Tis The Season to Celebrate, and Keep Up Your Job Search

holidayIt’s common that many job searches either slow down or come to a complete stop during the holiday season. Either the idea that no one is going to hire at this time or just getting caught up in the busyness of the season can stand in the way of any job search. Don’t let this happen. You can enjoy the holiday season and continue your job search. It’s actually a great time to connect with your network, update your resume, tidy up your job search records, and even set up some interviews.

 

Connect with your Network

Take advantage of the season and reconnect with those you’ve lost touch with by wishing them Happy Holidays. This is a great way to touch base and set up future conversations in the coming weeks.

Get Organized

It’s easy to loose track of where you have submitted your resume, companies you are interested in, and recruiters you have spoken with. Set aside some time to re-group. Either start a spreadsheet or update your records.

Update Your Resume

Review your resume. After interviewing a couple of times, or speaking with prospective employers and recruiters, double check your resume to make sure it includes the skills you have to stand out. Maybe it needs some editing. There are several sources on line that can help guide you in this process. We have several articles in our blog category “resumes” that can help!

Take Time Off

The holiday season is also a time to connect with family and friends. It’s important and useful to “recharge” by taking time off of the job search as well. Make sure you have time set aside to focus on something meaningful to you during your job search. When you go back to your search, you will be surprised at the motivation that comes after taking your focus away from it for a day.

Interviews and Hires DO Happen During the Holiday Season

Job Searching is still a numbers game. While others have put it on hold, you have the advantage of getting your resume out there. Many companies have year end deadlines they want to meet in their hiring goals as well. And they DO interview and hire during the holiday season!

If you have questions on your job search, interviews skills, or resume, don’t hesitate to give our recruiters a call. We’re here to help!

http://www.tworoads.com

Today is #GivingTuesday! Corporations and Individuals Making a Difference

calmToday is the 3rd Annual #GivingTuesday around the world. Created with the help of the 92nd Street and United Nations Foundation, today is a global day dedicated to “giving back”. It’s a day that corporations and individuals have set aside to make a difference.

According to the Blackbaud Index, Donations to charity increased 1.8 percent over the months of July through September from the same time period in 2013. The highest amount of giving is during the the last three months of the year.

Two Roads Professional Resources has been consistent over the years in charitable gift giving and charity sponsorship during the holiday season. Each year Two Roads has sponsored local charity organizations in providing Thanksgiving meals. The organizations include the homeless, women’s shelters, and low-income housing communities.

An annual tradition for the entire recruiting staff at Two Roads has been to adopt local families for the holidays. The staff divides the “Christmas List” and each employee enjoys the opportunity to include these family members in their Christmas shopping. The gifts are wrapped and delivered by elected Two Roads staff members. Items not only include the family’s wish list for gifts, but gift cards for local grocery stores to help the family during the holiday season.

This year Two Roads is working with The City of Bellflower, Collette’s Children’s Home of Huntington Beach and Project Self Sufficiency from Huntington Beach, adopting a family from each organization.

Charitable giving and fundraising isn’t a seasonal event for the staff at Two Roads. A group of staff members meet quarterly to discuss, choose, and plan either an organization to sponsor or an event to participate in that will support a local charity. The spirit of giving is more than seasonal!

For more information on #GivingTuesday, go to givingtuesday.org

Staying Organized in your Job Search

Push pin on employ text conceptIt can be difficult to keep track of your job search details these days with the use of job boards, social media, online advertisements, and recruiter calls. However, it’s imperative that you come up with a system that works for you to keep track of companies you have applied for, Managers you’ve interviewed with and locations on the internet you have posted your resume. Inconsistencies in these areas can cost you your next job.

Here are some brief tips that can help you stay organized:

1. Create a “spreadsheet of opportunities”

Head to Google Drive or Excel to organize every job you’ve ever wanted, heard of or applied for. Be sure to include even those companies where you’ve only dreamed of working. I organized mine by Company, Position, Contacts, Job Application Link, Date of Application, Notes and Status.

Update your spreadsheet daily. It will help you keep track of when to follow up, where you might need to make a new contact and what homework you need to do to prepare for the next interview stages.

This also comes in handy if you’re on unemployment. Having all this information in one place is a great reference guide when you need to prove you’re actively looking for work.

2. Save answers to application questions

Job applications are significantly more complicated than they were just a few years ago.

Many applications now ask specific questions about a project you’re most proud of or require a list of your most useful skills. Instead of just typing this directly into an online form, store those answers (proofread and spell-checked, of course) in a Job Hunt folder in Evernote.

For your next pesky phone screening, keep these questions open during the call so you can quickly reference your best answers. The more you do this, the more comfortable you’ll get answering these questions. (I’ve memorized most of mine by now, which is a bonus since I began to sound really articulate during those calls.)

Evernote also has great a great tagging system, so it’s easy for find responses pertaining to skills or project results when answering new questions on the fly.

3. Save your cover letter templates

Though you should submit a customized cover letter for every job, it’s OK to start from a template. Each template should include your favorite accomplishments relevant to the role you want. This makes applying for jobs the right way easy as pie.

Save your cover letter templates and a PDF of your resume to Dropbox so you can access them from anywhere on any device. So if you meet a lead for coffee and the conversation goes well, you can send your resume right there.

While my title has pretty consistently been “Social Media Manager,” that can mean different things to different people. Instead of limiting myself to roles with the same title, I applied to content strategy and community management jobs as well as more traditional marketing positions. When I sat down to write a cover letter for a position, it was helpful to have a few different templates to start from.

4. Become best friends with your calendar

Randomly applying for jobs will not get you hired. My biggest successes have always come from meeting people in person.

Whether it’s at a formal networking event or meeting a friend of a friend at Starbucks, talking to humans always trumps applying online. Regularly talk to people who love their jobs. Buy them coffee in exchange for picking their brains about work, projects and valuable skills.

This means you need to invest time in organizing your calendar. And don’t forget to pencil in valuable Parks and Recreation time so you don’t go crazy — there is such a thing as too much networking.

Set a schedule for what you will do each day: Who you’ll reach out to, what jobs you’ll apply for and what action steps you can take. With an organized calendar, your job hunt will feel purposeful and productive instead of listless and hopeless.