Most job seekers will use two documents in their job search; their resume and cover letter. That’s a good start, but how about professional bio as well? They are no longer just for authors, musicians and politicians. Anyone that has an online presence across social media and blogging (which is just about everyone nowadays) can…
The first contact of the year came from the brother of a friend of mine. My friendship with my friend had started some years ago when he had returned from overseas and was trying to find an executive role in the UK. Now his brother needed help. These are bright guys – excellent academic backgrounds…
I went to this networking event a few weeks ago featuring a good speaker named Andy Lopata. I hadn’t actually heard of him before but apparently he’s known as Mr Networker for those in the know. I liked what he went on about as it seemed very aligned my own thinking. The points outlined below…
Linkedin have offered premium accounts to the greater public for some time now, these have been popular with salespeople and others for years. Congratulations to all you job seekers out there, the time has cometh for to get your credit cards out.
Cashing in on job seekers
LinkedIn recently announced their new Job Seeker Premium Accounts, basically charging job seekers to use an enhanced version of LinkedIn. Have LinkedIn gone nasty and exploiting the people that need it most? Not really, they will still allow you to use it the basic version for free so no panic.
There is definitely an online trend to charge for services at the moment. LinkedIn are hopping on the same band wagon as The Ladders, CareerBuilder and other platforms aimed at job seekers. They have all noticed that there is no great shortage of cash out there, however definitely a shortage of jobs. This could very well be due to layoffs avec payoffs.
As long as the value you are getting from a paid account outweighs the cost, it could be worth considering paying a little to speed up your job search.
What are the benefits?
First off, you and your profile will be bumped up to the top of the pile when applying for a particular job. This is very much like a sponsored link on Google, your name will come up highlighted in the applicants list which is likely to get you some attention from the hiring manager (along with the other paying applicants of course).
You will also be able to send InMails straight to employers that aren’t in your network. This is particularly useful when you don’t have any contacts in common and it’s impossible to obtain emails for direct contact outside of LinkedIn.
On top of that, there’s the Profile Organizer feature which lets you track the contact you have with others, save favorites and even add your own notes to others profiles. A good old spreadsheet can probably do the same but this one is automated for you.
Finally, there are some webinars with Lindsey Pollak that act as video tutorials on how to use the new functions and how to search for jobs on Linkedin in general. Lindsey definitely knows her stuff so this could be useful.
What’s the damage?
Your brand new and shiny job seeker premium account comes in three versions; basic, job seeker and job seeker plus.
As you can tell from the image, they vary a bit on price, the only difference in service is the amount of ammunition you will have for each feature.
Basic: With this option you get five folders in your Profile Organizer and you get 100 profiles in your search results. You get 10 introductions to inside sources at companies.
Job Seeker: Here we get five InMails which you can use to contact any employer inside or outside your network. Your search results expand to 250 profiles, you get 10 folders for your Profile Organizer and you get 15 insider introductions.
Job Seeker Plus: The top of the line deal lets you send 10 InMails, 25 folders in your Profile Organizer and your search results of hiring mangers go up to 500 profiles.
Is it worth upgrading?
If you use LinkedIn daily and have hit a wall where you have run out of InMails, can’t seem to get yourself organized enough and think insider introductions will help you – go ahead and try it. As long as you get useful incremental results, stick with it until you get that new job. This is assuming that you have the money to spend, check your budget and ideally cut back on something else instead.
Personally I was never convinced of the ‘regular’ premium accounts, I can live through not having 500 people coming up in my search results (the more precise search, the better anyway). I don’t really see the need for InMails as I tend to get the proper emails of people, more often than not you can guess it.
I think it’s a shame there are no free trials for the job seeker premium account but I can understand why. Job seekers are not long-term customers for any business, as soon as they get a new job they no longer need the service. LinkedIn have decided to milk it from day one which is probably the right decision from a business perspective.
What do you think?
Do you use the premium account today and has it helped you at all? Are you going to try it out?
Got this question from a Linkedin contact today and thought I would share the answer with the world, and at the same time enlighten any other career advancers who are in the same boat.
First off, let’s pretend the contact’s name is Carlos and mainly for comedy effect that he is the mustache sporting gentleman in the photo above. Second, let’s look at the question:
New internal gig, more wonga?
“Can I ask you for an advice? If I am given an opportunity to change my role/responsibilities by moving to a different department in the same company, is it a good idea to ask for a raise?
Thing is a new role has opened up in my company and open for internal people only. I am very much interested. As part of the process, I am required to go through interviews and other recruitment related stuff. I am thinking of asking for compensation raise when I am in the final round. Is this fine thing to do? If yes, what stage should I ask for it – final stage when everything is confirmed or at the first step even before applying for it?”
Of course he should get more moolah
There are really two questions here. The first is, should Carlos ask for raise when moving jobs internally? I would say yes he should. The new position could entail new tasks, more responsibilities or more travelling to different sites – these are all good reasons for giving someone a raise as they increase the workload, stress and learning curve for the employee. But what if the new position is merely a change of scenery, doing the exact same job but in another location? Carlos should still get a raise as he has to make changes in his life, and he is crucially taking a risk moving away from the safe confines of his current position.
How much does one ask for?
Carlos doesn’t want to rule himself out early in the process by making high demands. In my experience, he has nothing to fear as long as his request is reasonable and he can justify it. Asking for a 10% increase when taking on a new position is realistic, perhaps even 15%. If Carlos goes any higher than this, he could be treading on thin ice.
What about the timing?
Question number two is when does he ask for the pay hike? The more honest and upfront he is, the more he will be respected for it. There is nothing wrong in valuing your own work as long as you can back it up. I say he should prepare the reasons why a raise is justified and then mention it in the first interview. It can even work in Carlos’ favor if the hiring manager realizes that Carlos doesn’t sugar coat anything and speaks his mind on matters like these.
Going for a new internal position is a safer way of learning a new job in a tough economy. You are still taking a risk though and you deserve a reward for it. If you want something, you have to ask for it. And you have to be prepared to back your request up with a good case. As long as you provide value equal to, or exceeding your request – you are in the money. Go for it Carlos and please let us know how it went!
What is your experience of moving jobs internally, more cash or just more work? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Here is a list of common behavioral interview questions that you should answer using the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, and Result) model. Communication skills: What was the most challenging business presentation you have ever delivered? Give an example of when you had to put your foot down to assert a point that meant a great…
That’s right folks; I am going philosophical on you today. As great as the quote from Confucius is, the sad truth is that doing what you love is the dream of many, but the reality of few.
I get asked to help people with their job searches, however some people haven’t got a clue what the next job should be, where they are heading and what the longer term plan is. They are currently doing one thing and would consider doing ten different others. This makes it near impossible for me or the person themselves to actually get anywhere with the job search, let alone accepting a job offer down the line when the doubts start kicking in.
Confucius, the über wise man himself, put the truth down in a nice quote that sounds easy enough. The question is, how do you actually go about finding out what you would love to do? Not even a career coach can tell you exactly what you should do; it has to come from you. I don’t claim to be an expert on people’s dream careers but there are three simple questions you can ask yourself today and the answers can give you some guidance. Take a few minutes out of your day to think this over and you will have better clarity as a result. Here we go:
• What is the passion in your life?
• What would you pay to do?
• How would you fill your days if you were a millionaire?
The answers to these three questions are hopefully somewhat similar and will give you a good indication of what your true calling is. Whatever it may be, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that it is your childhood dream or what you set out to do before you stumbled upon an different path. Your dream will latently follow you for the rest of your life, your choice is whether to pursue it now or run the risk of having serious regrets later on.
Let’s say we press on. At this point it may seem like the dream activity is impossible to fill your days with unless you are idle rich. Assuming you don’t have that kind of money, your best bet will be to map out what others have done. By modeling others’ path to your dream job, you will have the roadmap ready. Ask yourself the three follow up questions:
• Does anybody get paid doing this?
• How could you get paid doing this?
• What is stopping you?
The answer to the final question is usually an amalgamation of excuses such as limiting beliefs, fear of failure, complacency and the all too cozy comfort zone. These objections can all be overcome with clear goals, hard work and belief in yourself.
Let’s take some action
When you have identified exactly what you want to do, the next step is to research the dream job. What companies or organizations do you target, where are the jobs located, do you need any qualifications, who can you contact that is already doing this? Speak to friends and family, professional contacts, scour Linkedin and the rest of the web for clues. The more research you do, the more fired up you will get.
Set some clear objectives and timescales and make sure you take an action every day to edge toward your goal. Get a big wall calendar to fill out your through goals and achievements. This change could be a long process but as long as you are willing to focus on where you are heading, you will get there.
Please note that while all great jobs out there are up for grabs, you have to do a reality check and make sure you are not delusional when pursuing your dream. There will be physical and other limitations that are out of your control. There could of course be very valid obstacles such as family situation or your finances; as a rule however, there is always a solution that can be worked out over time.
In my mind, as soon as you have identified the job you love you should go for it non-stop. Actually taking the decision to pursue your dream can sometimes be harder than achieving it. I say there are only two things you need to get any job; belief in yourself and desire. The rest will somehow take care of itself.
Are you doing the job you love? Why or why not?
You might want to check out How a Career Coach Can Help Your Job Search as well.
Image by Rob Web
Britain is definitely lagging on the Twitter job posting front so I will do best to stimulate some employer tweeting in the realm. Here is a list of the major British companies doing it already (no recruiters).
By following these Twitter accounts you will get jobs straight from the source and possibly quicker than anyone else. Click on the employer’s name and you will be taken to their Twitter page.
Royal Bank of Scotland
Surrey County Council
Follow all the British employers tweeting jobs here.
The list is short but growing so please let me know if you find any other tweeting UK employers!
Whether Twitter is useful or not has been hotly debated. One thing Twitter is very good at is shooting out snippets of information to a lot of people very quickly. In today’s job market, speed is of the essence and announcing new openings on Twitter is a fast growing phenomenon among employers and recruiters.
As a clever job seeker, you can now get new openings sent to you even before most recruiters get them simply by following the right tweeters. Here is the list of major employers that tweet their new job openings, it’s sorted by industries and the companies are hyper linked to their Twitter career page.
This list is a live document meaning more employers will be added as and when they start tweeting their job openings. I have carefully left out a few employers which are very local and/or small and thus not relevant for most readers. Do let me know if you want any additions to the list, as I am sure more and more companies will be catching on to using Twitter for recruiting staff.
Advertising / PR
[url=http://www.twitter.com/Ernst_and_Young”>Ernst & Young
Greenville Hospital System
Kissito Post Acute
Sri Ramachandra Medical Center
St Joseph’s Hospital
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Kaplan Test Prep
Disney Interactive Media
MTV Networks Games
Department of State
Department of Veterans Affairs
Securities & Exchange Commission
Retail & Hospitality
McCormick and Schmick’s
L-3 Global Security
Transportation & Logistics
If you want to follow all of the companies in one go, click here.
And be sure to follow The Undercover Recruiter on Twitter here.
Do you know of more great employers tweeting jobs? Let me know!