Written by: Lauren Kutsko
“Take risks: If you win, you will be happy; if you lose, you will be wise”
Your Work Begins Before the Interview
As someone who has reinvented her professional career 5 different times and has been in the resume writing industry for 20+ years, we were delighted to listen to Martha deliver valuable insights into the actions we can control during our career transition. Without some of the actionable steps she shared to keep our job search positive and connected it is easy to feel overwhelmed with a wide open calendar and nowhere to aim your efforts.
She shared 6 major areas of the job search to keep in mind as you seek interview opportunities.
- Resume, Cover Letter, LinkedIn
- Personal Criteria/Work Preferences
- Research and Targeting
- Interview Preparation
- Time Management
Resume, Cover Letter and LinkedIn Profile
Many major corporations are using Applicant Tracking Software to sort and organize resumes. Because sorting is being done by computers there are a few things to keep in mind when submitting yours:
- Do not use tables or text boxes.
- Have your designated title at the top of the resume match exactly for the position you are seeking.
- Adding keywords that match the job description throughout your resume will strengthen your match and bring you to the top.
- Simply put, a LinkedIn profile is just a must. If you do not exist online you don’t exist! Career Connectors has coaches onsite to help you with yours. As far as the cover letter, they aren’t always necessary. If you do submit one, take the time to address the specific qualifications listed in the job description and speak to how you exemplify them in your work and attitude.
Personal Criteria and Work Preferences
In career transition you have the opportunity to make a change to your life. To do that well it’s important to take a look back and acknowledge what you like and don’t like to shape your future. Take an honest look at your previous work history and explore what you loved what you hated and what you would like to have in the future.
80% of all job placement is done through networking! Martha encouraged us to keep the emphasis of networking as we make connections, not to land a job. If you go out with the only intent of getting a job it’s likely that networking will feel inauthentic and dry. You never know who other people know! Reach out to old friends, take them to lunch. Make a list of everyone you know and start making the small connections to build your network. Don’t forget to list people out of state, you never know who they know here in Arizona.
Research and Targeting
I thought this was a very cool proactive place to start your job search! Start with a group of 20 companies that you have always thought would be interesting to work for and begin to do research on them. Perhaps you will find a few don’t have offices in your city. Perhaps a few just released press releases saying that they laid off employees. As you research, narrow your list to 3. Then begin to look through your network of people to see if there is anyone you know that could hand deliver your resume for you.
An interview should be a conversation between two interested parties. So as you answer their questions consider finishing with a question like, I would like to know more about the qualifications you are looking for. She also encouraged us to write out and practice the dreaded “tell me about yourself” statement. Include your background, how you found the position, your strengths and then don’t forget to end it with a question back to them!
As I am sure you know, without setting clear goals it is too easy to get overwhelmed and delay the start of your job search. On of the easiest ways to overcome dread is to make a plan! One of the goals is to get out of the house everyday. There is a fantastic resource at www.networkingphoenix.com that lists all the events that are happening around the valley. Now that you have the time, make coffee and lunch dates with old friends or coworkers. Remember you never know who other people may know that could land you your next position!
To learn more about Martha’s company check out her website!
Peter Swenson, Divisional Vice President
Northstar is a growing smart home securities company based in Utah. With an office in Tempe, they are accepting college interns and hiring heavily in sales and field tech services. Their mission is to empower confident living. They do that with their clients through products that make people feel secure and they do that with their employees by ensuring work life balance and employee development. Current openings are in recruiting, customer service, field service technicians, sales representatives and sales managers. For more information go to their website.
Chet Joshi, Sr. Talent Consultant
With a new office on Raintree and the 101, there are many opportunities at this very established company! With over 200 years in business, this company offers some of the most competitive healthcare and 401k matching plans available. They like to say they don’t have job openings, they have career openings. With low turnover and rapid advancement opportunities you can build an incredible career here. Their current openings are in Phoenix and Scottsdale, including Customer Service Rep, Workers Compensation Claim Rep, Liability Litigation Claim Consultant, Client Relationship Manager, Underwriters, and Auto Claim Rep. More information here.
Justin Hook, VP Sales and Recruiting
As a local staffing firm that has deep connection with some of the valley’s best companies, this is a great place to start your networking efforts. Staff Logic offers not just temp to hire positions but plenty of professional direct hire positions. They have placed over 50K professionals in long term careers here in the valley. 63% of their referrals come from clients or professionals that they have placed! They work in many fields such as accounts payable, banking and financial services, bookkeeping, credit and collections, audit, public accounting, executive staffing, software development, IT engineering, customer service, software sales, medical administrative, marketing, HR, and executive searches. For more information click here.
Goodwill of Central and Northern AZ
Carter Ellis, Professional Career Advisor
Goodwill is more than a retail store. In fact, 90 cents of every dollar earned at their stores supports their work of ending unemployment here in the valley. With over 18 different career centers valley wide they support their clients with career coaching, resume critiquing, mock interviews, talent sourcing, and access to a job posting board. They do not just hire entry level positions. Because they have relationships with 600 different employers around the valley, their recruiting is diverse for the professional placement as well. For more information about hiring events or their Career Centers, check out their website.
Sheila Coulam reminded us that pictures are uploaded to the website, they will not be emailed to you.
There is an upcoming military career event that all are welcome to attend. Attendance is FREE for all job seekers! Create your profile to be pre-matched with hiring companies for onsite interviews March 7! More information including participating companies can be found here: BCAZ 2018 Military Career Event.
On Feb 22nd in Glendale Kevin Dumcum will speak on how to Activate Your Job Search and Jim Sorenson, will be sharing from DES/Unemployment Insurance and how to take advantage of DES services. The hiring companies will be DES and Honor Health.