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Beat the Competition and Land Your Dream Job

 

When you have your dream job in sight, it can be as exciting as it is scary. After all, you have to outshine the other candidates if you are going to land the role, and that isn’t always an easy task.

 

Luckily, there are things you can do to beat out the competition and secure your ideal job. If you aren’t sure how to begin, here are five ways you can get started.

 

  1. Bring Something Unique to the Table

When you are applying to a job, you can almost guarantee that your strongest competitors are bringing similar technical ability to the table. After all, if they didn’t have the prowess to handle the tasks, their resume would likely get discarded.

 

If you want to stand out, finding a unique non-technical offering can make a difference. Consider your personality and attributes and identify points that can help you excel in the role. Then, find ways to add them to your resume and cover letter, making sure the hiring manager is aware of the fact that you have more to offer than hard skills.

 

  1. Make an Emotional Connection

How a hiring manager feels about you can play as much of a role in their decision as for how well your skills and experience match the job posting. If you have a chance to bond emotionally with the hiring manager, take it.

 

For example, if you can connect your passion for the opportunity to the company’s mission, that can help forge a bond. Similarly, by being friendly and open during the interview, they may see you as more likable, which can also create a connection.

 

  1. Make Subtle Comparisons

If there are areas where you perform better than average, you can stand out from the crowd with a subtle comparison. While you should never directly bash other candidates, showcasing how you outperform the average person in your field can help.

 

You’ll need to do some research about statistics that apply to your chosen profession and then identify areas where you perform better than average (and can prove it). While this can take some time and energy, it can allow you to highlight why you should be considered for the job.

 

  1. Correct Mistakes When Possible

Nearly everyone makes a mistake during an interview at some point in their career. Maybe they draw a blank on a topic or accidentally get an answer wrong. While this can feel dooming, a single misstep isn’t usually the end of the world. Plus, you may also have a chance to correct your error if you proceed properly.

 

For instance, if you missed an answer during the interview but remember the correct one before the meeting is over, you may be able to revisit the topic in a later response or when you are given a chance to ask questions. While you don’t want to force it into the conversation, as that may not impress the hiring manager, if it can work into the discussion naturally, touch on it.

 

Otherwise, when you send a thank you email, you can also cover it then. Let the hiring manager know that you remember the mistake and correct it quickly and concisely.

 

  1. Have a Closing Summary

As your interview draws to an end, having a closing summary ready that allows you to touch on your key skills and attributes, bringing everything together. This can help you stand out by making sure your last impression is a powerful one.

 

Want the Most Exciting Contracts in Silicon Valley?

By following the tips above, you can beat out the competition and land your dream job. If you are looking for more valuable information, the professionals at The Armada Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our skilled team members today and see how our expertise can benefit you.

 

 

 United States

 

A lot of tech professionals enjoy their jobs for a variety of reasons, but one recent study shows why careers in the field can be so satisfying, and why so many people are interested in joining the ranks of the technology-oriented workforce.

 

The minds behind Indeed, one of the largest job sites in the country, examined jobs across multiple industries and compiled a list of the Best Jobs in the United States, and tech positions are featured prominently.

 

If you are wondering why tech jobs are the best jobs in the United States, here’s what you need to know.

 

Average Salaries

Many tech positions have substantial salaries. This is partially due to the fact that it requires a substantial amount of skill to be successful in these roles. Plus, the current shortage of skilled IT workers pushes compensation rates higher as companies compete for some of the industries best and brightest professionals.

 

For example, full stack developers, number two on the list, command annual salaries above $111,000 on average. Computer vision engineers, who placed third, can earn more than $130,000, while machine learning engineers can reach an annual income of over $136,000.

 

Typically, these salaries are also accompanied by comprehensive benefits packages and a variety of perks, making IT professions particularly lucrative.

 

 

Growth Rates

Indeed also examined growth rates as a means of ranking the best jobs in the United States. High growth rates show that demand for the specified skill set is increasing, often indicating that there are a wealth of opportunities in the field.

 

For example, requests for full stack developers increased by an astonishing 198 percent since 2014 while machine learning engineer opportunities increased by 166 percent.

 

Development operations engineers saw demand for their skills rise by 128 percent and data scientist saw growth reaching 106 percent.

 

As more companies embraced Agile, Agile coaches became a hot commodity, experience a growth rate of 113 percent.

 

What This Means

Ultimately, the study suggests that the tech jobs market is incredibly healthy, creating a wide range of opportunities. Additionally, professionals working in the field can usually expect strong salaries, particularly as their skill sets grow and they gain experience.

 

It’s important to note that the study did have qualifiers, including only examining positions with base salaries of $75,000 at a minimum. Additionally, the information was based on job postings submitted to the site and did not include feedback from professionals working in these roles.

 

However, pursuing a career in tech can lead to lucrative opportunities, and demand for skilled IT workers is expected to continue over the long-term.

 

If you are interested in finding a new tech job, the professionals at The Armada Group can connect you with some of the area’s leading employers. Contact us today to learn more about our current opportunities and to see how our services can help you further your IT career.

 

 

12 Uber

 

After accusations of sexual harassment and discrimination had reached the media, Uber came under fire for many of its practices and its poor corporate culture. Both the CEO and a board member have since resigned from the business, highlighting the level of turmoil experienced by the company.

 

Uber’s failure to create a culture that focused on supporting and caring for their workforce had serious consequences for the business, resulting in a situation that could have otherwise been avoided. Learning from their mistakes gives you an opportunity to avoid a similar debacle, ensuring your employees are working in an environment that promotes inclusiveness and safety. To help you benefit from the situation, here are some tips regarding what your company can learn from Uber’s culture mistakes.

Craft Strong, Clear Policies

Policies regarding issues relating to harassment and discrimination in the workplace are your first line of defense against improper behavior and guide the actions of leadership whenever an incident occurs. Uber failed to apply their policies universally, allowing certain members of upper management to operate with different standards than those assigned to the workforce. This creates a “them versus us” mentality, separating the workers from the leadership team and poisoning the culture.

 

All policies need to apply equally to employees, regardless of their level of status. This ensures everyone is suitably protected and provides clear guidance regarding associated disciplinary actions.

Document Complaint Tracking Procedures

Uber didn’t provide definitive guidelines regarding grievance tracking, and that led to inconsistent processes being used. Over time, critical information was lost, and follow-up opportunities were missed due to the lack of data.

 

Companies need to have thorough complaint tracking procedures, documented in such a way as to guide the actions of human resources professionals and members of management. This ensures vital information is recorded, including any course of action that is taken and their ensuing results. It also increases the likelihood of consistency throughout the organizations, making it easier to maintain standards as decisions are made, and plans are put into action.

Monitor Culture Shifts

A company’s culture develops over time, and it can change even with strong policies and appropriate measures on the part of the leadership team. Businesses need to monitor their climate for shifts, giving them the opportunity to intervene if things begin to move in an unfavorable direction.

 

Typically, this means communicating with employees regularly to assess the current state. By cultivating conversations between workers and management, it is easier to create a sense of community and take advantage of opportunities to make course corrections at the earliest sign of trouble.

Provide Appropriate Training

Conscious and unconscious biases can hurt company hiring, firing, and disciplinary standards. Those responsible for these decisions must be suitably trained to ensure certain opinions aren’t incidentally affecting outcomes in these areas. Additionally, making transparency a priority can alleviate concerns employees may have about the fairness of actions, helping them see why decisions are made instead of simply witnessing the outcomes.

 

If your company would like to work with a skilled staffing firm to ensure biases aren’t impacting hiring decisions, the professionals at The Armada Group have the training and expertise necessary to provide an appropriate solution. Contact us to discuss your hiring needs and see how our services can ensure bias doesn’t come into play.

 

Published in IT Infrastructure

Fears

 

Fear is designed to keep us safe; it helps keep us aware of physical and emotional dangers, allowing us to take action to stay safe. But too much fear can cause trouble, especially when the situation causing the feelings of anxiety aren’t as severe as we perceive them to be. And, when those feelings affect our jobs, it can actually halt career progress in its track.

 

To help you overcome fears that are holding your career back, here are two of the most common ones and what you can do to overcome them.

Fear of Rejection

People aren’t solitary creatures; we often crave the support of a group who accepts us. But finding a new job opens us up to fears of rejection, as we don’t know whether our new co-workers will accept us into the group once we start a new position. However, there are ways to make transitioning into a new team easier, increasing the chance you’ll be seen as an asset instead of an outsider.

 

Take the time to listen to those working around you. Many people start a position and want to share their ideas with their new co-workers. But, it is often better to hear their perspectives first and to learn why current processes are the way they are. By taking this approach, you are showing respect for the current standard, and you get a chance to really see what makes the place tick.

Fear of Failure

A fear of failure can stop us from trying anything new, including finding a new position that might be a better fit. Often, it leads us to procrastinate, or even give up on our goals, as it seems like a better option than having a less than favorable outcome.

 

In most cases, our fear of failure has us believing that the results could be catastrophic, even if that isn’t actually the likely result. To get beyond these concerns, examine the situation objectively and consider the likelihood that, even if it doesn’t go well, the worst case scenario is actually going to happen and if it is actually that bad.

 

Often, when it comes to a job search, the worst outcome is being passed over for a position. While this can be upsetting, it doesn’t generally do much harm. And, when compared to the benefits of scoring that new job, it can seem like a risk worth taking.

 

While trying to land a new job can be scary, our fears regarding the situation are often unfounded. Instead of focusing on the potential negatives, try and keep the benefits in mind. Finding the right job can be invigorating for your career and you personally. Before you decide to step away from your goals, see if what you could gain doesn’t make it seem worth it in your eyes.

 

If you would like help during your job search, the recruiters at The Armada Group can support you through the process. Contact us today and see if the right job for you is just around the corner.

 

Published in Recruiting

recruiter

 

As a job seeker, working with a tech recruiter requires a significant amount of trust. You need to feel secure in the idea they are prioritizing your needs appropriately, and not just focused on meeting the needs of the companies with which they work. Without trust, you will struggle to create a partnership with your recruiter that will ultimately yield results.

 

But determining which recruiters you can trust and which you should pass by isn’t always easy. To help you find the right tech recruiter for your job search, here are some key characteristics to aid you in identifying a recruiter on which you can rely.

Open Communication

A recruiter that is truly concerned about your needs when looking for potential employment opportunities will provide you with all of the information you need to make an informed decision. They will outline the pros and cons of any position or company in consideration and will be thorough in their descriptions of the work tasks involved and how the business operates.

 

Additionally, they will be open to hearing your concerns and finding answers to any questions you may have about the position. If they truly feel you are a match for a position, there will likely be a level of excitement or eagerness about delivering information to you, and they won’t be inclined to avoid any detail when speaking to you about the opportunity.

 

However, if it seems your recruiter is hiding something such as withholding important details or glossing over your concerns, then it could be a sign of trouble. If they aren’t willing to share the name of the company, provide information about the work environment or discuss potential compensation, that should be a red flag.

Honesty

While you want a recruiter to be your advocate, you also want them to be honest. They should be clear about how the process works as well as what they will or will not do to help match you to a position. Additionally, they should be able to provide information about placement rates and current client relationships.

 

Recruiters who are reluctant to answer your questions with an appropriate level of detail could signal a problem. Additionally, if they say they are interested in helping you, but speak more about how you can help them, there may be another motive behind their actions.

Skill

Being a recruiter requires specific skills, just as any technical position does. They need to have knowledge of the current job market, an understanding of what your skills mean and ability to speak with hiring managers to reach a mutual benefit. Those with a high level of competency know what questions to ask candidates to determine their needs and gain thorough knowledge about their capabilities. Additionally, they will have the ability get details about available positions from businesses.

 

A skilled recruiter wants to create a situation where everyone benefits in the end. However, a less competent recruiter may not get all of the information necessary to truly find a match or may pressure you to accept a deal that doesn’t actually meet your needs. Additionally, they may end up overpromising about what they can do, selling an outcome that might not be realistic. And sometimes, that fact doesn’t come to light until the process has gone on for some time.

 

Finding a skilled tech employer doesn’t have to be a challenge. By working with a company that has significant experience in the tech recruitment field, such as The Armada Group, you can find a recruiter who will operate with integrity and work diligently to meet your need. Contact us for a consultation and see the benefit of selecting the right recruiter first-hand.

Published in Recruiting

2 hiring trends

 

The process involved in the hiring of new employees is ever-evolving. Low employment and challenges to the traditional workday norms are having a significant impact on workplaces across the nation, making the job market feel unfamiliar to many. Whether you are planning to hire or be hired in 2017, take note of these trends that will shape opportunities in 2017.

Goodbye Traditional 9 to 5

Between the rise of the gig economy and declines in the number of mid-level positions, the traditional full-time work experience isn’t going as available as in previous years. Reliance on freelancers and contractors is growing, and many technical professional are using that as an opportunity to focus on skills, tasks, and projects that they truly enjoy.

Additionally, rising competition for top talent allows employees to leverage options like flexible scheduling and remote worker options. That means fewer people in the office during the “standard” work day, and a new paradigm to which everyone must be somewhat prepared to adjust.

Personal Networks and Job Referrals

One of the quickest routes to a new position is through the direct referral process. Social media geared towards professionals has made finding referrals a simpler process and can be seen as a blessing to employees and employers alike. High-quality employees are only going to provide referrals to those they feel will represent them in a positive light, so there is a strong likelihood the referred candidate will possess a similar work ethic or skill set. The route can also be more cost-effective than openly advertising positions, and referrals can often access individuals not actively on the job market.

Information Upfront

Many companies are moving away from the practice of hiding information about available salaries and benefits. While the information isn’t always posted publicly on job announcement, more companies are relying on systems like chatbots to provide potential candidates with more details than what is shown in a job posting. This increased transparency allows job seekers to determine whether a position meets their minimum requirements prior to applying. And that means less time wasted on filling out applications for positions they would never accept, and less time spent considering candidates who will never accept the available salary.

Security is a Priority

Regardless of the primary function of an IT position, an understanding of security as it relates to their work is going to be a priority. Issues regarding data breaches regularly make front page news, so everyone within an organization will need to contribute to larger security goals. Whether that involves developing an additional skill set or increasing awareness regarding vulnerabilities, efforts in the area of security will almost always prove valuable.

Shorter Hiring Processes

The candidate experience is being given more consideration in previous years, and many companies intend to shorten their hiring processes as part of the larger initiative. This produces more favorable conditions for candidates interested in new opportunities as well as businesses filling vacancies.

One method for shortening the hiring process is working with a professional recruiter that specializes in the unique needs of the IT field. The Armada Group has over 20 years of experience in matching top talent with outstanding opportunities. Contact us today and see how our experience can work for you.

Published in Hiring Managers

11 Decision Makers RESIZE

Excitement over the potential found in data and analytics may lead you to believe that decision-makers consider the information critical to making business decisions. In fact, some leaders find it difficult to use the results to make calls that previously relied on their own experience and instincts.

This idea seems to be in contrast to hiring activities within the IT field. Even though many companies understand the value of the information they hold and are hiring competent professionals to manage and review the data, there are still serious doubts in the upper echelons regarding the reliability of the information they have hired people to provide.

However, it is important to understand that the mistrust is not necessarily in the quality of the IT professionals working in the space. Instead, it is a hesitance to change a major component of how business is traditionally done. While the insights offered by advanced data and analytics may not be inherently in question, changing how decisions are made within any organization can be challenging, especially for those who have operated in a particular fashion for the majority of their careers.

Trust Takes Time

Depending on your generation, previous experiences or industry, your trust in data may vary. While those who have focused their careers on data and technology may be more open to what these processes have to offer, people who have not focused their careers on tech-based analysis may be hesitant to shift the decision-making power based on a new mechanism.

Questions regarding the accuracy of the data being collected, as well as how it is leveraged, leave some wanting. In fact, many executives even feel being overly reliant on this information can put their organizations at risk. However, as more businesses look to analytics for guidance, the level of comfort may increase.

C-Level Support is Required

If a company wants to use more data and analytics to assist in decision-making, the organization needs buy off from those at the top of the proverbial food chain. When C-level executives are hesitant to get behind the findings, any subsequent attempts at data-driven action may be thwarted before they even had a chance to be explored.

There are still questions relating to the reliability of data-driven decision making, especially since traditional decision-making approaches are distinctly more common in today’s workplace. Additionally, anxiety around the analytics lifecycle increases as the business dives deeper into the process. Even if support is relatively high at the point where issues of data sourcing are being discussed, it is comparatively non-existent when it comes to deploying solutions and measuring the effectiveness of the actions.

Data and Analytics Leaders Must Step Forward

Leaders in the areas of data and analytics will need to alleviate any concerns regarding the use of data-driven insights in the decision-making process. Ultimately, they will be responsible for creating the trust necessary to allow these projects to move forward in a corporate environment.

If your business is ready to see everything that data and analytics have to offer, The Armada Group can help the tech professionals you need to make the transition into a new way of thinking easier. Contact us to speak with one of our professional recruiters and see how we can help you modernize your decision-making processes.

contract employees are the future

The gig economy isn't just for Uber drivers. Companies are also turning to contract employees for skilled work, including in the technology industry. There are several reasons for this outsourcing:

Contract employees offer companies flexibility.

Companies today need to be able to respond to changing business demands and scale up or down quickly. Through using contract employees, companies are able to add or shed workers easily in response to growth or other changes in the business environment.

Technology enables remote work.

The internet, virtual desktops, and video conferencing all mean that people don't need to be in the same place to get work done. Documents and other resources are easily shared no matter where people are located, so companies don't need all their employees working in one office.

Contract employees offer special skills.

Companies sometimes need a specific skill for a short time, to fill a specific gap in their teams. If they don’t have many projects that will utilize that skill, it's difficult to justify adding a permanent employee just to add that skill to the team. By bringing in contractors, the employer gets the skills they need without making a long-term commitment. Employers also use contractors to help train their existing workers when there's a mismatch between the skills they have and the skills they'll need going forward.

Hiring contractors is cost-effective.

When companies hire contractors, the contractor is paid for their work, but the hiring company doesn't have the expenses of benefits like health insurance, 401K matching, unemployment insurance or contributing the company's share of Social Security taxes. Companies also don't withhold taxes on behalf of the contractor.

There are different legal obligations between employers and contractors than there are between employers and employees. One of the main legal obligations employers have is to classify their workers correctly; companies cannot simply call a worker a contractor in order to avoid paying unemployment costs. In order to avoid the risks of being accused of misclassifying workers, many companies prefer to hire contractors who operate as employees of a contracting agency.

The Armada Group helps companies fill their staffing needs whether they want to hire permanent employees, use a contract-to-hire model to help evaluate potential employees, or add contractors on an as-needed basis. Contact us to learn how our services can help your company grow.

Published in Recruiting

Armada Group RecruiterSpotlight Alexsis

It's the core values The Armada Group applies to its work that makes its recruiters so successful, says our talent consultant Alexsis Navarro. "Armada holds the same core values as I do," Navarro says. "Integrity, passion, fun, teamwork, trust, and professionalism/respect. Working at a place where both you and the company see the same values can lead to a very successful career." Because of these values, the company and managers support recruiters with the tools and resources they need.

For talent consultants, these values mean personal interactions with its consultants. "The most unique thing about The Armada Group, as a staffing firm, is once you place a consultant at the client site, you get the opportunity to meet them face to face," Navarro says. This isn't typical across the industry, and helps the recruiters get to know and develop a professional relationship with the consultants. As a result of these personal relationships, talent consultants gain insight that helps make future placements successful.

The relationships with the client companies also help making successful placements. "Most of our clients give us detailed feedback on why a candidate was or wasn’t successful during the interview process which in turns helps us search for more suitable candidates and the feedback is always given within a reasonable time frame, anywhere between 24-48 hours – because as we all know this is a very candidate driven market," Navarro says.  

While making the perfect match is what Navarro finds so rewarding, the interaction with different kinds of people is what makes the job fun on a daily basis. Navarro explains, " I love being a recruiter because of the people I interact with daily. Whether they are Front-End Engineers, Mobile Developers, Program/Product Managers, or Software Architects, I have met some of the most intelligent people. Although I am not technical, I really enjoy learning from the candidates and hearing about their background and truly am fascinated by the tech field."

Are you ready to work with the most passionate, professional recruiting team in the industry? Contact The Armada Group to learn about our recruiters and the skills we'll bring to identifying the ideal employees for your team.

Published in Recruiting

Sitting at a Desk All Day isnt Healthy. What Can You Do Instead

When you think of workplace health and safety, you probably think of factories and laboratories where there's dangerous equipment and hazardous materials. It seems like the biggest occupational injury you might face in an office job is a paper cut. But it turns out that no matter how ergonomic your desk chair and keyboard, sitting down all day is bad for your health.

Health Risks from That Comfy Chair

It doesn't even matter if you exercise; sitting all day can outweigh those benefits. The risks include heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Your muscles and bones can weaken, and even thinking deteriorates.

Stand up Once in a While

The best way to protect your health from the risks of sitting all day is obvious—don't sit all day! Set a timer to remind you to step away from your desk. Walk over to a colleague's cubicle to talk instead of sending an email; walk down the hall or around a block. Just don't step outside for a cigarette break.

Don't Sit in a Chair at Your Desk

You don't have to sit to get work done at your desk. You can stand up while you type; standing desks are designed to keep your keyboard at the right height. Some computer stands will let you easily adjust the monitor and keyboard height so you can alternate between standing and sitting.

Treadmill desks go a step further; you actually walk on a treadmill while you work. It can take time to get used to this. Keep the treadmill pace slow and be cautious if you have any balance problems. You might want to stand up and pace your office periodically. Long conference calls are a great opportunity for that!

You can even make sitting a more active process by sitting on an exercise ball or a chair without a back. These force you to engage your abs and back muscles while you sit.

Give Yourself Time to Adapt

Anyone who's ever made and broken a New Year's resolution knows that making lifestyle changes is difficult. Set timers and leave yourself reminders to take a break. And once you succeed in sitting less at the office, don't undo the good work by sinking into your comfy sofa at the end of the day. Stay active at home as well as at the office. Taking care of yourself is a 24-hours-a-day job.

Published in News at Armada
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