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Professional Association of Reseume Writers and Career Coaches

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 5 Ways to Optimize Keywords for a More Powerful LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is the monster.com of the 21st century, and more than 85% of employers will "source" (find) people through LinkedIn. There are now more than 200 million people on the site, and this article will show you how to make sure that you show up in the searches relevant to your job search.LinkedIn offers many opportunities to include appropriate keywords for your job search and career. It is smart to take advantage of that opportunity, given LinkedIn's popularity among recruiters.

Determine the Keywords You Want



 6 Critical Resume Tips to Launch New IT Professionals


So you enthusiastically enrolled in an IT curriculum, worked hard and graduated only to find that the job market is not what you thought. Now you need a powerful resume that will get you in the door so you can apply your recently acquired skills in the real world. Here are some important tips to make sure you get noticed.



 How to Get the Most Out of Job Fairs


Job fairs can be great or a frustrating waste of time. Nonetheless, they should be a part of your job search strategy. This article will help you understand how to maximize the value of job fairs.



 How to Work with Recruiters



Call them recruiters, headhunters, or search consultants, these are the people who are paid by the employer to find people who meet their needs, although these recruiters are not part of the employer's staff. (See the different kinds of recruiters for more information about recruiters.)

Here are some tips to get the most out of these relationships.



 New Ways to Use IT Job Boards


The first thing that most people do when searching for a position is to go to the job boards.

Although this was the best thing to do in the past, the job boards are not really the most effective way to find positions today. Here we talk about some of the best practices to optimize the impact of job boards on your job search.

See the full article at: http://bit.ly/kL1T3t



 IT Career Cross-Roads: Do I Stay Technical or Move to Management?

At some point, the IT professional rising from the ranks needs to make a major career decision: do I advance my career as a hands-on technical professional or should I focus on managing technical people? Here are some key points to consider when making this major IT career decision.



 Just Named North American IT Career Expert

I am proud that I have been selected as the IT Job Expert for Job-Hunt.org the leading career portal.

US News & World Report: Top Site
Forbes Magazine: Best of the Web
PC Magazine: Best of the Internet

Details at Job-Hunt's IT Job Expert



 5 Ways to Instantly Improve Your Job Search Results

By now you’ve learned the traditional ways of job searching don’t work anymore. A few years ago you could put your resume up on Monster and Career Builder and wait for the phone to ring. Those days are gone. So here are 5 things you can easily do that will quickly improve your job search results.



 You HAVE to be on LinkedIn

LinkedIn just announced 2 breakthrough capabilities for employers searching for candidates, which means you cannot afford not to be on LinkedIn anymore.

The Referral Engine lets companies find high-quality applicants by tapping the professionals in their employees' LinkedIn networks. Referral Engine recommends the most qualified professionals from within employees' LinkedIn networks. Email and LinkedIn homepage reminders suggest the best candidates, allowing employees to make referrals with just a few clicks.

LinkedIn also announced Jobs for You, which allows companies to distribute their job openings ONLY to individuals with matching backgrounds. You can pick your audience based on LinkedIn profile data including function, seniority, industry, and more.

So what does this mean to the job seeker? The major job boards are dead. Employers received far too many unmatched resumes at too high a cost. Employers and recruiters are flocking to LinkedIn to source candidates. Jobs for You ensures that only high caliber, well-matched candidates are sources while the Referral Engine helps find candidates through employee referrals. Bottomline, you must have an OPTIMIZED profile on LinkedIn and you should make sure you are well-networked to those who can refer you, which can be done through Groups and other tools.



 How to Turn a Temporary Job into a Permanent Position

A lot of people are taking temp-to-perm jobs lately. This is a great way to keep their skills fresh, earn a paycheck and hopefully be offered that coveted full-time position with benefits. Here are some tips to make sure you are #1 on the boss’ list for permanent status.

Of course you should put forth an A+ effort on the job. Produce high quality work consistent on time and make friends with everyone. Never say anything bad about anything. Nonetheless, plenty of other people can do this too, so here is what will get you that special edge.

Find out the things that your boss is measured on and consider how you can help him meet his goals. Then learn about his boss and any key influencers who can affect your boss’ career.

Now think about ways you can make him look good and meet his goals. Subtly suggest that you have found ways to improve things or another area you can help and you will have transformed your relationship from boss/temp to trusted ally.

Who do you think will be chosen for permanent status then?



 Unemployed for Over 60 Days? This Saves Employers Money!

Although it doesn’t feel good to be unemployed for over 60 days, new regulations actually makes it smart for employers to hire you.



 The Job Board Trap

Every day I hear from people who tell me that they have sent out dozens of resumes and are not getting calls. Some of these people have very good resumes so what’s the problem here?



 Things are Looking Up

There is a lot of noise regarding the state of the labor market. Here are some promising statistics.

First, remember that unemployment is what is called a trailing indicator meaning it is one of the last things that will be affected as the economy improves. When bad times occur, employers will quickly react by cutting staff and then try to get the most they can out of their existing workers until they just can’t get any more. Then they will start hiring on a cautious basis, often starting with temporary workers first before they commit to full-time employees. So let’s see where we are.

 US productivity in the third quarter rose to 9.5%, the fastest surge in 40 years. Normal productivity growth is about 3.0% so this shows that employers have reached the limit of what they can get out of their existing staff.

 There were only 11,000 jobs lost in November, the lowest rate in 2 years.

 Hiring of temporary workers grew by over 52,400 personnel in November, the highest surge in 3 years.

 In October, companies announced they plan to hire 57,250 new workers which is the highest level since July 2007.

 For executives, job postings on ExecuNet are up 30% since the summer, and last week postings were up 26% from the week before. Executive recruiters and hiring decision makers state that they expect 2010 to be much brighter than 2009. And there has been a 50% rise in new jobs obtained since September 2009.

Remember that February is the biggest hiring month of the year so be prepared. Make sure your resume presents you well and build a job search plan that includes recruiters, job board postings and networking.



 Building Your Network on Linkedin

Connecting with people in LinkedIn is an important way to build your network. For example, my network of about 100 people I know directly yields over 40,500 people 2 degrees away and over 3,510,800 people 3 degrees away. So here are 2 simple tips for building your network.

First, have rules as to who you allow into your circle. You should have some relationship with the person at the very least. So don’t just allow anyone into your network.

Second, when inviting someone into your network, take the time to override the default invitation and put something personal in. It is more effective, and just more polite. Every week I get invitations from people and sometimes I have to say, I just do not recall how we know each other or why we should be connected. So improve your acceptance rate by taking 30 seconds to put in a personal greeting.

Linkedin has become a must for job seekers so use these tips to make sure you are appropriately managing your network.



 Reviewing The Best Job Search Techniques

Hundreds of thousands of positions were obtained by job seekers last month, so employers are definitely hiring. If you are frustrated in your job search, then perhaps you should rethink your job search plan. Here is a recap of job search techniques and how to get the most out of them.



 Work at Home Job Sites

Here is a good article from CNN on companies that look for people working from their homes.

Check out:

http://www.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/worklife/12/01/cb.home.based.workers/index.html



 Retiree Job Boards

Here are some online resources for retirees looking for part-time or full-time work, many of which target anyone 50 or over:



 5 Things You Must Do in a Bad Job Market

Unemployment recently hit a new 5-year high of 6.1% with 605,000 jobs leaving the market. This will only get worse as the turmoil from the financial markets causes more layoffs. Here are 5 things you need to do TODAY to protect yourself.



 Great Online Research Tools

The internet has a wealth of tools that can help you in your search. Below are a choice few:



 Why You Should Not Send a Follow-Up Letter

I have often been asked whether you should send a Follow-Up letter. This is a letter used after days/weeks have passed since an interview and you are waiting for a decision. The letter is designed to ask how the process is going and when a decision could be expected. The answer is simple – NEVER SEND A FOLLOW-UP LETTER! Here’s why.



 SWOT Analysis for your Career

A basic tool used in strategic planning is SWOT analysis. This is where you take a hard look at your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats and plan accordingly. I am a firm believer that you should perform this analysis on your career at least once a year.



 Handling Salary Requirements

I am often asked by my clients how to handle requests for salary requirements. Many employment ads request salary requirements and some ads even insist on them.



 Power Career Moves for 2008

The new year is here – budgets are fresh, positions are open and every statistic points to aggressive hiring. Here are 5 sure-fire steps that will get you a competitive edge and land you that job.



 Following Up – What To Say

So you’ve sent your resume to a job you’re very excited about and a week has gone by without a word. Or perhaps you’ve had an interview and are waiting to hear how it went. What should you do?



 Save Your Numbers

I often come upon a situation that is a real wake-up call for people. When I am preparing a resume, especially for managers and executives, we need to impress potential employers by highlighting the achievements that were produced. That boils down to showing percentage improvements in quality, productivity, costs and so on. Yet many people haven’t bothered to save their numbers, particularly when they are trying to remember past year’s accomplishments.



 Parents – Add $200 to Your College Bill

Every week I get a number of calls from recent college graduates who are interested in our resume writing service. But when I tell them the cost is about $200 for a complete package, they say they can’t afford it. Does this make sense?



 But I Don’t Have A Degree

Every week people tell me that they are not getting interviews because they don’t have a college degree. Degrees are great, but to hiring managers, experience counts more. So how do you get around this obstacle?



 Simple Tip for Managing Office Politics

In the last couple of weeks, I have coached a few people who lost to “office politics”. However these cases stand out because a few basic tips could have helped them avoid losing their jobs.



 Job Prospects Look Good for Executives

According to ExecuNet’s survey of executive search firms, job growth will accelerate in the second and third quarters of 2007. In fact 67% of all recruiters report there is already a shortage of qualified talent in the market and the market will improve in the next 6 months.



 CareerBuilder Announces Video Resumes

CareerBuilder will begin taking video resumes in June they announced. That means that candidates who have video resumes can upload them to the site. So I wonder, is this good?



 Return to Work Mothers

I frequently work with women returning to the workforce after 1-14 years of managing the home front. If that sounds like you, here are some tips on how to reflect this period on your resume.



 Tip To Get Noticed

You see a job posting and you think you are a perfect fit. Yet, as excited as you are, you know that if you just send your resume to the listed address, you’ll be in a pile of over 1,000 resumes. Here’s a neat tip to move your resume to the top of the pile.



 Enjoy the Music

Does your cell phone have a message, “Enjoy the music while we locate our subscriber”? I recently called a potential client who was complaining that their resume for an Executive Assistant position was not working. I got that message and then was blasted by rap music about girl’s booties. So I asked the person, is this the number you have on your resume? She said it was.



 Is the Market Picking Up?

Yes, yes, yes. My barometer tells me that the job market is picking up due to the fact that this week I have had about 5 calls this week from employers asking for access to my "database" so they can find new hires. (For the record, I DO NOT give employers access to my client information as it is 100% confidential).

This would suggest that they are not finding enough candidates through traditional methods and it's certainly a good sign for the job seeker.



 Here are a bunch of statistics I've found interesting.

Here are a bunch of statistics I've found interesting.



 Great Time of Year to Get Jobs

Most people think that the holiday season is a dead time for getting jobs. Not true. In fact, the weeks in between Thanksgiving and Christmas are 1 of the best times to get noticed. And smart job hunters are taking advantage of the fact that few people know this.



 How to Get The Best Reference Letters

A client is being downsized from her employer, a Fortune 100 firm. Knowing that she will be leaving in 4 weeks, she asked me if she should be asking for reference letters from her peers and managers. My answer surprised her.



 Spending Time on Your Career

Isn’t it interesting that we spend the least amount of time planning for that which we will be spending the most amount of time in our lives. I’m referring to your career. Perhaps you read my other articles on “Happenstance Careers” – that most of us arrive where we are by happenstance. Extremely few people go through a formal exercise of actually planning their career path in a proven, methodical way. And this nonchalance often extends itself to resumes.



 Happenstance Careers

Most people manage their career by happenstance. They happen to meet someone… they happen to see an ad…they happen to get a call from a recruiter. And all of a sudden, they are 40 years old and not sure what they really want to do for the next 20 years.



 Senior IT Workers on the Decline

According to a survey by AFCOM (Association For Computer Operations Management), there is a trending lack of senior IT employees for data center operations.



 Hey what’s up, pup, pup, pup?

This is the voice message I received when calling the phone number a potential client had on their resume. The message continued to say she would return the call “if the caller were worthy”. She is applying for a Financial Analyst position that requires interfacing with senior executives. Just imagine how an employer would react to this.



 When to Use a Career Coach

Career coaches can clarify your strengths, identify your preferred work environment, balance the quality of your life and help you build a plan to realize your dreams. Nonetheless, most people do not use career coaches. There are, however, some situations that provide a compelling reason to use a career coach. Ask yourself these questions:



 Inside Secrets to Writing a Cover Letter

In interviews with hiring managers and recruiters, many confess they don’t even look at the cover letter. If they do, they only glance at it for a few seconds. So the trick is to have a cover letter that quickly captures their attention.



 What Do You Look Like Online?

According to a 2005 survey of 102 executive recruiters by ExecuNet, an executive job-search and networking organization, 75% of recruiters use search engines to uncover information about candidates, and 26% of recruiters have eliminated candidates because of information found online. What does your online profile look like?



 Simple Trick to Stand Out When Responding to Jobs

When you are responding to advertised positions through email, employers are getting hundreds of responses. Here’s a simple trick to make yourself stand out from the hordes.



 Job Seekers Expect Success in '06

In a recent CareerBuilder.com survey, 54 percent of respondents said they plan to increase their staffs in the coming year. Only 9 percent anticipate staffing cuts.



 Spam is Hurting Blogs

I think blogs are a great way to express yourself and share information with a wide audience. Although they are supposed to allow virtual communities of people with similar interests form, the spammers are killing us.



According to Computerworld. 2006 should be a good year for IT professionals. In fact the numbers of jobs posted on Dice.com from January through September for developers, project managers and help desk technicians rose 40%, 47% and 45%, respectively, compared with the same period in 2004. Interestingly, with all the talk of outsourcing, less than 5% of the 10 million people who make up the U.S. IT job market had been displaced by foreign workers through 2004. The survey also indicates the top 4 jobs that employers seek.



 Good News for Young Professionals

Fast Company has an article citing a yearlong study conducted by McKinsey & Co. indicating that the most important corporate resource over the next 20 years will be talent. It's also the resource in shortest supply, which is good news for the job seeker.



 Now's the Season to be Networking

As you consider all the parties and gatherings you will be going to this holiday season, are you remembering that this is a great opportunity to network? Do you have the tools to do it effectively?



A Computerworld article indicated that in a recent survey of 210 senior IT executives at Global 1,000 companies and 242 executives at outsourcing service providers, the percentage of users satisfied with offshoring providers fell from 79% to 62% over the past year. Even more telling was the number of customers who prematurely ended domestic or offshore outsourcing contracts within a year: That figure jumped from 21% in 2004 to 51% this year. Yet, in a PricewaterhouseCoopers survey, 74% of the respondents said they plan to increase their use of offshore contractors. So while outsourcing is not living up to its expectations, it is still a growing trend. What does this mean to the IT professional?



 Writing a Thank You Letter

I can’t tell my clients enough the importance of sending a Thank You letter after an interview. In a recent survey of hiring managers, nearly 15% say they would not hire someone who failed to send a Thank You letter after the interview. And 32 % say they would still consider the candidate, but would think less of him or her.



 How good is the job market?

I am asked this question at least 5 times each week. And to me the answer is simple. There are probably 2 million less jobs than there were 5 years ago. But you only need 1 so the odds are good. What has changed is the way you play the game.



 Making a Bad Job Good

The number one reason a person likes or dislikes their job is their boss. You can work for a company listed as one of the best places to work, and if your boss is a jerk, you’ll be miserable. Conversely, if you have a supportive boss in a lousy company, you’ll be buffered from the issues that arise there.

So what do you do if you are suffering under a micromanaging, egocentric, abusive, lying and untrustworthy creep? There are only a couple things you can do.



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