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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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  • Creative Resume: Amazon Product Page

    January 28, 2013
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    Getting noticed can be hard for job seekers, especially when it comes to differentiating yourself from the competition when you’re all competing with the same tools. A candidate with the right references, resume, or even a lucky tie can potentially be lost amid hundreds of similarly qualified candidates. How then to go about getting noticed? Setting yourself apart from the crowd is easy, it just has to be done with tact and just a pinch of cheekiness, the most important thing being to have some point to your deviation from the norm. The notoriously strict conventions of the resume produce a homogeneous applicant pool on paper, flat like the medium. One of the easiest ways to attract attention is with an unorthodox resume. Just check out this creative resume in which the job seeker made himself an Amazon product page to showcase his work skills. It’s funny, clever, and still has the basic information for employers. To see this outside-of-the-box resume, click the link below.

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  • Robotics Industry as a Future Job Creator

    January 24, 2013
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    For this week’s Fun Friday featured article on the Accolo blog, we have some New York Times coverage on a widely discussed topic in the employment world: automation. A typical argument against the expansion of robotics in the United States always involves the claim that more robots in the workforce (how weird does that sound?) would adversely affect people with manufacturing or even white collar jobs, and that technological advancement will make certain positions obsolete. According to Dr. Christense of the Georgia Institute of Technology, the robotics industry will actually be beneficial to both job seekers and industries the world over. The Times article talks to several small American Manufacturers who stand by their decisions to ramp up their use of robots, saying that it has allowed their companies to expand and compete with other companies internationally. Whether or not the robotics industry will create millions of new jobs worldwide over the next decade remains to be seen, but the testimony of these American robotics engineers and the manufacturers that use these machines certainly is heartening. To read the full article on how robotics will potentially be a job creator, click the link below.

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  • Accolo is Counterpoint to Bloomberg’s Criticism of Recruiters

    January 24, 2013
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    There has been a lot of discussion recently in the HR and Recruiting industries concerning a lack of qualified candidates on the job market. Recruiting and hiring in general needs to be as adaptive and as today’s economy is volatile. For job seekers, the process of signing with many of these recruiters (generally the ones that see a problem with today’s candidate pool) is tedious and overly bureaucratic. Such recruiting practices as forcing candidates to fill out a dozen personality tests or failing to keep candidates in the loop about their prospects can sweep brilliant candidates under the rug and leave only the scratchy, barnacle-type people clinging on at the end. Today’s source article is from Bloomberg Business Week and it criticizes those in recruiting that are not taking steps toward innovation in hiring. It’s not that the candidates aren’t qualified — it’s that recruiters aren’t finding them. At Accolo, our mission is to continue to innovate cutting edge cloud recruiting software and provide better candidates more quickly than ever before. To read the full article on what’s changing in recruiting, click the link below.

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  • New Tax Code Weighing Heavily on Silicon Valley

    January 23, 2013
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    Startups in Silicon Valley have enjoyed the potential for wild success since the time when computers were still only displaying green text, and even before the advent of pre-ripped jeans. You and your friends could take your idea and run with it: bring some sharp engineers on board, work 80 hours a week and potentially cash out in a big way. One of the things that made this business model so successful over the years is California’s deduction in capital gains tax for “Qualified Small Business” stock. How big of a deduction? About half off, down to 4.5 percent when startups finally hit pay dirt.

    This is no longer the case. The Federal Tax Bureau announced that this tax break for entrepreneurs will no longer apply. Not only that, but a retroactive taxation (with interest) will apply to all company sales since 2008 in the State of California. This new tax code could have a large impact on the start-up model, pushing budding companies (and the jobs they generate) out of California and into states with a lower Capital Gains Tax. To read an Op-Ed about this development in the tax code, click the link below.

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  • Improving Office Morale and Other Cultural Standards

    January 18, 2013
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    Atmosphere, ambiance, culture, vibes: there are many words for the overall feel of a place. There’s nothing more disconcerting than to discover that someone that you work with dreads coming in each morning and doing their job. As an employer, you want to make sure that your employees feel good in the place that they work. While the problem of work environment aversion has a lot to do with the unhappy employee, the fault sometimes does lie with practices that make employees feel alienated or like they don’t belong. One of the easiest ways to improve the environment of a glum office is to change the way in which daily tasks are parceled out. Instead of a laundry list of tasks, try a delivery that focuses on how these tasks fit into the big picture for the company and for the individual employees themselves.

    Of course, the classic way to boost morale is to incorporate some non-work related activities into your office’s schedule. Lunch out, games, contests, fantasy football: pretty much whatever will float the most boats. That being said, you can’t please everyone. Sometimes certain employees aren’t a good fit for an office culture that has been thriving for some time. Whatever your case, you should definitely check out this article from Xenium about the “4 Ways to Culturally Engage Your Employees”.

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  • Wal-Mart Intends to Hire 100,000 Veterans

    January 16, 2013
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    Wal-Mart announced their plan to help strengthen the U.S. economy by hiring 100,000 veterans as well as stocking its shelves with a higher percentage of goods manufactured in the United States. This act of good faith comes a few months after the store had seen walk outs and striking by its employees across the country. During the strikes, disgruntled employees said that they were not allowed to work full time or change their schedule, problems that critics of the store immediately brought up in response to Tuesday’s announcement. They also brought up an earlier “Made in America” campaign during which the retailer presented foreign manufactured goods as made in the USA. This being said, Wal-Mart does provide high wages in its store’s management positions, the highest salary of a store manager being over 250,000 dollars. It’s clear that the retail giant is trying to be less harsh toward their employees, which is definitely a good thing. If this gesture is enough to drop unemployment rate, we have yet to see. To read more follow the link below to a Reuters article.

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  • Software Developer Outsources all of His Work to Chinese Consultant

    January 16, 2013
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    Telecommuting into work might sound like a dream to you. No rush to get out the door before the sun comes up, no early morning traffic and most importantly: no pants required. The only down side is the potential for distraction that exists in the comfort of one’s home. Yep, pretty much the only downside of working from home is that you still have to get yourself to work when nobody is watching you. Or that’s the theory at least. The exception to this rule came, today, in the form of a software developer for Verizon outsourcing his daily tasks to a consultant in Shenyang, China. What did this lazy, enterprising individual do with his free time? Diddly squat. According to the BBC, the software developer surfed the internet for almost the entire time that he was supposed to be working. In addition to lying to Verizon, the culprit was also outsourcing his work at other companies to the same overworked Chinese Developers, paying 50,000 a year to pull in a several hundred thousand dollar salary. To read more about this hard to believe story, follow this link to the BBC source article.

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  • How to Spot Bad Habits in Employees Early

    January 11, 2013
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    Do you believe in love at first sight? How about first impressions? As a manager, do you think that you can tell who is going to work out in your office and who won’t within a few minutes of meeting them? How about after the first week? While some obvious warning signs may include constant profanity or an aggressive disposition; some can appear benign at first and then blossom into a chronic problem. Today’s source article from CEO.com discusses the early warning signs of work habits that lead to the employee in question getting very little done at all. For instance, an employee that is late or absent within the first week is likely to be late again, and again. In fact, 35% of employees who were late in their first week violated attendance standards in the future. This doesn’t mean you should fire someone for being late on their first time, but do keep an eye on them. To find out about the other 4 early warning signs of a bad employee, click the link below.

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  • The Pitfalls of too Much Social Networking

    January 11, 2013
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    Utilizing social networks to increase the speed of collaboration between internal employees and external consultants or experts is rapidly becoming the norm for offices everywhere. Email and instant messaging are key, especially if one of your key collaborators has never set foot in the office, or even the country. While this rapid idea sharing is certainly helping businesses expand, too much interaction online can be unproductive and sometimes downright inappropriate. For instance, if you are in upper management, it’s ok to delegate the updating of your Facebook page to someone else for external readers, but write your own social media for internal affairs. Your employees read your emails, memos and everything else you write, so they will be able to tell when your ghost writer is speaking on your behalf.

    Probably the biggest no-no for social media is the discussion of personal matters. Trying to discuss somebody’s sub-standard work ethic on a Facebook thread just isn’t an effective way of getting your point across. Even in today’s digital age, a face-to-face conversation is still the tried and true way of sorting out private issues. To read about all of the 7 Business Tasks to keep in the real world, click the link below.

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  • Facebook can be a Hiring Manager’s Gold Mine

    January 10, 2013
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    Facebook and other social media have become an integral part of most people’s personal lives and professional toolboxes. Facebook offers companies a platform for direct marketing and recruiting. Basically, if your business isn’t represented in the social media sphere then you’re missing out on a golden opportunity not only for expanding brand awareness, but for recruiting the most qualified potential employees to grow your company. But simply creating a page is not enough on its own fulfill the recruiting potential that social media offers. Here at Accolo, we pride ourselves on our social-media savvy. Click here to check out our webinar on social network recruiting.

    Whether you want to use Facebook for recruitment or for marketing purposes, it’s important to keep your page regularly updated with timely and relevant content. You can’t let your page atrophy out there in cyberspace. Be sure to invest the necessary time into creating a web presence and interacting with your fans, customers and potential future employees. This is “social” media, after all. To get some more tips about using Facebook the right way, click the link below:

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