You Got the Job Offer! Should You Take It?

You applied for a job opportunity. You were called in for an interview. You aced it. You were called in for another interview. Ditto. The hiring manager tells you she’ll make her decision in a week and in that week you hear from her and she offers you the job!

You’re excited, naturally. Flattered, of course! Proud of yourself, natch!

But just because you’re offered a job in no way means you should actually take it.

careers in cerritos

Take a look below at four things you should consider before accepting any job offer.

  1. Do you know what constitutes success in the job?

In other words, has your potential new boss spelled out clearly what she expects of you? If in doubt, take a look at the job description and go over it with her, asking her for clarification and – more importantly – asking if there’s anything she expects that’s not in the description.

Taking a job with ill-defined expectations can be a prescription for disaster. If your boss says “I’ll know when you’re doing a great job when I see it” also could end up meaning “Your idea of what  ‘doing a great job’ means is not mine.”

  1. Do you think you and your boss and new coworkers will have a respectful, friendly relationship?

If you think you can be respectful but not head over heels in “like” with your boss/coworkers, that’s OK. Respect is far more important than liking each other because if your boss/coworkers don’t respect you, chances are great they won’t “like” you much either.  A lack of respect means they won’t trust you, won’t have your back, will second guess you, etc.

Still, having respect for and liking each other will make your working relationship much more enjoyable and will go far in helping you succeed in the job. But if there’s no respect, your working life will be miserable.

Another important aspect of respect/like: do you think you’ll fit in with your department’s/company’s culture? It’s probably best to go with your gut on this one: what was the vibe of the department when you visited/met with colleagues? If your intuition is saying there are red – or even yellow – flags ahead, it may be best to turn the job down.

  1. Does the position fit in with your overall goals?

Many of us see our career going in a certain direction. While it’s sometimes necessary to go sideways or even move “down” a bit in order to get ahead, if the new position isn’t going to at least teach you new skills or put you in front of new challenges – especially if they can help you move to the next step upwards – it may not be a good idea to take the job.

For example, let’s say you’ve been working in as an account executive in finance but want to move into marketing. It may be a good idea to take a “step down” and work as a marketing assistant in a finance firm that has a marketing department. But if it’s a lateral move with a salary increase to another finance company – but one that has no marketing department and no chance to learn marketing skills – you may want to turn it down.

Which brings us to the last thing to consider when deciding whether to take a job offer…

  1. Money isn’t everything, but it definitely IS something!

We put the salary question last because while money is an important consideration when mulling a job offer, it’s not the most important thing.

As mentioned above, it may not be worth it to take a job that offers no new challenges even if it pays more. It also may be advantageous to your career to take a job that pays a bit less so long as you the new position challenges you and helps you get where you want to go.

Still, you do want to feel that you’re being fairly compensated and you also want to look forward to the benefits package offered. (Remember: if you’re not happy with salary/benefits, the only time you can easily negotiate them is before you accept the job offer.)

If you’re looking for new opportunities – whether temporary, part-time or direct-hire – check out our job openings here with Helpmates. See one or two you like? Follow the instructions on the posting and/or contact the Helpmates branch nearest you.

Helpmates Staffing Services Once Again Is Named to the Best of Staffing® Awards for the Tenth Year in a Row

It’s a 10-peat!!!

Helpmates Staffing – once again! – has been named to ClearlyRated’s Best of Staffing® Client and Talent Diamond Awards. This is our 10th straight year of earning this award!

Helpmates Staffing  Services has earned ClearlyRated’s Best of Staffing® Client and Talent Diamond Awards for 2019. (ClearlyRated formerly was known as Inavero.)

We earned the Diamond Awards in both the Talent and Client categories after winning the best Best of Staffing® award in each at least five years in a row. Participating staffing firms are rated by both their clients and their candidates (talent). On average, clients of winning staffing agencies are 2.2 times more likely to be completely satisfied with the agency’s services and candidates who have been placed by winning agencies are 1.7 times more likely to be completely satisfied compared to those working with non-winning agencies.

Fewer than 2 percent of all staffing agencies in the U.S. and Canada earn the Best of Staffing award and just 35 percent of those also earned the Diamond Awards this year.

More than 1.2 million people (staffing candidates and clients) across the country provided feedback on many of the nation’s staffing firms. Award winners are determined by the percentage of satisfaction scores of 9 or 10 (out of a possible 10) given to them by their placed job candidates and clients.

Helpmates won in four areas:

  • Client Satisfaction Award (10th year in a row)
  • Talent Satisfaction Award (8th year in a row)
  • The Best of Staffing Client Diamond Award (6th year in a row)
  • The Best of Staffing Talent Diamond Award ( 4th year in a row)

We never would have enjoyed winning this award for the 10th time without the dedication and hard work of our internal team members. We are humbled that our temporary associates and clients appreciate all the work that our internal employees perform on their behalf: we are honored to work with and for you as we strive to place the best candidates with the best companies in Southern California.

To learn more about our services for clients and job candidates, contact the Helpmates branch nearest you.

Hacking the College Job Fair

Yep, it’s February. If you’re a college senior, you’re busy. And one of the things your busy with is getting ready for your campus’ college job fair this spring.

jobs in carson

What? It’s not on your radar!!! Why not!? College job fairs are a terrific way for you to land job interviews with potential employers. Understand that you’re not going to get a job offer at a career fair: your goal instead is to line up job interviews with different potential employers.

The great thing about college career fairs is that employers come to scope out potential employees. They want to talk to you and, if it you looks like you might be a good fit, set up a full-fledged interview at a later date.

So sign up for the career fair!

Yes, dozens if not hundreds of your classmates are going as well. But they may not have read this blog post. YOU have and in this post are three hacks that, if you follow them, will get employers to ask you in for a job interview.

Warning: these hacks will take some time and a good bit of effort on your part. But if you want to stand out, put in the time and you’ll be rewarded.

Take a look below for our three college job fair hacks.

  1. Study the list of companies coming to the fair.

See what companies are coming and then go research the ones that look interesting to you. And almost all of them should look interesting to you because even though, for example, you’re looking for a marketing job, just about  every company has a marketing department, so don’t automatically say no to a bank or a manufacturer, etc. Still, it’s OK to designate your top 10-15 companies and then focus on them

By study we mean, research. Take a look at its website. Look it ALL over, not just the careers or jobs page. Read as much of the site as you can. Take notes about things that pertain to your degree field.

Read everything you can about the company.  Google it and see what others say about it. Check out Indeed.com and Glassdoor for reviews.

  1. Decide what skills and experience you bring to an employer that bring value.

Remember: employers hire people to solve problems. What problems do you solve? What value do you bring to an employer?

Yes, you have little to no real-world experience in the field you want to enter. But do you have initiative? Are you a member of the dean’s list? Have you worked full-time while going to school full time (that shows you know understand what hard work is and that’s highly valuable to an employer)? And so on.

Write down the skills you have that the field you want to enter requires. Have professors, managers at internships, etc. commented on how great these skills are?

You’re going to need to know what problems you solve/value you bring because now you’re going to….

  1. Write a custom cover letter and resume for EACH company you intend to visit at the career fair.

That’s right: one cover letter and one resume for EACH company. No template cover letters/resume for you. And, while many people say there’s no need to bring a cover letter to a college career fair, writing one specifically for each company helps you stand out. And standing out is what you want.

Yowza, this is going to take work! Yes. It certainly is.

But understanding what particular skills and background you provide to a company and then showcasing how they bring value to a particular company shows a recruiter you understand why an employer hires people.

Any time you look for work you should make it as easy as possible for an employer to hire you.  Presenting how you help solve a company’s problems, etc. makes it a lot easier for a recruiter to see how you match a company’s needs (she doesn’t need to read between the lines) and you’ve made it much easier for her to ask you in for a formal interview.

We can pretty much guarantee that very few – if any – of your classmates are going to customize a cover letter/resume for each company at the job fair. Few – if any – of your classmates are going to be able to talk to a recruiter with as much information as you will because of your deep-dive research. Perform these hacks and watch how well recruiters will respond!

Want some real-world experience before you head to the job fair? Take a look at our job opportunities here at Helpmates and if one appeals to you, follow the instructions on the opening or contact the branch office nearest you.

Everyone’s Leaving My Employer. Should I Go, Too?

Today’s hot, hot, HOT candidate market means many people are leaving one job for another. And it feels as if everyone is doing so. Why? Because they can. With unemployment in Los Angeles County at 4.6 percent (in October, the latest figure available) and 2.9 percent in Orange County in October, employees are leaving for what they believe are better opportunities in droves. (And some don’t even bother giving their employers notice.)

So what do you do if you see “everyone” at your company or in your department leaving? Should you leave, as well?

South Bay Careers

Take a look below to see when it’s a good idea and when it’s better to stay put.

Better to Leave

  • If rumors of layoffs are rampant – and these rumors have the taste of reality – then it’s far better to leave sooner rather than later, especially if there’s more than one of you with the same duties and you realize that you’re not the best of the bunch. (Yes, it’s true: employers tend to keep top performers and let lower performers go, even if the lower performer is doing just dandy.) It’s best to leave before being asked to leave because you’re much more attractive to an employer when looking for work if you’re employed while doing so. There’s unconscious bias in hiring that if you’re unemployed – even through no fault of your own – that there must be “something wrong with you.”
  • Similar to if layoffs are nigh is when your company is purchased by another and it has one or more people doing the exact same thing you do. Most layoffs occur on the side of the company purchased (not at the buying company), so unless your skills and the value you’ve been bringing to your employer are top-notch, it may be best to start looking elsewhere.
  • Your employer had layoffs and you’ve survived but the workload is now awful. If you’re overwhelmed and stressed at work after surviving an employee purge, it may be best for you to start looking elsewhere.

Best to Stay

  • Just because “everyone” is leaving is no reason you should. Be careful of herd mentality and have a meeting with yourself to see if your desire to leave is because you’re now lonely in your department. If that’s the case, make an effort to make new friends at work, not only in your department but throughout the company.
  • You’ve just been promoted. It’s time to prove to yourself and the manager(s) who believed in you enough to recommend a promotion that you have what it takes to succeed in your new role. Once promoted, try your best to stay in that new role for at least one or two years.
  • If there have been layoffs, you survived and your manager starts to hire replacements, you can take a look at your situation in a much more positive light: now is the time you – as the experienced one – can be a leader among the new hires. Showcase your success with these people to your manager – how your mentoring/leadership of them has provided value – and you have an excellent argument for a promotion/pay raise in a few months.
  • Is yours a company that has a history of not laying people off in a recession? (Perhaps it asks folks to take reduced pay in order to keep everyone employed, for example.) Regardless, chances are great there’s going to be a recession or – at the least – a growth slowdown at the end of 2019 or in 2020. [Will link to January Post 3.] Job layoffs may result. If your company has a track record of keeping people employed, it’s best to stay instead of leave because a new employer may end up laying people off and if you have yet to prove yourself to them, you may be one of the first to be let go when payroll funds become tight. (Of course, as noted above, if layoffs DO appear imminent and you feel you’re not a top performer, start looking!)

Whether you’re currently employed or unemployed, today’s candidate market is one of the best on record and if you’re interested in “seeing what else is out there,” take a look at Helpmates’ current opportunities. If one or more of them appeal to you, follow instructions to apply, or contact the Helpmates branch office nearest you.

Southern California’s Job Outlook for 2019

So here it is, mid-January. Talent still is hard to find around the country. Candidates are ghosting when it comes to job interviews and even employees are just leaving their employer without notice.

But that’s nationwide. What’s this year’s job outlook for Southern California? We put on our sleuthing hats to find out.

  1. More of the same: an absolute candidate market (at least through the 2nd Q 2019).

Brea Jobs

No surprise there. According to the California EDD (scroll down to the link at “Short-Term Projections: Two-Years” and download the spreadsheet), employment in Orange County from 2nd Quarter 2017 to 2nd Quarter 2019 is projected to grow overall by 3.4 percent (interestingly, self-employment is projected to grow by 4.2 percent). Not every employment sector is going to grow (mining and oil/gas extraction, for example, is projected to fall by 8.5 percent overall), but most are growing.  Manufacturing is to grow 1.8 percent; while software publishers are to grow a whopping 13 percent; auto equipment sales and leasing by 6 percent; professional and business services by 3 percent; advertising, PR and marketing by 3.4 percent; professional, scientific and technical services by 4 percent; office administrative services by 6.7 percent; and so on.

(Take a look at the document; it’s fascinating. For example, if you’re looking for work in the “travel arrangement and reservation services,” growth is expected to be 5.6 percent. And this, remember, is in a day when many of us make our own travel arrangements online. So much for the “death of the travel agent”!)

  1. But that’s statewide. And it’s for mid-2017 through mid-2019. What about in Southern California and in just 2019?

We hear you. It’s a bit trickier to find info/predictions for just Orange and Los Angeles counties, but here’s what we found: we may experience an economic slowdown in late 2019.

If you don’t want to read the link, here’s what it says in a nutshell:

Although the economy is currently operating at full employment and benefiting from the massive tax cut and spending increases, the economic stimulus coming from that combination will likely run out in 2020, and deficits it creates will linger for another decade.

In spite of concerns about the risk of a full-blown trade war with China, the forecast for the U.S. economy is one of growth, albeit slower growth. California remains one of the most prosperous states, with a strong market that is expected to continue to grow.

You’ll notice it says the big growth ends in 2020, but further down the report states the growth “will slow to 2 percent in 2019 and to a near recession at 1 percent in 2020.”

As for California: the state’s growth will slow along with the nation’s but our economy is still expected to grow faster than the country’s as a whole. Here’s the skinny, below:

The total employment growth forecasts for 2018, 2019 and 2020 are 1.7 percent, 1.8 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively. Payrolls are expected to grow by 1.7 percent in 2018, by 1.8 percent in 2019, and by 0.8 percent in 2020. Real personal income growth is forecast to be 2.5 percent, 3.6 percent and 2.9 percent in 2018, 2019 and 2020, respectively. California’s average unemployment rate is expected to have its normal differential to the U.S. rate at 4.2 percent in 2020. Home building will accelerate to about 140,000 units per year by the end of the 2020 forecast.

  1. Most job growth is in the Inland Empire.

Sorry, OC and LA, but the job growth is greatest due east. Which could be great news if you live there and work west and wish to find a job closer to home. Pay rates are a bit lower, however. For example, Indeed.com reports that the average hourly rate for an administrative assistant in Anaheim is 16.21/hour while in Riverside, it’s $15.28. Yet housing also is less expensive, with the median gross rent in Riverside County hitting $1,212/month, while it’s $1,264 in Los Angeles County and $1,608 in Orange County. (Data is from 2017.)

  1. Wrapping up.

So things look great for job seekers for at least the next six months and possibly throughout the entire year. After all, slower growth still is growth. But don’t be complacent because often in business, slower growth often means….job cutbacks! And that means the unemployment rate will rise and jobs will be harder to come by.

 

So if you can:

  • Learn new skills.
  • Take note of your accomplishments and add them to your resume.
  • Work to add value to your employer (don’t just “show up for work,” do the minimum expected of you and then think that you’re “valuable”).
  • Grow your professional network.
  • Never, ever become complacent. If you’ve never been laid off from a job before, if you’re laid off next year or early in 2020, get ready for potential WEEKS of unemployment. It happens. And to talented, valuable workers. No one is immune.

That’s why it’s a good idea to have a Helpmates recruiter in your professional network. In fact, take a look at our current opportunities, and if one appeals to you, follow the directions to apply. You also can contact the branch office nearest you to register.

How California’s Statewide Minimum Wage Hike is Affecting Your Temporary Workforce

It’s not news to the region’s employers that the minimum wage for California businesses with more than 26 employees increased statewide from $11/hour to $12/hour on January 1.

What’s more, Los Angeles County will be raising its minimum wage on July 1, from $13.25/hour to $14.25/hour.

What this means is that temporary workers taking assignments in Los Angeles County will be making more than $2 more an hour by mid-summer than if they were to take assignments in Orange County, where the minimum wage will remain $12/hour.

Brea staffing agency

We believe that employers in Orange County within a “reasonable” distance from Los Angeles County will lose out on top temporary workers unless they are willing to at least meet the higher minimum wages.

We’ve found that driving 60 minutes or more to make $2 or even “just” $1.25 more an hour is quite attractive to temporary workers. Long commutes are a way of life here in our region, and even taking a trip from the coast to the San Bernardino Mountains for a day is considered pretty much “nothing” to many of your friends and neighbors. (We know you agree with us, but in case you need proof…..)

Workers Making More than – But Near – Minimum Wage Also Expect a Hike

We’ve also seen that temporary workers who earned $2 or possibly as much as $3 more an hour than minimum wage before this year’s hike also expect to see an increase. If not, they will leave. So if an employer was paying a forklift driver $14/hour in December, that driver is expecting a raise to at least $15.

This expectation is particularly acute among lower-wage hourly workers (particularly those working in light industrial environments) on extended assignments (six-months or longer). Our administrative/professional associates, who already may have been making $18 or $20 or more an hour, haven’t been expecting a pay raise since the minimum wage hike.

We do, however, expect our administrative/professional associates to look for wage increases for their higher-than-minimum pay rates once the minimum wage reaches the $14 to $15 an hour area in the next year or so.

What This Means for Your Staffing Firm’s Billing Rates

We’ve found that our clients understand that a temporary agency’s employee cost doesn’t rise by $1/hour when the minimum wage increases by $1. We know they do because most of our client contacts work in human resources and understand well the costs involved in bringing on employees (as well as how using temporary staff can help keep an employers’ costs down considerably).

We also know they do because we’ve made a point of educating our clients months ago regarding how the past (and coming) wage hikes not only the temporary workforce’s pay expectations but also their staffing partners’ employee costs.

Bottom line on billing rates? Paying temporary workers $1/hour more does not mean you will be billed $1/hour more. Your bill rate will increase by an amount reasonable to cover our increased employee costs.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding how much to pay hourly for different skill sets and occupations, or if you’d like to start planning ahead for this summer’s wage increase so that your ability to continue to attract hard-to-come-by top talent, contact the branch manager at the Helpmates location nearest you.

2019 New Year’s Resolution: Embrace AI

Many recruiters and human resources professionals may be – to put it lightly – a tad leery regarding artificial intelligence. After all, while many experts are saying AI won’t take away our jobs, just change how we do them, we’re still wary. Should we gird ourselves for a “take over by the ‘bots”?

Our take? Embrace the techno! We believe AI won’t replace recruiters. It will, instead, make our workday lives easier. Here are just three ways how, below.

Anaheim Staffing Agency

  1. No more poring over dozens/hundreds of resumes.

Let AI do it! By allowing technology to find the relevant skills, education and background needs and then saving all of it in easily accessible (and readable) data fields, is a sourcer’s and recruiter’s dream come true. Using a resume parser can be an incredible time saver. And since too many great candidates find other employment while your hiring process lags, that’s a very good thing indeed for your desire to hire top talent. Especially as they evolve into tools that use neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) for much greater accuracy.

  1. Provide “scores” for each candidate.

AI can rate each candidate based on criteria set by a hiring manager. Artificial intelligence can crawl through resumes and even social media profiles to find this information, thus eliminating the oh-so-time-consuming resume cull. What’s more AI can perform multi-batch phone screenings, thus ridding humans of this highly stressful and somewhat tedious task.

  1. Help you predict which candidates will perform the best on the job.

Most of us show our best selves when interviewing.  And as a recruiter or hiring manager you’ve no doubt hired someone who looked great on paper and/or interviewed exceptionally well only to find them….lacking in some important aspect of their job performance or even cultural fit.

Predictive hiring analytics, however, can help identify which candidates are a best fit – and would make a better employee. This type of AI uses richer data sets and smart algorithms to highlight the candidates that best fit criteria set by hiring managers and/or recruiters.

Additional uses of predictive hiring analytics include:

  • Highlighting which requirements are associated with good performance over time.
  • When do soft skills – and which soft skills – indicate how successful a candidate will be.
  • Ascertain which job candidates are most likely to accept the job offer.
  • Screen out those candidates who are good-looking-on-paper-but-not-going-to-be-good employees.
  • More objectively use information found during reference checks and background screening.

What AI Can’t Do

Taking a look at the above tasks easily taken over by bots, what do you see? You see the preliminary, early going, screening process tasks. (And they don’t do any outreach to passive candidates!) The in-depth conversations and relationship-building during a job interview — the selling of the position — can’t be done by technology, and probably never will.

Instead, AI will take the tedium away from recruiting and allow top recruiters to do what they do best: connect with and nurture top talent.

Looking to connect with top talent today? Call upon the recruiters at Helpmates. All of our recruiters are Certified Staffing Professionals (CSP) and we pride ourselves on delivering exceptional service to both our clients and candidates, as evidenced by being named to Inavero’s Best of Staffing list for nine years in a row!

Contact the Helpmates branch nearest you. We look forward to hearing from you.

Making Career Resolutions that Actually Stick

Merry Christmas!

While chances are that you’re reading this on some day other than December 25 (the day this went live) and you’re no doubt now thinking of which gifts to return, why not also take some time in preparation for the New Year to think about what career resolutions you plan to make… and how you plan to keep them in 2019.

Long Beach careers

Take a look below for some tips on how to keep your career resolutions this year.

  • If you’re looking for a new position, 2019 is probably one of the best times to do so. Yes, even better than it has been this year.

This resolution should be easy to keep: the economy next year is expected to continue to grow and the fantastic candidate market (if you’re a job candidate) or war for talent (if you need to hire someone) is projected to continue.

In fact, the unemployment rate nationwide is expected to fall in 2019 from 3.7 percent (2018’s rate) to 3.5 percent. (One caveat, however: the economy may slow a bit in the second half 2019 as a result of the current trade war and other factors.)

Still, if you’re unhappy at work, now is the time to put your toe in the job-hunt water: recruiters are eager (some might say, desperate) to help you.

  • Explore careers that might interest you. As in REALLY explore.

It’s one thing to say you want to change careers. It’s another to actually start researching different possibilities because doing so probably will take you out of your comfort zone.

You don’t want to move to a different career just because you “think” you’ll like it. Instead, you need to “try it out” as much as possible before making any change.

How can you do so? At minimum you should read as much about it as you can. Your second (easy-ish) step is to find people who work in the field now and talk to them. Talk to at least three and ask them what they love/hate about it, how they got the work they do in the career and ask what you should do to learn more about it.

If at all possible, try to work in the career yourself. See if you can get a part-time job within the field. Or freelance. Do this for at least three months so that you can be sure you actually like the profession/work.

  • Get those skills you’ve been promising yourself you’ll get.

Hard skills are in great demand today, especially in technology and healthcare. So desperate are Southern California employers for people with these skills that the state’s community colleges offer dozens of two-year (or shorter) degree and/or certificate programs that will help residents learn new job skills. Getting trained in some in-demand-positions (such as “middle skill” healthcare positions) may not take nearly as long as you think and could raise your salary, possibly considerably.

If you’re not up to two years or several months of education, consider taking short certificate programs, either online or off. Don’t forget to ask your supervisor about being reimbursed for short training programs you find online (although many online professional development courses are free).

If you’re thinking of finding a new job (or a new career), consider registering with Helpmates. We have many part-time and even direct-hire and temp-to-hire opportunities waiting for you; one of them could well have your name written upon it. If you see one that interests you, follow the posting’s instructions or contact us.

Happy New Year! And here’s to a wonderful 2019 for you and your loved ones!

Hiring Trends for 2019

Happy 2019 (soon)! As we get ready for the New Year, we thought we’d explore the next 12 months to see how they may differ from 2018 from a hiring standpoint. How will AI affect recruiting and staffing? How will candidate interviewing evolve? How will data affect sourcing?

Take a look below.

  • Talent will continue to call the shots.

If you think finding great people is going to get any easier next year, keep your sourcing and networking skills sharp because the economy is expected to continue to grow throughout the year  and so the hot candidate market is expected to continue apace. In other words, as it stands now, employers/recruiters don’t pick candidates, they choose you. And that state of affairs is expected to continue throughout the coming year.

Torrance staffing

Many recruiters and employers have started treating candidates more like customers. Which means hiring this coming year will mean using even more marketing tactics in recruiting so that you attract, convert and retain your customers candidates.

In other words, you’re going to continue to be exceptionally nice to candidates (as you’ve always been, of course!) and you’re going to continue building solid relationships with them. You want to continue to be their BFF throughout the recruitment process and beyond.

  • Speaking of BFFs, say hello to your new best friend, AI.

Many recruiters worry that artificial intelligence will take sourcing/recruiting jobs away, and while it may take the really tedious aspects of the recruitment process from off humans’ hands (tasks such as screening resumes and scheduling interviews, for example), it actually will make recruiters’ lives better and more enjoyable, allowing them to do the things they entered the field to do: to connect great people with their employer (and for independent recruiters/staffing firms, other great companies).

AI also will help recruiters and hiring managers improve quality of hire, because AI uses data that standardizes the matching of a candidate’s experience, skills and knowledge to a job’s requirements, thus helping match the right person to the right job, resulting in more productive and happier employees. You know, the types that tend to stick around for the long term.

In addition, LinkedIn’s Global Recruiting Trends Report 2018 predicts that AI also will remove human bias in hiring and save employers money.

  • Job interviews may become more like auditions and it’s possible we’ll start to say goodbye to the paper resume.

As more and more employers start placing more and more importance on “technical” skills, employers may start asking job candidates to perform aspects of the job during the interview, an audition of sorts. (Marketers may be asked to create a marketing plan while coders may be asked to create some code, for example.)

Meanwhile,  because companies also are looking for soft skills in addition to technical acumen, a candidate’s social media profile or a video submission may provide an accurate first impression more accurately  than the traditional “paper” resume.

(Job seekers take note: it may be necessary to create digital portfolios, your own website, etc. And make sure to clean up your social media profiles!)

What about you? What hiring/recruiting trends do you see making stronger footholds next year? Let us know by contacting the Helpmates branch nearest you. We’d be happy to offer tips/best practices on how to recruit top talent in 2019 and beyond.

Navigating the Office Holiday Gift Giving Obstacle Course

It’s December! Bring on the office gift exchange!

As we move into the 2018 gift-giving season, many of us may wonder: Do I give my boss a gift? Do I have to purchase holiday wrapping paper from my colleague’s son’s Scout fundraiser? Can I opt out of the office gift exchange?

Brea jobs

The answers to these questions are – frankly – important because office interactions do impact career success. What’s more holiday gifting traditions at the office often can be fraught with landmines. Here’s how to navigate them successfully while also enjoying this lovely time of year at work.

  1. Should I give my boss a gift?

In a nutshell: you don’t have to. In fact, it’s probably best that you don’t, because it could come across as toady-ish: as if you’re trying to curry favor with your supervisor. If you really, really want to, it’s best if you go in a group gift with your department.

If you feel you must give your manager a gift because he/she expects it and will not look upon you favorably if you don’t, you may want to think about getting another job and another boss…

By the way, many bosses often give gifts to their team members. (Such holiday gifts often are flowers, movie tickets, food, gifts that are the same for everyone, etc..) This is appropriate and in no way obligates you to reciprocate. Even if the boss gives different gifts to everyone (the boss has taken note of his/her team members’ likes and dislikes), accept the gift graciously.

  1. Do I have to give my coworkers gifts?

If you feel that one or more coworkers is a true friend (that is, you’re personal friends outside the office and you want to give a personal gift), then do so. Just make sure you give the gift outside the office.

As for giving coworkers with whom your professionally friendly? It’s appropriate to do so with those with whom you interact daily or with those in your department. If you feel uncomfortable giving individual gifts, consider asking if there’s a formal office gift exchange event such as a white elephant gift exchange (often hilarious) or Secret Santas.

If you’re hard up for funds and you don’t want to provide gifts for colleagues, you should never feel ashamed (or shamed into doing so). If people give gifts as a matter of course and you don’t want to come across as Scrooge, consider baking cookies or bread and giving those as gifts.

If you plan to give gifts to some, but not all of your colleagues, present the gifts privately so that the co-workers who are left out don’t have hurt feelings.

  1. Do I have to purchase items during holiday school fundraisers?

No, you do not. Yes, it can be very hard when a colleague asks you to purchase flavored popcorn or wrapping paper for his/her child’s school fundraiser. If you don’t want to, say so politely. A simple “No, thank you” should suffice.

  1. Can I opt out of the office gift exchange?

Probably not. The good news is that full-office gift exchanges often come with price points (you don’t have to spend more than $10, $20 or $25, for example) and you often only have to purchase one gift for one person.

In addition, office holiday gift exchanges often come with office parties and are festive and usually loads of fun. (Look up white elephant exchanges, for example….)

But refusing to play along if your department holds an “official” gift exchange? You could hurt your reputation as a team player. Probably best to play along, follow the stated budget guidelines (or make your own) and enjoy the fun of the exchange itself

Why not give yourself a great holiday gift by taking a look at Helpmates’ current opportunities and then following the instructions within each job description to apply and/or contact the Helpmates office nearest you to register with us.

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