So, those are four easy ways you can inject your personality into your job search. Are you interested in more job search advice? Explore our candidate resources here!

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.

Here’s How to Find A Post-Graduation Job During A Pandemic

Here’s How to Find A Post-Graduation Job During A Pandemic

If you are preparing to graduate this spring, you probably have a lot on your plate. Balancing finals and end-of-the-year projects is no easy feat, and the pressure to find a post-graduation job is building. Add a pandemic to the mix, and you have a recipe for a challenging job search. If you want to secure a job before you graduate, here are a few helpful tips.

Earning free certifications

If you are a traditional college student or even a high school senior, your work history is probably a little lackluster. You might have a summer job or two and possibly an internship, both of which are great. However, if you want to rise above your competition, you must bolster your resume. A great way to do that is to earn some free certifications. There are dozens of reputable sites and programs that offer free training and certifications. Not only will this broaden your knowledge about your targeted field, but make you a more marketable candidate. Once you complete these certifications, you can add them to your resume and LinkedIn profile to showcase your knowledge and stand out to recruiters.

Let recruiters know you are open to opportunities

Speaking of recruiters, if you are looking for a post-graduation job, it’s time to let them know! You can let recruiters know you are open to opportunities by turning on a new feature on your LinkedIn profile. This feature signals to recruiters that you are interested in learning about job opportunities, and thus, will encourage recruiters to reach out to you. When recruiters use LinkedIn to search for prospective candidates, they can filter by users who are open to work. So, if you don’t have this setting turned on, you could be missing out on some exciting job openings!

Plus, it gives you this nice filter on your LinkedIn profile picture, which will help you visually stand out to hiring professionals looking to make additions to their teams.

Network with alumni

A great way to find a post-graduation job is to network with alumni. Join alumni associations, groups on LinkedIn with alumni from your school, and connect with them. When you send them a connection request on LinkedIn, send a personalized message with it. They are more likely to accept your invitation if you send them a personal message introducing yourself. Here is an easy example you can use:

“Hi [Insert Name],

My name is [Your Name], and I am a senior at [University Name]. I am looking to build my network with alumni, and I would love to connect!”

This example is super easy to customize and will help you successfully connect with alumni. You can tailor your connection requests to alumni working in similar fields or within companies you wish to work for after graduation. Fellow alumni are typically very eager to connect and help others succeed!

Are you looking for more job-search advice?

These three tips will help you land a post-graduation job and start your career journey off on the right foot. If you are looking for more job-search advice as you navigate this challenging time, check out our candidate resources. We have tons of valuable articles and pointers to help you make this transition successful. Good luck!

How to Get Noticed By A Prospective Employer

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.

Start building connections

The first thing you can do to start gaining a prospective employer’s attention is build some connections within the company. If you know someone who works there, this will be much easier. Reach out to your network and ask them to introduce you to the hiring manager of a job that interests you. If you don’t have a connection, you will have to stick your neck out a little more. Find people that are in similar fields with you at this company and start introducing yourself. Send them a LinkedIn connection request with a custom message. Introduce yourself and share (very briefly) why you are connecting with them.

Apply directly to the hiring manager

Once you start building these connections with employers you wish to work for, it’s time to start applying. Of course, you will want to submit your resume through the company’s career portal. However, if you know who the hiring manager is, you can submit your application directly to them. Competitive companies receive hundreds or even thousands of applications for a single position. So, instead of getting your resume thrown into the pile in an applicant tracking system, get your resume right to the source. A hiring manager or recruiter is much more likely to review your resume if you stick it right in front of them instead of letting an ATS do the work for them. Bypass the competition by sending your resume directly to the hiring manager, and you will start to get noticed by a prospective employer.

Go above and beyond with your application

If you are just blindly submitting your resume to every position in your field, you won’t experience much success. Due to the pandemic, we are in a competitive job market. You have to put in more effort to beat your competition and receive a callback. Tailor your resume to each position you apply for to ensure it illustrates that you are a strong fit. Write a custom cover letter for each application, even if one is not required. A thoughtfully crafted cover letter will help you stand out and connect the dots between your transferable skills and the position. Also, an excellent way to showcase all your skills and qualifications is an online portfolio. Submitting a link to your portfolio with your other application materials is a great way to show off your work examples, experience, and other things that make you a fantastic candidate. They are easy to make and often free to build on certain websites.

Need more help?

These three things will drastically help you get noticed by a prospective employer. But if you are looking to take your job search up a notch, consider working with a recruiter. JSG’s recruiting team can work with you to find the career that matches your skill sets and career goals. We have opportunities across North America and are ready to get you back to work. Reach out to us today!

jobs with the most demand

Jobs with the Most Demand in November

Another month down, another group of jobs in high demand. Once again, LinkedIn revealed the jobs that are in the fastest-growing demand this month. Although some jobs from the previous month continue to top the list, we see a new job with outrageous demand. Here is a closer look at the jobs with the most demand in November.

COVID-19 impacts tax season

There are two things guaranteed in life, and one of them is taxes. According to LinkedIn’s job posting data, job openings for Tax Specialists skyrocketed 579%. That is no surprise, as this year’s tax filing deadline was pushed back again to October 15th. Previously, the deadline was postponed from April to July, so we saw a similar spike this past summer. Taxes will be challenging for both companies and the American people, so Tax Specialists will be a hot commodity for months to come.

The holidays spur seasonal hiring

Retail positions remain in high demand as brick and mortar and online retailers ramp up their hiring efforts for the holidays. Retail Associates (+426%), Customer Representatives (+406%), and Merchandisers (+191%) were some of the jobs with the fastest-growing demand. This trend will likely continue into next month as holiday shopping picks up. With even more people relying on Ecommerce for their holiday shopping, there is a massive surge in Fulfillment Specialists (+184%) and Drivers (+155%).

Are more people traveling?

A new job cracked the top ten list: Automotive Technicians. In October, the demand for Automotive Techs jumped +177%, the eighth fastest-growing job in the month. This is likely due to more people traveling, a sign that people are feeling a little more optimistic about the pandemic. And while fewer people are commuting for traditional office jobs, food delivery companies experience a massive spike in business. Last month, Food Delivery Drivers were the sixth-most in-demand job. Thus, as more people utilize these services, vehicles will need maintenance. It will be interesting to watch this trend as more states impose stricter lockdown measures with rising coronavirus cases.

Need help sourcing for these roles?

So, these are the jobs with the fastest-growing demand in November. If you are searching for a new career path, consider exploring one of these roles. And if you are an employer that needs some assistance sourcing some talent for one of these positions (or any other role), reach out to us today. We work hard, we work together, and we work for you.

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.

sea of applicants

How to Stand Out in a Sea of Applicants

Millions of job seekers are filling out application after application in an attempt to find the next step in their career journey. It can be demoralizing to spend hours filling out the same information (work experience, education, references, skills, etc.) and striking out repeatedly. Most of us, including myself, have been there. It’s frustrating and makes you feel defeated. To mitigate the pitfalls that come with job applications, you need to think outside the box. Here are a few things you can do to stand out in a sea of applicants and land the job of you deserve.

Leverage your network

One of the best steps you can take to propel your job search is to leverage your professional network. For some reason, people are afraid to ask for help. It may be a pride thing, but you should never be ashamed to reach out to your network for a helping hand. If you are applying for a job and know someone that works at that company, do not be afraid to ask for them to make an introduction. Send them a quick email, shoot them a text, or pick up the phone and call them. Tell them which job you are applying for and see if they can connect you with the hiring manager. Who knows, they may even be able to give you a solid recommendation!

On the other hand, if you don’t even know where to start your job search, alert your network that you are on the hunt. Write a post on LinkedIn to let your network know you are looking for a new opportunity. You never know what’s out there if you do not make it know that you are looking!

Put in that extra work

If you want to stand out in a sea of applicants, you have to be willing to put in the extra work. Trust us; it will pay off! Tailor your resume for each position instead of submitting the same old resume over and over. Really read the job description and identify the key points the hiring manager desires. Taking a few extra minutes to tweak your resume to fit the position better can make all the difference (and help you get past an applicant tracking system!).

Are you crafting cover letters for your job applications? Sometimes cover letters are required while other times there are optional. And you might be giving yourself a high-five in your mind when you see the word “optional;” but if you really want to land the job, optional is not an option. Cover letters are your opportunity to show some of your personality. Sure, your resume can speak for your education, work experience, and skillsets. But your cover letter is your opportunity to really sell yourself to the hiring manager. It’s your chance to bridge the gap between your qualifications and why you are an excellent fit for the company. So, instead of passing on the cover letter, spend the time to craft one that will make your application rise above the competition!