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Interview Questions that Reveal Everything

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You have thirty minutes to gather all the information you need to make the perfect hire. You’re aware of the negative impact that a bad hire has on a company and you want to leave confident knowing you made the right decision. Where do you start? Our own John Younger offers up his top three interview questions that reveal everything about the candidate.

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  • Job Seekers Buried by Bad Credit

    May 14, 2013
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    When making a new hire, it’s important to figure out what kind of person you’re bringing on board, both inside and outside the office. The inside part is easy, accessible through their resume and their presence during the interview. What can be harder for employers to gauge is what kind of person the candidate is in their home life. Some of the only investigative tools at the disposal of employers are criminal background checks and credit checks. The use of credit reports by hiring managers was featured in a New York Times article that found a correlation between bad credit and not being able to find a job. According to a survey in the Times article, 47 percent of employers use credit checks when making hiring decisions, and 12 percent use a credit check before every hire. The article’s main focus is on those job seekers adversely affected by their bad credit and the vicious cycle that debt has entangled them. Many employers, especially those in retail, will reject qualified candidates because of their credit score. The big news for employers and job seekers alike is the support that opponents of this practice are getting from lawmakers: Nine states have already implemented measures to curb credit checks by potential employers. To read the full article, click the link below.

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  • Prospects Still Uncertain for College Grads

    May 13, 2013
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    For those of you with kids about to graduate college, or you recent graduates who have metamorphosed into job seekers, you’ll be interested to know that job prospects in 2013 are looking to be as scarce as last year. Unfortunately for people who thought learning to express complex ideas with words and drawings was going to be a viable career path, it seems like the market is still favoring those versed in numbers and diagrams. According to a Addeco survey conducted by Braun Research Inc., 58% of hiring managers are not planning on hiring any college graduates for entry level positions. Still more hiring managers, 66%, believed that fresh college graduates were unprepared for the workforce. This is not to say that all grads will have a tough time finding work. A CareerBuilder survey reports that graduates with Business or STEM degrees (Science, Technology, Engineering and Medicine) are much more likely to find a job, with business majors in demand for 31 percent of employers. To read the Addeco survey and find out what college grads can do to improve their chances of scoring an interview, click the link below.

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  • How Big Data Predicts Job Performance

    May 10, 2013
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    In 2013, data is king. The usefulness of analytics in hiring models has been vetted and is here to stay. But with this expansion of the role of Big Data in hiring comes a necessary focusing or narrowing in on what is useful and what has become antiquated. Further, it is necessary when implementing the data analysis process to be smart about what your sources are. Free, unstructured data from casual social media, such as Facebook, may not be as reliable a predictor of job success as other, more formal sources such as LinkedIn or virtual accreditation sites like Klout. An article by Dr. Charles Handler discusses the ways in which data is influencing both the hiring process and the attention and accuracy of job performance figures. One of the findings that Dr. Handler discusses is that people that give a high volume of referrals tend to have higher success levels than those who receive a high number of referrals. To read all of Dr. Handler’s findings, click the link below.

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  • Demand For Nurses Higher than Ever

    May 9, 2013
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    Do you ever wonder why the expression goes “nursed back to health”, instead of “doctored back to health?” The reason could be that, since the advent of modern medicine, it is the nurse who takes charge of the well being and recovery of patients after the doctors have come and gone. As anyone who has been in the hospital knows, it is these professionals who provide the attention and care necessary for recovery. This week is National Nurses Week, a fine time to shed a little light on one of the most respected and in-demand careers in the country. According to an article from ERE.net, nurses are currently the most in-demand professionals in the country, based on the numbers of online job postings. And the demand is projected to grow even further, adding as much as 700,000 job listings for nurses by 2020. Unfortunately, the country’s capacity to train nurses is still far behind today’s demands, not to mention handling the further needs coming over the next few years. To read the article from ERE.net, click the link below.

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  • Social Networking and the Future of Hiring

    May 8, 2013
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    The integration of social media into the recruiting process was a turning point, leaving the old ways of doing things behind. This development of the web presence of candidates has been a useful, if sometimes controversial tool for screening candidates. While party pics on Facebook from several years ago probably won’t tell you much about a candidate, the concern that this potential screening generated spawned hordes of online image management companies. But according to China Gorman, the days of social profile evaluation may be behind us. A new survey from SHRM (Society for Human Resources Management) says that just about two thirds of employers do not or will no longer use search engines or social media to screen candidates. This is most likely to do with the evolution of legal ramifications associated with misuse of candidate profiles.

    One of the most significant data points in the survey was that 40% of companies are now seeking upper management through social media. This effectively gives top management candidates the option to self-promote rather than seeking employment through recruiters. To read China’s full article and grab some more social media trends, click the link below.

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  • Holding Out For Perfect Hires

    May 7, 2013
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    Settling for less than you want is never the right course of action. Unless you’re settling for less debt, conventional business wisdom says to stick to your guns and hold out for a better deal. While this can make your company strong, the flip side of resilience is stubbornness, which doesn’t help anybody. Sure, we’d all like the highest quality in the people we hire, but is it really feasible for your company to attract perfect, superstar candidates? Are they even necessary to seek in the first place? According to Kieth Halperin at ERE.net, the key for a successful hiring model is to hire for the tasks you need accomplished, not for some unrealistic standard. By understanding your company’s employment brand and public image in a pragmatic way, you can see what level of candidates you are going to be able to find and retain. Holding out for dream talent can waste time and money, so don’t get caught up in the search. Instead, think about who you need to get the job done. To read the article on Robust Recruiting Models from ERE.net, click the link below.

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  • Visa Debate in the Tech Industry

    May 6, 2013
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    People with degrees and training in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM for short) are some of the most sought-after job candidates on the market today. STEM jobs have also come under the national spotlight recently in the congressional debate over immigration, specifically in regards to the proposed increase of H-1B work visas. Opponents of the visa increase suggest that tech jobs that might otherwise go to Americans will go instead, in ever greater numbers, to foreigners.

    STEM industries, specifically technology companies, have some of the most highly-publicized employee shortages in the nation. Companies like Microsoft continue to complain of a talent shortage while thousands of qualified graduates and job seekers languish in unemployment. These companies are relying more heavily on foreign talent, such as Facebook with 15% of its staff on visas. Naturally, these companies are some of the most vocal proponents of the new legislation. What do you think? Should the most qualified candidate get the job no matter what, or should considerations be made to help lower American unemployment? Feel free to leave a comment with your opinion. To read the full article click the link below.

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  • US Economy Adds 165,000 Jobs in April

    May 3, 2013
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    Analysts were surprised by April’s jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which was contrary to many projections of doom following March’s uninspiring numbers. And speaking of numbers, 165,000 jobs were added in the month of April. Getting back into the triple digits after March’s dip into doubles bodes well for the continued strength of the recovery. Despite a recent payroll tax increase, global financial uncertainty and the government’s sequestration, the recovery continues on, more or less uninterrupted. The industries that hired the most in April were Hospitality (43,000), Temp Services (30,800), Retail (29,300), Health Care (19,000) and Professional and Technical Services (22,800). The sectors that performed poorly in April were in the government and in Manufacturing/Construction. We all knew that major government lay-offs were on the way due to sequestration, so it was no surprise to see 11,000 jobs lost from the federal work force. Construction lost 6,000 jobs and Manufacturing had a net gain of 0 jobs. To read the report from the BLS, click the link below.

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  • Getting Past the Cold Shoulder in Cold Calls

    May 2, 2013
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    Forming a connection or even getting someone’s attention over a cold call can be challenging. There is a good chance that you will be brushed off initially or, even worse, after giving your all in a passionate pitch. A dismissal may not be the end, however. According to an article from ERE.net, if you are dismissed in a knee jerk sort of way right from the start of the call, you should not give up. Instead, hear the person out on why they aren’t interested and then try to engage them in conversation with a less direct line of questions. By letting the person that you’re calling do some of the talking, you are transforming a pitch into a dialogue, forming a connection with this person that you’ve known for 60 seconds. Even if trying to engage the candidate or potential client doesn’t work, politeness and an open ear can form relationships that could translate to a new hire a few years down the line. To read the 10 steps in building rapport in cold calls, click the link below.

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  • Interviewing for Motivation

    May 1, 2013
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    Evaluating a candidate’s level of motivation, and the conditions under which they will perform at their best, seem like difficult things to figure out for sure during an interview. According to Lou Alder, it’s not only these things that you should aim to learn by the end of an interview, but also a candidate’s aptitude for the primary tasks that they would be completing at your company. This can be done most effectively by starting with an outline of several concrete performance objectives, and defining the work for the candidate from the start. Once you have defined the work, you ask the candidate to relate comparable accomplishments to these primary tasks from their work experience. This method requires hiring managers to go further than just listening to these answers, as patterns in the candidate’s answers can reveal the conditions under which they can work best. Ask questions as they relate these comparable accomplishments. How closely did they work with their team? With their managers? Did they ever go above and beyond what was asked? To get Lou Alder’s advice on interviewing for motivated candidates, click the link below.

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