Trump’s Effect on Jobs in the UK

Last Friday, the 20th of January, saw the inauguration of America's 45th President, Donald J. Trump. A controversial figure, Trump's campaign promised to bring manufacturing back to America and look after the American worker, who he felt had been severely let down by the Obama administration. I'm not here to tell you what I think about Trump. I'm here to tell you something much more relevant to recruitment. This post examines the effect of Trump's presidency on the UK job market. How will his inauguration directly affect British workers and job-seekers? Let's find out. I'm no stock market expert, but here are some intriguing statistics for you: The Dow Jones, a stock market index which tracks publicly-owned American companies, reached an all-time record of 20,000 today (Wednesday 25th January 2017). This is directly connected to Trump, whose policies are much more business-friendly than Obama's were. The Dow started off 2016 at a low point of 15, 451, but by the end of the year it came close to the 20,000 mark. According to various sources provided at the bottom of the article, this is because of Trump's business-related policies. Cutting taxes and regulations for businesses stimulates the economy and encourages more investment. How,…

Comments Off on Trump’s Effect on Jobs in the UK

How To Create a Good Computer-Readable CV

How To Create a Good Computer-Readable C.V I've previously written about what information should appear in a C.V, and how to divide information between a C.V and a cover letter (here if you didn't read it yet). The points in my previous writing were concerned with general C.V writing. This post, however, focuses specifically on how to write a good C.V for online applications. The title above, 'How To Create a Good Computer-Readable C.V', is illuminating. Many job-seekers aren't aware of the fact that the actual layout of their C.V can impact their chances of getting the job they're applying for. This is because many companies use what is known as an applicant tracking system. An applicant tracking system is a software application that handles the recruitment process. They filter through the C.Vs submitted and select the ones which are the best fit for the position advertised. It can be disheartening to find out that you have put time and effort into writing a C.V only for some non-human recruitment tool to throw it onto the waste pile. However, applicant tracking systems are becoming more and more popular since the rise of online recruitment. Online applications were originally seen as supplements to a…

Comments Off on How To Create a Good Computer-Readable CV

What is your Greatest Strength?

This month's blog continues the series of most popular interview questions. So far I've addressed 'What Are Your Weaknesses?', 'Tell Me About Yourself', and 'Why Do You Want This Job?'. Now I'm going to address the 'What is Your Greatest Strength?' question. When you prepare for an interview and want to think of a smart way to answer this, remember the following: The strength you highlight must be relevant to the position you're being interviewed for A lot of interviewees make the mistake of being familiar and transparent when they formulate their answer. For example, you may think of yourself as a very compassionate person. You may be able to talk in great detail about your charity work. However, you can flush all this sentimentalism down the toilet if you're applying for an investment banking position. Investment banking isn't a field that's renowned for its compassion. I would hazard a guess that the interviewer in this case would prefer ruthlessness or pragmatism. Similarly, if you're applying to be a social worker, ranking your intellect as your number one strength is not going to impress the interviewer. This is not to say that social workers aren't intelligent, but in an environment that deals with…

Comments Off on What is your Greatest Strength?

Why Do You Want This Job?

Moving on from Brexit, this month's post returns to the series I started back in May. So far, I've covered two popular questions asked in interviews: 'What are your Weaknesses?' and 'Tell Me About Yourself.' I suggest you go and read those too, particularly if you're preparing for an interview. Now that you' ve come to terms with those two unpalatable questions, here is an even more unpalatable one: Why do you want this job? This is going to be asked at pretty much every interview, because for some reason, employers want to know that you know about their company. I'm trying to be empathetic/mature/adult here, trying to understand why this is important if the candidate is qualified and seems relatively normal. If I was an employer, would it matter if the potential employee knew about my company? Not even a tiny bit. If I'm hiring a graphic designer, I only care that they can make wonderful designs. I don't give a hoot if they've never followed my company's Facebook page. Alas, it seems I am alone in this, for this annoying question is pretty much standard fodder for an interview no matter what job you're going for. I think part of the…

Comments Off on Why Do You Want This Job?

Post-Brexit Job Market

Happy September-almost-October everybody. This post is four days overdue. In case you hadn't noticed, they're supposed to be out on the 25th. Well, I have no reasonable explanation for why I didn't make the deadline this month. I actually just lost track of the date, and the only way I was reminded of it was checking the use-by on sausages in the fridge. Anyway, last month I promised to be more specific about the impact of Brexit on the job front, so here it is. After consulting various sources provided below, I have some insights to share with you that will hopefully ease your anxiety about looking for work, or changing career path, or whatever situation you find yourself in. Below is a list of popular phrases that dominate the commentary on the post-Brexit job market, and my analysis of what it really means. Note: Some of these studies only focused on the first month after Brexit, so we can't take them as gospel because employers one month in are going to be very worried about an unstable economy and very cautious about hiring. Something I noticed while conducting my research is that the majority of studies on this are remarkably quiet about…

Comments Off on Post-Brexit Job Market

More About Brexit

I promised you all I would write in greater detail about Brexit last month, so here it is. One month after the referendum, The Guardian published an article talking about the impact Brexit had on the economy. Now, The Guardian is an anti-Brexit newspaper, so pretty much any discussion they put out there is going to spell doom and gloom for the future of Britain. However, that being said, the article in question does present some graphs and evidence; a refreshing anomaly compared to the usual patronising rhetoric. So it's up to me to have a look and see what the graphs actually say, because their analysis (before I even read it) is probably going to be all-sorts-of lopsided. What can I say, I'm terribly prejudiced — I live and breathe stereotypes. Okay so: here we go. Oh wait — here's a link to the article so you can read it for yourself and follow my analysis. Before even getting to the graphs, the first paragraph sets off alarm bells in my overly-critical mind. The second sentence is this: 'What is clear is that the decision to leave the union will have far-reaching consequences for all areas of British society and the economy for years to…

Comments Off on More About Brexit

Why you Shouldn’t Panic about Brexit

This month's post adopts a somewhat more serious tone than usual. This is because I'm tired of the distorted 'facts' circulated by 'experts', 'objective' media outlets, and morons on social media about the UK's decision to leave the EU. Firstly, it's difficult to find a quality source that doesn't get all melodramatic about the supposed end-of-the-world Brexit repercussions. This is because the media is generally supportive of the Remain campaign. Thus, you will be hard-pressed to find a newspaper article online that presents an objective analysis of the consequences. Then we have the so-called economics experts. When we read an article and see that an expert in economics has said something damning, we are prone to panic. However, when you read lots of different articles and see that lots of different economists say lots of different things, you begin to realise one very important fact: Economics is an art, not a science. Sure, it uses fancy graphs and bar charts, but it relies very heavily on interpretation, and sometimes the graphs don't ask, or answer, the right question. Consider this source, for example. One of the charts asks the question 'Do migrants reduce UK wages?' The analysis which follows says there is no…

Comments Off on Why you Shouldn’t Panic about Brexit

Tell Me About Yourself

Tell Me About Yourself Before I begin, I just want to take a moment to congratulate England for voting to leave the E.U. My faith in humanity is temporarily restored.   Back to the blog: Following on from last month's 'What are Your Weaknesses' post, this discusses another popular interview question and how to answer it. Personally, I hate being told how to do things, and yet here I am telling you how to do things. Anyway, once you've got over your annoyance at being bossed around and given canned answers, it's time to consider the reality that interview questions in general can be a big, fat trick. It's my job to tell you how to jump over the tricky-hoops of interviewing, so here we go. There are a few elements that make this question a pain for interviewers and interviewees alike. On the surface, it seems like a very simple question to be asked. However, it's one of those coy, the-truth-is-hiding-under-the-surface kinds of questions. I know, I know, it's silly. I mean, is this an interview or a therapy session? It's almost as if they're trying to dig into your personality and tease out psychological complexes as opposed to finding out if…

Comments Off on Tell Me About Yourself

What are your Weaknesses?

This month will be the first in a series of posts dedicated to interview techniques. There are some questions that pop up in almost any interview. 'What are your Weaknesses?' is one of them. It's a ridiculous question, but for some reason interviewers love to ask it. Before I give you the platinum answer let me just vent a little about why this question makes my skin crawl: It's a trick question. This is what it's really asking: Are you humble? Are you TOO humble? Do you lack confidence? Are you an arrogant bozo? It's like some kind of Freudian dream analysis, pulling things out of thin air or twisting whatever you say. There is no right answer, is there? All of the professionals will tell you to give a weakness but explain how you work around it. So really the key to answering this is to lie, because everyone has a weakness. No one is perfect, and sometimes a weakness is always going to be a weakness, never to be improved. Humans aren't robots. Another beef I have with this question is the utter predictability of it. It's taken straight out of a random cliched textbook called 'Interview Questions 101'. It's up there with 'How…

Comments Off on What are your Weaknesses?

The Benefits of Approaching an Employer Directly

Hi again, readers. I have to say, writing this has been an eye-opening experience for me. I have been in the position before of being unemployed and camping out on the internet trawling through hundreds of job advertisements trying to find work. There is a tip in this post that I guarantee will change the way you see the job-hunting process and will result in a much more productive job-hunting experience. The writing that follows examines why approaching an employer directly in search of a job can be extremely beneficial. Below are some useful points to consider: Benefits to Approaching an Employer Directly: 1. Speculative Applications Approaching an employer directly gives you the freedom to send out what is known as a ‘speculative application’. This is an application that isn’t responding to a specific job opening or advertisement, it is simply a way of expressing your interest in working for a particular company. You do this by contacting the relevant person within a company which sparks your interest and emailing them with an expression of your intentions. Your email is like a digital covering letter, and you should obviously always attach your CV to these emails. This way, you will be on file when something comes up in…

Comments Off on The Benefits of Approaching an Employer Directly
Close Menu