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Lights. Camera. YouTube. Cruise to Job Victory on the World’s 2nd Largest Search Engine.

Insight #1: Did you know that YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world, after Google? And the fact that Google owns YouTube?

Insight # 2: Sure, many people still associate YouTube with cute puppy videos, movie trailers and music videos. And while this is all true, did you know YouTube can also be an excellent resource while looking for a job?

Yes, using video as a recruitment tool is gaining big momentum in the HR industry.  Recruiters and hiring managers are increasingly using employment videos to tell their story and recruit, hire, and source candidates for an array of positions. And that explains why even popular sites like Monster.com  have dedicated YouTube pages for job search and career development.

Not only can you surf lots of “how to” videos on job search and even view virtual interviews, you can use YouTube to promote yourself in interesting ways.

Build Your Professional Brand with a Visual Resume. 
Personal branding is key to developing your career and YouTube is the perfect tool to help you build your brand. You can now post a video of yourself to convey your knowledge and passion for the position. This also lets you demonstrate both your soft, transferable skills and core technical skills in one shot.

Set up an Exclusive YouTube Channel. 
Consider creating a new Google account to set up a professional YouTube channel that can be exclusive to your job search. This can now be an additional asset to let prospective employers understand your value and your brand. Then share a few brief videos that show you highlighting your skills and familiarity with your chosen occupation and industry.

Build a YouTube Network. 
By curating and sharing interesting content, you can soon build an exclusive network on YouTube. You can also link to videos by experts in your field, add comments and share the impression they’ve made on you. This helps future employers see your involvement and enthusiasm.

YouTube  is specially a boon for people in creative and technology fields or for candidates with friends in those fields – you can leverage its strengths well.  Make use of the site’s built-in production tools by adding effects, inserting links or adding a soundtrack. This proves you know how to do the things your dream job requires.

Once you create your channel, link to it from your resume, LinkedIn profile, Facebook page and any other relevant media or marketing material you use for yourself in your search.

Final Tips

  • YouTube is a simple, quick way to get yourself seen.
  • Fancy film work and high tech cameras aren’t key to success.
  • Recruiters hire people, not two stapled pieces of paper. If they see you in action, they will be more likely to want to connect with you.
  • Keep your videos to a max of one or two minutes.
  • Use HD settings and make sure the lighting reflects you well.
  • Shoot as many takes as necessary; edit ruthlessly using YouTube’s built-in tools.
  • Look and dress professional, have a professional backdrop, practice with a friend first, and make the video conversational, yet professional.

Insight # 3: If Justin, so can you. 
Yes, one of the most famous YouTube discoveries is Justin Bieber!  It all started when Bieber posted homemade videos of himself singing. He quickly garnered interest and created a buzz as the views jumped from hundreds to thousands. And it was only a matter of time before he was discovered by his now manager, Scooter Braun, and introduced to Usher.

 

So if Justin can, why can’t you?

 

ACE The Panel Interview.

10 Panel Interview Tips to Set You Up For Success.

Panel interviews are becoming increasingly common as organizations look for even more rigorous ways to screen job seekers and spot the best talent. Though they may be uncomfortable for candidates, panel interviews save time for organizations and enable a teamwork approach to hiring.

As the name suggests, a panel interview is where a candidate is interviewed by a senior management group, where each person will ask the candidate a question in turn. At some point in your career, you’ll most likely go through a panel interview.

To the uninitiated, these can feel like a cross-examination panel! The key is to remain calm and focused, develop an element of rapport with each interviewer and be well prepared for the questions you are likely to be asked. And so, here are some simple panel interview tips to make the process work to your advantage

1. Make an excellent first impression. 
The way you meet and greet your panel will impact the rest of the interview. When you enter the panel interview make swift eye contact, shake hands firmly and engage with each interviewer. It may be difficult later to build rapport with each panel member during the interview, so your introductions are key to creating the right first impression.

2. Be prepared for the panel’s questions.
When answering the questions, highlight your full range of abilities, skills and knowledge. Behavioural interview questions are commonly used in panel interviews. Develop relevant behavioural examples that demonstrate what you are able to bring to the position.

3. Do a background check on the panelists. 
It’s a good idea to be aware of who will be on the panel and what their function is in the organization. Look up LinkedIn or the company’s website to help you in your quest. Each panel member will approach the interview from his or her own viewpoint and you need to be aware of their perspectives, to respond to their questions better.

4. Be aware of verbal and non-verbal communication. 
Purposeful use of relaxed and pleasant body language helps convey your professionalism. Make initial eye contact with the person who asked the question and then include the other panel members in your answer. Focus on speaking to each individual and then, as you finish your answer, return your focus to the person who asked the interview question.

5. Address each member’s concerns effectively. 
A good strategy when answering panel interview questions is to cross reference a question with one that has already been asked by a different member. For example: “To elaborate on my answer to Elliott, my project management experience also includes …..” This way you are reinforcing the positives you have already discussed and are addressing the concerns of two panel members at once.

6. Impress with personal success stories. 
The panel may ask you for examples of demonstration of certain skills or experience. It’s a good idea to have three to four success stories up your sleeve to share on the day. Think about how your individual actions and approach led to positive results each time.

7. Close the panel interview successfully. 
Once the interview concludes, ask if there is any other information they would like to have. On your part, have at least one question ready for each member if they give you that opportunity. As you close, shake hands and thank each person individually, again using each person’s name.

8. Send a thank you letter. 
Make sure you take each person’s business card. Follow up on your interview with a personalized thank you to each panel member within 24 hours. Refer to each person’s area of interest and customize your comments to make them relevant to that person’s particular role.

As you can see, panel interviews are nothing to fret about. If you come armed with a positive attitude and plenty of success stories then you have nothing to dread. With a decent amount of preparation, you can rise and shine in every panel interview.

 

Crack the Applicant Tracking System Code

ATS

Get your resume in front of recruiters every time.

“You can’t change the direction of the wind, but you can adjust the sails to reach your destination.” The meaning is obvious in Jimmy Dean’s famous quote and hugely

relevant for job seekers in the marketplace today. There are some things you just
can’t change and, when you come across a challenge, you simply need to make a few
adjustments in order to reach your objectives.

With the sheer volume of resumes that recruiters receive each day, many of them
today must first make it past the Applicant Tracking System [ATS] before a live
person even looks at them. An ATS is a specialized software highly favoured by
employers, which literally filters through thousands of resumes before it submits
the top most recommended resumes to the employers.

ATS make recruiters’ lives easier, saving them hours and days’ worth of time by
performing the initial evaluation and by narrowing down the candidate pool from
100s of resumes to the top 10 candidates. This means that the more the employers
depend on the ATS, the more the chances that qualified candidates may get filtered
out. And your only hope for breaking through the ATS barrier is to understand
exactly how the system works and effectively format your resume to get through.

How Applicant Tracking Systems filter your resume

Regardless of your stellar qualifications, if the resume isn’t formatted in the right
way, which means if the right keywords and phrases are missing, the Applicant
Tracking System will simply misread your resume and rank it as a bad match with
the job opening.

The most important criteria used by the ATS to determine a match includes the
appearance of a keyword or phrase that can be measured by its presence in the
document, as well as the number of times the keyword or phrase appears.

Plus, the ATS contains different database fields for information on a resume, such as
an applicant’s name, contact details, work experience, job titles, education, employer names and periods of employment. These systems try to identify this information on a job seeker’s resume, so it’s essential that you format your resume to fit these criteria. And thus, the higher your resume ranking by the ATS, the more likely the application will end up being reviewed by a human reader.

How to format ATS-friendly Resumes:

  • Always submit your resume in an ATS approved format [.doc, .docx, or .txt.].
  • Remember, PDF, RTF and Jpeg formatted resumes may not be ATS-friendly.
  • List your contact information at the top of the document, with each piece of information labelled, “Phone”, “Email” and “LinkedIn.”
  • Simplify and streamline section headings “Qualifications”, “Summary,” “Work Experience,” and “Education.”
  • Avoid the temptation to use fancy dingbats, design templates, shading and borders and opt for simple bullets instead.
  • Ensure that the content is set in a simple single column format by minimizing the use of tables, multiple columns and text boxes.
  • Write your resume using safe, ATS-accepted fonts like Verdana or Arial.
  • Do not include images or graphics because the ATS can’t read them anyway and worse, they could clog the system.
  • As always, thoroughly check for spelling errors as the ATS may not recognize misspelled words.
  • If you are using abbreviations, like “PM”, make sure you also spell out the full version – “Project Management”.
  • Customize your resume for the individual job using keywords from the job position itself. If you are formatting a new resume, look up a few job postings from sites like indeed.ca and cut and paste relevant keywords and add them in your resume strategically.
  • Keep the section around your name clean. If you intend to add your credentials like PhD, CPA etc, make sure that you list them separately but not along with your name as that may confuse the ATS.

In summary, the ATS can be a very powerful ally if you understand how to make it work in your favour. If you can research jobs and optimize your resume wisely with the right keywords and in accepted layout and design formats, in no time you can be sitting face to face across the table with your potential employers.

Here’s wishing you all the luck in cracking the ATS code.

Top Ten Twitter Tips to enhance your job search

TwitterJobSearch-300x212

Twitter – A tremendous tool for job success

According to the latest Jobvite survey over 55% of recruiters and 40% of job seekers have actively engaged in Twitter for job search. How about you? Twitter is one of the most popular, social networking websites with more than 20 million active users. These also include the very recruiters, hiring managers and the CEOs of the companies that you wish to work for. With its popularity continuing to rise, here are ten creative ways Twitter can help you with your job search strategy and online branding.

1. Build.
Getting started is easy. Set up a free profile on Twitter.com. Write a compelling, keyword rich introduction, with preferably the same professional image that’s on LinkedIn, for consistency. And, add a link to your resume, portfolio or blog on your Twitter profile.

2. Connect. 
Shortlist the top five to ten companies that you wish to work for. Follow them and also follow influencers and key people working for each target company. You can also try to search “their name + Twitter” in Google for effective results. As a next step, you can begin to share what they say through re-tweets.

3. Engage. 
Pay attention to what those influencers are saying and what they’re sharing. Brush up on tips about why people follow on Twitter to improve your odds of them following you back. Now get in conversations with the influencers, ask intelligent questions, follow up with links to your best work., offer help and re-tweet the good information you see.

4. Tweet. 
Post intelligent, industry-relevant Tweets to demonstrate your skills, abilities, knowledge, and separate yourself from the competition. Don’t just re-tweet what others are saying; create meaningful content that people care about. Be a thought leader. Similar to how Google indexes your Tweets in the same way indexes your LinkedIn profile and Blogs.

5. Share. 
Share content that is valuable. The more relevant contributions you make, the more others will want to continue to follow you. Show what you are passionate about to give recruiters an idea of your personality. Keep your conversations focused on your area of expertise, or job search topics. Participate by joining hashtag discussions related to your field.

6. Search. 
With recruiters and hiring managers across the globe posting jobs on Twitter, it is now serving as a mini job board. You can go to the Twitter search box and search for the roles you are interested in, find the relevant Tweets and then follow the links provided to learn more about the open positions.

7: Read. 
Hundreds of Career Experts regularly post advice and links to job search resources on Twitter. The quickest way to find these experts is to use the Twitter Search function and enter the hashtag #jobsearch, #career or #jobseeker. The amount of excellent ideas, tips, leads, news, informative articles, and best practices going by all day long is amazing.

8. Absorb. 
Directly connect with companies and people that you want to work for. Find companies and people using Tweepsearch and follow them. Read their Tweets, respond and share. Many companies have job-related Twitter handles and following those is a great way to keep tabs on job openings.

9. Comprehend. 
Knowledge is power. Regularly follow the news items, trends and industry chatter on Twitter. You can become much better versed in your field and with the new and valuable information. And when you eventually get an interview with one of the companies that you are following, you will be much more prepared in the interview conversations.

10: Excel. 
Take advantage of Twitter’s unique open platform. Twitter’s openness makes it a useful platform for showcasing your talents, personality and interests. Recruiters can get an idea of who you are, and if you would be a good fit at their company. It’s not just about the transparency of candidates but companies as well.

Twitter can be a tremendous tool to build social credibility during a job search and help you establish a strong online reputation. The reputation you build on Twitter, just like the any other site will greatly aid your chances of finding the right position. Go on, have fun and start making your mark online in less than 140 characters.