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How to Build a Job Description in 5 Easy Steps

Posted by Natalie Pike on March 27, 2015

One of the biggest headaches we hear from hiring managers is that they don't have enough candidates. This is the first step in the hiring process. Reviewing resumes, interviewing and training can't happen if no one applies to your open job.  So, what draws candidates in? What is the first thing they look at during their job hunt? 

The job description.

According to an article in Financial Wisdom, "all candidates like to know what is expected of them and how they will be evaluated. Job descriptions can also be a great value to employers. Creating a job description often results in a thought process that helps determine how critical the job is, how this particular job relates to others and identify the characteristics needed by a new employee filling the role."

To create an eye-catching job description that will really grab the attention of job seekers, follow these five steps:14198777_s

1. Use paragraphs, not bullet points

How many times do you click on a “job description” and are greeted by a page full of bullet points? Bullet points are meant to highlight key concepts, not explain them. The job description tells the story and bullet points are there for support. Candidates want to know as much as possible about their potential job. Being vague and providing only a snippet of information is going to steer them away. 

2. Show off your company culture 

Don’t just tell candidates why your company is a good place to work - show them! When putting together the job description, include a few short paragraphs about your company. Include the fact that you offer unlimited vacation time or sports leagues after work. Who wouldn't want that? This gives candidates a better idea of what your company is all about. Plus, it gets them excited about the possibility of working for you.

3. Do your homework

Browse the internet and do some research on what you like and don't like about other companies' job descriptions. Do they mention anything about the companies' values? Do they say who the candidate will be working with? Is it thought out and filled with details? These are things you want to look for prior to building your own. 

4. Tell the truth

Say some applicants start rolling in. Then you manage to hire a superstar employee, but he or she finds out everything in the job description isn't match up to the day-to-day duties she's being given. It's more important to have an employee stick around for the long run than to simply have a candidate apply. Be truthful. Describe exactly what they'll be doing and make sure to delegate those responsibilities when they start as well.

5. Be conversational

"Whether your culture is serious or laid back, the person on the other end of your description is just that – a person. So write as if you were speaking to him or her," said LinkedIn blogger Kate Reilly. Be conversational. Write as if you are speaking to him or her.  Read your description out loud. Would you say those words in person? If not, don't use them.

99% of job descriptions are painfully long and boring. Most hiring managers either don't want to take the time to write them out or they feel it has no correlation to candidate flow. Take my advice - follow these five easy steps and I pretty much guarantee the applicants will start rolling in.

Still stuck? We wrote an entire eBook on how to build the perfect job description. Check it out!

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Topics: Company Culture, Job Description

New eBook: How To Use Culture To Cultivate Success

Posted by James Patrick Kahler on March 26, 2015

If you had to describe your office culture in one short sentence, with enthusiasm, could you do it?

The key here is how you describe your office. Sure, anyone can talk about the place where he or she works; but Culture_Mini_ebookis it with a sense of appraisal or criticism? There’s more to an office culture than Friday afternoon drinks, a foosball table and free lunches—it’s about the people who create and makeup this special environment, which if done right, can nurture endless amounts of success for your company.

How To Use Culture To Cultivate Success is our latest eBook that dives deep into what workplace culture is all about, at its very core. Once you discover how to develop a unique workplace and what it’s all about, it is then you can cultivate a workplace environment built for success.

Key Takeaways 

By reading this helpful eBook, you’ll gain a new perspective on:

  • The concept of workplace culture
  • Why culture is vital for your business
  • The essential benefits of culture
  • 7 steps to take while building your own culture
  • An insight on culture from Hireology’s CEO, Adam Robinson

Don’t try to mimic another company’s office culture. Learn how to develop a unique workplace that’s true to your business values, brand and employees. Regardless of whether you’re an HR manager or CEO, these insights will help you construct a culture that leads to success.

Looking to improve your office culture? Download our complimentary eBook below and kick-start your campaign for a better office today!

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Topics: Talent Management, Company Culture, Start Ups

Quick Guide: Finding The Perfect Job Candidate

Posted by James Patrick Kahler on March 25, 2015

Have you ever spent an absurd amount of time in the grocery store, picking through the produce section? Trying to find the right batch of fruit or veggies that DON’T look like they spent spring break in the red-light district of Amsterdam is hard to do.

ProduceMarket

It takes time and an honest effort to find the produce that’s just right for your liking.

The same can be said about the hiring process. While there are countless differences between the produce section and actual human job candidates, it really does take time and an honest effort to find an employee that’s the right fit for the job. Hiring managers need to be prepared to conduct a search and interview process that is effective enough to attract candidates that are the cream of the crop.

5 Steps to Follow

To make sure you’re not wasting time on your hiring process like you might be in the grocery store, below are five steps to follow in order to find top-notch candidates for your open job position:

  1. Spread the Word, After the Word—You can’t post a job description, on a job board, if you don’t have any written content describing your open position! Be sure to describe all of the necessities on your job description, such as: qualifications, responsibilities and what kind of culture your office supports. Culture fit is essential when searching for the right employee.
  2. Talk Before You Meet—Phone screens are always important. They save you time and help you weed out initial, unfit candidates before bringing any into the office for an actual interview. Notes_Interview
  3. Meet Face-to-Face—While most jobs require personal interviews before making a hiring decision, it’s what you do during that interview that helps you find the best candidates available. Using scorecards is an efficient way to make sure your candidates are the best match with concerns to: attitude, accountability, related job success, culture fit and whatever else you might find vital to the candidates’ success at your company.
  4. Do Your Homework—This should be done via reference and background checks. Knowing a candidate’s background, past related success and what his or her former coworkers have to say about the individual is quite valuable. These insights can help you decide between two similar candidates if you feel like it’s a close call.
  5. Decision Time—Obviously, hiring is the final step towards finding the perfect candidate. Nevertheless, this decision can be much easier and less stressful if you have research, notes and data rating your candidates to help support your final hiring decision.
These steps will help put you on the right path towards finding the best possible candidates. However, if you want the complete guide for finding the perfect hire, download our complimentary eBook below! Hire in a box, ultimate guide to hiring Did you like this article? Click here to subscribe to our blog.
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Topics: Recruiting, How to Hire, HR & HR Technology, Hiring Tips, Hiring

The Win-Win of Hiring Through “Cultural Fit”

Posted by Natalie Pike on March 23, 2015

This is a guest blog by Rachel Fullerton from The Good Jobs

A new term has been swimming around the talent environment of 2015: “Cultural fit”. Finding perfect connections between employer and talented people is no longer driven by checking boxes and matching technical skills with open positions. Skills and experience are important factors in the hiring process, but shouldn’t be the only criteria that gets a candidate hired. Most companies don’t talk about their culture until AFTER the hiring process. What happens if one week later you realize that the person who was hired simply didn’t fit your culture? 

This is why cultural fit is so important.

Did you know?

To put it simple...

Better Cultural fit = Engaged Employees = Profitability + Productivity

So what do you do about it now?

1. Be transparent about your culture. culture_fit

At The Good Jobs, our main goal is to connect good people with good jobs. Transparency is the Kool-Aid we drink at our office, and we’re helping employers all over quantify their cultures and showcase the wonderful things they do for their employees. Transparency is key when you’re looking to attract the best people to your organization. Think of it this way: If you aren’t talking about or showing off the amazing things that your organization does (inside and outside of the office), then how would any talented job seeker know HOW much they would LOVE to work for you? Talented people WANT you to talk about your organization. The more they know, the more confident and driven to apply for an open position.

2. Hire the person, not just their skills.

CEO of Zappos, Tony Hsieh, says that while considering hiring a candidate, he would ask himself:

“Is this someone I would choose to hang out with or grab a drink with….if we weren’t in business together? If the answer is no, then we wouldn’t hire them.”

Some employers might believe that “work is work” and that employees don’t need to be engaged to get their work done. But, the proof is in the pudding. Engaged employees are happier, more productive, and overall can do great things for your bottom line. So don’t just hire an individual by what their skill set looks like, but consider them as a person who has the potential to fit perfectly with your organization.

In the end, cultural-fit is good for you AND your employees. With that Win-Win outcome, it’s time to consider culture.

Rachel Fullerton is the Marketing Intern at The Good Jobs, a turnkey employment branding solution for attracting and retaining top talent who fit your company culture.


Hiring for cultural-fit is the first step when looking to build an award-winning team. See what else you should consider by reading our free eBook!

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Topics: Company Culture

Coaching Millennials: 15 Quotes from March Madness Legends

Posted by James Patrick Kahler on March 20, 2015

Around this time of year, every year, I am filled with mixed emotions. If the famous comedy and tragedy masks got together and had 20 little children masks, that family of emotions would properly represent how I feel during March Madness.

With that being said, I still try to take every tournament with a grain of salt and enjoy it for what it is—the most exciting tournament in all of sports. (Yup, that’s how I feel about it soccer and cricket fans)

BasketballRim

The one thing that amazes me every year is the fact that some schools can have continuous success year after year. Even if you're not making it to the Final Four every so often, simply getting into the tournament and getting a win or two is an accomplishment in itself! It’s not easy to see the plural side of WIN in the NCAA tournament. Nevertheless, for some schools and their coaches, they make it look easy.

There are specifically three coaches who’ve seen the most success in the NCAA tournament over the years, reaching the Final Four numerous times. In order to achieve this level of success in any sport, a team must have an exceptional leader with the kind of leadership skills that are applicable both on and off the court. New Call-to-action

The same leadership skills are needed for managing employees, especially the millennials in the office. While they might be the youngest of your employees, they still make up a solid percentage of the workforce and are an impressionable group that can excel under the right leaders. Therefore, it’s crucial to make sure your leadership skills are up to speed so you can always relate to your younger employees and help them thrive in your office.

In honor of March Madness, below are quotes from three coaching legends who have the most Final Four appearances by any Division 1 coach in NCAA men’s basketball history. Keep these words of wisdom in mind when leading your millennial employees…these gentlemen knew and know what they’re talking about!

Quotes from John Wooden:

{UCLA head coach from 1948-1975}

"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are."

"Winning takes talent; to repeat takes character."

"A coach is someone who can give correction without causing resentment."

"I'd rather have a lot of talent and a little experience than a lot of experience and a little talent."

"If you're not making mistakes, then you're not doing anything. I'm positive that a doer makes mistakes."

Quotes from Mike “Coach K” Krzyzewski:

{Duke head coach from 1980-present}

“Everybody wants to take responsibility when you win, but when you fail, all these fingers are pointing.”

“A basketball team is like the five fingers on your hand. If you can get them all together, you have a fist. That's how I want you to play.” 

“Leadership is an ever-evolving position.” 

“I think you're not a human being unless you have doubts and fears.”

“Imagination has a great deal to do with winning.”

Quotes from Dean Smith:

{UNC head coach from 1961-1997} 

"What to do with a mistake - recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it."

"A lion never roars after a kill."

"The most important thing in good leadership is truly caring. The best leaders in any profession care about the people they lead, and the people who are being led know when the caring is genuine and when it's faked or not there at all."

"Good people are happy when something good happens to someone else."

"A leader's job is to develop committed followers. Bad leaders destroy their followers' sense of commitment."

You can only get so much out of a good quote. Download our complimentary eBook below to get some extra tips on coach the millennials in your office. Millennials You Don't Want to Hire Did you like this article? Click here to subscribe to our blog.

 

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Topics: Talent Management, Employee Engagement, Hiring Millennials, Management

It’s Time To Restructure Your HR System

Posted by James Patrick Kahler on March 18, 2015

Don’t you just love getting constant reminders to update your software!? And the pop-up notifications that just love interrupting you while you’re in the middle of working; so awesome! If you can sense sarcasm, then you just read those last two sentences correctly.

Glasses_Silly

I know that updating smart device software is easy and takes very little time—yet, I still like to avoid doing it right away. I’m not sure what it is, but I feel like if I avoid the update or keep pushing the reminder back another day, it’ll go away and the update will complete itself without me having to click the dreadful “shut down” or “restart” button. I think it’s my way of believing that I’m beating the system, even though I know that’s not the case.

As stupid as this habit may be, the consequences aren’t dire. The worse case scenario that I’ve ever had was dealing with a slow running computer and taking over 15 minutes to figure out how to update my software…without that little bittersweet pop-up reminder. For other things in life, such as those that rely on regular upgrades or renovations, the consequences can be much worse.

Every company needs to restructure some form of its business sooner or later. Companies who are slow to “get with the times” often see negative side effects, which typically trickle down to the backbone of their business; the employees.

startup_employees

According to Deloitte’s recent report, Global Human Capital Trends 2015, most businesses’ HR system is in need of a facelift.

Deloitte's report “involved surveys and interviews with more than 3,300 businesses and HR leaders from 106 countries.” In this detailed study, the findings suggest that the HR system is in need of renovation—one that can match the needs of the millennial workforce. Below are four key topics mentioned in the report, as well as relative discoveries from each topic, to take into consideration when restructuring your HR system:

Factors To Consider

Gen Y Taking Control

“The gap is widening between what business leaders want and what HR is delivering,” for office culture, millennial employees and workplace demands.

Workplace Environment Is Essential

“Engagement and culture skyrocketed to the no. 1 issue around the world, with 87 percent of companies rating it important or very important vs. 79 percent last year.”

Open Communication Needed

“Half the respondents rated their leadership shortfalls as ‘very important,’ while only 31 percent believe their leadership pipeline is ‘ready.’”

Continuous Training & Education

“Learning and development issues exploded, rising from the no. 8 to the no. 3 most important challenge in this year’s study, yet despite this demand, capabilities in learning dropped significantly.”

Renovating your HR system doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking. Check out our complimentary eBook below to get some cheap and simple tips!

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Company Culture, Management, HR & HR Technology

Product Insight: Why A Behavioral Interview Matters in Your Hiring Process

Posted by Lino Jimenez on March 17, 2015

This is a blog written by Lino Jimenez, Jr., MA, Industrial Organizational Psychology, a Hireology Product Manager, focusing on our selection content.

Your applicants know the questions you’ll ask. They will prepare to flatter you with stories from their resume. And you risk hiring the most charming of candidates, and not the most qualified.

I used that knowledge when I applied to the open positions for my last two employers. I knew I would get the job when I met them for the in-person interview. I wore a sharp looking suit. I studied the most commonly asked interview questions. I practiced reciting a compelling story for each of the bullet points in my resume. Predictably, I had answers to all the questions they asked of me in the interview.

Run of the Mill Interview Questions

  • “What are your strengths?"

  • “What are your weaknesses?”

  • “Why our company?” 

A lot of hiring managers might use these questions, and they typically prove unuseful. Ask yourself --can you meaningfully tell the difference between your candidates’ responses to “Why our company?” I bet not. If you have three finalists who say that their weakness is that they “work too hard,” how will that help you?

Behavioral interviewing offers a better way to interview candidates. Instead of asking general interviewElements_of_Success questions, you ask job related questions that draw out an applicant’s experience. After you note the candidate’s response, you’ll compare those responses against performance standards for your job.

When you focus your questions on job specific behaviors, and ask candidates to give you specific examples to support her answer, you’ll rate candidates on the skills and abilities that they bring to the job. You’ll hire not on luck or looks, but performance.

Improve your hiring process by downloading our white paper all about behavioral interviews!

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Topics: Interviewing Help, Product Update

5 Signs You Might Be Killing Company Culture & Creativity

Posted by James Patrick Kahler on March 11, 2015

Most of us know the old saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” It’s one that makes sense and can be applied to many things in life. But does anyone ever apply this saying during self-reflection? I guess not since it’s grammatically incorrect and it just sounds weird. Nevertheless, if you’re running a business it is important to reflect on your leadership skills and how it may be affecting your company; especially the office culture and employees.

Stressed

We all know that no one’s perfect and if you’re self-aware, you know that there’s always room for improvement. As a business manager, improving your own leadership skills helps develop company culture and therefore, inspires your employees to work hard and actually care about the work they do.

But before you can improve your office environment and the work conducted within it, you first have to get rid the bad habits or behaviors that may be having a negative effect on your business. Below are five ways you can do just that:

Leadership Habits You Must Avoid

  1. Meddling With Employees Ideas—Just because you’re a manager or hold a leadership position within a company, it doesn’t mean you must be involved in EVERY little detail within the office. This is especially true during brainstorming sessions or when collaborating with employees on new projects. Interference during the creative process, as a manager, limits the creative potential of your employees. (It’s like having your parents try to hang out with you and your friends…as a teenager)
  2. Ignoring Others In The Office—Listening skills are vital to creating a successful office environment. Whether or not your ignorance is intentional, listening to what your employees have to say and putting forth an effort to connect with them on some level goes a long way. It helps build teamwork and a culture of transparency.
  3. Disregarding Core Values & Goals—There’s a good reason why companies have mission statements, values and ambitions; without them business direction is lost. Leaders must stay true to their core values and goals in order to move their businesses forward. This means having the will to let go of an all-star employee if he or she doesn’t believe in or goes against your business values. Follow your principles and you’re bound to build a workplace culture that thrives. Plus, this might help you avoid being known as a hypocrite amongst your employees as well!
  4.  Not Giving Credit When/Where It’s Due—This is a habit all leaders must avoid if they care to promote culture, creativity and overall motivation. Even when there’s a small accomplishment, such as finishing a project done well, give credit to that person and make it public in the office. People appreciate when they’re credited for hard work and it helps push other employees to work harder as well.
  5. Rushing The Hiring Process—It’s nearly impossible to build a suitable culture in your office if you don’t employ the right people. Hiring someone just to fill an open position is a big mistake and one that can lead to turnover. Make sure you have a hiring process that accurately evaluates job candidates and scores their abilities. Not only does this help fill your office will employees best fit for your office culture, but it also helps make the company parties MUCH more fun and tolerable.

Be sure to evaluate your own leadership skills before trying to make changes in the office, because the problem might begin with you. If you think about it, Ice Cube was right when he said, “You better check yo self before you wreck yo self!” 

How would you compare your leadership skills compared to others? Limit potential mistakes as a manager by downloading our complimentary eBook below.

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Company Culture, Management, Hiring Tips

What No One Tells You About Employee Turnover

Posted by Natalie Pike on March 10, 2015

We all know turnover is something we don't want, but do we really know what the problem actually is and why we consider it such a bad thing? Most small businesses should be concerned because of the simple fact that turnover is expensive. When you hire an employee and then they either leave or you "let them go," you're out the following costs.

Costs of Employee Turnover  

Recruiting Costs: These vary depending on the size of your business. According to a recent article on About.com, "a grocery store that is constantly recruiting and hiring cashiers doesn't have a huge incremental cost to recruiting one more person. But if you're looking for a Chief Information Officer - a highly specialized job - you may have to hire a headhunter, and that can cost you around 1/3 of the final annual salary. That's a big chunk of change." images-2

In addition to the price of hiring someone to hire someone else, there are even more costs associated with the time it takes to review resumes, interview candidates and lastly, make a final decision. These are precious hours that your staff could be spending on other things. 

Training Costs: Companies typically have training programs in place for entry-level positions. It's their first job out of school and although most businesses would prefer a candidate with some existing experience, we all have to start somewhere. In other words, training programs cost money to facilitate.  However, for a higher level position, it's assumed that they know what they're doing and programs aren't normally offered. Even in these cases, the time it takes to set up computer equipment, complete orientation and answer the numerous questions your new employee will have, all falls into the training costs department.

So, what can you consider as preventative measures to avoid turnover in the future?

  • Collect turnover data
  • Perform employee check-ins and quarterly reviews
  • Practice transparency
  • Provide a comment/suggestion box

Ideally, turnover is a problem you'll never have to deal with. Put these costs into consideration and take action towards preventing it in the first place. 

This is only the beginning. We wrote an eBook all about the sources of sales turnover. Check it out - it's free!

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Topics: Management, Turnover

Hireology Celebrates Its 5th Birthday

Posted by James Patrick Kahler on March 6, 2015

What better way to celebrate Employee Appreciation Day having a party or more specifically, a company birthday party!? Ok, well our official birthday was on March 1st, but celebrating on a Friday makes more sense than on a Sunday, right? 5thBirthdayCake

Hireology turned 5 years old last weekend. Many things have happened here in the lab (as well as the older labs) over the past five years. Our team has grown from a handful of people to a current total of 77 employees. We went from literally rubbing shoulders in our older offices to working in our current, spacious workplace that overlooks the Chicago River, as well as has wonderful views of Navy Pier and Lake Michigan.

A Brief History of Hireology

It would take much longer than a blog post to describe the crazy ride that this company has been through over the years, so to sum things up, here’s a snap shot of our history:

December 2, 2009—First meeting of our founders: Adam Robinson, Jeff Ellman, Margot Nash, Erin Wasson, and Michael Krasman

March 10, 2010—Hireology gets incorporated and becomes an official company

June 2011—Our beta platform makes its début at the Society for Human Resources Management Annual Conference in Las Vegas

March 2012—We make our first employee hire: Kevin Baumgart, VP of Sales

July 2012—Secure a Series A Investment of $1 Million from Firestarter Fund

July 2013—Reach 500 customers

August 2013—We grow out of our hallway space and move into a larger office

January 2014—Reach 1,000 customers and secures an additional funding through Lightbank for $1.4 Million

June 2014—We reach 1,500 customers

August 2014—Raise $10 Million in Series B funding from Bain Capital Ventures

December 2014—We move to our new and recent office at 303 East Wacker Drive in the heart of Downtown Chicago

March 6, 2015—We celebrate our 5th birthday!

We want to thank all of our fantastic customers for helping us get to our 5th birthday. Without you, we wouldn’t be celebrating. Finally—to us and all of the Chicago tech startups celebrating a birthday this month, happy birthday! 

It’s hard to reach company milestones without a solid team. Download our complimentary eBook to get tips on how to hire a winning team.

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Topics: Company Culture, Fridays in the Lab, Hireology Updates