How to Find a Job Through an Employment Agency

How to Find a Job Through an Employment Agency
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How to Find a Job Through an Employment Agency
What is a fee-paid placement agency and who pays the fee? A fee-paid placement agency recruits employment opportunities and candidates for those jobs. The fees for placing you in a job are paid by the hiring company. You have no out of pocket expenses.

Why is the agency referred to as a placement agency and not an employment agency? The agency does no counseling for job placement and is thus not regulated by state agencies. The agency is, however, usually a member of an organization that encourages the “Golden Rule” of ethical business practices.

What is the title of the person helping me in my job search?
Those titles may vary from agency to agency and state to state, but we will use the title of “Recruiter” in this e-book. The recruiter may also be referred to as “she”. There is no intent to be disparaging or sexist in this usage.

Let’s say I have registered with an agency in one city and I relocate, will I have to do new paperwork for the area in which I have relocated?
Most nationwide agencies are computer networked and can easily transfer your file. If you are working through the temporary division, you probably, for legal purposes, will have to complete new paperwork applicable for the state in which you have relocated.

How long will my application be kept on file?
Probably six months to a year in an active status. After that, up to three years, in an inactive status, in most states. After a year as active, you would probably want to update your employment history and skills.

Is there any guarantee that a fee-paid agency will place me in a job?
Unfortunately, there is no guarantee; however, your recruiter will work hard on your behalf. The recruiters earn their commission and salary by placing candidates.

Now that I have registered with a fee-paid agency, should I continue to look for employment on my own?
Yes, keep looking on your own. Think of your relationship with the agency as just a part of your employment search.

Do all fee-paid agencies follow the guidelines you have outlined in this booklet?
Some may, some may not. I have tried to generalize my observations in an effort to provide standard practices that will benefit you, the reader. Your actions in considering and using these suggestions could also benefit the recruiter.

HOW TO SELECT A FEE-PAID AGENCY

When selecting a placement agency to assist in your job search, do use a fee-paid agency. The hiring fees are paid to the agency by the company seeking an addition to their staff. Avoid placement agencies that charge the fee to you, the job seeker. These fee-up-front agencies do have a place in the employment search, but do you want to take the money out of your pocket when there are fee-paid agencies ready to assist you?

Where can you find a reputable, fee-paid placement agency?

Referral
Ask your friends if they have used a fee-paid agency. If so, were they happy with the service received?

Newspaper Advertisements
Check the employment section of the local newspaper, particularly the Sunday issue. The larger display ads usually indicate the major agencies in the area.

If calling on a particular job advertised on Sunday, keep in mind that the ad was probably placed no later than Thursday noon. (The cut-off time is set by the newspaper, not the agency.) It is entirely possible that the job you are especially interested in has already been filled by the time you call on Monday morning. With a reputable agency, be assured the job actually existed and was definitely open at the time of the ad placement. The agency gains no advantage in listing a job that never existed or was already filled.

Even if the advertisement says “No appointment necessary”, it is to your advantage to set an appointment. That appointment time will allow for the best interview possible with the recruiter and will indicate that you are organized.

Telephone Yellow Pages
Again, the larger display ads indicate a bigger player in the placement agency.

Web Site
Most likely the persons from whom you received a referral name will also have a business card with the web site address. The newspaper advertisements will also include address, phone number, and web site. The web site will list information about the history of the company, location, phone number and jobs.

Radio or Television Advertisements
Probably no specific jobs will be mentioned, but usually a phone number will be included in the message. If an agency is advertising on television, this is a good clue that the agency is a big player. (Think $$’s per advertisement minute.)

Driving By
If you notice a name on a building directory, go home and do your research. It is best to call and set an appointment instead of dropping in.

THE INITIAL PHONE CALL TO START THE PROCESS

Call the number you have obtained, being patient if your call isn’t answered on the second ring. Also be patient if you have to be on hold for a short bit of time. Many calls are processed by usually only one operator. This operator may also have other duties to perform in between the phone calls.

Be specific when stating the type of position you are seeking. The phone operator isn’t being nosy, just needs to know where to route the call for your best interest. If you have a name of a specific recruiter, ask for that person. If you do not have a specific name, the operator may ask some leading questions. Some recruiters within an agency may specialize in a particular industry.

The recruiter will probably ask for some initial information from you, so be prepared to answer the following types of questions:

* What type of position are you interested in?
* Are you presently employed?
* What are your skills? (If you type or do data entry, they may ask for speed of either)
* What size company are you most interested in?
* Are you interested in a specific industry?
* How far are you willing to commute?
* Are you agreeable to working overtime?
* Is a smoking environment acceptable?

Why, you ask, is this information so important on your initial phone call? Chances are, the recruiter has a particular job order in front of them and is matching up your answers to the employer’s “wish list”. Also, the recruiter needs a good understanding of what makes you happy in a job.

The recruiter will most likely set an appointment. They may ask you to e-mail or fax a resume to their attention prior to the appointment. Be sure you get the recruiter’s name and remember it!

When setting that all-important first appointment, allow at least one to two hours. Why such a seemingly long time? Look below:

* For interview with the recruiter
* For completing either a paper or an on-line application
* For skills evaluations
* For possibly an interview with recruiter’s co-worker (this is a EXCELLENT sign, it indicates that you are a good candidate for a job that co-worker may be trying to fill)

GETTING READY FOR APPOINTMENT WITH RECRUITER

* Make sure your most professional attire is clean, all buttons in place, and not wrinkled. Your goal is to present an appearance to the agency that is the same as you present in an interview with an employer. Remember: you only have one chance to make a FIRST IMPRESSION! You want to create the impression of a person who is self-assured, gracious, and confident.

* Your hair should be neatly groomed, your shoes polished, and your jewelry limited. If you normally wear fragrances, be subtle in your application. Additional grooming tips are included in a later chapter.

* Make arrangements for a baby sitter. Do not bring children to any interview – it indicates a lack of planning and organization.

* Check your resumes. Make sure you have an adequate number of clean (not written on) resumes. Have a list of references readily available.

* Since some permanent positions are a temp-to-hire situation, bring documents that are specified on the government required I-9. The two most common documents are a Social Security card and a state issued driver’s license that includes a photo. These I-9 requirements are also required if you decide to work temporary positions while continuing to look for a permanent job.

* If you do not know the location of the office, call ahead and ask for driving directions. Investing in an area map is worthwhile. A key map is even more valuable, especially if you are new to the area. Often a prior issue of these key maps can be purchased for a very reasonable price at used book stores. The maps in these prior issues will not have changed for the basic core of the city.

* On the day of the appointment, if you are running late, call and advise recruiter of the approximate length of delay.

* If you discover that you will be unable to keep the appointment, call as far ahead as possible to reschedule. If you have obtained a job after setting appointment, also call and advise recruiter of that fact. You don’t want to burn any bridges – you may need the agency’s assistance in the future.

HOW TO BE THE PERFECT APPOINTMENT KEEPER

Just prior to entering the lobby, make a bathroom visit for last minute grooming. Turn your cell phone and/or pager to the “off” position.

Be on time. Arriving a few minutes prior to appointment is acceptable, but do not be extremely early. Be prepared to wait or fill out paperwork. Especially do not drop in an hour or so early just because you are in the neighborhood. The consultants have duties other than interviewing, including meetings out of the office. Someone else may be able to work you into their schedule, but they are not likely to have the notes from your initial phone call. For best results and best use of your time, you want to see the recruiter that you have the appointment with.

Have at least two clean copies of your resume with you (even if you have previously faxed or e-mailed it). Speaking of resumes, here are some hints: white paper is best – it faxes better and makes better copies than colored paper. Graphics are better left for those job candidates who are applying for a graphics position. No self photographs, please. Additional resume hints are included in another chapter.

Check with the receptionist and let her know you have arrived. Tell the receptionist your full name, who you have the appointment with, and the time of your appointment. Giving the receptionist a copy of your resume is an excellent way to provide proper spelling of your name. Procedures for the receptionist may include asking for a copy of your resume. Want to get lost in the lobby? One sure way is to be seated and not advise the receptionist that you have arrived.

Probably there will be a few minutes to wait before your recruiter calls for you. Find a comfortable seat, take a couple of deep breaths, and relax. Avoid engaging in conversations with other job seekers and/or the receptionist. If you are talking, you won’t be able to hear. What is there to hear? Those other job seekers may be talking about places they have been interviewing. Clue: a job opportunity!

RECRUITER LATE FOR APPOINTMENT

You’ve done your part. You arrived on time. You have waited 15 minutes and your recruiter has not greeted you. What do you do?

Politely check with the receptionist and let her know you have been waiting. Ask her if there is a problem. Return to your seat; the receptionist will again notify the recruiter that you are waiting in the lobby. If there is a problem, the recruiter may send word to have you work on an application while the problem is resolved. If you are informed that it will be just a few minutes more, wait patiently for at least another 15 minutes. If you still have not met with your recruiter, check with the receptionist again and ask if you should reschedule. The receptionist will relay that information to the recruiter and pass along a response.

Why is your recruiter failing to be on time? Recruiters schedule appointments with the best of intentions, allowing adequate time for an indepth interview. But, as in every industry, a person cannot control all aspects of their job.

A hiring authority may have called your recruiter, perhaps just at the moment they were getting out of their chair to come to the lobby. Your recruiter may, at this moment, be obtaining details of a new job opening – perhaps one that is a perfect fit for you!

It is best to wait for your recruiter. After all, you are already in the lobby. You have invested perhaps a half hour, so what is another 15 minutes? Just be calm and patient.

If you do decide to leave, please advise the receptionist of your decision so she can, in turn, let the recruiter know that you are leaving and will call at a later time to reschedule.

Just remember, the recruiter is aware that you were the ultimate appointment keeper!

WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT FROM YOUR INTERVIEW WITH THE RECRUITER

The recruiter will come into the lobby and ask for you by name. Do not be offended by this seemingly casual procedure – unless she has met you before, she has no way of knowing which person sitting in the lobby is her candidate.

When your name is called, stand up. If the recruiter has extended a hand for a handshake, do so. If not, again, do not be offended. Handshakes actually spread germs. You want to stay healthy for that upcoming employer interview, don’t you?

You will accompany the recruiter into an interviewing room. Usually some pleasantries are exchanged before getting down to the actual interview.

The recruiter will go over the employment sections of your resume, asking questions along the way. The recruiter will be able to determine, from the way you answer the questions, whether you were enthused about that job. A person usually lights up when talking about a job they really like.

If there are breaks in the employment dates, be prepared to explain.

If there were unusual circumstances for your leaving a company, please discuss this with the recruiter in this initial interview. Honesty is really the best policy. If you don’t discuss these unusual circumstances and the recruiter discovers them in obtaining references, it will look as if you had something to hide.

If you did not complete an application upon arriving, the recruiter will ask that you do so at this point. Most firms have computerized applications and it only takes about 30 minutes. Be sure you have your resume for reference in entering information.

Most likely, the recruiter will ask you to do some skills evaluations. Even if you have been a top-level executive secretary, do not be offended by this request. All candidates are to be presented on an equal basis and scores from the same evaluations therefore must be obtained.

The recruiter will advise if she wants to meet with you after the evaluations or if you will be free to go. If this isn’t clear to you, be sure to ask either the recruiter at the time of interviewer or the receptionist after evaluations. Do NOT leave lobby without being sure.

CHANGE OF RECRUITERS

You have registered with a recruiter, had an interview, but are just unable to establish a rapport. What do you do about this situation?

If, at any time, you feel uncomfortable or ill at ease with your recruiter, do not hesitate to contact their supervisor. Explain to the supervisor that you think you would feel more comfortable with another recruiter. You don’t have to go into detail unless the supervisor asks you to do so.

For one reason or another, your personality and the personality of the recruiter just don’t “jell”, what should you do? If you feel confident enough to discuss this with the recruiter, do so. They understand that not all candidate and recruiter relationships can be a close one. Your recruiter will have already determined, from the initial interview, what type of personality and skill level you possess and can recommend a co-worker who may be better suited to work with you. You will experience no residual fall out from changing recruiters. If you don’t feel confident talking to your recruiter about making a change, bring the supervisor into the picture, but not in the presence of the recruiter. Call the supervisor at a later time.

Your recruiter leaves the agency. Now what? Your active file will be transferred to another capable recruiter. That recruiter will contact you advising you of the change and get acquainted, probably by phone, with you. The recruiter may ask you to come into the office for a face-to-face meeting. Believe it or not, employers do often ask the recruiter, “Have you met this person?”

SKILLS AND ABILITIES EVALUATIONS

Skills evaluations will be administered based upon your discussion with the recruiter. Do not ask at this time to do any evaluations that were not requested. (If you are a person who likes to be challenged, it will be very tempting to do any and all that are on the computer.)

Do not ask the skills administrator to discuss your scores with you. It really puts them in an awkward position, because the testing site does not allow for privileged information to be shared. If your recruiter has indicated that she wanted to meet with you after evaluations, that is when you discuss those scores. If you were not scheduled to meet with recruiter again at this time, you certainly may call later the same day or the next day. The scores will be posted in the computer by then and she will be happy to share that information with you.

WHAT ABOUT WORKING TEMPORARY POSITIONS?

If you are not currently employed, why not give temporary positions a try? These temporary positions do often become permanent. Job seekers often have a warped view of temporary jobs. That view is that the company has all the advantages of trying you out. BUT, that street goes both ways. It also gives you the advantage of trying out a company and an industry!

There are big corporations that use the same temporary help for years and years. One big oil company in a major Texas city used the same temporary employees for more than 10 years.

If you decide to work temporary positions, you will probably meet briefly with a temporary recruiter. That recruiter will discuss what hours or days you prefer, how much advance notice you need, and what part of town you prefer. There will be necessary additional paperwork to complete for the temporary positions. (You may have previously completed the temporary paperwork at the time of your initial interview.) Temporary paperwork will need to be updated on an annual basis.

KEEP IN TOUCH WITH YOUR RECRUITER

If you don’t hear from the recruiter within two or three days of your initial interview, call her to check in. There will be no need to call every day or so. Once every couple of weeks should keep you and the recruiter in a loop. Believe it – she wants to place you in a job as much as you want to be placed in one!

When you do call in, tell her where you have been interviewing. There are good reasons to do this. Not only do you get brownie points with her, but the company you may have visited may also be one that the agency regularly assists in their placement efforts. She may be able to pick up another job there that would be the perfect fit for you.

If you have been interviewed by a hiring authority and that company has made a job offer to you, give your recruiter a call.

INTERVIEW WITH A HIRING AUTHORITY

What should you expect when your recruiter calls with a possible interview with a hiring authority?

You will be told what part of town the interview is in, the salary range being offered, the duties, and the character of the office. If the job sounds appealing, tell her so. If not, also tell her. This gives her additional information about you that she needs in finding that perfect position for you.

If you tell her you would like an interview, the recruiter will give you a time and place to meet with the hiring authority. That meeting might be held in the agency’s office because the hiring authority may be hiring for a “confidential replacement” (the current job holder is not aware that he/she is being terminated). She will also give you the name of the hiring authority and their phone number. If you are running late for the appointment, be sure to call the recruiter and let her be the bad cop with the hiring authority. If you have to cancel, call the recruiter as far ahead as possible. Hopefully, you have a legitimate reason for cancelling.

Be on time for the appointment. Bring an extra copy of your resume – just in case the hiring authority hasn’t been provided with a copy.

Be sure to read the chapter on interviewing tips.

If the interview is at the agency, your recruiter will want to speak with you when your interview is concluded. Please don’t leave the office immediately following your interview. If your interview is at the job site, call your recruiter as soon as it is convenient after your appointment with the hiring authority. Feedback is important to you, your recruiter, and the hiring authority.

HOW TO ACE YOUR INTERVIEW WITH HIRING AUTHORITY

Your recruiter has obtained an interview with a hiring authority. What to you do to get prepared for this event?

Get Acquainted With Yourself

* Know what position you want and what qualities make you the right person for that position.

Do Preliminary Homework

* Become informed about the company prior to your interview. Your recruiter will be able to tell you some things, such as type of company, address, phone number. Companies annual reports are usually available at your local library. Chamber of Commerce organizations may have information about when company began, how many employees they have, their annual gross income, etc. Also, the Internet is an excellent source of information.

* Look over a business etiquette book. Be sure of introduction protocols and other appropriate, professional behavior.

How to Dress

* Your recruiter may have already told you that the position you are interviewing for will not require business attire; however, for this all-important first interview, do present yourself in a conservative business attire – be traditional. Keep the perfume or after-shave subtle.

* Your overall effect should reflect cleanliness. You should be well groomed and competent. Your looks should be current but not trendy. Do not dress “dowdy” or “sexy”.

* Men’s suits should preferably be blue or dark gray and fit well. Choose a shirt with a current collar style in a white or blue color; preferably a solid and no more than a subtle pattern. Accessorize with a good quality tie with no wide stripes, bold or comic designs. No tie clips or tacks. Leave your earrings and body piercing jewelry at home. If your shirt requires cuff links, wear small ones for the interview. Watch should be conservative. Wedding and/or class or signet rings only.

* Women should interview in a conservative color and classic style suit. Stay away from pink, red, purple or green. When selecting a blouse, avoid sheer fabrics, frills and low necklines. If you accessorize with a scarf, it should compliment the suit and blouse, be arranged in a subtle style, and be secure. Dress watch, earrings, pins or necklace should be conservative. Wear no more than two rings. An interview is no place for spangles, glitter, bangles or visible body piercing jewelry.

* Shoes for men should be well polished, conservative and dark in color. Women should wear basic closed toe and closed heel, basic color shoes. Shoes should be well polished. Very high heels are not appropriate for interviewing.

* Men’s hair should be clean and groomed. Make sure hair, beard and/or mustache is trimmed on a regular basis. Nails, of course, should be clean and trimmed.

* Women should wear a conservative hair style that reflects professionalism. Understate your makeup, avoiding bright eye shadows and blushers. Avoid ultra long nails. Subtle shades, or even clear, polish is best.

* If you wear glasses, have a current conservative style.

How to Schedule Your Time

* Allow enough time should more than one person want to interview you. You may also need to complete unexpected paperwork.

When to Arrive and Whom to Have With You

* Know where you are going. Anticipate your commute time. If possible, give the trip a trial run. After all, if the interviewing location is the same as your potential work location, you would need to know that information to help make a logical decision should the job be offered to you.

* Try to arrive about five or ten minutes early. This makes a good impression – it indicates punctuality and interest. Allow for parking difficulties and unexpected traffic problems. Don’t do your last minute grooming in the parking lot. Your potential boss may be looking out the window and get the impression that you are only interested in your outward appearance. If possible, do the grooming in the rest rooms inside the building.

* Interview alone. Do not bring children, parents or friends with you. Having someone with you could indicate to the interviewer that you are unable to have adequate transportation or day care arrangements.

TO TAKE OR NOT TO TAKE

Bring a leather (or at least have it look like leather) briefcase and include the following:

* Several copies of your resume and references
* Notepad
* Appointment book (for scheduling follow-up interviews)
* Pen

Be sure and turn off your cell phone and/or pager.

GOOD MANNERS TAKE YOU A LONG WAY

Introduce yourself to the secretary or receptionist, stating whom you are there to see. Do NOT say you are interviewing for a job. The job opening may be a confidential replacement.

Be respectful and courteous to everyone you meet. Those individuals may later be asked by the hiring authority for their opinion of you.

Be warm and friendly. Do not force a smile, just smile naturally, punctuating your conversation.

WHAT TO DO UPON MEETING INTERVIEWER

Thank the interviewer for seeing you when introduced. At the same time, if a hand is extended for a handshake, give a firm one without going overboard. This is no time to for a show of strength.

Before you sit, wait until the interviewer offers you a chair or is seated. Hopefully, this will be directly opposite the interviewer.

If your job will be as a colleague of the interviewer, treat him as such, establishing a rapport. Be respectful while avoiding placing the interviewer on a pedestal.

Here again, we’ll mention those nonverbal communication actions. Keep an open body position, lean toward the interviewer just a bit to show you are interested. Make direct eye contact, but not in an intimidating manner.

Do NOT click your pen, tap your pencil, twist your hair, stroke your mustache or beard, crack your knuckles, swing your feet, or any other irritating and distracting habits. Do NOT smoke, chew gum, eat candy, or drink coffee during the interview. It is proper to accept water and sip occasionally, between questions and answers.

There is no need for you to provide personal information. Legally, an interviewer cannot ask direct questions such as: Are you married? Are you expecting a child? Do you have children? How many? What religion do you practice? What is your ethnic background? How old are you? Do you have a car? If the interviewer is inexperienced and does ask these types of questions, answer them indirectly i.e. “Do you have a car?” “I have reliable transportation.” “Do you have children?” “There are arrangements for their care already in place.”

HOW FRIENDLY SHOULD YOU BE AND WHAT KIND OF ATTITUDE TO SHOW

Exhibit enough enthusiasm and friendliness to indicate interest for the job and the company. Answer any questions honestly and stick to job-related facts. Omit any personal problems. The company at this point is interested in what you can bring to the company, not what the company can bring to you. If the interviewer brings up a work experience problem, be prepared to discuss it in a positive manner. Do not criticize former employers as you want to show that you include loyalty in your character traits.

You want to show a “What Can I Do for You” attitude. Don’t ask about benefits, raises, vacations, etc. until you are offered the job. Your recruiter probably shared that information with you prior to your accepting the opportunity to meet with the hiring authority.

BE PREPARED TO ANSWER THESE POSSIBLE QUESTIONS

Do not try to be two steps ahead of the interviewer by anticipating what answer he/she is expecting. Be honest and, if you are hired, you will be happy in your job.

* What type of position are you seeking? Why are you seeking employment at this time? Why did you leave your past position? Why do you think you qualify for this position?

* What made you select our company? What can you contribute to our company?

* Would you describe your work background? What experience did you like the best and why? Also, what experience did you like the least and why?

* Do you know anything at all about our company? (Here’s where your homework pays off.)

* If you could have an “ideal job”, describe it to me. If you had your choice of jobs and companies, where would you go?

* What is your ideal working environment? What is your ideal boss?

* What aspects are important to you regarding a company and a position when you evaluate new employment opportunities?

* What is your main motivation for considering a job change?

* The “most dreaded” questions of all: Tell me about yourself. What are your strengths and weaknesses? Be prepared to turn any weaknesses to positives.

* What is your immediate job objective? What do you see for yourself in the next five to ten years?

* Why did you choose your college and your major?

* How did you finance your education? (If you personally contributed to financing your education, this indicates to the interviewer that you were serious about getting an education.)

QUESTIONS THAT ARE PROPER FOR YOU TO ASK

At the end of nearly every interview, “Do you have any questions?” is asked. If you suspect the interview is at an end and it is just a rhetorical question, ask a quick one. If you have more than one question, say so, but indicate that out of respect for the interviewer’s time schedule, you’ll save them for another time.

But, if you feel the interviewer is going to shape the interview into a structure where you ask the questions, be prepared to ask the following:

* What are the company’s objectives? Is there a plan in place to achieve those objectives? (Remember, you already did your homework.)

* What are the company’s opportunities, problems and/or challenges? Use the interviewer’s response to point out what you are “bringing to the table” to help in these areas.

* What is the company’s management philosophy?

* What are you seeking in an employee? (If you have established a rapport with interviewer, you can get more personal and ask, “What qualities would your ‘ideal employee’ possess”?)

* Can you tell me why the position is available?

* Are you able to share success and failure stories of employees you have handled this position? (Explain you would want to make any potential employment with the company a successful one.)

* What abilities, skills and/or traits will help me succeed within your company?

STYLES AND STRUCTURES OF INTERVIEWS

Interviews usually fit into one of the following styles:

* Probing and explaining – “Tell me about yourself…” This is an unstructured or informal, conversational type of interview.

* Interviewer talks 40%, you talk 60%. This is a series of scripted, logical questions or a structured interview.

* Questions that look for specific responses and behavioral evidence. Your past conduct/action predicting future performance is a behavioral type of interview.

* Questions which seem to be random and unplanned may indicate the inexperience of the interviewer.

Structures of Interviews:

* The most common interview is structured as an individual or one-on-one. Be relaxed, be solidly prepared, and think of the interview as a friendly conversation.

* You may be interviewed by two or more interviewers at one session. This is known as a panel/group structure of interview. Make eye contact and give your answers to the interviewer who asked the question, but then make brief eye contact with all others in the session. As soon as you determine which persons are giving positive feedback (smiling or nodding affirmatively) from your responses, try to concentrate on those persons. Do not indicate that you have noticed any negative expressions from your panel of interviewers. Avoid being rude.

* Another structure of interview is one that is conducted in progression. This is called a serial or progression structure. You may begin interviewing with multi-level participants and then progress to work teams interviewing. Keep your enthusiasm and energy throughout the progression. You may hear the same questions from each progression, so continue to be pleasant, friendly, and patient. Consistency is the key here.

COMMUNICATION OTHER THAN VERBAL

Did you know that words only reveal about 30 to 35% of what persons intend to communicate?
The remainder, 70 to 65%, is nonverbal. Your actions, body positions or movement, and facial expressions transmit more than you know. Following are some “body language” keys to remember:

The way you stand or sit tells a lot about your energy level and whether you are interested or not. So, stand, sit and walk confidently. You might consider leaning toward your interviewer just enough to show that you are enthused. (Don’t lean too far, that would be invading the interviewer’s personal space.)

Your eyes are truly the “windows to the soul”. Making good eye contact (don’t stare) shows the interviewer that you are willing to communicate, want feedback, and are friendly. If you look away while the interviewer is speaking or while you are weighing your answer to his question or comment may give the impression that you aren’t interested, are shy, or just generally dislike the interviewer.

Your voice should be of moderate pitch. Too loud a voice may indicate aggression or anxiety. Too soft a voice may require the interviewer to ask you to repeat your answer. Being too extravagant in your gestures may confuse the interviewer and distract from your response.

HOW TO END THE INTERVIEW

Thank the interviewer for the opportunity to meet with them. Follow up your interview with a thank you letter.

Points you should cover in your brief follow up letter:

* Express an interest in their company and the position for which you interviewed.

* Point out matches between what they are looking for and what you can bring to their company.

* Refer again to experiences you may have mentioned in your interview.

* Provide further information that may have been requested at the interview.

* If an issue isn’t clear to you, ask for clarification.

* If you have not yet been asked for references, offer to provide same.

* Have someone who is objective read your letter to make sure it conveys what you mean to convey. Mail the letter one day after the interview. Mailing it the same day may make you seem too anxious but after two days, the letter loses its impact.

* If interviewer has given you an e-mail address and indicated it would be proper to communicate directly, do so; otherwise stick to the tried and true method of regular US mail.

* Advise your recruiter that you sent the hiring authority a follow up letter.

WHAT ARE YOUR CHANCES OF BEING PLACED BY THE FEE-PAID AGENCY?

Let me provide you some background on job market climates. There are basically two types of climates that prevail in the job market.

* One is EMPLOYER-DRIVEN. That occurs when there are more candidates than jobs.

* The second is CANDIDATE-DRIVEN. This occurs when there are more jobs than candidates.

Obviously, a person has more of a chance of working in the CANDIDATE-DRIVEN mode. A fee-paid placement agency also obviously places more people in the CANDIDATE-DRIVEN climate. But, this CANDIDATE-DRIVEN mode also promotes the emergence of more agencies in town to share in the overall profit picture.

The rules of statistics therefore prevail and a fee-paid placement agency traditionally places 1% of the people who register with it. You have every chance of being within that 1%!

ADVICE AND ENCOURAGEMENT

In any endeavor in life, it is those who persevere in their pursuit who get the “golden ring”. Do not become discouraged. Even in a CANDIDATE-DRIVEN climate, a job search could take as long as four months.

If your skills are out of date, state or federal government agencies offer no or low cost courses.
Also, there are excellent web sites that offer skills enhancement.

WHEN A DOOR CLOSES, WINDOWS OF OPPORTUNITIES OPEN

WHEN THE GOING GETS TOUGH, THE TOUGH GETS GOING

KEEP ON “KEEPING ON”

RESUME HINTS

What should be included in a resume

* First name, middle initial and last name
* Current address
* Current phone number
* Employment history in reverse chronological order, i.e. the most recent first
* Employment dates of month/year
* Achievements at each employment
* Reasons for leaving each employment
* Cover any breaks in employment history dates
* Educational background including name of university with inclusive attendance dates
* Degree obtained, if any
* Skills including foreign languages
* References provided upon request

What should NOT be included in a resume

* An objective
(A specific objective is limiting and a generic one isn’t necessary)
* Any personal information
(Age, height, weight, organizations, and/or marital status)
* A photograph

General hints

* Letter size paper
* Use white paper, it faxes better
* Use black ink only
* Have resume available for e-mailing, using Word or Text
* No creative, unique resume format such as putting resume in form of a poem or humorous antidote
* Keep address and phone numbers current
* Have several copies of your resume available at all times
* Keep resumes in a folder, avoiding folding

Employers usually think in a broad scope, thus salaries are often quoted as an annual figure. On the other hand, employees tend to think of salaries as a monthly or even as a weekly figure.

I sincerely hope this article will be of help in your job search.

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