Blog

  • Busting Staffing Myths: Are Recruiters an Asset or a Liability?

    A persistent myth about staffing firms is they are all the same. This is far from true. However, a wide gap exists in quality among recruiters. There are bad ones, which can actually represent a liability to your long-term development, and then there are the great recruiters; ones that act to amplify your career ambitions, becoming a major asset to your development.

    But how can you tell the difference? How do you separate the winners from the losers without wasting a large amount of time?

    Here are some signs you can use to separate the good from the bad, helping you find the right recruiter to push your career forward:

    Good Recruiters Give You Specific Details 

    You can tell early in your conversations with a recruiter whether or not things are going well. A good staffing partner will provide detailed information, rather than vague promises. Ideally, they should have a specific plan for you soon after your first meeting, using your skills and background as a basis for a way forward.

    You shouldn’t be left waiting and you shouldn’t be forced to follow up continuously just to get information. At the very least, your recruiter should offer a timeline of when they can give you ... Read More

  • Using your employer brand to attract the best employees

    You may not be Disney, Coca-Cola, Apple, or Google, but your company has a brand, whether it’s actively managed or not. And your brand extends beyond customers or clients—it reaches employees, too, including the ones you most want to recruit.

    In fact, your employer brand isn’t necessarily the same as your company brand. The former is a perception among members of your staff or work force, while the latter is a perception held by your clients or customers.

    What attributes make up your employer brand? For most companies, these include their mission, values, company culture, workplace environment, and salaries and benefits. These are areas a company should focus on when working to establish or improve its employer brand.

    Advantages of a strong employer brand to job recruitment

    A vital but often neglected part of job recruitment strategies is convincing candidates the company is a good place to work. That starts with developing a strong employer brand, one that:

    • Creates initial enthusiasm among job seekers in working for your company.
    • Appeals to candidates during the selection process and increases their interest in the job.
    • Maintains or improves retention of your current employees.
    • Saves money on recruiting costs because you can fill positions more easily.

    Presenting your employer brand to job ... Read More

  • How to Answer “What Is Your Biggest Weakness?”

    It’s the moment you dreaded. The interview started pleasantly enough. You went through some small talk, a list of your qualifications, some banter about where you went to school, and a long recitation of your best qualities.

    But now the discussion has taken a turn toward an interrogation. The trick question of all trick questions has been asked: “What is your biggest weakness?”

    It’s a difficult query that requires self-reflection and a higher degree of openness than most people usually allow themselves in front of strangers. However, it’s also a common question you’ll face at most interviews. You should have an answer prepared.

    With that in mind, here are some tips in crafting your response to the dreaded “what’s your biggest weakness?”

    Be Honest …

    You want to be honest in your interview. Part of the purpose of the “biggest weakness” question is to test a candidate’s ability to handle a seemingly unwinnable situation. They want to see how you’ll handle the pressure.

    Try to evade the question and you’ve effectively failed the test. They know you have weaknesses, so presenting yourself as perfect will only hurt your cause. So, don’t attempt the cutesy tactic of listing an obvious strength as a weakness (“if anything, I’m ... Read More

  • Recruiting employees for success in entry-level positions

    There’s more than a grain of truth in the saying, “You hire for attitude, train for skills.” In fact, the late Herb Kelleher, founder and former CEO of Southwest Airlines, said, “You can always teach skills. One needs to hire attitudes that fit the firm’s culture.”

    Now, I’m not about to downplay the importance of skills. I’m a recruiter–I look for candidates who have the skills our clients need. I respect professionals who devote years to learning skills in school or on the job and, often, years more perfecting them.

    But skills alone don’t make a great employee.

    Overcoming the risk of recruiting employees at the entry level

    Have you had the following experience? You’re recruiting employees to hire for an entry-level position. You review candidates whose skills appear untested or underdeveloped. Hiring any of them feels a bit risky. I totally understand, because I’ve been there, too.

    However, someone without experience but who is sharp, upbeat and confident may be just who you need to fill that entry-level job. You can train an employee with a clean slate in a way you need for them to perform well in the job.

    Employers often have lofty requirements for positions when recruiting employees for entry-level jobs. Research by TalentWorks, a developer ... Read More

  • Busting Staffing Myths: Recruiting Generalists vs. Specialists

    You’ve heard the benefits of partnering with a staffing agency. And these details have you interested in getting jobs sooner and in finding better positions.

    But you still have a major worry: you have specialized skills and you don’t want to settle for a position outside your field. You don’t want to get thrown onto a big pile of candidates, all fighting for the same entry-level positions.

    That represents a major myth about staffing firms. People think all recruiters work the same way…that each one is virtually indistinguishable from all the others.

    Not true. Rather, there are major differences between individual firms. In practice, each one has its own core competencies, its own area of focus.

    Generalists Vs. Specialists

    A key split exists between generalists and specialists. Most job seekers assume that every staffing agency acts as a generalist, taking on any client and matching candidates with any type of skill set.

    That certainly describes a sizable part of the industry. These companies benefit from a broad scope, both in the clients they sign up and the candidates they look to place. The generalist works best for job seekers who have skills that can be applied in almost any situation.

    However, generalists have drawbacks as well. Job ... Read More