Faith Based & Neighborhood Partnerships

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Connecting Older Workers, Long-Term Unemployed With Jobs
by Ben Seigel

cross-posted from (Work in Progress), the Official Blog of the U.S. Department of Labor. 

Did you know that the age group most impacted by long-term unemployment - that is, 27 weeks or longer - is workers 55 and older? And while the ranks of the long-term unemployed have been steadily declining over the past year, there are still 4.7 million people in this category according to the department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Local job clubs, career ministries and job search support groups across the country are uniquely positioned to help unemployed older workers, including those in the long-term category. Take Roddy, a 52-year-old product manager who lost his job when his company relocated.

Click here to read the rest of the blog.

Guest Blog: Are you a LION?

by Absolutely Abby

 

Editor's note: Abby Kohut (a.k.a. Absolutely Abby) will be a featured presenter on this Friday's Partnerships CoP conference call, February 8 at 3pm EST. Please visit the Calendar link above for information.

The truth is that like many of you, I decided to join LinkedIn because of peer pressure. In 2005, I received so many invitations from friends that one day, I finally decide to take the plunge. Unbeknownst to me, this was the best decision I could have made as a recruiter, and it is the best decision a job seeker can make as well.

Despite the fact that there are 200 million LinkedIn users (and growing), there are not 200 million people who actually know what to do once they become a user, and more importantly a job seeker. Similar to a resume, your LinkedIn profile is where you tell the world all about yourself, but as usual, you have choices to make. Here are five questions to consider as you are setting up your profile:

Are you Honest Abe?

These days, almost every recruiter uses LinkedIn to do background research. That means that your dates of employment, dates of graduation, and job titles listed on your profile MUST match your resume exactly. If they do not match, you may have difficulty passing the background check once you receive an offer because a core value of many of the companies that you are applying for is integrity.

Many job search experts are encouraging job seekers to have different versions of their resumes. If you opt for that strategy, as long as your titles and dates are in sync on all of your resumes and on your LinkedIn profile, your integrity will not come into question. If you have a title that doesn’t match the standard titles in your industry or what you were actually doing, you can always add an explanation in parentheses.

Are you keyed in?

 

Keywords barely mattered when I started recruiting. Today, they are practically the only thing that does matter. Why? Because computers are making the first pass for recruiters rather than eyes, and as smart as computers are, they can’t read your mind (yet). Having a brief LinkedIn profile so you can lure the recruiter into giving you a call is simply a bad strategy if the recruiter can’t find you in the first place.

 

For the longest time, you have probably been told not to repeat skills on your resume. While this made sense in 1997, today it is antiquated information. The more keywords you have that match what I type in, the higher on the page you appear. It’s really that simple. I’m not telling you to say the exact same phrase over and over. I am telling you to tactfully repeat the keyword.

 

You can find the appropriate keywords from job descriptions that you apply for. How many times do you need to list them on your resume? Just one more time than your competition does.

 

Are you interesting?

 

The answer to this is that you're as interesting as your profile is. If you do any volunteer work or participate in extra-curricular activities, consider adding them to your profile (and to your resume). You never know who might read your profile and want to learn more about you. I won the Long Island Women’s Table Tennis Tournament in 1993 and it was that interesting fact on my resume that earned me an interview and then an offer at a software company.

 

Are you reachable?

 

Whether or not to list your e-mail address or phone number on your profile is a decision you should not take lightly. When you are conducting a job search, it is important that people who want to contact you can do so with ease, whether they find you on LinkedIn or on a job board. There are many reasons why people choose to keep their e-mail addresses on LinkedIn confidential. However, if you don't list your e-mail on your profile, a recruiter has to rely on someone that is connected to you to make the introduction. If your e-mail is listed on your profile, you remove the middleman.

 

Are you a LION?

 

Frequently you will see the term LION on a profile, which stands for LinkedIn Open Networker. A LION is someone who agrees to accept LinkedIn invitations from anyone who sends them, regardless of whether they know them personally. The people who designate themselves as LIONS are typically business owners, headhunters, and people who love to connect other people together. While you are a jobseeker, you may wish to become an open networker, simply to increase the number of connections you have to people that can help you. As a LION myself, I invite you to connect to me as well.

 

According to Jobvite, social recruiting has become an essential HR practice, with 92% of U.S. companies using social networks and media to find talent in 2012. More importantly, 93% of those surveyed use LinkedIn to recruit. With those percentages, job seekers simply have to learn to take advantage of the tools LinkedIn has given them. Encourage them to think of themselves as recruiters. How would they find themselves on LinkedIn? How would they contact themselves and how long would they wait for a response? When used strategically, LinkedIn can become the light at the end of the tunnel that they have been waiting for!

 

Abby Kohut, who is known on the web as Absolutely Abby, has held positions from recruiter to Senior Director of Recruiting. Her website www.AbsolutelyAbby.com, her speeches, and her books teach candidates secrets about the job search process that other recruiters won't tell you. Since 2010, Abby has been on a mission to educate one million job seekers, and is currently driving around the USA on a nationwide tour to accomplish that goal, which you can learn more about at www.AbbyAcrossAmerica.com. Abby would be thrilled to speak at your job search group while she’s in town.

See below list of upcoming dates and locations for Abby's Job Search Success Tour. If you would like her to speak at your job club, contact her at akohut@absolutelyabby.com.

Melbourne FL: 02/12/13 to 02/12/13

Cocoa FL: 02/12/13 to 02/13/13

Tampa FL: 02/13/13 to 02/13/13

Palm Bay FL: 02/13/13 to 02/15/13

Titusville FL: 02/15/13 to 02/16/13

Jacksonville FL: 02/16/13 to 02/19/13

Atlanta GA: 02/19/13 to 03/10/13

Tallahassee FL: 03/10/13 to 03/15/13

Pensacola FL: 03/15/13 to 03/20/13

Mobile AL: 03/20/13 to 03/22/13

New Orleans LA: 03/22/13 to 04/01/13

Springfield NJ: 04/01/13 to 04/17/13

Baton Rouge LA: 04/17/13 to 04/19/13

Houston TX: 04/19/13 to 04/28/13

Austin TX: 04/28/13 to 05/05/13

San Antonio TX: 05/05/13 to 05/10/13

Dallas TX: 05/10/13 to 05/31/13

Oklahoma City OK: 05/31/13 to 06/03/13

Tulsa OK: 06/03/13 to 06/13/13

Springfield MO: 06/13/13 to 06/16/13

St. Louis MO: 06/16/13 to 06/25/13

Chicago IL: 06/25/13 to 07/15/13

Des Moines IA: 07/15/13 to 08/01/13

Omaha NE: 08/01/13 to 08/15/13

Denver CO: 08/15/13 to 08/31/13

Salt Lake City UT: 08/31/13 to 09/10/13

Boise ID: 09/10/13 to 09/15/13

Seattle WA: 09/15/13 to 10/02/13

Portland OR: 10/02/13 to 10/10/13

Sacramento CA: 10/10/13 to 10/17/13

San Francisco CA: 10/17/13 to 10/23/13

San Jose CA: 10/23/13 to 10/31/13

Los Angeles CA: 10/31/13 to 11/10/13

San Diego CA: 11/10/13 to 11/25/13

Las Vegas NV: 11/25/13 to 12/05/13

Phoenix AZ: 12/05/13 to 12/20/13

Walnut Creek CA: 12/20/13 to 01/15/14

 

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