We asked our specialist recruitment consultants across a number of industries what they think are the most crucial dos and don’ts for candidate CVs. Dos Structure Good CV structure is so important. You can do this by: Arranging your work history and education separately according to date and in chronological order. Keep education and work history in separate sections of the CV. Don’t use borders or tables or strange fonts or pictures/images. Always apply in word format, in standard text form. This might not apply to marketing jobs but I know financial services do not enjoy it. The formatting should be uniform and consistent. If you’re using bullet points, they should all be the same style and alignment. You should follow an obvious pattern. If you’re using Italics for role and Bold for organisation, you need to do this for every role. Details The more detail you give about your work history the easier it is for a recruiter/hiring manager to understand your experience, and know if you are suited to a particular role. Jobseekers often put just one word to describe their duties and when you consider the competition out there this isn’t enough detail to stand out. Statistics, facts and figures are essential. If you hit targets, made sales, achieved goals, employers want to see the exact numbers and/or percentages. Achievements Include what you’ve achieved in your professional career. Awards and certificates are very impressive to hiring managers. However, they don’t always have to be job related awards, they can be personal achievements too e.g. completed a marathon, raised money for charity, served on a community or student committee etc. It’s good to show on your CV that you’re outgoing and achieve goals outside of work. Extra Curriculars If you play sport or music etc. include this on your CV. This will make you stand out. However, don’t include ridiculous hobbies. Charity work and current hobbies are acceptable, but don’t put down hobbies for the sake of it, like “I enjoy walking”. Use that space on your CV for something more relevant. Don’ts Don’t Leave Gaps Hiring managers like to see exact timeframes on CVs. Dates on your CV should include month to month time frames, as opposed to year to year. Often people will avoid putting dates on a CV or will try to be vague about the dates. This can look suspicious to employers. It’s better to be honest and give reasons for any gaps instead of trying to hide them. Don’t Include Graphics Leave out fancy graphics, complicated formatting and decorative pictures where possible. They just tend to make it more difficult for employers to read. Keep things simple, clear and detailed. Don’t Forget to Include Contact Details You may just assume that sending your CV via email is enough for an employer to contact you but often CVs get forwarded around and saved on hard drives/desktops so the original email you sent could get lost along with your contact email address. Always put your email address and contact number on your CV. Don’t use Personal Details It’s good to show your personality through your CV and give the hiring manager a sense of who you are but some personal details are too personal for your CV. Avoid putting your relationship status on your CV e.g. married, divorced. It’s irrelevant information and it could affect you negatively.
Searching for jobs is a job in itself. It can be challenging and time consuming but there are ways of making the task a little easier. If you are planning on finding a new job, Sigmar Recruitment has devised a list of top 5 job searching tips to help you in your pursuit of the perfect job. 1. Get Employers to Come to You Uploading your CV online can increase your chances of being seen by employers. Most job searching websites like; Jobs.ie and Monster.ie allow jobseekers to create an online profile using their CV content. This online profile can then be viewed by potential employers and recruiters. There is also an option when you create your account to highlight specific jobs and organisations you’re interested in and receive email notifications when positions become available. This is useful for any jobseeker as it does the hard work for you and allows relevant job vacancies to come directly to you. 2. Update Your LinkedIn Profile The first thing you should do before applying for a job is ensure your LinkedIn profile is up to date with all your relevant work experience. Often employers will search for you online while reviewing your CV. It’s important to make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date as it could be the reason you get called for an interview. Extra Tip: If you are unemployed and don’t have an issue with making your employment status public, you may want to update your LinkedIn profile headline to something like, “Currently seeking (insert type of role here) in (insert location here)”. This will let others know that you are currently job seeking. 3. Target the Right Companies It’s important to know what type of company you are looking for. This all comes down to your personal preference. Knowing what you want will make it easier. Would you rather be; “a big fish in a little pond” or “a little fish in a big pond”? By eliminating the type of companies you don’t want in your search, you will narrow down the available jobs suited to you. Extra Tip: If you know of a company you think you would like to work for, search for reviews of the company online. Glassdoor.com lets you search millions of reviews of companies that are all posted anonymously by employees. This is a great way to get an honest appraisal of organisations you’re considering applying to or considering accepting an offer for. 4. Network Use the contacts you have to enquire about available jobs and get the word out that you’re looking for a new position. Often jobs can be found through people we know so it’s a good idea to get in touch with any relevant contacts you may have. Building on your current network can also give you an advantage in your job search. Attending conferences and job expos are a great way to network and find out about career opportunities. 5. Keep Positive Finding the perfect job isn’t easy and may take time. As rejections start coming in, it’s important to always try to stay positive. It’s only natural for you to feel deflated when things aren’t going according to plan but try to use the rejection as a motivation to work harder. The right job is out there for you and you will find it if you stay persistent and optimistic. Don’t have the time to job search? If you find yourself not being able to find the time to search for jobs properly, you can contact us in Sigmar Recruitment. You can upload your details and CV to our website, create an online profile and one of our 125 specialist recruitment consultants will contact you to discuss potential job opportunities.
The supply chain industry in Ireland continued to grow in the last 12 months with a number of multinational companies setting up EMEA manufacturing or virtual headquarters across the country from Galway to Cork and Athlone to Dublin. Candidates are coming to the Irish market in large numbers, in particular experienced Irish supply chain professionals are returning from Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom. This in turn increases supply of candidates but they are being more selective of the jobs and the salaries they require. There is currently a gap in the market between what companies are paying and what candidates can now demand. In 2016 salaries increased in the pharmaceutical, medical devices and food industries, however companies with exposure to Brexit in terms of exports will keep salaries constant as they navigate the ramifications of the changing political landscape. After speaking with senior managers and directors all year about developments at their companies a number of key trends have emerged. Real-Time Tracking for Consumers is Paramount for Customer Engagement For any company that is supplying produce or specific products directly to consumers, real time tracking is essential to keep the customer engaged. With the world being “smaller” and more connected, consumers have a myriad of choice when it comes to spending their money. This leads to impulse buys and the expediency of a speedy delivery, is essential. This is making the visibility of tracking technology used by the company directly or third party logistics (3pl) providers vital. Plan, Plan, Plan – Improvements are Always Needed Brexit, currency fluctuations, increased tariffs, geographical disruption – supply shocks are everywhere. 2016 was a year of turbulence and change with most of the aforementioned occurrences unpredicted at the start of the year. However, regular planning or even reactive planning to changing market conditions was essential for nearly every company dealing with a changing geo-political environment in Ireland, the EU and beyond. Flexible Supply Chains V Lean Supply Chains The focus over the past number of years, and rightly so, has been to champion Lean principles throughout the supply chain. This has led to companies reducing costs and trying to improve processes on a regular basis. Between supply shocks and the changing global economic and political landscape, companies can be left with major stock shortages affecting key parts of their supply chain. With consumers being more transient, keeping or maintaining service delivery through a period of disruption is key. More and more companies have set up excess stock facilities and depots for excess raw materials to insure continuation of supply instead of irreparable damage to their brand over the long term period. With expansions and new system implementations rampant as companies seek to increase market share and deliver a better service offering to consumers, supply chain experience to improve and create a flexible supply chain for a European marketplace is being sought in the form of senior contractors for certain durations from 2 months to 2 years. For those in Supply Chain or interested in getting into it, courses to upskill in a different ERP system would be hugely beneficial the movement evermore to Big Data and its usages across the supply chain function. Supply chain qualifications as a primary degree are becoming more in demand, putting certain candidates at a disadvantage therefore bettering a qualification is advisable. Undertaking a supply chain course, particularly one with classroom participation, thus drawing from other students’ supply chain experience would be advisable as more and more companies are looking for people to have a supply chain qualification on top of their initial degree.
There is extensive demand in Ireland for speakers of multiple European languages with German, Dutch, Swedish and French being the most commonly requested. The flow of companies basing themselves in Ireland to deal with their European customer base is constant and this is predominantly in sales, customer service and technical support. Staff retention is a constant challenge for these companies, especially for junior multilingual roles. Candidates will often move without hesitation for an increase in salary and they have little or no loyalty to the organisation they are working for. With regards to senior roles candidate retention is highly prized and can be obtained through benefits, pay rises and changes in job role that the person may not be able to get elsewhere. The multilingual sector is coming under increasing pressure as more and more companies move here and seek to draw on the same pool of candidates. The demand is fast outstripping supply, particularly when it comes to languages such as German and Dutch. One solution to this problem is to source candidates internationally and bring them to Dublin. A challenge with this relocation however is that it is only typically offered in specialised cases or for particularly senior roles. Location is a massive draw for a lot of candidates in the multilingual sector and there are huge challenges for candidates new to Dublin to find suitable accommodation. Offices on the outskirts of the city (Park West/Citywest) are becoming more prevalent due to the lack of office space in the city centre but candidates have a preference for their work to be based in the city which creates additional challenges on attraction and retention. This is something that is likely to turn but will be slow. Mid to high level sales roles have seen exponential rises in both basic salaries and on target earnings. A successful salesperson with 3 years’ experience could be earning €40-45k basic with potential to earn up to €90-100k. Outside of this, marginal increases for junior roles is the order of the day, across numerous types of roles. Essentially, salary comes down to supply and demand, the fewer people based here who speak the language the higher your salary potential. Foe employees in the industry a top tip is to develop your technical skill set – what software packages have you used? Are you familiar with terminology in online advertising? There are lots of short term courses out there to upskill yourself and sometimes a little bit of research will answer any questions you may have prior to any interview. If you want to stand out from the crowd, then you need to show your knowledge!
The market trend in the sales industry at present, is that a lot of companies are hiring, which offers more opportunities to graduates. By far and away the industry with the most marked increase is the construction and technical sector. After a number of hard years for both clients and candidates, there is a tentative upsurge in this area. Numerous companies are now returning to the market, hiring additional staff. In the IT sector there has been very strong growth in inside sales functions with many businesses investing in graduates or junior sales people, so that they can grow them through the ranks. Domestic IT companies have returned to the market with field based sales roles becoming more common after years of cutbacks. Things are looking bright for the Irish FMCG Market for the rest of2017, particularly for many smaller companies and SMEs. The rise in popularity for diverse ranges of produce such as artisan food and craft beers has led to the creation of many more local operators within the industry. Demonstrated sales experience is key. In interviews candidates are being quizzed on their figures and achievements and an inability to demonstrate these clearly makes the difference between getting the role or not. There is a slight disparity across all industries in relation to what candidates are seeking and what is on offer from businesses. Companies want to hire people who can generate new business, whilst candidates are seeking more senior account manager type roles, having ridden out the recession years. This puts a strain on the market as business development roles get turned down in favour of more appealing account manager positions. Salaries in the ICT sector have seen the biggest increase as multinational companies with deep pockets have been driving entry level and experienced salaries up. This has put pressure on smaller companies who can’t compete at those levels. Irish companies need to realise, that they are now competing with multinational companies for talent, as graduates from all backgrounds work in Google, Twitter etc. If you as an employer want someone with 12 months sales experience – so does half the country so be prepared to compete for them. Another factor that is affecting salaries is living costs. A lot of people are struggling with living costs when working in sales roles, especially if commission or bonuses are not paid on a monthly basis. If as an employer you are offering a low base and an annual bonus, you run the risk of failing to attract quality staff or losing them to employers who reward their staff more frequently. Those looking for a career within sales need to get online and make sure your LinkedIn profile is current and relevant to what you want to do next. Every recruiter and company out there is going to look you up online and they want to see someone who is professional and connected regardless of the industry they are in.
As an old saying goes you cannot fit a square peg in a round hole so before you take that job offer, ask yourself- ‘Is this company somewhere I can truly picture myself?’ You need to work in an environment that you look forward to being in everyday, an environment that inspires you to do the very best you can do. A positive company culture that suits you will drive your passion to succeed whilst fueling your ambition and determination to climb to the top of whatever cooperate ladder you belong to. Otherwise, it will be the cause of you wishing with every bone of your body as the 7am alarm buzzes on dark winter mornings, that you could go back to sleep. Here’s some things to do see if you are aligned with the culture of a company you may be looking to work for: 1. Do Your Research Find out as much about the company as you possibly can. Have a creep around their website, LinkedIn and Facebook accounts. Accounts or threads on boards.ie or Glassdoor can also be very useful for behind the scenes gossip but be very wary of them and take them with a pinch of salt as they are anonymous comments and we have no idea as to the honesty, profile or past experiences of the commentator. 2. Values & Goals Values determine behaviour and decisions so it is important that an employer’s and an employee’s values match. If you do not agree with the values the company complies by, the work load and even minute tasks will prove to be difficult for you. When we as employees cannot comprehend or agree with the values of a company the decisions we make will be out of alignment with the company’s current practices and that will cause a whole lot of extra work and stress, which nobody needs. Your vision for the future should also match where the company aims to go. There is no point accepting a job when you have no interest in what the company itself is aiming to build. 3. Work Environment If you are not fortunate enough to know someone already working there, use your interview to assess the work environment and way in which the company works. Some of you may be social butterflies who can work in an open plan office chatting the day away whilst still meeting your goals and deadlines. More of you may prefer a quiet space where you can put your head down, get your work done and scurry off before having to interact with anyone. Also do not forget that in your interview the employers are also assessing whether you would be a good cultural fit for their company or not. Some questions you could take the opportunity to ask the interviewers may include: If you could describe the company’s culture in three words what would you say? Are the work hours strict or do you offer flexibility? If lucky enough to get this position what type of office environment would I be in? Is there reward structures or incentives in place? How would you describe the work culture on this team? 4. Social Does the company’s present culture fit in with your lifestyle? Perhaps everyone in the office is an avid sports fan but you cannot tell a football from a tennis racket, or maybe the only out of work activity on offer is drinks in the local bar on a Friday night when you need to be at home with the kids. If social activities are important to you to get to know your colleagues and to also help you meet that work life balance that is congruent with positive mental health you need to make sure the social benefits and activities the company works around suit you and at the very least appeal to you! Finally let me tell you to listen to your gut! You more than likely got a feeling from the interviewers, present employees you passed in the hallway or even the receptionist at the front door as to what the atmosphere in the company is like and if you received warm, welcoming vibes that’s usually a good sign. Think about what you want, what type of workplace will work for you and just go find it! Maybe you are looking for flexible hours, need incentives to reach targets or seek a social club to build relationships with your colleagues, either way the company with the perfect culture for you does exist. You just have to relax and take the time to find it. So now, when offered your next position instead of accepting it right away based off its six figure salary (hey we can dream) take the time to consider is it really a good fit for you?
2016 was an exceptionally interesting year, with economic activity increasing and then coming under threat from the impending Brexit. That being said, there seems to be no ceasing in companies and firms in Ireland growing their legal divisions. There has been a lot of conflicting commentary over the timing and potential impact of Brexit on the global economy and in this context Ireland’s prospects post-Brexit. Whilst no one can be sure, Ireland seems to be the “Hot Topic” when it comes to companies and firms discussing post-Brexit life. Ireland is an obvious choice when it comes to top UK law firms and companies contemplating a move of headquarters. That being said, the pressure is on for Ireland to prove that our infrastructure can handle this growth. Lawyers have been and will continue to play a key role in any development in this area, and thus we anticipate an upsurge in legal recruitment continuing throughout the rest of 2017. UK, Australian and New Zealand Returners As a result of the recession and personal circumstances, many Irish legal graduates or professionals moved to different jurisdictions to either begin or continue their legal careers. This could be attributed to the fact that people were not being trained in certain areas of law linked to a strong economy such as corporate, commercial, banking, construction etc. As such, there is a gap in the market at this level (NQ to 5PQE). Our clients are keen to speak with those who may be interested in a return home and Brexit is expected to increase the flow of people back to Ireland from the UK. It is always a personal choice however, and salaries in London are at an all-time high. Given the busy construction and energy market in Australia and New Zealand, we are finding that Irish returners from these jurisdictions can offer amongst other things strong non-contentious advisory and contentious experience in large scale projects. The newly adopted construction contracts act in Ireland draws similarities to legislation in New Zealand and Australia so this experience is very relevant. “Hot Property” in the Legal and Company Secretarial Market Whilst recruitment is steady across a variety of legal disciplines in Ireland, it is clear that certain areas are in strong demand. We are finding that all leading commercial firms are seeking transactional lawyers in the areas of banking, funds, corporate and commercial property. ICSA company secretaries will continue to be in high demand throughout 2017 both in-house and in legal and accountancy practices, given the implications of the Companies Act 2014. Company secretaries with experience across investment funds are required across financial services and legal practices and these professionals often attract a higher salary. On the in-house side, companies continue to grow their legal and regulatory teams and people with niche experience in areas such as pharmaceutical, financial regulation, utilities, telecoms, aviation etc. are highly sought after. Partner/Senior Associate Recruitment Experienced hires are often a strategic move and it is important for candidates to know their worth. If a candidate can offer a skill set in a particular niche or emerging market or has a strong following of clients, law firms are more than happy to consider taking advantage of this and many leading firms hired in 2016 at a senior level. NQ Market The market is highly competitive at this level. Despite strong retention levels in Ireland, firms have needed to add to their offering to avoid lateral moves and relocations to London, off shore jurisdictions or the Middle East. In-House 2016 was a busy year for in-house recruitment with candidates strongly motivated to move in-house from practice. Areas of growth include aviation, pharmaceutical, FinTech, life sciences, asset management, funds etc. Continued FDI in Ireland and the possibility that Brexit will increase demand, should create further opportunities during 2017. Private Practice 2016 saw private practices focus on sourcing London returners as competition for talent increased, with 3-5 years PQE the in-demand level of experience. With strong solicitors often lost to in-house departments, law firms are placing a lot of emphasis on the non-tangible benefits they can offer their talent. Money often dictates whether talent will move on and law firms are increasingly flexible to attract lateral movers. With regard to salaries in the legal sector the race is on for legal talent and some firms are increasing their salaries to prevent their trainees from leaving upon qualification. There is also a growing amount of flexibility in terms of what firms are willing to offer. The banded salary model often does not exist when it comes to a specialist lawyer or a strong candidate returning from London. When it comes to senior candidates, your salary offer will often come down to a business case (i.e. what clients/fees can you bring to the firm). The Legal market in Ireland (and particularly Dublin) is continuing to show clear signs of growth. Lawyers are key partners to businesses and levels of recruitment both in-house and in practice indicate economic confidence. 2016 has been an exceptionally interesting year, with economic activity increasing and then coming under threat from the impending Brexit. That being said, there seems to be no ceasing in companies and firms in Ireland growing their legal divisions. If you are looking for specialist advice please contact Cailim Boyle, Senior Legal & Compliance Recruitment Consultant Tel: (0)1 4744617 Email: email@example.com
With an ever increasing number of platforms to utilise for finding a job, how do you stand out from the crowd and grab an employer’s attention? We’ve put together nine easy steps to get yourself noticed online. Create a LinkedIn Profile LinkedIn is the most commonly used and abused job website in most countries at this stage. With over one million users in Ireland, LinkedIn has the capabilities of jobs boards along with a community of knowledge that any candidate can benefit from. Recruiters are probably some of the most avid LinkedIn users so make sure your profile is filled out in detail and is optimised with keywords associated with your target job. Bonus Tip: Along with LinkedIn, recruiters and hiring managers also love Twitter to get jobs out there so consider becoming a regular user on this site also. Use Jobs Boards Smartly When applying for jobs tailor your CV for each position. Optimise your cover letter and skill section to match that of the job specification. Consider creating a profile on these sites but keep track of them as people tend to forget they create these profiles after they find a job. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) This daunting term is not just relevant to marketers but to anyone who is marketing themselves online. SEO is identifying keywords relevant to your role and using these evenly throughout your profile. Look over specifications for jobs that you are interested in, identify commonly repeated skills that you possess and use these in your profiles. This method works for any profile that is searchable online (both publically and privately) so apply these techniques to LinkedIn, jobs boards and anywhere else you are looking for a job. Embed Social Profiles into CVs Whether handing out hard copy CVs or sending CVs via email etc. make sure to include links to your online profiles. This gives recruiters and employers the opportunity to get to know you before an interview and will help recruiters gauge overall fit with the company. But be careful what you post on these sites as inappropriate posts can be detrimental to your future role. Interact on Social Media Most recruiters are active online, sharing content and updates. If they share a job that may not suit your experience but you know someone, forward or retweet to them. If your contact gets an interview they can drop your name in for the recruiter’s knowledge. Sharing recruiter’s content and commenting on company news can be a great way of getting known by a company/recruiter. Following thought leaders in your industry will keep you ahead of the tide as regards changes in the trade and alert you to any importance conferences or networking events that you should be present at. Be In Demand Know what is going on in the landscape of your industry. Are things changing? Are there new technologies that will affect your job? Be ready to talk about these openly in your cover letter, on LinkedIn and in interviews. Showing that you are ahead of the curve with industry news shows that you are interested in your chosen profession/industry. Keep a close eye on competitors to know what they are doing and come up with examples of how you can help your company gain traction over their competitors. Showing genuine vigour for a company can score you points with a recruiter. Be Creative The above point leads directly into this one – Be Creative. If you know your industry and the companies that you are applying for then you know the norms. Do not be afraid of pushing these norms to get noticed but know the limits of your industry. Do not copy off others but show your uniqueness through your CV and online profiles so that personality and cultural fit are evident. Get Recommended LinkedIn have a nifty tool called ‘Recommendations’ which allows colleagues/managers/former associates to publicly or privately provide feedback on your work ethic and experience working with you. This can be great when recruiters are trying to find talent as referrals can say a lot more about a person’s ability to work than their profile can. Unique Selling Point Proposition The most important thing to remember when actively seeking employment is that you are selling your skills and abilities to recruiters and human resource departments in the hope of a position in their company. With this in mind you need to figure out what skills/abilities you possess that makes you different to others in your field. For your online profile use something generic to the industry that you are in/want to be in but tailor your cover letter and CV for each role you are applying for – make it relevant to the position that you are aiming for. Examples would be: “I increased our company’s online sales by 11% in three months, using a mixture of social media, content creation and email marketing, which was coordinated solely by myself.” “I effectively managed several large client accounts over the past year, turning them from loss making accounts into some of the largest profit making accounts for my company.”