Monthly Archives: May 2015

4 Surprising Things A Job Seeker Might Not Know

4 Surprising Things A Job Seeker Might Not Know

 

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Looking for more career advice?
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Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow Oldcastle Careers on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest and Facebook for jobs and career advice. And, don’t forget to join our NEW Talent Community to receive a monthly e-mail newsletter with expert advice on the job search process.

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6 Things Recent Grads Looking For Their First “Real” Job Should Know

1) Being green isn’t a bad thing
Employers understand that a recent graduate has less experience. In many ways, this can be a good thing for the employer. Recent graduates can be trained on processes and offer a different, fresh perspective than more seasoned employees.

A “green” employee is desirable to an employer because the employer has an opportunity to find someone motivated to use their new knowledge and apply it in the workplace for the first time.  You can train and guide the junior employee to navigate through the company and how to handle situations appropriately. 

If treated well, you could have a long term employee who will grow with the company.  They can provide a good mix with more senior employees who bring perspective from other companies or industries to the workplace.
-Corey Listar, Staffing Operations Manager

2) Everyone has a different timetable
Don’t beat yourself up if you haven’t landed the job of your dreams yet. Take a moment to enjoy the moment. While some of your friends may have landed jobs or gone onto graduate school, don’t compare your timeline to theirs. This advice will bode you well your entire career.

3) The college career office is your friend
If you haven’t made a visit to your college’s career planning office, make sure you do so before you leave campus. If you are already back home, connect with them online. Alumni can take advantage of services ranging from job listings, resume help and, often, an alumni email you can use for your job search correspondence.

4) You can never be too prepared for an interview
Kallee Stein, a Recruiting Support Coordinator for Oldcastle, landed a job before she graduated in December of 2013. Graduating a semester earlier gave her extra time for her search (and less competition).

Bring extra copies of your resume to the interview. I ended up meeting with more than one person when I interviewed. Also, bring questions with you to ask the employer. Last but not least, do your research on the company and make sure to bring up that knowledge during the interview.

A few more tips:
– Get business cards from everyone you meet.
– Jot a few notes during the interview. Refer back to these when you send your thank you note. Personalize your response to each individual.
– Ask what the next step in the process is, so you’ll know if you have enough time to mail the card or need to do it electronically.

5) Be enthusiastic but realistic
The post college work world does offer great opportunities. However, it takes time to move up in a company. Don’t get so hung up on a title or desired compensation that you overlook a position that could lead to something even better down the line. Better to take a little less pay up front if the company is known for rewarding and promoting their employees. Don’t forget to factor in benefits too. Health/life insurance, 401k/403b plans and vacation time are all worth money. Know what is important to you and let the smaller things go.

6) Network with everyone you know
This is another piece of advice you can take with you your entire career. Friends, family, Facebook and places you interned can all be a source of potential employment. Let everyone know that you are looking for a job and what you are looking for in a role. This is not the time to be shy! According to Corey, “it never hurts to have a referral rather than blindly applying to job postings.”

Bottom line time:
Channel that excitement and sense of accomplishment from graduating on to your next goal –  landing that first job. Your first professional position is within your reach!

This post, by our Social Media Specialist, originally appeared on LinkedIn. Looking for more career advice? Check out this post: 7 Simple Salary Negotiation Tips.

taglineOldcastle

Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow Oldcastle Careers on Twitter, LinkedIn,and Facebook for jobs and career advice. And, don’t forget to join our NEW Talent Community to receive a monthly e-mail newsletter with expert advice on the job search process.

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Filed under Interviewing, Job Search, job search advice, job search tips

7 Simple Salary Negotiation Tips

1) Know your worth
This is salary negotiation 101. You have to know what the going rate or range for your profession is. There are many web sites out there, including GlassdoorMonster’s Salary Calculator and JobStar that provide the information you need. You can also research other job descriptions where the salary is listed. Remember, these numbers are just a starting point, and can vary based on type of company. Typically, a large corporation in a big city is going to be able to offer more than a family business in a small town or a not for profit organization. A recent college graduate has less leverage than an experienced professional. That being said, there are exceptions. Bottom line – you have to have a baseline range in mind when you start the negotiation process.

2) Let the employer reveal the figure first
If the employer won’t share that figure, state that you are negotiable, and are looking for the fair market value for the position. If pressed for an actual number, always give a range. The lowest number in the range should be the bare minimum you’re willing to accept. This can be the trickiest part of any salary negotiation.

3) Calculate the value of each benefit
If you’re offered a figure that is below what you were expecting, don’t dismiss it right away. How much is the health/life/disability insurance package worth? What about vacation time? Is there a 401k/403b match? Do they offer bonuses? Run the numbers. For instance, if you have 20 vacation days at your current job, but the new job offers 15 days but 6 more paid holidays, then you are really coming out ahead. Don’t get hung up on the overall salary if the added benefits are worth it.

In addition, sometimes it’s not just about the money. If flex time or the option to telecommute or alter your work schedule are important to you, ask about them! This is the time to put all your chips on the table. You can always counteroffer.

4) Demonstrate how you add value
In your last/current position, have you taken on additional responsibilities? Contributed to a major project? Increased sales? Keep track of these wins throughout your working career. Having a list you can refer to will really come in handy when it comes time to negotiate for that new salary or increase in pay. Show them how you are worth that salary or bump up.

5) Lose the entitlement/”I deserve” mindset
It’s one thing to know what you’re worth and going for that figure. We all deserve to be paid a fair raise for being a productive employee. However, many people mistakenly believe that they deserve a bump in salary or higher compensation because they “can’t afford their bills” or have a “growing family.” The reality is – the employer is not concerned about your family size or personal financial situation. They have allocated a budget for salaries and raises. You need to prove to them that you’re worth XX amount. Keep the emotional and personal pleas out of it.

6) Be aware/careful of your tone
You don’t mean to or want to, but it’s easy to sound nervous, defensive or disappointed during the salary negotiation process. Practice beforehand with a friend. They will be honest with you about how you look and sound. Negotiation is not easy. You’re talking with experienced hiring managers who do this every day.

Make sure to actively listen and don’t be afraid to pause when the offer is first presented to you. Silence can be a negotiating tool. Don’t appear overeager. Employers typically have some “wiggle room” with pay (within reason). Your goal is to get to a mutually agreeable figure without squeezing the last penny out of the employer. Negotiate too hard and you will start off on a dissonant note.

7) Know your “walk away” figure
Deonna Campbell, a Corporate Recruiter for Oldcastle Precast, believes in being realistic and upfront when it comes to going after what you want.

Be honest about expectations/requirements. When people aren’t honest, they may feel cheated when they sign the offer. We want happy employees and happy managers.

Deonna brings up a good point. If you know that you’re going to be bitter or resentful down the line, this may not be the job or company for you. Again, this means divulging your range to the recruiter or employer when pressed.

Along the same lines, if you’re negotiating for a raise, and have consistently been denied, it may be time to look for a new job. Stellar performance should be rewarded. There are companies out there that will recognize and reward this.

Without a doubt, negotiating your salary or raise is a stressful, out of your comfort zone part of the job search process. Introverts and non-sales professionals find it the most challenging. Nevertheless, you can do this! Go into the negotiation having practiced, with a proof of worth (accomplishments list), a target compensation range and an open-minded attitude.

Bonus tip for raise negotiations:
If you can’t meet in the middle, ask for a re-evaluation in 6 months.
While the outcome may be disappointing, always leave the door open for future discussion. You should not have to wait a full year to be re-evaluated again.

Looking for more career advice? Check out this Mother’s Day inspired post: When It Comes To Your Career, Listen To Your Mother.

This post, by our Social Media Specialist, originally appeared on LinkedIn.

taglineOldcastle

Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.

Follow Oldcastle Careers on Twitter, LinkedIn,and Facebook for jobs and career advice. And, don’t forget to join our NEW Talent Community to receive a monthly e-mail newsletter with expert advice on the job search process.

 

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Filed under Interviewing, Job Search

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