Category Archives: Job Fairs

Carmen’s Hot Jobs, Vol 1, No. 10

By Carmen Lapham, Director of Recruiting and Operations

Let’s face it; Labor Day needs a make over. It no longer carries the same significance that it once did. There was a time when Labor Day was celebrated with speeches, parades and picnics honoring those who worked, the laborer. Most people today probably don’t even know what Labor Day is meant to celebrate. And beyond the historical significance of the day itself, it no longer signifies such things as the last day before school starts with some schools starting as early as August 1st;  the last day that swimming pools are open or the last day that those fashion conscious among us can wear white.

So what happened to Labor Day? Where did it lose its significance? Why isn’t it still celebrated like Independence Day or Memorial Day or even Groundhog Day?

I was pondering these questions while I was out with my family and a few friends doing my part to keep the Labor Day tradition alive. We packed a picnic lunch complete with a great selection of some fine crafted beers brewed by some local laborers; we listened to some speeches by my husband and his friends regarding the best place to picnic and the best way to get there without using Google maps or asking for directions; and we paraded around several great locations until we settled upon a shaded hilly spot close enough to the stage where young local musicians were covering some of the great Woody Guthrie tunes.

A Great Labor Day! But those questions kept nagging at me the whole time. Could Labor Day have lost its mojo because unlike two of the other days, Independence and Groundhog, there was never a movie made about it? Or could it be that unlike the other day, Memorial there was not a significant auto race or a major (sort of) golf tournament played that weekend?

I am not sure what the reason is but I have an idea that might help to bring the first Monday in September back to its glory days, back to being a day that is truly celebrated by all. We need to rename it. We need to call it Career Day, a day to celebrate those who are working, those who have been working and are now looking for work, those who have been working and are now retired or only seek part time work and those just entering the workforce. It would be a day to recognize workers of all types and honor them for what they are doing, what they have done and what they would like to do.

Those of us in the recruiting business could spearhead this movement and organize job fairs, seminars and discussions about job search, career management, career planning, career coaching and involve our own clients in the process.

We could come out from behind our desks, take off our headsets and for one day join the ranks of the masses who are yearning for any and all information regarding work, labor, career, job search, interviewing, offer acceptance, negotiating, resumes as product literature and performance profiles that only we, as seasoned professional recruiters, possess.

It would be a national day of information and celebration that no other special day could rival. And the next day we would have job orders to fill and pools of talent from which to source.

“Carmen, Carmen the show is over we need to get the kids home and you have a big day tomorrow.”

Oh well, it seemed like a good idea. I wonder if Hallmark would be interested in producing a line of greeting cards for Career Day!

Now here are our Hot Jobs for this week and they are worthy of celebrating.

  • Senior JDE Project Manager – If you thought all PM jobs were alike, think again! Great internationally recognized Oracle consulting firm promising as much travel as you have always wanted.
  • Junior Security Engineer – A job with real security and the only difference between the Junior and Senior position is that only one of you gets to wear the Green Lantern’s Ring and the Senior picks which one!

That is it for this week. If you are interested in the Hot Jobs above click on the link and apply through our Talent Hub. We will respond quickly and we will value your time. At Q4B candidates are our customers too.

And remember after reading this blog be sure to Like, Retweet, Pin it, and +1 this post. You never know who is going to see the positions and think that it is the perfect position for them.

Til next week!

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Asking the Why Question

Asking the Why question makes the How, What, Where, When and Who that much easier to answer.

At a recent TEDx conference, Jeffrey Fox, the NYT best selling author of How to Become a Rainmaker, How to Become a CEO and Rain to name just a few, was speaking to an audience of sales people, sales managers and company owners who were also in sales. Fox’s talk was on the concept of dollarizing your product or service. His contention was that terms such as “value added, highest quality, best of class, award winning” have no meaning to your customer. These terms and others like them mean nothing unless a dollar value can be associated with them. Your customer is not buying value added or best of class. They are buying your product or service because it will solve their problem and make/save them money. These terms also mean nothing to your customer because everyone uses them.

Fox then asked his audience if any of them or their sales people ever asked their customers the Why question, “Why do you need our product or service?” No one answered. Fox suggested that perhaps only a handful of sales people in the world ask the Why question, those he refers to as Rainmakers. Obviously there were no rainmakers in his audience.

Most of us in the recruiting business identify potential customers based on our specialization, our service offerings, research, marketing campaigns (including trade shows), direct inquiries, etc. We then conduct some more research and begin to develop a needs analysis based on available information from the prospects web site (they have 80 positions posted on their career site), news releases (recently announced an expansion in a new city) and networking (using our contacts from the various social media channels).

With all of this information we then make the first call knowing full well that we have services that they need, that they should do business with us and it is just a matter of price. But we never ask the Why question, “why do they need our service?” In many cases we need them more than they need us.

Asking the Why question allows the customer to open up and discuss the real problems, the real issues, the real needs. And it allows the sales person to offer a service that is solution based and dollarized. Remember customers only buy your service to solve their problem and to make/save money. If you can provide as good or better service than your competitors and demonstrate that your service will make/save more money for your customer than your competitors, you will win the business.

Knowing that a customer has multiple openings that your company can help fill is important. Asking why they need your service or a service like yours could provide you with the following information:

  • These are all revenue generating positions. Everyday that they go unfilled the company loses revenue.
  • Currently using high paid contractors to fill positions, margins are low and relationship with client is delicate. We could lose the business.
  • Company reputation is at risk, since we market ourselves as providing the best talent, quickly. What we sell is not what we have been delivering. Losing market share and business.
  • Some of these positions are replacement positions. Recently lost a number of experienced people to competition and internal resources have not been able to find the level of talent needed.

Successful selling is all about asking the right questions and listening to the answers. Those of us in the recruiting business put this into practice everyday. Some might say that recruiters are always asking Why questions, “Why is the position open?, Why would someone want to work for your company?, Why do you want to work for this company?, Why do you want to leave your current position?”  All good questions but none of them provide you with the key to your success. Knowing why a customer needs your service will allow you to become the Rainmaker you would like to be.

I am going to begin asking the Why question of all of our company’s prospective customers and insist that our new business consultants do the same.

And just so that our company is prepared, I have just ordered six new umbrellas.

Let the rains begin!

Keep On Truckin’

When people find out that I am the CEO of a managed recruiting services firm they typically ask if there are any jobs out there; if companies are hiring; why can’t they seem to find a job (for those who are looking); when is the economy going to turn around. I usually respond by saying that there are jobs out there; that companies are hiring; what is their job search process (assuming that they have one); and that I am not an economist. And, except for the last response about not being an economist, I always provide much more information, examples and advice regarding jobs, companies hiring and job search (for those who are looking).

Having answered these and other similar questions many times in the last few years, I decided to do some research, update some of my advice and look outside our company’s areas of specialization. I know that our company’s clients are hiring and that many of our competitors are engaged with their clients who are also hiring. So, no doubt there are jobs out there and companies are hiring.

However, our industry, RPO and managed recruitment services, represents such a small percentage of companies who are hiring, and such a small percentage of available jobs. The vast majority of companies who have jobs to fill are still using combinations of job boards, internal recruiters, employee referrals, 3rd party recruiters, job fairs, college recruiting, etc to attract, identify and recruit candidates.

My research regarding available jobs and companies hiring led me to the usual suspects, healthcare, energy, oil and gas, engineering technology and one surprise, an industry that I had never considered.

That industry is Transportation and the job is long distance truck driver. If you are a job seeker this is probably not the glamour job you dreamed about. But consider the following.

  • The industry will experience a critical shortage of drivers over the next 2 to 4 years due to an ageing work force.
  • The average age for long distance truck drivers is 54.
  • Based on recent surveys of the trucking company owners, there is currently a need for over 500,000 long distance truck drivers
  • Even if those 500,000 drivers were hired, there would still be a need for over 1,000,000 drivers a year over the next couple of years.
  • The average income for long distance drivers is 45K per year.
  • The service that long distance drivers provide is the backbone of our economy. Most everything that we as consumers use on a daily basis is handled and delivered to stores by truck.
  • The job does not even require a high school diploma.

So, the next time you are out on that open highway and are passing or are passed by a big eighteen wheeler, picture yourself up there in that cab. What is the view? Does the road go on forever? Is this the job for you?

Pass this along to anyone that you know who is looking for a job. You will be helping them and doing something for the economy.

And that is a big 10-4!

Some Food for Thought

Sometime over this past holiday weekend, somewhere between the second helping of Aunt Rose’s cranberry-orange relish and Cousin Minnie’s green chili mac and cheese I recalled an article that one of our contributing consultants had written for our web site, see Should Job Fairs Be Part of Your Talent Acquisition Strategy? The first part of the article is below. I think that you will enjoy reading it as much as I did re-reading it, especially since it kept me away from going after that fourth piece of pumpkin bread.

Do you know when the first Job Fair was held in this country? You should. You and millions of other people celebrate that day every year with family, friends and near and far relatives. You celebrate it with lavish meals, roast turkeys, gravy, stuffing, Aunt Mary’s pumpkin pie and Uncle Willie’s green bean casserole. You celebrate it with parades and football games and late night turkey sandwiches with cranberry sauce and mayo and plenty of Rolaids. That’s right, the first Job Fair was held as part of the First Thanksgiving. The Job Fair lasted for three days and since there were no restaurants to speak of in 1621, the Indians brought in food to share with the Pilgrims.

The Indians were hosting the Job Fair because they were expanding into new markets and were looking for people with little or no experience in fishing, hunting, corn planting and agriculture. Most of the young braves in the tribes had been promoted to middle management, running small tribes and some in charge of raiding parties. With new markets opening up, there was a need to fill entry-level positions and implement the training programs required to build and sustain a growing enterprise and nation.

The Pilgrims were new to this country and were willing to take any job that would lead to promotion with a good organization. The dollars were not as important as the training and a chance for advancement.

A three day Job Fair was held outside of Plymouth, MA and a number of Indian tribes sent their chief hiring managers to conduct interviews. As a result of the Job Fair, 60 offers were made and 56 Pilgrims accepted. The four who were turned down required relocation and moving expenses.

To celebrate the success of this first Job Fair, a small catered lunch was served to all participants and one Pilgrim was heard to say,” Thanks for Giving me this opportunity.” Thus the First Thanks Giving.

Hope you had a wonderful and happy holiday. I am now off to Wal-Mart to camp out for the early bird specials.

Happy Thanksgiving!