Feature: WEDDLE’s Research Factoid

Feature: WEDDLE’s Research Factoid

Feature: WEDDLE’s Research Factoid

WEDDLE’s continuously conducts both primary and secondary research on Best Practices in employment excellence and HR leadership. We recently asked the visitors to the WEDDLE’s Web-site to tell us where they expect to find their next job. A total of 1,270 people participated in our survey. Here’s how they think they’ll be successful in future job search campaigns:

  • 57.6% Responding to an ad posted on an Internet job board
  • 16.8% Networking at business and social events
  • 7.2% Responding to an ad posted on an employer’s Web-site
  • 7.6% Sending a resume to an employer by mail
  • 3.9% Receiving a call from a headhunter
  • 1.9% Receiving a call from a staffing firm
  • 1.9% Attending a career fair
  • 1.6% Responding to a newspaper ad
  • 0.7% Joining a social networking site
  • What the Findings Mean

    There are two key requirements to executing a successful job search campaign, especially online:

  • Doing the right things
  • and

  • Doing the right things in the right way.
  • These findings make very clear that, in today’s job market, one of the right things to do is use a job board. But which job boards are right for you? With more than 40,000 of these sites now operating in the U.S., that question is not easy to answer. You can arrive at a good solution, however, by using the following guidelines:

    Look for career portals as well as job boards. Career portals are site that help you prepare for career advancement as well as find the employment opportunities that will enable you to do so. They do, of course, provide a job database so you can perform the most popular job search activity among our respondents-look at job postings-but they also provide a way for you to network with your colleagues-the second most popular activity. These sites use features such as discussion forums, bulletin boards and blogs to put you in touch with your peers and position you to tap their knowledge of the “hidden job market” online-the unadvertised jobs that often provide the greatest opportunity and rewards.

    Be a good consumer. When most of us buy a car or a television set, we work our way through a structured decision-making process. It’s not particularly fancy or complicated, but it works-it helps us make a selection that is appropriate for us. That’s exactly how we should “shop” for a career portal.

  • First, gather as much information as you can about your options. I recommend that you look for sites that connect with you in multiple dimensions. For example, if you’re in the financial services field, look for sites that specialize in financial service opportunities and at least one other attribute that applies to you (e.g., your age, ethnicity, gender or level of experience). In other words, look for sites that focus on women or African-Americans or senior level managers in financial services, whichever applies to you.
  • Second, gather data on the sites and compare their features, services and fees. For example, which offer a job agent, which provide confidentiality in their resume database, and which post jobs with salary levels that meet your employment objective. Pick at least ten sites that you will explore further.
  • Third, test drive the sites. Evaluate both the maintenance of each site and the experience it provides to its visitors. Do its pages open, are its links broken, and do you find typographical errors on its pages? Does the site have a professional and welcoming look and feel? Is it easy to use and navigate or is it bland, confusing and uninviting. If you have a lousy experience, so too will recruiters, and that means they are unlikely to use it.
  • Fourth, select at least five winners. To ensure that you tap into the full range of employment opportunities online, pick two general purpose employment sites-those that post openings in all professions, crafts and trades (e.g., Monster, CareerBuilder.com, Yahoo! HotJobs, NationJob Network, Best Jobs USA)-and three specialty sites that focus on your career field, industry and desired location (e.g., ConstructionJobs.com, BioSpace.com, The New York Times JobMarket).
  • Fifth, revaluate your selections regularly. The job boards and career portals available to you change all of the time. We at WEDDLE’s, for example, update the site data in our Guides and Directory every two weeks. The key to success is to avoid getting stuck in a rut. Make sure you’re always using the sites that give you the best access to the career advancement opportunities you seek and deserve.
  • Please Note: As a part of our ongoing research, WEDDLE’s has been surveying both job seekers and recruiters on the Web since 1996. We’ve amassed hundreds of thousands of data elements probing:

  • what they do and what they don’t do,
  • what they like and what they don’t like,
  • and most importantly,

  • what they think works best.
  • To add your insights and opinions to our research, please visit the Polling Station at the WEDDLE’s Web-site.

    Section Two: Insights From In-Sites

    Peter Weddle has been writing columns for his own newsletter and for the Interactive Edition of The Wall Street Journal since 1999. The following column has been drawn from that work and updated for 2006. You can also find many of Peter’s tips and techniques in our book WEDDLE’s WizNotes: Finding a Job on the Web.

    How Workaholism Can Hurt Your Career

    More and more Americans are working more and more hours. Some believe they must put in the extra time in order to hang onto their jobs, while others think that spending lots of time in the office or on the road is the key to career success. Sadly, the former are probably right-employers are squeezing the life out of the work-life balance in order to meet Wall Street’s profit expectations-and the latter are definitely wrong. Here’s what I mean.

    Americans now spend more hours on the job than English, French or German workers and even the vaunted salarymen of Japan. According to the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average workweek in the U.S. now drags on for 49 hours, which means Americans are working 350 more hours per year than their counterparts around the world. Worse, recent surveys indicate that American workers are also cutting back on or even eliminating their vacations in order to meet their employers’ demands.

    Not surprisingly, this behavior is wrecking havoc with our lives. Spherion conducted a survey several years ago that explored where people are spending their time. It polled 600 people and found that a staggering 51% spent 7 or more hours of personal time each week thinking about work. When asked what part of their lives this behavior most adversely affected:

  • 32% said family and relationships,
  • 27% said health and fitness, and
  • 20% said their sex lives and hobbies.
  • In other words, over-doing work is a harmful addiction, and there is even a Web-site that provides support for those who are afflicted. It’s called Workaholics Anonymous .

    The recognized consequences of workaholism are bad enough, but there is another side effect of this condition that is not as obvious, but just as hurtful. Ironically, focusing all of your time and effort on the workplace can hurt your career. Why? Because such all-consuming behavior precludes your investing the personal attention and thought required to manage a career successfully, especially in these difficult and unpredictable times. There are only so many hours in the day, and workaholism commits them exclusively to the service of your employer and leaves little or no time for you.

    Setting the course for your career and taking the actions required to implement that plan are not trivial tasks. They require considerable skill, knowledge and commitment. They are not something you can do on an ad hoc basis, when you decide to make a move to another employer, or on an emergency basis, when your employer decides that it’s time for you to move along. As with anything important and complex, managing a career-at least, doing so successfully-is a full time, on-going obligation. In short, it’s work, and you must make time for it just as you do for your work on-the-job.

    Now, employers have been telling us for years that we are in charge of our careers and personally responsible for their direction and success. Until recently, however, the tools for responding to that dictate were all but nonexistent. Most people did not have access to either the information or the resources necessary to develop a clear course for their career and take the steps necessary to make it happen. The Internet, thankfully, has changed that. For the first time in history, working men and women actually have what they need to be bona fide personal career managers.

    What should they do? I believe they should invest the time and effort to work at six discrete activities. These activities provide both the forward momentum to move you toward your personal employment objectives as well as a safety net for the unexpected turns in a career. They entail:

  • Using the job agent technology on employment Web-sites to look for career advancement opportunities every day for the rest of your work-life.
  • Visiting corporate Web-sites and independent research companies online to conduct research on prospective employers and identify those where you can best continue to grow and develop in your work.
  • Joining online discussion forums and electronically networking every day to expand your range of contacts and access to opportunities in the world of work.
  • Learning and following the rules for the safe storage and transmission of your resume on the Internet.
  • Tapping the rich information and developmental resources available online to ensure that you are always “interview ready” in your profession, craft or trade, your industry and the world of work, in general.
  • Doing your homework to find and then investing the time to use those job boards and career portals that can best advance your career-today, tomorrow and into the future.
  • This 6-step plan can be helpful to you, whether you are about to graduate from college, are still looking for your first job after college, have years of experience in the workplace or are a senior executive in transition for the first time in your life. It includes all of the offensive and defensive steps you should take to find good jobs consistently, perform at your best in those positions, and continuously advance your career. It is not, however, an ala carte menu. In other words, you cannot pick and chose among these activities and expect to be successful. No, this plan is a single, integrated strategy which must be executed in toto, if it is to deliver the outcomes you seek in the world of work.

    Workaholism is an illness that is often shrugged off because we think it is the price we must pay to secure and advance our careers. It is so all-consuming, however, that it ends up abusing our careers as well as our lives. If an employer expects you to adopt such behavior, therefore, it’s in your best interests to refuse. Then, use the 6-step plan above to look for a job where you can excel in your work and in the management of your career.

    Thanks for reading,

    Peter

    P.S. Remember what you learned in kindergarten: It’s nice to share. Don’t keep WEDDLE’s to yourself. If you like our newsletter, please tell your friends and colleagues about it. They’ll appreciate your thinking of them. And, we will too!

    Section 3: News You Can Use

    EHSCareers.com, an employment site specializing in environmental, occupational health and safety employment, announced that it will now serve as the official job board of NAEM, an organization formerly known as the National Association for Environmental Management. NAEM serves management-level professionals in the environmental, health and safety fields.

    JobKite.com published several tips for job seekers who are thinking about posting their resumes on the Web. The site’s suggestions are presented below with my commentary:

  • Check to ensure the site has a privacy policy (Comment: Equally as important, check the policy, itself, to make sure the site will not sell, trade or barter your personal information to another company);
  • Limit the contact and personal information your provide (Comment: While it is not a foolproof solution to identity theft, there is some protection in replacing the home address and telephone number on your resume with an e-mail box and cell number); and
  • Don’t post your resume everywhere (Comment: For the best privacy protection, only post your resume on sites that remove your contact information and get your permission before releasing it to prospective employers).
  • WEDDLE’s is pleased to announce a special new program designed to deliver important benefits to career counselors and coaches. Called CareerReaders, it provides:

  • World class training on the latest trends and issues in online job search and career self-management;
  • Exclusive discounts on WEDDLE’s flagship Guides and Directory; and
  • Unlimited supplies of WEDDLE’s 2007/8 Catalog for distribution to your clients, so they too can take advantage of WEDDLE’s publications.
  • Best of all, the program is absolutely free for professionals in the counseling and coaching field.

    CareerReaders is open only to practicing career counselors and coaches. To obtain additional information and sign up, please call WEDDLE’s at 203.964.1888.

    “When in doubt, consult WEDDLE’s … an industry standard.” HRWIRE

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