Why the Job Market and Job Search Is Broken

August 31st, 2015

In 2007 Ben Yoskovitz was involved in the job market, and he wrote a post titled 9 Signs the Online Job Market is Broken. His 9 reasons are below, click to his page and see his reasoning as well as over 60 comments.  Not much has changed.

When people ask me about the broken job search, job market, dumb interviewing and hiring practices, etc., I have one answer: it is broken because it’s all based on people.  People who, by nature, are flawed.  We hire the person with the better smile, or the right skin color, or the person who dressed “better” (whatever that means), or the person who is more like us (in age, religion, etc.).  We aren’t supposed to discriminate, but we do.  As long as there are people involved, it will be flawed. It will be unfair.  It will be unpredictable.  And sometimes, it just won’t make sense.

I’m not suggesting that we should get people out of it, and have applicant tracking systems and artificial intelligence take over. We’ve already seen how messed up that is.  All I’m saying is that these processes will always seem broken, because they are, and it’s all due to our flawed human nature.  Even people with the best intentions will make mistakes.

So that’s my answer.  Here are Ben’s 9 reasons, with my commentary:

  1. Companies can’t differentiate themselves. Ben’s company (now defunct, he’s moved on) was about employer branding…. so that explains #1 here.  But there are consultants around the world helping companies stand out… still an issue, but not sure if that’s why the job market is broken.
  2. Job sites like Monster.com are loaded with too much spam. Yup, not much has changed.  Although, people do get hired from monster and other job boards. Realize that there are different reasons for fake job postings on job boards… none of them help the job seeker.
  3. Jobster.com now offers free job postings.  Jobster went the way of the dodo bird, but the message here was that free meant more spam and junk and phishing.
  4. Niche job boards don’t offer enough. I think niche is a good idea, and a good response to the one-size-fits-all that isn’t working.
  5. The best candidates aren’t surfing job sites looking for work.  I absolutely, 1,000% disagree with this.  The premise, and what Ben says, is “The top talent doesn’t spend time surfing job websites for fun. They’ve already got jobs. They’re busy.”  This, my friends, is discrimination and ignorance. Sorry. I meet many highly talented people when I speak, and through JibberJobber, who are “best candidates.”  They might be overlooked because they are “overqualified,” or because their resume wasn’t targeted enough to pass through the ATS, or because a hiring manager is intimidated by them, or because of crazy industry or market circumstances… the employed are not necessarily the best, and the unemployed aren’t necessarily the worst.  Ben continues: “And even if they find themselves unemployed, you can be sure they don’t spend much time surfing for work. They know how to stand out, and they’re busy making that clear through referrals and their network of contacts.” Sorry, but this is also flawed.  What about the “best candidate” who has been working, heads down, for 30 years? He’s an expert in his field, but not an expert in networking or job search? Just because a person knows how to stand out, and work referrals, and network, does not mean they are the best candidate… it just means they are a really good job seeker.
  6. It’s too easy for candidates to apply.  Yes, it’s ridiculously hard for people to apply for jobs.
  7. It’s too hard for employers to assess talent. I agree… employers are not necessarily trained to assess talent (unless that is their job, but many hiring managers aren’t trained deep enough, so they default to discriminatory thoughts, like “do I like this person, or are they too different from me?”). Again, the human issue.
  8. Companies use the services because they’re there, not because they work. Agreed.
  9. Lots of money and time is going into the online job market space.  Yes, but that isn’t  a reason why the job market is broken.

My purpose of sharing Ben’s post wasn’t to disparage his writing and opinion, but to show that 10 years ago there were problems, and frustrations, and today there are still problems and frustrations.  I don’t see that changing any time soon. I don’t think it will ever change.

I hope this gives you a different insight into why things are so hard, as a job seeker. Here’s my parting though: if it is so bad because of human nature, what could YOU do to make it better (as a job seeker)?  There’s actually a pretty good answer to that question.

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

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How To: Allow Your Coach to See Your JibberJobber Data

August 28th, 2015

Be default, your JibberJobber data is private.  No one can see it except you. This is not a social network… this is a private tracking and organizational tool.

However, it might make sense that someone else sees (and interacts) with your data.  For example:

  • You have a coach who wants to see what you are doing, so they can help you better.  Allowing a coach insight into your database could enhance your relationship with them, and their effectiveness to you.  Click here to see the list of JibberJobber Certified Career Professionals (these are people who have gone through our certification program, which means they understand JibberJobber pretty good!).
  • You have a parent or spouse or brother or neighbor or BFF who you allow access to because they are your accountability partner.
  • You really, really, really trust someone else to see all of your stuff, and even have access to add to your account (like, add a Log Entry).

I strongly encourage you to only do what I’ll show you below with people that you know and trust to the highest degree.  Furthermore, if you grant a coach or accountability partner access to your account now, when your formal relationship concludes, I encourage you to remove this coaching relationship, so they don’t have access to your private relationship management tool forever.  It goes without saying, if you grant someone access, you should probably be careful what you write about them if you have a contact record for them… :)

First, mouse over tools and click on My Coaches:

jibberjobber_my_coaches_tools_menu

Next, click Add a Coach (which will open up #2, the boxes):

jibberjobber_my_coaches_add_a_coach

Next, invite the person to be your coach in JibberJobber:

You can do this by adding their username, if they know it, or their email address (which is associated with their account).  Either way, ask them what their JibberJobber username is, or what email to put in.

They will get an email from JibberJobber saying you have requested the relationship, and they have to click a button to agree to this request.  Once they click this button, assume they have access to all of your data.  BE CAREFUL!

Finally, you might consider following up with the person who you invited… 

Just to be sure they got the message, and acted on it.

There is an alternative to this process… your coach can go into their Coach Dashboard and reverse this process, which sends YOU a message asking for permission to be their coach (and access your data).

As long as you totally trust the other person with your data, you should be good to go. Note that this was originally designed (9 years ago) for recruiters, but I got feedback from recruiters that they should not have that level of access to my job search, because they could do bad (unethical) stuff with it (that would not benefit the job seeker).

 

 

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

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Creating and Leading Effective Teams (for team leaders): My New Pluralsight Course

August 21st, 2015

I just finished a Pluralsight course on how to create and lead successful teams.  You can see the table of contents here.

Wait, what’s that?  You don’t have a Pluralsight subscription?  Well, I have two options for you.

Option 1: Just get one for $30/month.  In that month you’ll get full access to all of my courses, and each time you watch a Pluralsight course that I did, you can claim another 7 day upgrade on JibberJobber.  Watch 20 courses? Get 20 weeks JibberJobber upgrade.  Watch one course 20 times?  Get 20 weeks JibberJobber upgrade.  Watch 20 courses 20 times?  Get 400 weeks JibberJobber upgrade.  Pretty sweet.

Option 2: If you haven’t done this yet, take advantage of the sweet offer that Pluralsight extends to JibberJobber, where you get 30 days of premium Pluralsight at no cost to you.  Check out this video to see (a) how to get it, and (b) how to self-claim the week-long upgrades on JibberJobber:

If you watch this course on Pluralsight, please leave a comment and rank it… or at least drop me an email and let me know what you thought!

pluralsight_course_team_leader

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

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How To Figure Out (Almost) Anyone’s Email Address

August 20th, 2015

Here’s a question I get regularly… how do I figure out someone’s email if I can’t find it anywhere?

There are a bunch of tactics and theories, and much has been written on it.  Instead of duplicating anyone’s in-depth writeups, let me point you to a few cool resources:

YouTube video: Find and email address for almost anybody.  This guy points you to the rapportive Gmail plugin PLUS a spreadsheet he probably created and shares with you to guess email addresses based on common formats.  Basically, you plug a name and company domain into the spreadsheet, then get a bunch of possible addresses, then you paste those into gmail and click through each one until you find one that looks like the right one.  It’s pretty clever, even though it will take some time.  Watch the 5 minute video to see it in action (it’s worth your time, if you are trying to figure out how to get a good email address).

How to Find ANY Email Address Contact in 2 Minutes: This is the rapportive trick explained step-by-step (without the spreadsheet from above).  It’s a great hack/idea.

How to Find Email Addresses: This post starts out talking about rapportive (same as above), but then shares a tool called mailtester.com.  This is a super-cool tool.  Looks geeky, and there’s a lot to ignore in the results, but it can be really helpful. There are other cool tools to check out on that post.

The Complete Guide To Finding Any Email Address: Tools, Tips, Tactics, And More: This starts out saying to please not use the rapportive trick :p  I agree with a commentor that it has too many tool suggested with not enough info… but hey, if you are really wanting to crack this nut, here’s a nice list to spend your time on :)

And then there is always the Jason Alba suggested method: figure out how to network into the person, and ask someone to send an email introduction.  In my experience, that has always been more successful at getting to the next step than a cold email from some dude named Jason Alba, who just happened to guess the right email address :)  (however, if you can’t do that, go for the cold email, and follow up with a phone call!)

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

What Is JibberJobber? Simplified Version…

August 19th, 2015

Welcome to theMuse.com readers who signed up this week.  theMuse is one of the best places for job search and career advice… and we’re honored to get recommended again.

If you are wondering what JibberJobber is, take a few minutes and watch this video.  I found this video really helpful because people tend to see our menus and get overwhelmed by all of the options… but really, you just need to use the core features, and you can put the rest off until you really want or need them.  This video explains it all:

Also, you might be wondering what you get for free, and what you could pay for.  Let me explain.  For FREE, you get:

  • A personal CRM (that is, your relationship manager, or a “career relationship manager”) for life.
  • Almost every single feature that we’ve built into the system.
  • A private database of your contacts, prospects, target companies, and a record of your interactions with them.
  • Up to 500 Contact and 500 Company records, and unlimited Log Entries and Action Items (Note: there is a loophole where you can have unlimited Contacts and Companies as a free user).

You get all of that forever.  We won’t delete your data if you are “inactive.”  We don’t ever trim, delete, or touch your stuff.  This is your own personal database for the rest of your career/life.

If you upgrade, which is $9.95 a month, or $60 a year (which is $5/month!), OR FREE, if you watch my Pluralsight courses (learn how to get the JibberJobber upgrade free, here), OR FREE (for a year) if you are a veteran (learn more here), you get the four things on this page, which are:

  • Email2Log: This is the “killer app” in JibberJobber.  Want to send an email to someone and have that create Contacts, Companies, Jobs and create a Log Entry out of your email conversation, and even create a follow-up Action Item?  This premium feature allows you to do it… it is killer cool, and the #1 reason people upgrade.
  • Unlimited Contacts and Companies: People like to “quick start” by importing their LinkedIn or Outlook contacts into JibberJobber.  I’m not convinced most of those contacts are relevant, but heck, it’s a good place to start… oh by the way, you get 14 days of Premium when you first login, which means you can do these imports in the first 2 weeks, and have way more than 500 Contacts in your system (that’s the loophole).
  • Importing: This is a premium feature, where we allow you to import a csv file (most systems export Contacts to a csv file, which opens in Excel), a vcard (super useful for mac users), or other file formats.
  • Action Item reminders pushed to your email or SMS (where available): Want JibberJobber to send you a message when you need to follow-up with someone?  That’s what this feature is.  It’s super useful, and one of the main reasons we created JibberJobber (because our spreadsheet wouldn’t email us!).

Want these cool features?  Want hundreds of dollars of my video courses for free, including how to optimize your LinkedIn profile, how to have a proactive LinkedIn strategy, how to do Informational Interviews, and more?  Check out this video:

Finally, if you want some quick-start videos, check out this page: Getting Started Videos

So there you go, everything you need to know about JibberJobber to get started…

 

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

How To: Manage Columns on the JibberJobber List Panels

August 18th, 2015

In JibberJobber there are many pages that we call “List Panels.”  List Panels are kind of like Excel, with columns and rows.  You can do things on the List Panel, such as filter your search to only show you hiring managers in a certain city, or see a list (and get email addresses) of all of your family or friends.  You can do more things, but I want to focus on one: how to change the data that shows up on your List Panel.

First, to get to a List Panel, you can click on any of these menu headings.  Note there are other ways to get there, but this is the main way I get there:

jibberjobber_main_menu

Next, directly above the List Panel, find the Manage Columns icon, which will be on the left of the filtered search box (note in this image, I’m filtering my List Panel results to anyone I’ve tagged as a recruiter):

jibberjobber_manage_columns_icon3

Click on that and you see three columns:

jibberjobber_manage_columns_three_columns

Column 1 allows you to turn on or off columns, and reorder them (by clicking and dragging to the new position)

Column 2 allows you to show more (or less) than the default of 20 rows per page (and you can do a couple of other things, which I rarely change).

Column 3 allows you to save the changes, or reset your entire List Panel to the defaults.

What you do here will be saved so the next time you come into JibberJobber you don’t have to do it again.  You can change your preferences as often as you want.

Pretty cool, huh?

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

How to: Organize Your Job Search

July 31st, 2015

Around the country I asked “who is using a spreadsheet to organize their job search?”  Hands went up, and faces looked disgruntled.  No one likes using the spreadsheet in their job search, except for people new to the job search, or people who like to tweak columns and rows, instead of networking to find their next job.

The spreadsheet is a band-aid solution that will be thrown away once you land your job.  Or lost when your computer crashes, or when you switch computers.

JibberJobber, on the other hand, is a long-term tool to use in this, and future job searches.  It is a plug-and-play tool that you just sign up for and start using.  It interfaces with your email, and if you are premium (free to $5 or $10/month) you can get email and SMS (where applicable) reminders of to-do items (aka, Action Items).

Check out this short video which explains the core benefits/tools of JibberJobber:

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

What is JibberJobber?

July 15th, 2015

In the last few weeks I’ve introduced JibberJobber, as part of my message, from Madison to the D.C. area.  I don’t spend much time on JibberJobber because (1) that is not the main message, and (2) there are great resources to learn about JibberJobber online.  Here are three:

The User Orientation

When you watch the User Orientation, which is about 90 minutes long, you can ask for another week of JibberJobber premium.  As many times as you watch the orientation, you can get another week of JibberJobber premium.

The Getting Started Videos

These are, generally, less than 10 minutes long, and if you walk through the titles, you can watch any particular topic that catches your eye.  It is in an order that I would follow, but you can skip any topic you want.

The What The Heck is JibberJobber – I’m So Overwhelmed!! Video

This five miute video is a great primer to help you not be overwhelmed by JibberJobber’s features:

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

Why Organize Your Job Search?

June 25th, 2015

I started JibberJobber as a frustrated job seeker.  While other people use JibberJobber, including entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, people who don’t work (but want to manage their network), I regularly go back to my roots as a frustrated job seeker.

I wanted to organize my job search with a spreadsheet, but that didn’t work out.  It was a mess.  A rat’s nest.  What if you just give up, and wing it?  Impossible. Once you get deep enough in your job search, you have to stay organized, or else too many opportunities get lost. I’m not talking about job offerings, I’m talking about opportunities to follow-up with people.

Using Excel is a great option, for about two weeks.  Then the amount and complexity of data, and what you are trying to track, get’s too messy. And you’ll be tempted to create more and more columns and sheets, only muddying things up worse.

Using a paper-based system (spiral notebook, sticky notes, day planner, writing on your arm, etc.) is an okay system, until you can’t read your writing, and can’t follow anything.

Both of those systems, though, are not long-term solutions.  I bet a month after you find your dream job (the one that will end in two to five years), you’ll not be able to decipher what you wrote.  It will become garbage, encoded to the point where no one can make heads or tails of it.

When we designed JibberJobber, we were looking for something that would be:

  • Fairly easy to use: This is a significant challenge because of the complexity of the task.  We try and hide as much complexity behind the scenes, but simplifying the UI is always on the top of our list.
  • Long term: I wanted something that you could use after you land your job, and in five years, and between job searches, and when you got freelance gigs, and even after you retired.
  • Actionable: collecting and organizing data is one thing… reminding you to act on something is another thing. I missed a key call with a hiring manager because my spreadsheet was messed up (hard to read), and it didn’t say “CALL THIS PERSON TODAY AT 10!!”  Instead, I missed the call.  I wanted JibberJobber to put those reminders right in front of you.

I learned from recruiters that they hate calling a candidate, asking about their interest in a job they had applied to, and the candidate not knowing what they were talking about.  I get that – it’s hard to remember everything, and sometimes we are trying to remember if we had sent a resume, or which resume we sent… or maybe we just mowed the lawn and our brain was somewhere else. But the message we send to the recruiter is that we don’t care.  That we’ve forgotten and our interest level was low to begin with.

Why have an organized job search?  So you can talk to people, even recruiters, and know what you are doing!  So you can sound interested!

JibberJobber helps you stay organized by allowing you to keep track of:

  • Contacts
  • Companies
  • Jobs
  • Interactions you have with any of those (aka, Log Entries)
  • Follow-up you need to do (aka, Action items)

You can even use your email to add new records (email2log).

Look, I know this can be overwhelming… here’s a video that will help you put all of this into perspective:

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

6 Secrets of The New Interview + JibberJobber and Job Search Organizing

June 22nd, 2015

Nick Corcodilos, Ask the Headhunter, shared 6 Secrets of the New Interview from his book, The New Interview (an instruction book), on this blog post.

Here are his six, with my commentary:

1. Insiders have the best shot at the job.  They also have the best shot at recommending outsiders for the job.  Are you networking with people at your target companies so that you could be recommended by an insider?  This, my friends, is what I would call working the hidden job market.  How do you keep track of all of your networking touch points, and follow-up conversations?  Using JibberJobber, of course.

2. The real matchmaking is done before the interview.  Nick says “a headhunter never sends a candidate to an interview unless the headhunter already knows the candidate can do the job.”  How do you keep track of which recruiters know what about you?  Use JibberJobber to keep a profile on your recruiters, and when you send them what information, and who you have referred them to.

3. The interview is an invitation to do the job.  Nick says the interview is not an interrogation (even thought it might feel like one, since the stakes for you are so high!). In JibberJobber there’s a section called Interview Prep, to help you prepare for your interviews.

4. The employer wants to hire you, and he will help you win the interview. Combine the idea of interviewing well and having insiders network you in and refer you, and you’ll be ahead more than if you didn’t do those two things!  As noted above, JibberJobber helps with both.

5. The boss wants one thing from you: He wants you to solve a problem.  Same as #4 – can you, in the interview, prove you can solve the problem?  And, do you have insiders that influence the boss vouching for you?  JibberJobber helps organize and track this.

6. You will win the job by doing it. That is, not talking about it, but somehow assuring them that you know how to do the job, without any doubt.  This, I think, comes down to your personal brand, and how well you have communicated your abilities and success to your contacts.  You can use JibberJobber to keep track of which contacts need to know what about you, and whether you have told them the right stories or not.

In Nick’s post he shares a link to the interview flow chart… this is a complex process, and I can see how JibberJobber could add value to almost every step in the flowchart.

what where
job title, keywords or company
city, state or zip jobs by job search

JibberJobber is a powerful tool that lets you manage your career, from job search to relationship management to target company management (and much more). Free for life with an optional upgrade.

Sign Up Now! »

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