Recruitment Tips, Employer Trends, and Hiring Insights from CareerBuilder

Monthly Archives: April 2009

Reverse Apprenticeships: A New Kind of Employee Mentoring Program

Well, it’s not exactly proof that my earlier prediction that twinternships will take the business world by storm has come true (…yet), but today in the AdAge 3-Minute Video below, BBDO Worldwide CEO Andrew Robertson discusses a very similar trend happening at the worldwide ad agency: reverse apprenticeships.


Earlier this week, I mentioned how Pizza Hut’s search for a social media intern (a.k.a. Continue reading >>

By in Talent Acquisition, Talent Management

Just in Time for Earth Day: CareerBuilder Releases Survey on “Green” Companies

Tomorrow is Earth Day.  In honor of it, today, Ben & Jerry’s is having Free Cone Day.  (Okay, it’s more than likely just a coincidence, but the company is very environmentally conscious, and I’d be remiss not to show my support for that by eating some free Chunky Monkey.)

In actual honor of Earth Day, however, CareerBuilder released the results of its latest survey, which found that one in ten employers say they’ve added environmentally focused positions to their companies in the last 12 months.   Continue reading >>

By in Employment Branding, Insights & Trends, Survey Results, Talent Acquisition, Talent Management

CareerBuilder’s Annual College Job Forecast: New Grads Must Step it Up

Do you know someone graduating this spring (and no, watching the “Donna Martin Graduates” episode of old-school 90210 doesn’t count)? Chances are if you do, you’ve sensed or outright listened to them rant about heard their trepidation about entering the “real world” and throwing their hat into the current job market ring. Because, well, the environment right now is not exactly what it used to be for soon-to-be or recent grads. Things are a little tough out there.

The class of 2009 will face the most competitive job market in years, as companies continue to proceed with caution amid economic uncertainty, according to CareerBuilder’s newly released annual college job forecast.The percentage of employers planning to hire recent college grads is roughly half of what it was just two years ago. Only 43 percent of employers plan to hire recent college graduates in 2009, down from 56 percent in 2008 and 79 percent in 2007.

2009 Salaries

Along with the economy, entry-level salaries have taken a bit of a dive. Among those employers planning to hire recent college graduates, more than one in five (21 percent) said they will decrease starting salaries for recent college graduates in 2009 as compared to 2008. But there’s hope! A whopping 68 percent of employers plan to keep initial salary offers the same as last year, and 11 percent will increase them.

  • Thirty-three percent of employers plan to offer recent college graduates starting salaries ranging between $30,000 and $40,000.
  • An additional 17 percent will offer between $40,000 and $50,000
  • Fourteen percent will offer more than $50,000
  • Thirty-six percent will offer less than $30,000
  • “While recent college graduates are facing a highly competitive job market right now, there are still opportunities out there,” said Brent Rasmussen, President of CareerBuilder North America.

    “The biggest challenge is showing relevant experience, which employers say is one of the most important factors they look for in applications from recent college graduates. This isn’t limited to professional work experience, so don’t get discouraged. Class work, school activities and volunteering also qualify as relevant experience and can be included in your resume as well.”

So how can new graduates differentiate themselves in the current job market, and what are the absolute faux pas that today’s candidates need to be aware of — and steer clear of? Employers who participated in the survey weighed in below.

By in Economy, Generational Hiring, Social Media, Survey Results, Talent Acquisition

Twinternships: The Next Big Thing?

Anyone want to tell Michael Setzer and Kristy Hammonds that Pizza Hut is hiring? No? Just a thought…

On Friday, Pizza Hut announced its opening for a “twintern”…That is, an intern who uses Twitter and other online networking tools to “be our social media journalist, chronicling in 140 characters or less what’s going on at Pizza Hut,” the company’s VP for marketing communications told The New York Times. Continue reading >>

By in Employment Branding, Social Media, Talent Acquisition, Talent Management

Ageism and the Workplace: How Bad Is it?

Top Chef versus Julia Child. Real Housewives of Orange County versus The Golden Girls. The Jonas Brothers versus… The Beatles??? Okay, scratch that last one. The point is, generations may differ on what’s great in TV shows or music or clothing, but in the workplace, generational differences add up to more than just entertainment preferences — and the consequences can be dire. Until Gen Y came onto the scene, generations mixing in the workplace wasn’t as big of an issue. Or rather, the issues were simply different. Fifty or sixty years ago, we were still dealing with extreme female inequality in the workplace.

Fast-forward to today’s technology-filled world, and we are seeing the effects of “Sally,” tech-savvy, new-on-the-scene Gen Y worker, sitting down to a project with “Bob,” baby boomer who’s been with the company for 20 years and still writes people actual letters (non-electronic!). We are seeing these workers clash. They complete tasks differently. They demand different things. Their communication methods are vastly dissimilar. And Bob is afraid he’ll be pushed out of his job any day now due to “not fitting in with the company culture.” After all, companies are cutting back — and layoffs abound.

Although the recent economy has brought about tough times for many of us, older workers have been hit particularly hard in their attempts to rebound from the recession. Between 401 (k) troubles and rising health care costs, these workers have had a slew of problems to deal with. On average, workers over the age of 45 are experiencing longer periods of unemployment; many have been out of work for six months or longer. According to the New York Times article above, even when older workers do finally find employment, many suffer a much steeper drop in earnings than their younger counterparts.

In addition, over the last two years, the number of Americans age 55 and older who are still working has climbed by nearly 1.5 million to over 26 million in March, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Even worse, the number of people 55 and older who want a job but can’t find one has more than doubled over the same period to nearly 1.8 million. Joblessness is lower among older workers than the general labor force, but it’s growing much faster.

By in Economy, Generational Hiring, Retention, Social Media, Talent Acquisition, Talent Management

Is Domino’s Response to Employee YouTube Video Too Little, Too Late?

Hmmm…guess who won’t be Domino’s “Employee of the Month”?

By now, you’ve likely seen the now infamous YouTube video of the two Domino’s Pizza employees who filmed a rather, ahem, tasteless prank in the kitchen of a Conover, N.C. store: In the video, one employee narrates as another employee prepares a sandwich in a way that violates pretty much every health code there is. Continue reading >>

By in Social Media


@WhatTheHeckIsTwitter: A Guide to that “Twitter” Thing


By now, most of you have probably heard of a little thing called Twitter. People everywhere are talking about it: on the nightly news, late-night talk shows – it’s even recently caused troubles in, ah, celebrity relationship paradise a la Maniston.

As I’ve been using it for the better part of a year, both personally and via @thehiringsite, I’ve become pretty familiar with the medium. I am, however, by no means an “expert/guru/evangelist” and I tend to shudder at those who proclaim to be, because really, we’re all learning about social media together. I also don’t want to tell you how to use or not use Twitter, because everyone uses it for their particular purposes. But I would like to share a few things I’ve picked up along the way; I hope these bits of information will help you quickly learn the ropes of Twitter and get comfortable with your style of tweeting, following, and the like.

Who’s on Twitter?

The Twitter world is full of a wide spectrum of users –those who tweet humorous little “stories” or anecdotes; the social media “gurus,” the engagers; the celebs; the “I treat Twitter like an IM chat room” types; the marketers; the information sharers; the one-sided users; the thought-provokers –the list goes on and on. Not surprisingly, the array of users you find on Twitter is strikingly similar to the diverse mix of people you are in contact with in everyday life. These users, as do your real-life contacts, also likely fall into different levels: real-life friends (what are those?!), business contacts with whom you like to talk shop, those with whom you passively interact, and on and on.

The best part is that every digestible bit of information that these massively different Twitter users share, also called a “tweet,” comprises just 140 characters or less. Pretty amazing.

Oh, and did I mention that you can find all CareerBuilder-related Twitter accounts in one place?

Twitter Origins

Twitter got its start just about three years ago, in March 2006. According to the company, its user base has grown 900 percent in the last year alone. That’s some serious growth.

As Gregory Lamb notes in an article on Christian Science Monitor, “In a Twitter-fied world, no one ever need feel alone or unconnected.” The article mentions that when Twitter debuted in 2006, it was brushed off as “the latest narcissistic way to waste time online.” Even now, naysayers (some of my own friends come to mind) are dubbing Twitter as nothing but an online tool full of narcissists. Yet, Twitter is growing at breakneck speed, and many of its recent uses are anything but narcissistic.

For example, Twitter broke the news of the Hudson River plane crash earlier this year, reporting the news about 15 minutes before the mainstream media. Twitter users were also tweeting constant updates during the terror attacks in Mumbai last year, providing each other with new bits of information and organizing the info with hashtags for easy referencing.

Here’s a few things you should know about Twitter:

  • It’s free (there’s talk of paid corporate accounts, but we haven’t seen anything yet).
  • It’s public. Whatever nugget of information you write and send out as a tweet is completely and totally public. It’s searchable on the Internet and viewable by anyone. It can be grabbed from Twitter and written about on someone’s blog, for example. Keep this in mind, and use your best judgment.
  • You can access Twitter either through the Web or through a mobile device if applicable (there are a myriad of Twitter applications for the iPhone alone).
  • Even if you do not have Internet access on your phone, you can text messages to Twitter that will appear as tweets. They will appear in your feed as they normally would. Simply turn on your mobile device alerts, text your message (in 140 characters or less) to 40404 and it will appear as a tweet.

Twitter Definitions, a.k.a. You Want Me to Retweet What?!

@ symbol – When you want to reply to someone, you use the @, or “at,” symbol. You can easily reply by clicking the arrow icon to the right-hand side of any user’s tweet (it’s right below the star icon). When you click this, you will automatically be taken to your text box and @Name will be auto-populated for you. Conversely, you may manually place the @ symbol before the person’s Twitter name at the beginning of your tweet, like so:

That Twitter user will get your reply in their “Replies” area, and they can then reply back to you. Keep in mind that when you reply to someone, all of your followers (and anyone reading the public Twitter stream or doing a Twitter search) can see your tweet. It is still a public tweet. If you want to send a private message to someone, you can send them a Direct Message in your “Direct Messages” area. And a word on sending auto-Direct Messages to your followers: Just. Say. No.

Retweeting – Retweeting, in Twitterland, is essentially giving someone else credit for their tweet or their idea (which they’ve tweeted). It works like this. When someone tweets something and you want to broadcast it out to all your followers/repeat it/spread the word, you “retweet” it as one of your tweets, and you write it like so:

I want to retweet this. So I write:

It’s as simple as that. RT is the abbreviation, add a space, write @Name, and then that user’s tweet.

Hashtags – Represented by the # sign, “hashtags” are simply a way for twitter users to mobilize, organize, and easily connect to important news, conferences, and other events. You can add existing hashtags to any of your tweets, or you can create your own.

If you are attending a conference, for example, it’s quite possible that a hashtag has already been created. Attendees of the recent SXSW conference in Austin (including myself) followeed SXSW-related stream of tweets by searching for and using the #sxsw hashtag at Twitter Search. Bookmark that search page – if you’re on twitter, you’ll be using it a lot. Lastly, Tagalus is a new site that allows users to define tags — and check for already-established tags. Check it out.


Follows/Unfollows – The beauty of Twitter is that you can follow anyone you like (unless they have a private feed, in which case you must request/be accepted to follow first). It’s likely that you won’t know the majority of the people you follow on Twitter in “real life,” but that’s okay. Actually, it’s encouraged. If you don’t want to follow someone’s tweets, you simply don’t follow (or unfollow, as the case may be) them. Viola.

I have found that everyone has different methods of following. Some follow back everyone who follows them; others follow almost no one at all. Not surprising that some users are very engaged, and others are involved in a very one-sided conversation (their tweets only). This is up to you, and I’ll get into the business side of Twitter in another post (as I think the rules shift a bit), but I have found that eventually, you get into a rhythm. You create your Twitter world based on those you follow. You may choose to follow people who engage, inspire, or teach you. Those you follow may be solely comprised of fitness experts, if that’s what you’re into. Or you may just follow users who make you laugh all day. Either way, over time, you will likely mold your Twitter stream into those people and those things you are most interested in. And that’s a great thing.

By in Social Media

Mixed Emotions Over Latest CareerBuilder Survey on Laid Off Workers

Remember that “Seinfeld” episode where Jerry starts crying – evidently for the first time ever – and he’s looking at the tears he’s wiped from his eyes with wide-eyed confusion, saying, “What is this salty discharge?!”  Well, I do.  It’s kind of how I felt (minus Jerry’s resulting annoyance) upon reading CareerBuilder’s latest survey, which happens to have…what is this? Continue reading >>

By in Retention, Survey Results, Talent Management

What Reality TV Teaches Us About How NOT to Treat Employees

Sunday, on yet another painful to watch shocking episode of “Celebrity Apprentice,” Donald Trump fired Khloe Kardashian.  But it wasn’t Kardashian’s firing that was surprising (no offense to the “Keeping Up with the Kardashians’” star) – rather, it was the reason for her firing. 

Usually contestants leave the show because they failed the week’s challenge, but Trump fired Kardashian supposedly because he discovered she had a previous DUI – a reason my co-worker, an overly enthusiastic “Apprentice” fan, believes is completely unwarranted (so much so that he asked me to blog about it so all the world might know of his ire). Continue reading >>

By in Retention

Be Careful What You Post: What You Say in Your Job Listing Can Make or Break Your Employment Brand

What’s wrong with Iowa??  Yesterday, Gawker posted a job listing for an associate editor at Best Events magazine — no Iowa- or Seattle-based job seekers need apply.  In fact, if you’re from either of these areas and planning to send your resume, the magazine is “begging you to stop. BEGGING.” 

Apparently they’re serious: It’s in there twice.  (Don’t they know Ashton and Demi live in Iowa?  Continue reading >>

By in Talent Acquisition

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