If you’re a hiring manager, there’s a good chance you’re finding it harder to hire this year than one year ago. The unemployment rate just fell to the lowest level since 1969, so the competition is fierce for good workers. In fact, it’s taking 82% longer to fill open jobs than just a few years ago in 2010. And, on average, it’s taking companies 31 days to hire.
I recently had the opportunity to attend an event in Chicago hosted by Glassdoor, and I want to share a few of their findings with you. In particular, I want to focus in on why employers are losing their top candidates.
Glassdoor identified three big frustrations for job seekers that are going through the interview process. Job seekers feel frustrated at a lack of information about the job’s pay and benefits. They also feel frustrated that employers are cancelling or postponing their interviews. And, they’re upset that potential employers aren’t responding to them in a timely manner.
“Job seekers clearly feel that understanding the total compensation package, including pay and benefits, is absolutely essential to fully evaluate a job opportunity,” said Julie Coucoules, Glassdoor’s Global Head of Talent Acquisition.
I bet you can relate. The last time you looked for a job, I’m sure these things were on your mind too. To keep top candidates engaged, consider sharing your salary and benefits up front. Don’t turn the first screening call into a game, where you try to outsmart the candidate to get their number first. Treat candidates the way you’d want to be treated. Be respectful of their time. Keep your commitments, and let them know when you’ve moved on. Nothing is more stressful than just not knowing what has happened with a job you’re applying to.
Glassdoor also found a number of reasons that top candidates would pull out of the recruitment process. In other words, the candidate turns you down before you get the chance to even given them an offer. The top reason identified was an employer that has announced layoffs. This makes sense, right? Nobody wants to sign up to lose their job just after switching.
Other reasons cited were a poor first interaction with a recruiter or hiring manager. 40 percent of those surveyed identified this as a reason to pull out of the process. 35 percent said they would drop the company if they read negative employee reviews online. 33 percent said they would leave if they heard about employee or leadership scandals and 32 percent said they would leave if they read negative news coverage about the company.
The most straightforward suggestion from this list is to treat each candidate with the respect you’d want to be treated with. Beyond that, don’t undervalue the importance of your company’s online reviews or media coverage. With the transparency that’s available online, the hiring process really has turned into a two way street.
You know, I love tech companies. With a computer engineering undergrad, I’ve spent my entire career working in the world of technology in one way or another.
I’ve recently met a number of job seekers who have had job interviews at tech companies. They’re the kind of companies with only a few hundred employees. They have ping pong tables, video games, and free lunch.
Quickly, I noticed that something was different about their interview experience. Before the interview, we worked to update their resume and elevator pitch. But, nothing could have really prepared us for what happened next.
The attitude inside the doors of the tech companies was different – very different. Lots of young, flip-flop wearing employees fill giant tables where they are setup with computer monitors. There are no offices or cubicles. Imagine working in a Starbucks, or a lunchroom. Employees look exhausted. Their eyes are red and they’re yawning while interviewing candidates. Despite the office perks, these folks are working their hearts out day and night. And, the stress of the environment seems to come through in the interview.
Many of the interviews are what’s sometimes called a stress interview. They’re interviews designed to upset the job seeker, and to get a reaction out of them. In the middle of the interview, the hiring manager might tell the candidate that they’re not qualified for the role and that their experience is useless to the company. They do this all in a relatively rude and challenging way. Then, the hiring manager asks the candidate to respond. I’m really not sure how a candidate is expected to respond in these situations, especially if they have any self-respect.
There’s also an obsession around money. At a tech startup, everybody wants to know how much money you want to make. If you’re coming from any sort of non-startup environment, it can be tough to pin down your salary requirements because the benefits are different. Startups often provide equity in place of high salaries.
Tech companies are also looking for someone like them. Even when a candidate has all the required experience, it is very common for the number one objection to be, “You’ve never worked in tech.”
A number of tech companies also have an internal voting structure. Rather than the hiring manager selecting you, the entire team is involved. The team will meet together after you interview to decide whether or not you’re a fit. At some organizations, even one vote against you can keep you from being hired.
Right or wrong, this seems to be the reality that tech companies are living in. If you decide to interview at one, be sure to prepare yourself. On top of your normal interview preparation, learn as much as you can about the company, their culture, and their interview process. To score big at a tech company, you need to be more than qualified. You need to fit in.
Dear Hiring Manager,
You’re amazing. You’re the gatekeeper to new jobs, and the person who will later help us to get a promotion that will help our careers. But, we have to talk.
The last eighteen years have been great. Unemployment was high. You’ve been able to be picky. You could create a long wish list for your open jobs, and a perfect candidate would appear. They might even take less money than market value. You didn’t have to bother about relocation. They were so happy to have a job, they’d move themselves. And, forget about signing bonuses or extra vacation days. Those things were so 1999.
Landing a great candidate was easy. People were desperate to find work, and willing to put up with just about anything you could dish out. But, the time to rebalance things has come. After all the good years, we are back down to record low unemployment. It’s below four percent.
The good news is, people are feeling excited again. Jobs are coming open that haven’t been available in a while. Things are going well for everyone. You’re probably happy too. You’re able to hire again. You’ll be able to bring new folks into the organization. It will be a great time for fresh, new ideas!
But, there’s one little change since last time you were hiring. The market has shifted to the favor of the job seeker. This isn’t bad. It means that you’re going to find someone who really wants to work for you. They’re not going to join your organization just to escape their current role. They actually like you, and your open job.
This change comes with a catch. You’re going to have to cut back on that big wish list. I know; it’s hard. You want everything in one person. You want someone who understands sales and marketing and technology and operations. They need ten years of experience. They should’ve worked at an organization just like yours. And, they should have used all of the same software that you use.
This is where I have to be honest with you. This person does not exist. In the world of hiring, they’re called a Purple Unicorn (no kidding). As long as you keep searching for the unicorn, your jobs are going to remain unfilled. You are frustrating your company’s human resources team with your unrealistic requests. You’re offending great candidates. And, your jobs are staying open for over ninety days.
So, what’s the answer? It’s time to cut your wish list of twenty requirements back to six. It’s time to look for fit. And, it’s time to look for the person who’s willing to work hard and has the right attitude. That’s the person you want on your team. Not just someone who can check a bunch of boxes. The sooner you can understand this, the faster you will find the right people.
It’s official. It’s less than sixty days until Thanksgiving. Although you shouldn’t stop your job search when the turkey has been served, hiring will slow down as the holidays heat up. It’s just a fact of life. If you’ve been thinking of finding a new job, this is the time.
But, finding a job isn’t just about wanting one. When you’re passively thinking about getting a job, you can stand to wait a few years until one falls into your lap. But, if you’re hoping to find one now, being passive isn’t going to cut it. You’re going to have to work for it the old fashioned way. You’re going to have to put in time – lots of time.
You may be thinking, “But, Angela, I’m a busy person! I have a full-time job. I have a family. I have commitments! I only have so much time in a week.” I hear you. I get it. I empathize with your situation more than you can imagine. But, at the end of the day, you have to decide. Do you want to find a new job this year or not? It’s up to you.
If it’s important to you, you’re going to find the time. You may have to cut back a little on other activities. You may have to take vacation days to work on your search. You may have to sleep a little less. I know. None of these are fun options. But, they’re the only way. Someone shared with me once, “Look at your schedule and you’ll find the things you value. You make time for those things.”
If you truly want to find a new job, you’re going to have to carve time out. You need time to update your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn. You need time to network with your old contacts. You need time to apply for jobs, and to perfect your elevator pitch and your personal brand. And, you need time to interview for jobs.
You can’t outsource this work. Your job search is just that: yours. No matter how high up the food chain you are at work, you’re still in charge of your job search. You’ve got to do the writing, the calling, and the looking.
Remember, once you get into a company’s interview process, it can go fast or slow. It’s hard to predict. It could take just a few days, or it could take months. Putting in the time now is the only way to get there. You may wonder how much time I’m talking about. Try to put in at least two hours each day.
Looking for a new job isn’t going to be fast. It’s not going to be easy. Frankly, it’s probably going to be a painful process. But, it is absolutely worth it to take a risk and put in the time to find something that you truly love.
I have such exciting news to share! I’m in Austin, Texas today with Indeed.com.
At NOON CDT, I will take over the Indeed Twitter account to answer your job search questions!
If you have a job search question, tweet to me at @Indeed between NOON CDT and 1 PM CDT. Use the hashtag #IndeedJobMarket along with your question. I’ll write back with answers to your job search questions!
Whether you have questions about salary negotiation, resume writing, interviewing, or what to wear to a job interview — I’m here to help! Send me a tweet to @Indeed with #IndeedJobMarket.
I can’t wait to hear from you.
I have some exciting news to share with you today! Tomorrow, I will be at the Indeed Job Market and you’re invited! There are three ways to get involved.
- Stop by the Indeed Job Market in person in Austin. I will be there to answer your job search questions.
- Tweet your job search questions to me at @Indeed at NOON CDT on Tuesday. I will be taking over the Indeed twitter account to answer your questions! Tweet to @Indeed with your job search question and the tag #IndeedJobMarket and I will answer your questions!
- RSVP for the event for your chance to win a one-hour career coaching session with me! You can RSVP at www.indeedjobmarket.com, and check out the official rules here: www.indeedjobmarket.com/official-rules/.
As you know, job searching is hard work. So, to make it a little easier, Indeed is bringing the job search to you with the Indeed Job Market. This mobile job search services pop-up is a great place to learn about job searching, to network, and to get the support you need for your successful job search.
The Indeed Job Market pop-up will be located in Austin, Texas on Tuesday, September 22nd. You can come by in person, or you can participate online! I hope to see you there, or to hear from you on Twitter!
At the in person popup in Austin, you’ll find great resources for your search, including:
- One-on-one job search consultations
- Indeed Career Guide resources
- Professional headshots!
I’m so excited to be taking part in this exciting event! I hope you’ll join me.
You’ll have a chance to recharge and explore with complimentary refreshments, professional networking with peers & job search experts, and photo-worthy moments you can share with friends.
On top of all of this goodness, there will be a contest to win an hour long career coaching session with me! RSVP for the event for your chance to win at: www.indeedjobmarket.com. See official contest rules for all the details: www.indeedjobmarket.com/official-rules/.
If you’ll be in Austin, here are the details for coming in person.
What: Indeed Job Market
When: Tuesday, September 25, 2018
Time: 11:00 AM CDT to 7:00 PM CDT
Where: Corner of Guadalupe Street and 25th Street (West Campus)
RSVP: Get your ticket to the Indeed Job Market at www.indeedjobmarket.com
I look forward to seeing you on Tuesday in Austin!
181 | Speaking Up Without Freaking Out | Matt Abrahams, Communications Professor, Stanford University, San Francisco, CA
Episode 181 is live! This week, we talk with Matt Abrahams in San Francisco, CA.
Matt teaches Strategic Communication courses at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. He is also the co-founder of Bold Echo, a Silicon Valley-based company that helps executives to be better communicators.
On today’s episode, Matt shares:
- What we can do to reduce our anxiety from public speaking
- How to be more present in a job interview
- How body languages impacts a job interview
- What to do if you’re asked to give a presentation during a job interview
To learn more about Matt’s work, visit his website at http://boldecho.com/.
Thank YOU for listening! If you’ve enjoyed the show today, don’t forget to help me out. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts! When you subscribe, it helps to make the show easier for other job seekers to find it!
The title of my column today may sound a bit confusing. It comes from one of my own mentors. Years ago, when I was finishing graduate school in California, I spent a significant amount of time searching for the right job. I would go to job fairs and networking events as if it were my full-time job. I would interview for anything and everything.
Occasionally, a job would pop up that would seem almost right. It would have a great job description. The company seemed stable. The team seemed interesting. But, there was something about the hiring manager that was off – or perhaps the company wasn’t offering a competitive salary.
I would meet with my mentor to tell him about all of the jobs I was considering, and to discuss the pros and cons of each. If a job seemed like the wrong fit, he would encourage me to walk away. The thought of turning down an offer without another in hand was nerve-wracking. My mentor would then remind me, “Jobs are like buses. Just wait; another one is always coming.” The keyword here is always.
He felt it was more important to find the right fit, instead of hoping you could take every job that came along. Looking back, these were wise words. Who else in your life do you spend as much time with as your boss and co-workers? For most, the answer is your spouse. You typically don’t choose to marry your first girlfriend or boyfriend. Why would you expect that at work?
Often, we want to take every job when we’re feeling desperate. We’re miserable in our current position and we think that anything would be better – even if it were just for a short time.
The problem with this strategy is complex. First, your next job may have just as many problems are your current job, if not more. As the saying goes, sometimes the devil you know is better than the one you don’t.
More importantly though, planning to take a job for a short time forces you to explain why you’re looking for a new job just after accepting one. This means that you’ll be explaining all the dirt on your old company, including the ways that you didn’t get along with your boss or co-workers.
When you choose to wait and to select the right job, you’ll find yourself there for more than just a short time. While you’re interviewing, you’ll be able to focus on the positives of what you want in the future rather than the negatives from the past. Whether it comes to interviewing or negotiating your offer, focusing on the positive puts you in a much stronger position.
When you’re having a tough day, just try to remember that jobs are like buses. Just wait. Another one is always coming, and you want to be sure you get on the right one.
The title of this column is a reference to the big elephant in the room. It’s that thing that everybody knows, but nobody is talking about. I’d like to talk about it a little today: illegal job interview questions.
Did you know that in 2018, people are still being asked illegal questions in job interviews? They are. It’s happening.
I’ve wondered how this could be the case. My best guess is this. Illegal questions seem obvious from the outside. Rarely do hiring managers get trained on how to properly interview candidates. Interviewing seems like something we should all know how to do if we’re hiring. Human resources folks know the illegal questions, but the questions seem so obvious that it probably seems pointless to review the questions with hiring managers. But, sadly, it seems we really need to. Interviewing isn’t a skill we’re all born with, and as hiring managers, we may not really think about what we should or shouldn’t say.
A few of the basics we should all avoid include: religion, pregnancy status, disability, age, citizenship, race, marital status, or number of children. In certain states and cities, it’s also illegal to ask how much money someone has made at a previous job. The elimination of these questions helps everyone to avoid discrimination. It also helps us to focus in on what we’re really there for: the job search. Can this candidate do the job?
If you haven’t been asked an illegal question before, I’m glad. I have personally been asked about whether or not I’m married, if I have children, if I plan to have any children soon, and how old I am. It sounds more like I was interviewing to go on a date than to get a job. Don’t you think?
If you’re asked something along these lines, it can be hard to know what to say. If you answer, you may be discriminated against and not hired. If you make a fuss and don’t answer, you definitely won’t be hired.
One interview coach shared with me that he likes to reply with something snappy. If a candidate is asked, “Do you have children?” he suggests responding with something like, “What I think you’re trying to ask is if I can do the job – and I’m totally up for it!”
While I do agree that this technique can be effective, there’s something bigger at play. Do you really want to work for someone who would ask you illegal questions? Do you want to work with someone who is judging you in this way?
I’ll be honest. When I’m asked illegal questions, I answer them. I answer them in a kind and friendly way. Then, I make a mental note about the question and about the hiring manager. I know that anyone who asks questions like this isn’t someone that I’d want to work for. So, my answer doesn’t really matter.
Episode 180 is live! This week, we talk with Stephen Warley in Washington DC.
Stephen is the Founder of Life Skills That Matter. His mission is to relieve people of their work anxieties by empowering them to design their own work.
This is Stephen’s second appearance on the Copeland Coaching Podcast.
On today’s episode, Stephen shares:
- The biggest source of anxiety at work
- Top trends that are fundamentally changing work
- What self-management is and why it’s important to your work
- Better understanding our own values and identifying our peak performance period
To learn more about Stephen’s work, visit his website at https://lifeskillsthatmatter.com/.
Thank YOU for listening! If you’ve enjoyed the show today, don’t forget to help me out. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts! When you subscribe, it helps to make the show easier for other job seekers to find it!