About Me

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Fishers, Indiana, United States
Brenda gained career expertise as a human resources leader at a global company before becoming an HR consultant. She gained functional experience in a variety of sales roles in the health care industry achieving success for over 20 years. Her passion is participating in, writing about and observing the evolving workforce. For the first time in history four generations work together. It keeps things interesting. Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964) are redefining retirement and what it means to age in the workforce. It is not just about money. Okay it plays a role! At 76.4 million members strong, Boomers are leveraging technology to continue their careers and the personal fulfillment working brings. Managing a late-stage career requires more thought than 20 years ago. Unexpected changes in life force us to consider the future. There is no roadmap or one size fits all answer. This blog is about sharing, networking & finding your own right answer to working later, managing your career, redefining retirement, looking for work in your 50s & 60s and reinventing yourself.

Monday, June 24, 2013

How Recruiters Read Resumes In 10 Seconds or Less by Brad Remillard

This great post is a reprint from http://www.impacthiringsolutions.com, an Executive Recruiting firm that offers Executive Job Search Coaching and Networking Strategy Development.

The 10 or 20 seconds it takes to read a resume seems to always generate a lot of controversy. Candidates comment on how disrespectful it is, how one can’t possibly read a resume in that time and some get angry at recruiters when we talk about this. I hope this article will help everyone understand how we do this. I realize that some still may not like it and will still be angry, but at least you can understand how it works.
First, let me say I’ve been a recruiter for 30 years.  I’m sure I have reviewed over 500,000 resumes. I can’t prove this but I’m reasonably confident that this is the case, as this is only an average of about 46 a day. I know many days I have reviewed hundreds of resumes and most in less than 20 seconds. I would say the average is probably around 5 to 7 seconds.
So for the record when you hear or read about, “reading a resume in 20 seconds,” that isn’t completely true. It is more than likely, “reviewed the resume in 20 seconds.”
Here is my process for getting through 100′s of resumes in a short period of time. Others may have different ways and I welcome your comments.
I set up a hierarchy of certain “must haves” or you’re out, so at first I’m really just box checking. Generally, 80% of the time these are my knock out blows. There are exceptions to each of these, but I’m dealing with the 80/20 rule. These are not cumulative times.  This is box checking, if I see any one of these as I scan your resume you will be excluded.
1. Location. If the client is in Los Angeles, CA and you aren’t – goodbye. Few if any clients want to relocate anyone in this economy, and I believe most shouldn’t have to. Especially in a huge metropolitan area like Los Angeles. If they do have to consider relocation the position has to require some very unique experience that few jobs do. I can do this in about 1 second.
2. Industry. If my client is in banking and your background is primarily manufacturing – goodbye.  These two often are so different that the client isn’t open to considering such different industries. This works both ways, if you have a manufacturing background I’m not going to consider someone with banking. 2-3  seconds to determine this.
3. Function. If I’m doing a sales search and your background isn’t sales – goodbye. Generally companies are paying recruiters to find them a perfect fit. We never do find a perfect fit, but we have to be very close. They don’t need a recruiter to find them someone in a completely different function. 2 seconds to figure this one out.
4. Level. If I’m doing a VP level search and your title is “manager” and you have never been a VP – goodbye. There are exceptions to this, but again it is the 80/20 rule. Again, clients pay me to find them the perfect fit. It is generally way too big of a jump from manager level to VP level, all other things being equal. It works the other way too. If  I’m looking for a manager and you are a VP – goodbye. I know you are qualified to do a manager level role, but it is clear you have grown past. Most clients and recruiters aren’t willing to take the chance that when a VP level position comes along that you won’t be gone. Less than 5 seconds to figure out.
5. Recent Experience. There is some overlap on this one. If I’m searching for someone with international sales experience in the aerospace industry and the last time you held an international sales position in this industry was 20 years ago and since then you have been in retail – goodbye.  I can find people with more relevant experience and that is what my client expects me to do. 5 seconds to do this.
6. Education Like it or not, I will only work with people that have a college education and most of the time a master’s degree. This is mainly because, as I indicated before, I need to find the very best for my clients. I realize an education doesn’t mean by itself that the candidate is the best, but it is one qualifier of many. Also all of my clients require at least a BA.
7. Turnover. If you have had 6 jobs in the last 4 years, or have a track record of high turnover – goodbye. I realize there are good reasons for turnover and that falls into the 20% of the 80/20 rule. I can’t define high turnover, but I know it when I see it. 3 – 5 seconds.
8. Functional resume. I don’t read them. It is obvious when one has a functional resume they are trying to hide something and I’m rarely going to take the time to attempt to figure it out. 1 second.
9. Obvious things such as, spelling errors, poor format, errors in grammar, too long, verbose and rambling. If after reading it I still can’t figure out what you do, goodbye. 5 – 10 seconds
After all this, 80 – 100% have been eliminated. If there are any left, then I will take the time to actually read them in detail.
If this was helpful to you, please pass it along to help others in  your network. Consider adding it to your status on LinkedIn, posting on Twitter, or emailing the link to your network. Please help others if this helped you.

Brad Portrait thumb Meet the Partners
Brad Remillard, an executive recruiter with over 25 years of experience, has conducted over 50,000 interviews and been involved in more than 1,000 executive searches. A CPA and graduate of California State University, Fullerton, Brad previously served as President of CJA Executive Search, which was recognized as one of the top search firms in Southern California. Brad has conducted nationwide searches ranging from Fortune 500 executive vacancies to entrepreneurial companies. His search expertise includes General Management (CEO, COO, GM), Sales and Marketing, Manufacturing and Operations, Accounting, Finance, Human Resources, and Information Systems. Brad Remillard and Barry Deutsch are founding partners of IMPACT Hiring Solutions. 1-866-730-SOAR.
This was reposted with permission of IMPACT Hiring Solutions.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Size Does Matter: Dream Big!


Monday Morning Pep Talk!

How much longer do you want to perform the work you do today? Even if you are in job search mode are you searching for your dream job or are you looking for work?

There is no right answer because each reponse is as individual as our fingerprint. Financial obligations, family responsibilities and priorities change throughout our lives and impact how much we are willing to indulge in career dreams. In the process of doing what we do for a living don’t neglect to do what it takes to fulfill your life. According to the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation, in 2013 the average life expectancy for a woman in the United States is 81 years and the average life expectancy for a man is shorter at 76 years, so plan accordingly because time is running out.

Here are five questions for your consideration:

(1)  What career/work would make you excited to wake up on Mondays?
(2)  Can you turn your passion into something you can make a living doing?
(3)  Who can you talk to and move your career dream closer to reality?
(4)  Can you learn more about or pursue your field of interest part-time or online?
(5)  What one step can you take this week to push your dream closer to reality?

I provide these five thought-starter questions because at the end of this week---the same 7 days, 168 hours and 10,080 minutes will pass for all of us. Your career dream will remain just that without you initiating some action.

Don’t kick yourself if you just can’t make a move yet and you feel stuck. There may be a host of complex reasons. Maybe you feel like you don’t deserve to pursue your passion. Some of us are more comfortable in a pain that is familiar than stepping out into an unknown that is more fulfilling. I can recommend a popular older book you might consider checking out of the library, downloading or listening to on audible.com.

Your Own Worst Enemy: Breaking the Habit of Adult Underachievement by Ken Christian.

Personally, I’ve found it is often better to explore career fulfillment in baby steps than throwing everything overboard and starting fresh. When I left corporate America in 2001 as a single mother to become an entrepreneur, I developed a few clients while I still had a full-time job and income. After four years, I found my way back to corporate life in a different profession. However, I’ve known others who suddenly quit their jobs or invested severance packages into a franchise or starting a businesses and become very successful long and short-term.

If you are ready to get off the sidelines of wondering or wishing—“can I make a living doing something I love” and you want to “get in the game” with your dream, then do one thing to push your career dream forward this week. Maybe you make an appointment to discuss your idea with someone if you are taking a few vacation days next week for the 4th of July holiday in the U.S. If you need an accountability partner, tell someone what you plan to do or post it on your Facebook page. Take that first step toward getting unstuck. I have one last question for you. If not now, when?

Make it a great week!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

A Career Lesson from the Media Industry


John H. White lost his job last week. A lot of experienced people lose their jobs every week. I don’t even know John H. White personally, yet, hearing his story made me think about why I began career blogging. White is a Pulitzer prize-winning photographer formerly with the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper for forty-four years. In about twenty seconds management announced the photography department and staff were being_____________ (fill in the blank from one of the words below) walked out and turned the stunned staff of twenty-eight over to human resources to answer questions.

laid-off            furloughed       fired   
reorganized     re-deployed     let go  
realigned     optimized        terminated 
right-sized   re-engineered canned                 

It is the end of an era, and something more of us should think about as we manage our careers. The newspaper's management plans to have their reporters shoot photographs with iPhones. The rapid deployment of technology, the rise of the Internet and the dominance of social media can make many professions obsolete. How many more bank tellers were employed before ATM machines popped up everywhere? When was the last time you visited a full-service travel agency in a brick-and-mortar building? The Bureau of Labor Statistics has bad news for other media workers including newspaper reporters, radio disc jockeys and photojournalists, your jobs are in decline. Consumers are accessing media on their smartphones, online and in other digital formats. After 80 years, Newsweek ended publication of the print magazine and moved to an online-only format.

The same advice guidance counselors give students bound for college is important for experienced workers who are thinking career reinvention. Focus on the STEM professions:

Science           Technology               Engineering                Math

Focusing on careers that have historically been “high touch” is not even a 100% safe bet. I remember when teachers taught children in person in a classroom, complete with desks and those uncomfortable little chairs attached.  Now, students may take classes online from elementary school through a doctoral program. Companies are looking for teachers with experience in Blackboard (and I’m not talking about the one with chalk and erasers). Maybe we will not go back to school to major in civil engineering, however, keeping up with basic technology is within everyone’s grasp. Mastering the components of social media is available in a Saturday non-credit university extension course. There are online tutorials, seminars, and certificate programs at community colleges, short courses through university extension programs or opportunities to expand their talents through volunteering. Every day experienced workers need to think about how keep their skills current and what would be helpful to learn.

Let’s face it with advances in technology, work is being commoditized. With digital tools, customers can utilize self-service from a mobile device or online and the person who answers the phone if there is a question or problem can be 10,000 miles away. Experienced workers, it is important to be open to reinvention and figuring out how you can take the skills you have and think about transferring them to other jobs or industries.

John H. White is probably going to be okay. I read the 68-year-old photojournalist has a philosophy of faith, focus and flight. His Wikipedia biography quotes him as saying, "I'm faithful to my purpose, my mission, my assignment, my work, my dreams. I stay focused on what I'm doing and what's important. And I keep in flight—I spread my wings and do it.” The Sun-Times Media Group should be so fortunate.