3 keys to preparing for your interview in 2014
Job hunt Checklist Series:To start off the New Year and get your job hunt started well we’ve produced to help you get a lock on the job of your dreams. This is the second installement on preparing for a job interview.
1. How to dress for inteview success
2. Learn from past mistakes with the Randstad blogger's worst interview ever.
3. Trends in Resumes for 2014, the Dos and Don'ts
A few hours of preparation will save you hours of perspiration when it comes to time being interviewed.
Know your resume be ready to expand on it
If you’re being interviewed it is because you’ve impressed someone with your resume. Writing an effective resume and repeating yourself with the content therein during your interview isn’t enough; you need to continue the conversation you’ve started with its reader in the interview room.
There is also a chance that someone in an interview room with you hasn’t given your resume a very thorough read, they may be a higher level manager who is being invited in to get an impression of who you are.
Expanding on the points you’ve made in your resume will benefit you in any situation. It will show the person who has read your resume that you’re being truthful in your resume and it will provide context to the cursory reader who has only read your jobs titles.
Research your interviewers
As I mentioned in the first piece in the series on work attire, you should Google who you are being interviewed by.
This will give you a sense of what they do and might give you at the very least, something to break the ice with in your conversation. It looks good if you know who you are sitting down with. Linkedin is great for this, and when you look at their profile they’ll see you are preparing for your interview. There is nothing wrong with being attentive and active in your application, that doesn’t mean you should try to connect to them online right away or send them an Inmail message with your life story. If the interview goes well, they’ll be adding you as a connection after you’ve met with them or giving you a call offering the job.
Research the company and their recent projects
Large companies have press releases about recent or past activities. Corporations are a lot like people, they are creatures of habit. Understanding what they’ve done in the past will give you clues into what they’ll do in the future. They’ll also teach you about the company’s structure and will help you get on message and on brand before your interview.
Knowing what the company is saying is great, understand what is being said about the company can be even better. Know what the company’s pain points are and you’ll know what to absolutely avoid in your conversations with higher level management. You’ll be able to congratulate them on a recent award they’ve received, or may be even attend an event where they’ll be in attendance where you can make a natural first impression.
What was your worst interview ever? Share your story with us on Twitter @RandstadCanada
2 Stories that make this a New Year of progress for female executives
After Randstad Canada's Women Shaping Business program we learned a lot about how companies and governments are making efforts toward workplace equality.
There were two news stories popped up in the past week that I wanted to share with you all.
Japan looks to turn the tide of female executives
Japan which has historically been one of the least equitable working nations, in terms of female integration on corporate boards and executive level management is looking to change its tune. Starting from the top, Japan’s Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has set a new goal set a goal of increasing the percentage of women in executive positions, reports thinkprogress.com.
Japan is aiming to increase its share of female executives from its current 1.6% to an ambitious 30% by the year 2020.
Record Number of Women in the Fortune 500
According to Catalyst, a non-profit organization, as of Jan. 1, there were 22 women running Fortune 500 companies or 4.4% these include giants like, IBM and PepsiCo. This number is up three-fold from 2002-2003 when there were only seven women in these top positions
For a complete list of female chief executives running Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000, companies, you can visit, catalyst.org.
What these are saying is that policy can help move the goalposts on female executive progress. We've begun to make inroads in the Fortune 500 and if a government like Japan's can set such aggresive goals, what can your municipality or province do?
Have you heard anything that is inspiring you? Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @RandstadCanada
We wanted to share this awesome photo of one of Randstad Canada's Victoria, British Columbia teams, taking part at a local food bank stacking donations this holiday.
What did your office do to celebrate the holidays? Send up your photos on Twitter @RandstadCanada.
Great advice from Randstad Canada Thought Leaders
The year is has come to an end, and we wanted to share with you some of our latest accomplishments. Thanks to our talented spokespeople, our gifted agency partners and our creative marketing team, Randstad Canada has secured a constant presence in major media outlets in Canada throughout the year.
With the conclusion of the Women Shaping Business campaign, we’d like to thank all of you for helping us reach the media so vigorously. We more than doubled the media we gleaned last year, with over 53.5 million media impression and 100 articles from outlets across Canada, including 5.5 million in Quebec from 14 news stories, we really made the Randstad Canada brand known.
Some of your colleagues have been on the airwaves, in newsprint and on television speaking about the Canadian economy, workplace trends and employee engagement.
Tao Qiu, on CTV News
Toronto branch manager, Tao Qiu explains why most Canadian workers expect no holiday bonus this year.
Agnes Lam on OMNI News
Like Agnes Lam a Randstad Technologies Recruitment Manager out of Richmond Hill spoke with Omni News about the top jobs in Canada, who’s going for them and what it takes to recruit them.
Tao Qiu Canadian Press Video Series
Toronto branch manager, Tao Qiu took part in a long form interview with the Canadian Press on a wide range of topics from employer branding, effective resume writing, personal communication style and job hunting tips. The series is being published broadly on sites ranging from The Globe and Mail to AOL.com.
Patrick Poulin on Argent
Patrick Poulin is regularly interviewed on Canal Argent on various topics related to employment, this time, he talked about skills shortage and the need for employer to invest in skills training.
Do you have any questions about Canadian employment? Contact us on Twitter @RandstadCanada, or visit www.randstad.ca and search our current job openings.
Majority of Canadians Didn't Expect a Holiday Bonus in 2013: Randstad
Nearly half spent the holidays thinking about their jobs
There seemed to be few Canadian Clark Griswolds banking on receiving a holiday bonus this past year. According to Randstad Canada’s most recent WorkMonitor survey, only one-in-three (37%) Canadians expect to receive a bonus from their employer rewarding their hard work during 2013 – a full 11% lower than the worldwide average.
Taking a look around the globe, workers in the majority of countries within Asia (73.5%) are expecting a bonus this year, with Hong Kong (85%) having the highest expectations globally. Workers in Latin America are also hopeful of a nice year-end reward, with over three-quarters (77%) expecting their employers to provide them with a bonus. Only one-in-ten (11%) of employees in Switzerland expect a bonus this holiday season.
But considering Canadians are expecting less financial rewards from their employers, are employers expecting their workers to reward themselves with added downtime during the holidays? According to the survey, one-in-four (23%) Canadian workers feel they are still required to be available 24/7 while on holiday vacation –which can come at a high cost. This is a particularly concerning figure given that estimates state that work overload accounts for $3 billion in lost revenue annually due to absenteeism, and nearly $6 billon in health care costs or usage of benefits.
“We keep a close eye on how Canadians are feeling in their jobs and looking at 2013, many Canadians are definitely burning the candle at both ends," says Tom Turpin, President, Randstad Canada. “A lack of relaxation both physically and virtually will eventually take its toll and isn’t good for either the employee’s health and wellbeing, or the company’s bottom line."
Employer expectations aren’t the only reason why many Canadians aren’t taking advantage of what should be considered downtime. Two-in-five (41%) of Canadians plan to proactively check in with the workplace during the holidays to stay informed, while another three-in-ten (29%) say they can’t resist reading their work email continuously during the holidays.
Although some Canadians feel the need to stay continuously connected to their email, they aren’t feeling the pressure as much as those in Turkey (63%), China (58%) and Japan (56%).
“For many places around the globe, speaking about overworking has become a form of boasting, and tends to be applauded with a nice pat on the back, “says Turpin. “But the reality is that when you have so many Canadian workers that feel they need to remain connected 100% of the time, the mentality will eventually catch-up, resulting in poor work-life balance and potentially employee burnout and talent loss.”
For more information contact:
1.416.962.9578 ext: 2512
1.514.350.5309 ext: 233
About Randstad Canada: Randstad Canada is the Canadian leader for staffing, recruitment and HR Services. As the only fully integrated staffing company in the country, we understand the recruitment needs and demands of employers and job seekers across all levels and industries. Through our insightful knowledge of local markets, employment trends and global network of recruitment experts, we are shaping the Canadian world of work. Visit randstad.ca
2014 Job Hunt Check list Series – Work attire
To start off the new year and get your job hunt started well we’ve produced a series and checklist for you to follow, this is the first instalment of this series on proper interview attire.
1. Three keys to acing the this year's interview
2. Learn from past mistakes with the Randstad blogger's worst interview ever.
3. Trends in Resumes for 2014, the Dos and Don'ts
Different offices have different dress codes; suits are always a good call.
- Suit up: A safe bet is to suit up, with a nice pair dress shoes. Depending on the city you live in, the industry that you are trying to enter you can get away with a dress shirt and fitted slacks of some sort, likewise depending on the position you are applying for ties, and jackets are always necessary. If this is your first job, and you are applying at a large company, be respectful and wear a suit. No one will judge you for being overdressed; pretend it is your first day on the job. This applies for anyone; suits will open doors for you.
- Shoes make the man: If you can afford to wear a new pair of shoes. Nothing can make you feel more confident than a new pair dress shoes on my feet, confidence counts for a lot. If you have an older pair of dress shoes, consider having them polished professionally, or watch this awesome Youtube video on polishing your shoes yourself.
- To Tie or not to Tie: Know your audience, when you are being invited to an interview ask who will be attending. This way you’ll be able to Google them and find out what they look like and what they wear, plus it is never a bad idea to know who you are going to sit down in front of. A tie is customary, but not always required. If you are sitting down in front of two men who are older than you, wearing a tie is a sign of respect and you don’t want to be the only guy in the room with an open collar.
For women this is more complicated and less simple to describe. Forbes produced a great list of the top fashion blogs for female professionals, you can check that our here.
Styles change all of the time, and it is hard to pinpoint what is and isn’t work attire these days. But here are a few key points.
- Suit up. Yes: There are a lot of options for full suiting for women that are affordable, attractive and comfortable. Work wear for women is by-and large more affordable than for men, and comes in more creative styles, so explore your closet and consider buying a blazer that highlights something you already own. You can still showcase your personal style while wearing modern female suiting
- Yoga Pants. No: Yoga pants are a non-starter unless worn as tights. No matter how nice they look and how comfortable they are they are not work attire unless you are working in an athletic store or yoga studio. While yoga pants are a definite no, flats are acceptable. If you aren’t comfortable in heels you don’t have to wear them.
- Shoulders and neckline: There is absolutely nothing wrong with showing your arms, but be careful when you are nearing your shoulder line, it is a bold statement. Same goes for your neckline; a nice necklace hung across a bare neck can frame your face really well, but be sensible.
What are you wearing to work? Share your best outfits with us on Twitter and show off your style. @RandstadCanada
You can read this first piece, on preparing a job interview here.
We found this really interesting post from a newspaper at the North Pole that speaks about employer branding and working conditions in manufacturing facilities. It made for a very entertaining read and our hearts go out to everyone up in the North Pole this time of year.
From the North Pole Observer, this report, “Trouble in the Toy Factory”.
Trouble in the North’s largest gift production facility
By Ebenezer Scrooge
Speaking under the condition of anonymity, for fear of his job, a gift assembly operator reveals his story of a shift in labour conditions at one of the North Pole’s largest production facilities.
It was the week before Christmas and all through the shop, not an elf was there working, production did stop.
All is not well this yule-time season, as a labour shortage has created tough times for St. Nick in his Northern most production facility.
“It started with competition for my skilled manufacturing labour,” explained Mr. Cringle, also known has Santa Claus. “With production increasing for smart phones like the Galaxy 4, and the iPhone 5S, my elves are being poached, they are diligent workers and the most experienced manufacturing staff on the planet. Think about the pension you could rack up with over 400-years on the job.”
Cringle explained that 15 per cent of his labour force has moved south in the last two quarters, which has put pressure on his remaining staff. The result has been a general work stoppage as the Elves United Union (EUU), is looking for a wage increase and an improvement in the quality of hot-chocolate that is served during work hours.
Speaking under the condition of anonymity for fear of his job, the North Pole Observer spoke with a gift assembler who feels that the changes at the facility are affecting giftwrapping quality.
“We aren’t asking for a lot, we really just want improvements to our vacation packages and we want to switch from President’s Choice Hot Chocolate Mix, to Tim Hortons, it came to a vote and that’s what the EUU has requested,” the assembled explained. “My worry is that the number and quality of bows on gifts has dipped, and my fear is that we might end up spelling names wrong on gifts. Nothing is worse that writing ‘To: Timmy’, instead of ‘To: Jimmy’. The letters we get for that are horrible.”
Looking to bring the work stoppage to an end Cringle is wavering on his hardline stance of vacation time as suggested in a heated meeting with the EUU and the Reindeer Transportation Authority (RTA), that he’d create a relocation exploratory committee.
Speaking at the meeting Cringle said, “It is obvious to me that the issue at hand was less to do with vacations, and more to do with our facilities’ location. Perhaps building a new clandestine facility on the western coast of Canada, near the distribution hubs of Vancouver will improve relations.” Which, seemed to mollify the EUU but brought questions from RTA president, Rudolph Rednose.
“While I appreciate the living and working standards in the North Pole can be difficult, I worry that bringing a production facility closer to traditional transportation systems may reduce the relevance of flying hooved transportation. We’ll have to look into how this move would affect our overall carrying volume,” said the reindeer president.
The meeting concluded with both the RTA and EUU agreeing the Cringle’s exploratory committee suggestion with an ending to the work stoppage scheduled for Dec. 21 at 2 p.m. EST. “All gifts will be received as scheduled, and that’s my commitment as the jolliest, oldest elf of them all. I’m the boss, I’m Santa, the buck stops here.”
Randstad Canada Women Shaping Business Award Winner Announced
With over 50-submissions over two months, the competition was tough, but a winner has been selected for the 2013, Women Shaping Business story contest.
Chosen by an independent panel of female thought leaders, and nominated by Donna Diebel, Carly Kuntz of Waterloo, Ontario has been selected as the 2013, Women Shaping Business Award recipient.
About the winner
Carly Kuntz is a certified Spa Director, an M.B.A. graduate and a mother of twins. She was formerly a marketing executive and is now the owner and Chief Relaxation Officer (CRO) of the Waters Spa. Carly's vision for the spa began a decade ago when she felt there was a level of service lacking in the day spa industry in Waterloo and was determined to bring a high end "resort experience" to the day spa setting. Setting to developing her business after giving birth to her twins Carly wanted to build something she was passionate about and that used her business training to its full potential.
Since 2007, Carly has grown her business from a team of five, to a team of 26 and has continued to expand her business’s service operating year after year.
Now established and strong, The Waters Spa and Carly donates over $15,000 in services to the community. Outside of the spa, Carly is engaged in other charity work, including a co-ed children’s hockey non-profit and she is launching a regional magazine celebrating the accomplishments of women in Waterloo.
You’ll be hearing more about Carly in the coming weeks as we get to know her and her business better. Stories like hers are an inspiration to everyone here at Randstad Canada, and exemplify why we conduct research, host events and speak openly about women in the world of work.
In the meantime congratulations Carly, and thank you Donna for nominating such an outstanding member of your community.
There are few films that portray women in positions of power. Fewer still which feature powerful women who aren’t using violence to exact bloody revenge or who eventually have their problems solved by the men around them.
Women in power have an unfair relationship with both news and entertainment media. In news media female politicians are judged as much for their pumps, as their policies and in film women are onscreen less often, they have less valued professions and are usually 10-15 years younger than their male counterparts.
In a study performed by the Centre for the Study of Women in Film and Television, Martha. M. Lauzen PhD, found that, “The majority of female characters are in their 20s (27%) and 30s (28%). The majority of male characters are in their 30s (29%) and 40s (25%).”
It gets even murkier when you look how leaders are portrayed, with male characters accounting for 86% of onscreen leaders and females representing only 14%.
Finding movies where the female characters hold more power than their male counterparts and aren’t seen as a complete joke or caricature are hard to find. Challenging female stereotypes is an important step toward equality and these movies do a great job of it.
9- Films Featuring Strong Empowered Women
The Iron Lady: Meryl Streep plays, Margaret Thatcher, the former British Prime Minister with the titular nickname. Margaret Thatcher was the controversial leader of England’s Conservative Party and from 1979 until 1990 was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. The biopic showcased some of the difficultly that Thatcher had balancing the immense workload of being a leader of one of the world’s most powerful nations, with her familial responsibilities. The film manages to not diminish her character while showing Thatcher’s more familial side.
Fargo: The film starring Frances McDormand as Marge Gunderson a pregnant police chief, who is investigating a series of gruesome homicides. Marge is not only the hero of the film, but she manages to outwit and outshoot her male foes all while being seven months pregnant. While not shying away from Marge’s femininity it doesn’t make the scenario of a female police chief in America seem farcical.
The Help: Not only does this film feature strong women, it focuses on civil rights and education. The movie’s main character played by Emma Stone has a degree, is single and has returned home from school to become a writer. In doing so she also challenges the racial divide in her community and becomes a published author.
The Devil Wears Prada: If you’re beginning to see a theme of Meryl Streep playing strong female characters, don’t be shocked, we did too. Streep plays the vicious executive director of a fashion magazine empire. While being a stern and at times a cold leader, she undoubtedly holds a great deal of power and moves her character beyond the stereotype of the ice queen executive into well rounded, albeit eccentric mother of two.
Julie & Julia: All Streep, all the time. As she plays the infamous celebrity chef and author of The Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Julia Child. Streep’s character barrels past the preconceptions those executives in both the publishing and television world to become a force to be reckoned with in both all the while maintaining a strong relationship with her diplomat husband.
Contact: Jodie Foster plays as PhD radio astronomer who may have found life from another solar system. Her character is smarter than her male counterparts and shares her opinions with great diligence. While Foster’s character displays strong emotions she never plays this off as hysterical and is one of Hollywood’s few female characters that is able to balance emotional realism with scientific excellence.
Out of Africa: Meryl Streep plays a plantation owner in British East Africa. While in a marriage of convenience, in the early 20th century, Streep eventually sends her philandering husband packing after he gives her syphilis. In the coming years Streep’s character is about the pull her plantation out of debt and begin to reap profit from one of her ex-husband’s untoward business ventures, ultimately however doom prevails and she’s forced to leave Africa for good.
Erin Brockovich:Julia Roberts’ plays Erin Brockovich, in the true to life telling of her personal story, moving from an unemployed single mother of two, into a law clerk who almost single handedly wins a decade long court case with a gas company that let a dangerous compound leak into a city’s water supply causing illness and death. Roberts’ character is played close to reality showing a single mother’s struggle with the economic realities of parenthood on minimum wage.
The X-Files: While being the title of two films, it is the 1990s television show featuring Dr. Dana Scully and Fox Mulder that we’re most familiar with. Scully a forensic pathologist and an FBI agent is asked to reign in an odd-duck paranormal investigating agent, Mulder. Scully is seen as one of the strongest female leads on TV, regularly managing to take down the bad-guy while her male counterpart can barely pull his gun out of his holster while he jabbered on about space aliens for nine seasons.
Why aren’t more powerful female leaders featured in films? Is it about the money, because it seems to me that all of these films and franchises have fared pretty well? Let us know what you think.
Recruitment in the 16th or 17th century, (when Canada’s first colonies, Frobisher Bay, and New France were formed, and Thanksgiving would have been celebrated to some extent) was a little different than it was today. Considering that your hiring manager may have been the Queen of England, or the King of France, pay negotiations would be limited.
A strong job description can be the difference from finding a new hire and searching for months. It is also one of the first stages in the exposure of your brand to a new hire, future employee or jilted job-hunter.
Consider how a job hunter will read your description. Does it make your workplace seem appealing? How does it stack up against your competition? Have you checked for typos or grammatical flubs?
Unless you have Monarchical powers and are discovering new continents your brand, and prospect of hiring depends on effectively communicating your job role and your office’s culture.
So Happy Thanksgiving
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