On this page you have access to tools and resources to help keep you engaged on your path to employment. Whether you are just starting out with us or are a long-time customer, this portal serves as your access point to the wide-world of the job-seeking process. We are constantly trying to improve and add to our customer resources, so be sure to check back regularly for updates.
Your Path to Employment
You may just be starting out with employment services, and if so, wondering what that process looks like. This quick overview can give you a better understanding of how you become an employU customer and what happens once you do.
As an employU customer, or in the process of becoming one, you have access to an easy-to-use interactive platform called NextJob that can help prepare you for the job-seeking journey. This platform that walks you through every step of the process on your own time. You will have access to a guided resume builder that will help grab an employer’s attention quickly, personality assessments that can help to identify the right work environment and occupations for you, an interactive interview tool that allows you to practice answering difficult interview questions, and much more! The best part is that it is free to use for employU customers.
First time user? Use these codes to receive access to NextJob at no cost to you!
- Adults ages 18+ pursuing permanent careers: FT1884123717
- Students ages 14-21 with an IEP or 504 Plan in career exploration programs: FT192025850
Jumpstarting your job-seeking process
NextJob’s platform will help you jumpstart the job-seeking journey. We have broken down an overview some of the essential elements in this process. Dive deeper into each section by logging into your NextJob account where you will walk through in detail how to accomplish each task, all at your own pace and in your own time. Once you have gone through all of these areas, you will be better prepared to continue on your journey to your new career with employU’s one-on-one job coaching services.
Setting Goals and Sticking to Them
Goal setting gets us focused and keeps us engaged as work to completing them. It is the first real step in starting out anything new. Know what you want and then plan for how you will get there. Login to your NextJob account and set the goals you want to complete to land your dream job. The platform will take you through every step of completing the goals you identify. It’s that easy!
Building Your Resume
Your resume is the first impression any prospective employer has of you. Make sure it reflects your best professional self.
The challenge also is that the average hiring manager spends 20 seconds or less reviewing a resume. You will need to learn how to catch a hiring manager’s attention immediately by highlighting what hiring managers want to know.
Here are 5 tips to get started, but be sure to login to your NextJob account with your employU access to fully build out your own customized resume.
1. Write a Powerful Summary
Skip the old “Objective” statement on your resume – if you’re applying, they know you’re objective. Instead, write a brief summary that tells the hiring manager why you are a good fit and summarizes your relevant experience, personal attributes and accomplishments in 3-4 sentences.
2. Write a Memorable Headline
Boil your resume down even further to give a hiring manager a 3-7 word description of why you. This should stand out as a memorable tagline, for example: “Proven Leader | Creative Innovator | Dedicated Team Player.”
3. Add a Testimonial
Take an excerpt from one of your reference letters and use one or two sentences in a quote right in the body of your resume to add instant credibility and interest.
4. Include Measurable Accomplishments
Get to the bottom line with a list of accomplishments under each of your jobs on your resume. Use action words to describe specific measurable results. For example, use quantities, time frames, percentage of improvement, the benefit gained from your work, etc.
5. Use Keywords
Keywords will trigger the hiring manager’s interest in you. Keywords also help your resume pop up during online searches and will make it easier for the hiring manager to find your resume when searching their list of applications and resumes.
If your resume is the summary of your background, the cover letter is the summary of your resume. And it is a handy way to make your application to each employer custom tailored without rewriting your resume.
This is a unique opportunity to demonstrate your passion and your interest in their specific job. If it is done correctly, it will set you apart from all the other applicants!
Visible Jobs vs. Hidden Jobs
Of the 50 million openings, about half are “visible jobs” – they’re posted on the internet or elsewhere and easy to find, if you know where to look. The other half are “hidden jobs” that are filled mostly through networking and reaching out to employers.
To become a pro at the job-seeking process, you will need to learn about both avenues. The visible jobs section will help you maximize your search efforts using online job boards. There are four different types of job boards, all with their unique uses. Know which ones to use and exactly how to find what you are looking for.
If half of all new jobs are “visible,” that means the other half are “hidden” and it makes sense to spend at least half of your time finding and targeting them. Compared to applying for an advertised or “visible” position, finding a hidden job may require you to work a little harder and be a little bolder—but since you’ll probably have a lot less competition when you do find them, it’s definitely worth it.
Hidden jobs will not be posted on job boards. These are the jobs you discover by leveraging your network and connections, both on and off-line. Before you start looking at hidden job opportunties, you first need to spend some time developing your personal brand. Learn how others view your expertise, trustworthiness, what you represent or stand for, and which qualities of you they think are the strongest. A Personal Brand is, in many ways, equal to your reputation. Once you know your brand, you should develop your elevator pitch – a “commercial” about yourself that highlights your strengths.
There are many ways you can tap into hidden job opportunities, so as a savvy job-seeker you will want to make sure you are capitalizing on it.
Social Media and Your Job
Since hidden jobs are the ones you discover by leveraging your network and connections, social media can be a very powerful tool in your job-seeking process. However, it can also you cost you the job of your dreams if not done correctly. Make sure your you are aware of exactly how hiring managers use social media in their consideration of candidates so you can be sure you are putting your best foot forward.
Some tips to consider when “cleaning up” your personal social media accounts are:
- Consider a professional picture – pick a professional profile picture that matches the type of work you do. Whether you wear a suit or shorts to work, consider wearing something similar or one step more formal. Also, make sure you crop the picture so it shows you just from the waist up and no farther away.
- Avoid racist, sexist and discriminatory comments and references to illegal drugs or activity.
- Remove or un-tag pictures that make you look poorly or manage your album privacy settings.
- Remove comments on your wall that are inappropriate.
- Review your apps to see if they suggest anything negative about you.
- Review your groups to make sure they are appropriate.
For most people, the most nerve-wrecking part of the entire job-seeking process is the interview. The key to overcoming this – preparation. If you are prepared, you will be more comfortable and make a better connection with the hiring manager.
Your preparation will show in the first five minutes of an interview and includes:
- What you brought with you to the interview
- How you are dressed and your general appearance and
- How you act
By preparing for the interview, you will demonstrate to the hiring manager that you are willing to go the extra mile if you are hired for the job. Remember, how you prepare for the job is often seen as how you would work in the job.
Tips and guidelines for preparing for the interview
Everything from how to dress, to what to eat (or better yet, avoid eating) before the interview, to how to answer questions can be found in an extensive tip sheet created in your NextJob account. Be sure to check it out to make the most out of your shot of landing the job.
Get some practice in
As the saying goes – practice makes perfect. Your employU job coach will help you practice your interview skills and get you ready for that much-awaited moment, but in the meantime you can get in some virtual practice sessions with NextJob’s interactive interview tool.
In this virtual session, you can record your responses to some of the most common – easy and difficult – interview questions. A virtual “hiring manager” will ask you the series of questions and then you can playback your responses. The more comfortable you get answering these questions, the better off you will be when the time comes to answer them for a real manager.
Starting Your New Job on the Right Foot
You worked on creating your brand, developing a resume, and nailing the interview. Now it’s time to review what to do once you land the job. The way you conduct yourself in the first few weeks of your new job really sets the tone for the rest of your employment. Form good habits and they will serve you well.
Winning First Impression
As the saying goes, “you only get one chance at a first impression,” so make it count.
Here are some tips for a winning first impression:
- Be Prepared: Be ready to participate in the employer’s business by learning everything you can about the employer before your first day of work. Read the job description and the literature your received in the interview, and review the employer’s website.
- Start Strong: Sleep well the night before and get a good start on your day so you’ll have the energy you need for the demands of starting a new job. Nutritionists say breakfast is the most important meal of the day for energy. Don’t skip or skimp here.
- Dress for Success: Choose clothes for work that are appropriate for the job and make sure they are clean and pressed. Do not bare your shoulders or waistline and make sure necklines are conservative. Do not wear open-toed shoes. Be conservative in your dress until you fully understand the dress code.
- Be on Time and Be Committed: Always arrive 15 minutes early and be prepared to put in extra time, especially during your first few weeks of work.
- Be Polite and Courteous: When you meet others, look them in the eye and shake their hand. Try to remember their names and take a genuine interest in them and their job.
- Be Dependable: Reliability is one of the most important qualities of a good employee. If your manager or supervisor knows he can count on you, you’re more likely to receive extra responsibilities and recognition.
- Avoid sick days by eating properly, exercising and getting lots of rest.
- If you do need to schedule a doctor or dentist appointment, make sure it is outside of work hours.
- Have reliable transportation and childcare arranged.