Don’t Disqualify Yourself Before the Interview

May 18th, 2016

chicago-employment-agenciesIt has been said, “To err is human.” This is very true, especially when people are under pressure to get a job. People can be prone to putting their foot in their mouth. They may do or say things that are inappropriate without realizing it. And they may even go so far as to disqualify themselves before they even get a job interview.

How does this happen? You may not realize it, but hiring managers can be highly critical of the behaviors of candidates. If they come on too strong, they seem desperate. If they don’t respond appropriately, this can send up red flags. How can you avoid eliminating yourself from consideration before you even have an opportunity to interview for a job? Here are some tips.

Follow the rules.

It’s possible that you can eliminate yourself from even being considered for a job if you neglect to follow the rules. Read through the job description and advertisement carefully. Follow the instructions provided. This can include how to apply for a position, who to send your resume to, and understanding the requirements of the job. You may not meet all of the requirements, but you want to meet as many of them as possible. Even if it’s time-consuming, follow the rules and apply the way you are supposed to – no shortcuts!

Be honest, but don’t be too honest.

People can be too honest in their emails or cover letters when applying for a job. They may reveal something that doesn’t belong in this format – instead, it should be discussed in an interview. Now we aren’t saying be dishonest, but don’t bring up points that would make you a non-desirable hire (only have X years of experience, don’t know this technology, etc.) Let this come out in the process. If you are asked directly about it, obviously don’t tell a lie. But it’s not a great idea to highlight your weaknesses and shortcomings.

Highlight your strengths, not weaknesses.

As a candidate, you want to paint yourself in the best possible light. This means, taking the time to highlight all of your achievements, skills and unique traits that you bring to the table. Do not bring up anything negative nor discuss your weaknesses at this point. If and when you get to the interview process, you will probably be asked what your weaknesses are. This will give you a chance to discuss your weaknesses in a positive way. For example, you could say that you are very detail-oriented and that causes you to need more time to work on projects.

Avoid bringing up negatives.

In all of your communications with the hiring team, be sure to avoid bringing up any potential negatives in your work history or personal background. This can happen innocently enough without your knowledge. Watch what you put on your resume too. Never ever say anything negative about a former employer or the work that you performed there.

Provide your contact information.

You would be surprised at how many times candidates apply for a job, but then neglect to provide adequate contact information. This includes a home telephone number and a mobile telephone number. Use a professional email address and be sure to check it frequently. Avoid using message numbers or voicemails that have long musical recordings before someone can leave a message. Remember, keep it professional and set a good impression of yourself from day one.

Join a Top Staffing Agency in Chicago

At Davis Staffing, if you are looking to advance your career, earn extra income, gain more flexibility or find a full-time job, we can help. Contact our great team today and work with a leading employment agency in Chicago.

Be the Manager Your Employees Want

May 13th, 2016

chicago-temp-staffingIt’s one thing to be the type of manager that you think you should be; it’s another to be the manager that employees will look up to. In a candidate-driven market, it’s important for managers to be mindful of their management style. How employees are treated can determine the productivity and retention rates for the business. A good manager knows how to maintain a strong workforce, through a concerted effort of being an ethical leader.

Do you have what it takes to be the manager your employees want? Here are some tips for being a more effective manager.

You don’t need all the answers.

Just because you are the manager doesn’t mean you have to have all the answers all the time. In fact, it’s okay to let your employees know that you need to seek counsel before you provide any answers. Going this extra step can help you to gain respect from your employees who know that you are trying to be as accurate and truthful as possible. Employees don’t want to hear a wishy-washy answer from their boss. You don’t want to hide behind the “I don’t know” all the time, but in certain occasions, it is the right answer.

Avoid becoming a micromanager.

No one likes a micromanager. Remember, your employees are adults and they do not need to be babysat or handheld. Give all of your employees the benefit of the doubt and allow them to find their own systems for achieving tasks. If someone asks for guidance, provide it. But do not hover over your employees and expect them to be productive or happy. Everyone has their own method to accomplishing goals. If they meet those goals, then leave it alone.

Keep the doors open.

It can be tempting as a manager to lock your office door and try to get some work done. However, this sends the message that you are unavailable to your subordinates. Instead, schedule open office hours so that employees can come and go and ask questions or talk to you about their challenges throughout the week. Schedule regular touchpoints with your employees to maintain open communication at all times.

Bring out the best in your people.

Your job as a manager is not to make yourself look good. It is to make your people shine. Evaluate the skill sets and abilities of your team members and provide them with meaningful tasks where they can be productive and show off their skills. Your job is to bring out the best in your people in order to be productive as a team and to help the company reach its objectives. Never take credit, but instead assign it to other people who deserve it.

Partner with a Top Staffing Agency in Chicago

At Davis Staffing, we have the experience and flexibility to help you overcome whatever challenges your business faces. Contact our great team of recruiters today to get started on working with one of the top staffing agencies in Chicago. 

Do You Hate Small Talk? 5 Tips to Make It Easier

May 6th, 2016

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Small talk is one of those skills that either you are good at it or you feel very awkward. Being socially adept is something that all working professionals can work on. It’s a skill that you don’t have to be born with because it is something you can improve. You might not be able to walk in and light up the room, but you don’t have to feel anxiety or nervous leading up to the event. You can learn to be good at making small talk and feeling comfortable around new people. Even if you hate small talk now, there are some ways to make it easier.

Believe you can do it…

The hardest part about small talk is getting past the fear of it. Take a deep breath and say to yourself, “I can do this’ before you speak to anyone. When you believe you can do anything, you can pretty much erase any fear you have about approaching other people to make conversation. If you psych yourself out before even taking on the task, then you are going to struggle with anything.

Practice everywhere.

Nearly every place you go there will be an opportunity to make small talk with people. Try it out at the grocery store with the cashier, the waitress at your favorite restaurant and at work with a few colleagues. Just say something interesting and see what others say in return. Practice smiling and being calm. This is especially important if you will be using small talk in an interview.

Ask people questions.

Small talk isn’t about talking at all. In fact, it’s more about listening to others. Most people enjoy talking about themselves, their interests, their lives, and so you can take advantage of this by being a good listener. Ask some people questions that are open ended, such as:

  • Tell me more about you?
  • What’s your favorite part of working here?
  • What did you think about that latest movie?
  • Can you share some ideas with me about [insert topic]?

Follow up with their questions.

Once you have other people talking, use this opportunity to then share something meaningful about you. Listen for common ground with others and relate to what others are saying. Be funny. Be interesting. Show that you are listening to them by asking relevant questions.

Talk about things you are comfortable with.

There are always going to be some topics to steer clear of with small talk. For example, politics, racism, religion and moral topics can often turn into heated arguments. Keep topics light, interesting and fun. Stay away from negative things. If you are uncomfortable talking about something, chances are someone else is too.

By using the above tips you’ll soon be the best small talker in town. Just be yourself, have fun with this, and demonstrate your confidence.

Work with a Leading Chicago Staffing Firm

Learn about the Davis Staffing difference by contacting our great team of recruiters. When you are ready to take the next step in your career, partner with a top staffing agency in Chicago and call Davis!

Hire Faster with Mobile Recruiting

April 29th, 2016

chicago-temp-staffingAlong with social networks, mobile recruiting has grown to become highly effective for finding quality candidates. This is because more candidates are using mobile apps to search for career opportunities than ever before. LinkedIn published the findings of an extensive user behavior study that revealed 72 percent of professionals have used a mobile app to find career listings, and nearly half felt comfortable submitting their resume using the mobile app.

With millions of job seekers searching for careers on-the-go, it’s a good idea to get involved with mobile recruiting to capture the attention of this talent.

How can you hire faster and better using mobile recruiting? Here are some tips you can try.

Advertise or share content across social media platforms.

Use social media management tools to distribute your job leads, company updates, and more on all your social networks. This gets the message out to more people and so wherever they happen to be, they will learn of your career opportunities, job fairs, and recruitment news. Keep track of which social media outlets are best for your company and what brings the top results. When you do find the types of posts that work best, continue to use those posts.

Set up a system where you can reach job candidates through texting.

When using mobile recruiting, remember that the quickest way to get information out about job postings and other career updates is via SMS text messaging. Give employees a chance to opt in when they register for work with your company. Include unique links to apply to the specific job within the text. Sharing job leads happens automatically, which frees up time for other recruitment efforts. When you have fill a job order quickly, this technology can be a great way to reach candidates and get answers fast.

Use opt-in messaging to obtain the email addresses of potential candidates.

Along with the standard opt in during candidate registrations, send new candidates a targeted text asking them if they’d like to receive job postings via email. This can be a simple opt-in form on the website, or you can send a message to all new candidates. Some people prefer to receive all business communication through email, so texting alerts might not be for them. Acquiring more email addresses will also give you a chance to add more contacts to your distribution list for your monthly newsletter.

Share the corporate culture on branded mobile apps.

When selecting the right recruiting mobile apps, consider those that have branding possibilities so candidates can learn more about your company. Branded apps give candidates the full experience, and it helps them to remember you when they return to follow up on applications. A branded app can also be an effective way to market your company to all candidates. Anything you can do to keep your branding consistent will portray a great image of your company and give the right impression to anyone who interacts with your company.

By following the above tips, you can effectively use mobile recruitment to get in front of the right candidates. Remember to assign someone to monitor and administer the program so that it can be consistently bringing in new leads.

At Davis Staffing, we help companies fill job openings quickly and efficiently. Contact our great team of recruiters today to work with a leading staffing agency in Chicago.

What Should You Do on Your First Day?

April 22nd, 2016

chicago-temp-staffingHooray, you are just about to head to your new temporary job for your first day! This is an exciting time, and no doubt you are a little nervous because you are not entirely sure what to expect. But this can be a great day and the start of something wonderful. That is, if you follow the advice in this article about what you should do for your first day.

Don’t be late.

Whatever you do, try not to be late on your first day on a new job, especially a temp assignment. If at all possible, complete your route to your new workplace the day before and find it. Learn where to park or what train station you need to get off at and check out the facility. Time yourself and plan that you will need extra time during a busier time of the day to arrive on time. Get there about 5 minutes early if you can. If you arrive really early, either sit in your car or drive around the block. If you took the train, get off and walk around the block a little bit. There’s being 5-10 minutes early and being overly eager by arriving 30 minutes away. Your supervisor might not be ready for you at that time.

Ask about the appropriate dress before the first day.

The advantage of working a temporary assignment is that you can ask the recruiter what to wear and what to bring before you start there. Find out if there is a certain dress code for the employer, including any special shoes you may need to wear (for industrial work). Bring a light sweater if you are working in an office because the climate might be cooler than you’re comfortable with. For the ladies, don’t go overboard on makeup, fragrance, or jewelry.

Bring a lunch and a notebook.

It’s always a good idea to bring your lunch with you for the first few days on a new job. First, you don’t know how much time you will have and since you’re in an unfamiliar area, it may be worrisome to find a lunch spot nearby. Don’t assume that someone will take you out to lunch on your first day. If they do offer to take you to lunch, be flexible and consider eating what you brought for lunch later in the day or tomorrow. Bring a notebook and pen too, so you can take notes as you learn things at work.

Don’t come in with all the answers.

As the new person on the team, your job is to learn all you can from your new co-workers before you start being the office expert. No one likes a know-it-all, and it’s very annoying for a new person to act like they have all the answers. You don’t want to be this person. First impressions are important and taking over the know-it-all role in the office isn’t one to get tagged with on your first day.

Be ready to learn everything.

Ask good questions and be ready to absorb a lot of information on your first week on the new job. It may seem overwhelming, but as long as you take notes and seek clarification, you will do fine. Don’t think you’ll remember everything that you hear about performing job duties. Asking the same question numerous times will get annoying to your managers since their time is valuable.

If you’re ready to work with top companies in the Chicago area, contact Davis Staffing today. As a leader in staffing in Chicago, Davis Staffing is ready to find the right job opening for your skills and schedule! Don’t hesitate to call today!

How Can You Set the Tone on Your New Hire’s First Day?

April 15th, 2016

chicago-temp-agenciesIn a candidate-driven job market, employers must do all they can to provide a positive experience for new hires during their first day and onward. Studies have shown that when employees are given a positive onboarding experience they are much more apt to stay with their employer longer. For example, Aberdeen Group conducted a study that revealed 86 percent of HR managers felt that a new hire’s decision to remain employed for the first six months was based on a positive experience during the first few critical days.

Setting the tone of a new hire’s day takes a few simple, yet effective, steps. We will outline them here, so you can design a positive onboarding process for all your new employees.

Start with a great orientation and training period.

On the first day of employment, make sure there is someone on hand to greet your new hires as they arrive, then walk them over to the training space. Give your new employee(s) a tour of the building, provide them with all the materials they will need to be successful, and conduct introductions to their colleagues. Use training as an extension of the onboarding process, with ongoing support and guidance.

Make new hires feel involved in the company.

When employees understand their importance to the company and how their role contributes to the company, they are better able to feel a part of something bigger than themselves. Let employees know from day one how valuable they are to the company and they were handpicked for their unique skills and experience. You don’t want to give the impression that the job description was something different than what their actual job duties and responsibilities will ebe.

Explain company goals in detail.

During the interview, it may not have been apparent how a new hire fit into the company goals. Now is the time to explain this in detail with your new hires. Talk about the exciting projects they will be working on that help the company achieve these objectives. Let them know they are valued and respected for their ability to contribute much to the organization.

Have an open door policy for all new hires.

During the first day at work and in subsequent days, make yourself available and accessible for any questions, needs or concerns  your new hires may have. Set up daily and then weekly touchpoints to stay connected to new hires as they overcome learning curves and find their place within the company.

At Davis Staffing, we help companies find great employees who will be excited about joining your company and taking the next step in their career. Contact a leading staffing agency in Chicago today to get started on filling all of your employment needs today!

Is Your Cover Letter As Good As It Could Be?

April 8th, 2016

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Does your cover letter have the “wow” factor it needs to help you land a great job? If you are uncertain about the impact of your current cover letter or you have never crafted one, now is the time to develop a document that will get you results. Your career depends on it.

Here are the elements of an outstanding cover letter.

Addressed to the right person

Before you use “To Whom it May Concern” as the addressee of your letter, stop and consider how impersonal this is. In fact, it’s considered by many to be lazy. There are numerous ways to find out who you should be receiving the cover letter. For example, check out the company website and get the name of the human resource manager, or go to LinkedIn and get the name of the lead recruiter. If those sources don’t produce a name, pick up the phone and ask the receptionist to whom you should address the letter to at the company. This little extra step can help your cover letter to get into the right hands.

A powerful opening paragraph

Grab the attention of the reader with a good opening statement that introduces you and your value to the company. Don’t be generic because HR literally reads hundreds of cover letters every week. Try to stand out and say something interesting and relevant to the job you are applying for. Make the reader want to learn more about you. When you are trying to be interesting, get to the point quickly. You don’t want to take a lot of sentences to get to the point.

Highlights your achievements

Your cover letter also needs to provide more context and expand on your top career achievements. The points you are highlighting from your resume should be relevant to the job posting. This customization will take time on your end, but the payoff will come when you receive an interview and eventually get the job. When you are highlighting your achievements, make it simple and to the point. Use white space around this list to make it easy on the eyes and give the recruiter some room to make notes. Don’t be afraid to boast a little bit about yourself!

Effective call to action

The last and perhaps one of the most important elements that your cover letter needs is a strong call to action at the very end. This essentially asks the recruiter to contact you and provides the times you are available and how to reach you. Include your contact information and wrap things up by thanking the reader for their time.

When you are looking to take the next step in your career, contact Davis Staffing. Work with a local, experienced Chicago staffing service partner who will provide service beyond your expectation.

Is It Acceptable to Text Job Candidates?

March 25th, 2016

chicago-temp-agenciesThe job market is increasingly filled by younger candidates, those accustomed to using mobile devices practically 24 hours/day and seven days/week. Many younger job candidates are either currently employed full-time, or they are in-between jobs looking for that next great opportunity. But the truth is, they are busy and on-the-go most of the day.

If you’ve ever been in a recruiter’s shoes and tried to reach one of these candidates and received zero response, you are not alone. It seems that candidates cannot be bothered to call or e-mail anyone back, or they find it difficult to sneak away from their jobs to respond. But texting, that’s very easy to get a response and also recieves high reading rates.

Maybe this is the answer for recruiters?

But is it ever acceptable for recruiters to contact candidates via text message? Is it considered professional? According to a recent survey, the answer is “Yes.” Software Advice reported that “43 percent of job seekers younger than 45 years old considered recruiters who use text messaging as professional.” Additionally, now more than 60 percent of the recruiters polled in this survey were already using text messaging to get in contact with candidates or to send job leads to them directly.

So, that answers that question. But, what are some best practices for sending text messages to candidates?

1. Keep text messages brief and with a call to action.

Get to the point in your text messages and ask the candidate to respond if they are still interested or seeking work. Then if they answer with a yes, send them the job info and a link to learn more. You’ll save yourself a lot of time and headaches.

2. Send job leads as they come in via text message.

If you are trying to connect with a candidate and failing, try sending a message that invites them to apply online for a few great new jobs that have recently arrived. Follow up with candidates who actually apply using a text thank you message to make it more personal.

3. Don’t over-rely on text messaging for communications.

Take the time to use a variety of communications with candidates, and use the right type for the right task. For example, emails are best for arranging interviews because you can share files more securely. Directions and confirmations for interviews can be sent via text messaging.

Text messaging works as an option to reach job candidates, especially younger job candidates, because of the high open rates with this technology. You don’t want to spam their inbox because that will just have a negative effect and turn the candidates off to your company. Check with each candidate and see if they want to receive text messages. If they do, it won’t hurt to use that advantage to land more quality candidates.

Whatever challenges you face, Davis Staffing has the experience and flexibility to help you overcome them. Contact our Certified Staffing Professionals today, and we will help meet your company’s employment needs as a top staffing agency in Chicago.

What You Can Do after a Bad Interview

March 18th, 2016

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After weeks of waiting for a job interview at a dream company, the big day has finally arrived. But, as if you have a curse put on you, everything goes terribly wrong. You wake up with a huge pimple on your forehead, your power suit has a stain on it that went unnoticed until the morning, you cannot find a copy of your resume, and you have to take public transportation because your car won’t start. You arrive late, embarrassed and not exactly ready to put your best foot forward, let alone answer any interview questions.

What should you do if everything has gone wrong and you’ve left the building after a bad interview? Don’t worry – there are ways to redeem yourself and maybe even get a second chance to make a better impression.

First, go home and relax and calm down.

The last thing you want to do is contact the recruiter and start sobbing on the phone. Get yourself home, changed into something comfortable, get a hot cup of tea, and collect yourself. Then jot down what you would like to say to the recruiter, so you can get your thoughts organized.

Within 24 hours, call and speak to the recruiter.

Once you have a chance to process what you want to say, take the time to give the recruiter or hiring manager a phone call. Do not send an email. You want to speak directly to the person you went to meet with. Explain what happened and that you experienced an unexpected bad day. Ask the hiring manager if they would be willing to give you a second interview, and you promise it will be much better.

If you are granted another interview, make it count.

Hiring managers are human beings, and they understand that things happen. In fact, the decision to call and request another interview was enough to convince them. But, you have your work cut out for you. Bring your “A” game, and be able to show examples of previous achievements in your career. Show out your best side in the interview and thank the hiring manager profusely for giving you another chance for a brighter interview.

Always have good manners and show appreciation.

This is going to take more than just a handwritten thank-you card, although it’s a start. Take the time to send a grateful email, followed by a small gesture of appreciation such as a card with a gift card for a local coffee shop or restaurant in it. Or have a small plant delivered to the recruiter from a florist.

Remember, bad and good days happen for a reason and if you get a second chance you may still be in the running for the job.

At Davis Staffing, we’ll listen to your needs, evaluate your skills and interests, then match you with the perfect temporary, temp-to-hire or direct hire opportunity. Contact our great team of recruiters today to work with a top staffing agency in Chicago!

How to Build a Culture in a Large Company

March 11th, 2016

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Nearly every business has an idea of what corporate culture should look like. But, it can be difficult to build a strong corporate brand in a larger company because everyone has different ideas of what it should be and people are often spread out in different regions. Building a strong culture is possible in a large company, if the proper approach is used. Here, we will be talking about ways that your large business can create an outstanding culture.

Develop a set of real corporate values

A corporate culture is built on values that are promoted across the entire organization. Create a set of at least 5 core values that relate to the company mission statement and the type of reputation your company wants to build. These could be as simple as the word “respect,” as in everyone deserves and is treated with respect by everyone else.

Make changes over time to earn employee compliance

Don’t expect your employees to jump on your new culture overnight, particularly if they are working remotely. Instead, give this time and roll out each new value over a period of months. Employees will comply once they get warmed up with the idea of the new brand and culture your company is trying to grow.

Reward employees for demonstrating the culture

Give employees a reason to get behind the new corporate culture. This can be a challenge for a larger company, because of the sheer volume of employees. However, set up culture club meetings to lead discussions about the culture and its impact on the business. Reward and recognize employees who demonstrate the cultural values of your company, and make sure all know about this by publishing it on social networks. This type of public recognition will go a long way to establishing a corporate culture. When employees and management see certain types of behaviors get rewarded, it will accelerate the adoption of culture and values.

Take the culture from the internal to the external

Once the corporate culture has been embraced by employees and becomes a regular part of the internal process of the company, it’s time to move the culture to the outside world too. The culture should be something that benefits the community, through volunteer service and promoting important causes. Get the entire workforce involved in making the world a better place.

By following the above steps, your company can develop a strong corporate culture that transcends the industry and improves the workplace for all employees at your large company.

Partner with a Top Staffing Agency in Chicago

Whatever challenges you face, Davis Staffing has the experience and flexibility to help you overcome them. Contact our great team of recruiters today to work with a leading staffing agency in Chicago.

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