Save well, retire well.

Coming up with a retirement plan is tough. If you’re employed, you have to add retirement planning to your normal job responsibilities, in addition to any family responsibilities you might have. And if you’re unemployed, figuring out how to save can seem difficult when just paying daily expenses is more than enough to think about.

To make retirement planning a bit less stressful, we’ve compiled a few of the most popular retirement questions, along with insightful answers to those questions.

Do I Need to Start Saving for Retirement Now?

Yes. It’s worth the time and trouble of finding how much of your budget you can devote to retirement. You never know what’s going to happen in the future.

Retirement savings aren’t just for going on vacations or replacing your income source after you retire. A modest retirement account can pay for medical expenses, moving from one home to another, or simply paying for help with tasks you are unable or unwilling to do when you’re older.

Even if you plan on working for the rest of your life, a retirement account is worth it to cover expenses. Social security and pensions aren’t sure things, but putting a bit of your own money …read more

Source: Moving on up


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being a team player

Why do interviewers care so much about teamwork?

In 2012, Google launched an internal initiative called Project Aristotle with the goal of pinpointing what makes a great team at Google.

Project Aristotle researchers studied a broad range of characteristics of successful groups and teams within the company, including personality, hobbies, relationships with each other outside of work, and various demographic variables. Surprisingly, the results showed there was no real evidence that such characteristics made a difference in a team’s success.

The major breakthrough came when the researchers began to focus on “group norms,” or the unspoken and often unwritten set of informal rules that govern individual behaviors in a group. They found that the most successful teams shared a similar understanding and commitment to how they interact with each other.

According to a New York Times article about the Project Aristotle initiative: “One team may come to a consensus that avoiding disagreement is more valuable than debate; another team might develop a culture that encourages vigorous arguments and spurns groupthink. Norms can be unspoken or openly acknowledged, but their influence is often profound. Team members may behave in certain ways as individuals—they may chafe against authority or prefer working independently—but when they gather, the …read more

Source: Moving on up


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Get Your Dream Position with These Quick Tips

Getting a promotion isn’t easy. There are only so many upper level positions, and competition is fierce. It’s important to be ready when those openings arise.

How? By being prepared. Earning the right to ask for a promotion isn’t a question of tenure or age—it’s a byproduct of knowing not only the inner workings of your own job, but also those of the company you work for and the position you want.

Here are four secrets to getting a promotion.

Know What You Want

Management isn’t for everyone. Before you ask for a promotion, ask yourself if being a leader is what you want. Do you desire the position for the title and accolades or because you truly want to manage and inspire others? If it’s just for financial reasons, consider asking for a raise instead. You may also want to consider applying for a position in another department, depending on your interests.

Management isn’t easy. Leadership can seem fun, but there are numerous responsibilities that come with such status, including handling billing and budgets, managing deadlines, and dealing with unhappy or sick employees. And that’s only a partial list!

Speak with Leadership

Once you’ve been at the company for …read more

Source: Moving on up


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In this week’s episode of On the Job, we hear from Katelyn and Brendan Foley, a husband and wife team who had enough of the corporate rat-race in New York City, so they packed up and headed for the Hudson Valley to begin new lives as farmers. In just two short years, they started their own business, the Hoofprint Cheese Company, while still working day jobs to pay the bills. Listen to the full episode to hear more about this young couple working to turn the Hoofprint Cheese Company into their full-time dream.

Jobs give us a connection to our communities and the ability to provide for ourselves and our families. Your work may be your passion or it could just be the way you make ends meet. Each week, On the Job will share stories about the pursuit of work by delving into the employment situations people from all walks of life face each day.

Don’t miss an episode!
Download the On the Job podcast on iTunes or anywhere you listen to your favorite podcasts. And, be sure to check back next week for the next episode!

…read more

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Top tips from working recruiters

Many job applicants express frustration with the post-interview process due to not receiving any follow up. They want to know what they can do to improve future interview performance. However, interviewers are unable to provide this information, often because of potential legal issues or simply not having the time to write personalized letters for each applicant.

At Express Employment Professionals, our recruiters interview numerous job seekers every day. They know what works and what doesn’t, at both the staffing agency and client levels. We asked our top recruiters to tell us what they look for in job candidates, as well as characteristics job seekers should avoid.

What Makes a Great Job Candidate?


A promising candidate is one who arrives to an interview (either by phone or at the worksite) fully prepared.

“They come with a resume, references, and any supporting documents or credentials that could potentially give them a step up in the hiring process,” said Shannon Jacoby, a recruiter at the Bellingham, WA, Express office. “They know what they are applying for, they have done research on the company, and they know how they could fit into the organization.”


A candidate should also be <a class="colorbox" href="" …read more

Source: Moving on up


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Retool your resume with these witty words

Your resume is the first thing HR looks at, and unfortunately, you don’t get a chance to talk to them or show them who you are as a person before the interview. All you have are the words on the page. Which is why it’s so important to make sure you use the right ones.

Resumes can be frustrating. You’re spending hours working on a document when you know that if you could just meet your interviewer, you’d land the job. But it’s something we all must deal with. It’s not possible to interview every single applicant, so companies need to have some way to narrow down the competition. That’s why they have software that picks out certain words as more pertinent to the job than others.

Here’s how to make sure you don’t get thrown out of consideration.

Employ Metrics-Focused Verbs

Your resume should be full of accomplishments. When you list what you’ve successfully done (number of reports sent, projects completed in a finite time-span, etc), use action verbs:

  • established
  • secured
  • maintained
  • created
  • reviewed
  • achieved
  • accomplished
  • produced
  • identified
  • pitched
  • successfully converted

Use Team Player Words

Instead of saying you’re a team player, show you directed a team and achieved results:

  • collaborated
  • coordinated
  • cooperated

Opt for Management Words

Instead of saying you “led” a team, show …read more

Source: Moving on up


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Changing careers isn’t easy

You’ve worked for one company for the better part of a decade and were laid off yesterday.

Now it’s time to look for a new job. Competition is fierce, so you’re happy to accept a lower ranking position if need be.

Age is only a number. You know that, and you know that your experience is valuable. How do you show that to interviewers?

Stay Up to Date with New Technologies

Employers expect recent grads to be knowledgeable on the latest technologies. You must prove you’re just as tech-savvy. You’ll need to know your way around a computer, have an idea of how to use the Microsoft Office suite, Google documents, and email. Acquaint yourself with the major social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn), and create accounts to prove you understand how they work.

Research any specific technologies or methods popular in your industry and become familiar with those tools as well. Don’t be afraid of taking online or in-person classes to stay informed. Be aware of how to access email on your mobile phone or tablet.

Leverage Your Experience but Be Willing to Learn

Employers sometimes equate youth and lack of experience to a willingness to learn. You need to prove that …read more

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There’s been a huge shift in the way companies do business today as staffing services have become a more important part of business and hiring strategies. Since the great recession, U.S. staffing firms have created more jobs than any other industry and are expected to grow faster and add more new jobs in the next decade, according to American Staffing Association (ASA). Business owners are increasingly using temporary and contract staffing to help them quickly react to changing market conditions.

This change in hiring preference can be seen in data from Express Employment Professionals, who conducted a survey of 665 employers throughout the U.S. and Canada and found that many planned on adding temporary workers in the third quarter, especially in the commercial and light industrial sectors.

Should You Consider Temporary Work?

Staffing agencies are allowing businesses the flexibility to expand and decrease their workforce to meet demand. Like employers, workers are also seeing the benefits of flexible employment. According to a recent story by National Public Radio, temporary employment is a good way to get your foot in the door with a company. Contingent workers also have the freedom to travel and work in different fields. Working on a temporary basis …read more

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Group projects don’t end after high school. As adults, we call it work. Karen grew up, and now she’s a department manager. Like Jerry, some coworkers are undependable. And like Karen, some managers are less than great. It gets even harder to perform well when you suspect your manager might have it out for you.

But how can you really know whether your manager has a problem with you?

They Micromanage You

Maybe it’s constantly checking in on you or scheduling private meetings every day. They don’t seem to believe you when you say you have a deadline covered. Whatever it is, they’re not doing it to anybody else on the team. And that’s a problem.

You’ll probably never really know the reason. Maybe you made a bad impression on your first day, or the last person to hold the position was a friend of your boss. It could even be something in your background or social history.

How do you fix that? By doing a self-analysis. Look at your accomplishments and behavior. Check your career development plan. Are you doing anything offensive or untoward? Did your boss previously approach you about a performance problem you still haven’t dealt with?

If you can’t find …read more

Source: Moving on up


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Are you an introvert or an extrovert?

We’ve all heard it before. Be assertive and social in an interview. Show that you want the job and are easy to talk to. You want to show how great it would be to work with you, and how valuable your sense of teamwork is.

However, what do you do if you’re an introvert? You would love to come off as talkative and social, but that’s just not who you are.

It turns out that your personality type heavily affects how you approach an interview. You want to cater to your strengths and cover your weaknesses. As such, introverts and extroverts both need to approach interviews differently.


An introvert, per the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is “one whose personality is characterized by introversion; broadly: a reserved or shy person.”

An introvert doesn’t hate people—he or she just doesn’t enjoy being the center of attention. Introverts recharge their batteries by being alone, and sometimes can only handle social situations for a short amount of time.

How are you supposed to act in an interview? By focusing on your goals and preparing. Most introverts are critical thinkers—they spend more time alone, and thus more time in their own mind. …read more

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