November 2011 16
Economy be damned — it looks like Cyber Monday may hit record sales this year. Cyber Monday, otherwise known as the online (and seemingly safer) version of Black Friday, has become the No. 1 online shopping day of the year. A new CareerBuilder survey shows that many workers are not only using Cyber Monday to satisfy their winter boots craving or snag a new TV at a bottom-barrel price, but are actually making their e-shopping habits part of a year-round lifestyle.
“We want an ad so compelling that makes someone say, ‘That seems like a cool company. I want to check that out.’” - Jay Goltz
While discussing ways companies can bring in better quality candidates and eliminate hiring mistakes during his recent webinar, Hire With Purpose, small business expert Jay Goltz suggested companies pay more attention to the content of their job postings.
While it might not seem like it, job postings play a major role in the hiring process. After all, consider how much time you take to scan a resume – that’s probably about the same amount of time a job seeker takes to review a job posting. In other words, you have mere seconds to grab – and keep – a job seeker’s attention, so what you say - and how you say it - matter.
With a little effort, however, you can turn your ordinary job posting into one that truly stands out in the eyes of job seekers, drives more applications and leads to better hires. All it takes is knowing what to include – and what to avoid – when creating your next job posting. Consider the following tips:
DO THIS: Utilize keywords as often as possible. NOT THAT: Get keyword-happy.
The more keywords your job posting contains that are relevant to the position – and that job seekers might use to search for jobs – the easier it is for search engines to find it; in effect, the higher it will appear in organic search results. Look at your job posting and consider where you can substitute keywords job seekers might use in their searches. (For example, instead of saying, “The person in this position will be required to…” say, “The Marketing Manager will be required to…”) Just don’t flood the posting with so many keywords that you lose the message.
DO THIS: Go traditional with job titles. NOT THAT: Advertise for “rock stars” or “rainmakers.”
Not only are these terms nondescript, but job seekers aren’t searching for these terms. Stick to advertising for more traditional job titles, which will increase the ability for your postings to show up in search results on job boards, search engines and social media sites.
DO THIS: Think beyond healthcare and 401(k)s. NOT THAT: Leave out “Free Bagel Fridays”
What may seem like small perks are really a window into your company’s culture. And that, for job seekers, plays a major role when considering potential employers. While you should definitely still include traditional benefits like healthcare and retirement, remember that the little things count, too – and are often what differentiate you from any other organization. In fact, when considering which benefits to include in your posting, seek the advice of those who know best – your current employees.
Middle management positions were a significant casualty of recession-era layoffs, but new research from CareerBuilder’s various industry sites indicate that many employers saw counterproductive consequences and are now rehiring for those positions.
Employers surveyed in the retail, IT and healthcare industries indicated plans to bring back previously eliminated middle management jobs for the purpose of bringing structural gaps and addressing market demands. When assessing the impact of downsizing middle management, employers who made cuts in these industries cited both positive effects (cost-savings and more efficient operations) as well as negative ones (structural and emotional drawbacks).
Don’t know what you got till it’s gone?
According to industry experts, part of the reason for the resurgence in middle management jobs is that employers are now realizing just how essential middle management is to the organization.
“Middle management often gets a bad rap for adding bureaucratic layers to an organization, but these roles can be essential in maintaining team cohesion, retaining core talent and providing direction to workers,” says Bill Meidell, product director of WorkInRetail.com
Jamie Carney, product director of Sologig.com, agrees. “When a department lacks leadership or direction, it is easier to see the value of middle management,” Carney says. “The data suggests that middle management plays an important role in making an employee’s work experience meaningful and productive.”
“Middle management is essential to providing balance and direction within complex organizations,” adds Rob Morris, product director of MiracleWorkers.com. “They play important roles from onboarding new employees and tracking progress to building positive morale and maintaining chains of communication – all things that are difficult to do without.”
Check out details for each industry survey below…
CEOs, COOs, CFOs, senior vice presidents and other company leadership figures recently donned monogrammed robes, gathered around a bonfire in an undisclosed location, and answered a series of questions about their personal habits, including preferred style of dress, Bieber versus non-Bieber hairstyle, lunchtime brain wave patterns, and favorite martini garnishes. OK, not really (though that's how it happened in my head). In reality, CareerBuilder and Harris Interactive© got together to survey 561 hiring managers in senior leader roles to get the scoop on senior leaders' personal habits -- and here's what they had to say:
What company leaders said about their everyday habits:
In the following interview with CareerBuilder, Eric L. Affeldt, President and CEO of ClubCorp, discusses the importance of being on a first-name basis with employees, how he gets employees to give 100 percent and the three thingsevery leader should do to ensure success.
How do people have an impact on the daily business across the organization?
Our employee partners are the living embodiment of what ClubCorp is all about. We have some terrific physical plants and gorgeous clubs, but if the service isn’t there, and if the employees don’t make the members feel special, it doesn't matter how pretty it is.
How do you relate to your employee partners from a CEO level?
First of all, approachability is a given. Any employee partner who calls or emails gets direct access to me. When I go out to visit properties in the field, my nametag says “Eric” not “Mr. Affeldt”. I believe I should be on a first-name basis with them, and there should be no distinction between what they are doing and what I can help them do. We're all here to do the same thing: take care of the guests.
As far as leadership in general, what are some of the most important lessons you’ve learned along your journey?
I believe strongly that if leaders do three particular things, they’ll be successful no matter what business they’re in: First, establish a direction or a vision for either the company or a division. Martin Luther King didn’t say, “I have a strategic plan.” He said, “I have a dream.” It’s very important for leaders to be able to visualize what perfection or what a really great day would look like. Second, in order to achieve that dream or vision, leaders have to allocate resources—both in terms of capital as well as people. They have to put the right people in place as well as deploy the capital appropriately in order to achieve the dream. The third thing is, ensure execution. It doesn't do any good to have a really neat dream and to have allocated the resources and then just kind of walk away and hope that it happens. Great guest experiences are not the result of great accidents. They happen by design.
“There’s a connection between culture and recruiting,” Mike Grennier, Senior Director of Corporate Recruiting for Walmart Stores, Inc., told an audience of hiring resources professionals at the annual HR Technology Conference in Las Vegas last month.
Grennier was leading a session on virtual interviewing, a practice Walmart began just two years ago in hopes to create a more efficient recruiting process that benefits both company and candidate. They consider the effort a success: Not only has the practice enhanced Walmart’s ability to recruit more candidates across many geographic regions at a fraction of the normal spend, but it also helped them to create a better candidate experience and, in effect, strengthen their employment brand.
“Candidates love that we take the time to do this because it shows that we care about efficiency, and it saves them time,” Grennier says. Not only that, but the effort also makes Walmart stand out from its competitors. “It tells the world we’re being more green.”
Tomorrow, on Veterans Day 2011, we take time to honor the scores of men and women who have fought for our freedoms. While we often honor our military veterans with words, how can we make a difference by taking action on some of those words? A great way for businesses to take the lead on this is by hiring a veteran. This Veterans Day is an opportune time for all of us to take a closer look at the strengths veterans bring to the workplace and discuss ways to help tackle the challenges many face -- and a new CareerBuilder survey of more than 2,800 hiring managers helps us do just that.
What kinds of challenges are veterans facing?
Well, as of October 2011, more than 850,000 veterans were unemployed, and the jobless rate for post-9/11 veterans was 12.1 percent -- well over the national average. This problem isn't going away, but instead becoming more of a challenge: According to whitehouse.gov, more than 1 million service members are projected to leave the military between 2011 and 2016.
Veterans' skills are often highly specialized, and it is sometimes difficult for them to determine how to translate those skills to those that employers are seeking in a civilian workplace environment.
Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America, has some advice for veterans struggling to reconnect and adapt to a civilian workforce:
“The survey shows that employers recognize the unique value military experience can bring, but that they don’t always understand how military skills fit into corporate America. Veterans will need to clearly make that connection in their resume, cover letter and job interviews as they enter this new chapter of their careers.”
New job resources for veterans
Resources are popping up everywhere to help veterans adjust to their new civilian lives and find jobs. In New Brunswick, NJ, for example, veterans are learning to release stress, heal, and adapt to civilian life through music classes, and CareerBuilder has recently launched a job site matching military veterans and employers, EmployVets.com. Exclusively for veterans returning to the job force, the site includes a tool for discovering how one's military skills translate to the civilian world, career advice and resources, and much more. Sites like VETransfer are aimed at helping veterans with an entrepreneurial streak start their own businesses by connecting them with financing and equipping them with the necessary resources to get their venture started.
Veterans who believe they have a skills gap hindering their job search can also participate in the CareerBuilder Re-Employment Initiative, a paid internship program aimed at helping veterans and unemployed job seekers bridge the IT skills gap. This paid program will consist of several weeks of classroom training followed by up to six months of on-the-job, hands-on training with an assigned CareerBuilder software developer. Interested? See the job description and apply here.