It’s a great time to be in Information Technology in Ireland. Recent Reports quote a lack of qualified local talent, and that there are plenty of opportunities for people with the right mix of IT skills. So how do you choose the contract opportunity that’s right for you? As a contractor the temptation is to take the first offer you get, but it’s useful to take a step back and consider it carefully before accepting. Before you move forward with an opportunity, ask yourself the following questions: a) Is this a suitable role for my skill-set? Be sure you’re comfortable wih the fundamental requirements of the job and your future role on the project team and the position is a good fit with your primary skills. b) If some responsibilities fall outside my skill-set, am I comfortable with that? If you were careful to be honest and set the interviewer’s expectations appropriately during the interview process this shouldn’t be an issue; however, it is important for you to be comfortable with the scope of your future responsibilities and your ability to learn the skills you might lack at the start of the project. c) Are the working conditions and compensation acceptable and appropriate to my skill level? Don’t be afraid to aim high and negotiate, but do consider your relative expertise and existing market conditions to set realistic goals for yourself at this stage. Stay in touch with job boards to keep up with current market rates. Your recruitment agent is also in a good position to determine what the appropriate compensation should be for your skill level. d) Is this a good career move for me? Your first offer may not necessarily the best. Deciding whether to accept any given opportunity is a very personal decision, but do keep in mind that no contract lasts forever. e) Is the job in a feasible geographic location? Though this point is often overlooked when considering an offer, spending several hours a day or more commuting to work every day will impact your finances and quality of life. Now is the time to calculate your transit time as well as the cost of fuel, parking, public transportation, etc. and figure these factors into your salary requirements. f) Do I understand the local taxation and legal requirements of working in the project location? Are you legally entitled to work in the project location? Do you need a work permit or visa to enter the country? If this will be working as an independent consultant, some type of legal structure is required, usually a limited company. Have you decided what type of structure to use? Is it suitable for working in the geographic location where the role is based? What are the tax implications in the working location? Are there any implications in your home country? Typically working in another country will require significant up front investigation on these issues, as there is always some impact on your taxation obligations. If you consider all of these questions carefully and overall, on balance, the role seems like a good fit; it’s time to accept the offer. The choice of consulting opportunity is dependent on many personal factors, but I use this list of things to consider when comparing a new consulting opportunity with my current role. About the author Aidan Duffy is an independent consultant with 20 years international IT experience in Europe and USA, working with blue-chip multinational companies.He writes on Oracle topics at www.ILoveOracle.com and invites Linkedin Contact requests at this link ie.linkedin.com/in/aidanduffy/
The amount of Irish twitter users increased between 2016 and 2017. Twitter has become a key area for professional communication and also a great platform to post job opportunities and source possible candidates. Over the past few years social media has impacted and changed our manner of consumer behavior along with the job seeking and recruitment process. It is our opinion that these changes are very positive. The social job search allows for a greater chance to research the company, a great platform to sell and distinguish yourself from other candidates and an increased dialogue for your future employer. The following are our top 5 tips to make the most of Twitter in your social job search. 1. Let the world know you One of the most obvious first things you should do when using social media for your job search is to let the world know that you have a Twitter account. You should include a hyperlink to your account on your CV and use it perhaps in your personal email signature. Link your Twitter with other platforms, or as a promoter for your blog, allow people the chance to get to know you. Additionally, let your network know that you are looking for a new role, or better yet, the type of role you are looking for. Some people would rather a more conservative approach, but the social platform ethos is all about transparency. Leverage your network for introductions, share jobs and be referred on to a role, ‘ask and you shall receive!’ 2. Connect and communicate Twitter is uniquely positioned, arguably more so than any other social platform, to connect with people. You have the ability to follow anyone on Twitter immediately and vice versa without an approval process. The opportunity to engage with the highest leader of your target industry is only a click of a ‘follow’ button away. Research the company, follow the decision makers in your target company, retweet their industry news, if appropriate start a conversation or otherwise send a discrete DM. 3. Actually Network Twitter is not all about self promotion! Do just add people to have them in a list and push your own message on them. This is all about dialogue and actually networking. Engage in your industry of choice, joining in on conversations and interacting. This will also make a good impression for prospect employer visiting your profile. Show an interest in other people and retweet their ideas. The concept of paying it forward is strong within social media. Helping others can hold some leverage with your networks in the future and build stronger relationships. 4. Searching in Twitter Hundreds of Irish companies are communicating on Twitter, so being able to effectively search through all these conversations to find the job opportunities is crucial. The website search.twitter.com is an advanced search option and allows for a more precise search than the in-site search option. Click on advanced search and you can enter keywords like ‘hiring’. ‘job’ or ‘opportunity’ to find you a role as well as you word to describe the job you are looking for. You can also precisely refine by location as well. An interesting idea is to make this search real time by integrating it to your RSS reader. If you don’t have an RSS reader try www.feedmyinbox.com, create an account, and add the RSS reader link to receive e-mail updates instead.
After reading countless CVs day in, day out here at Sigmar, there are many a CV cliché that makes our eyes glaze over. Phrases such as ‘motivated, hard-working, team player’ and ‘enthusiastic individual with experience working in a fast-paced environment’ are white noise to us as recruiters yet we still see them appear on numerous CVs every day. The problem for many job seekers, is that whilst the have accomplished many career goals and achievements, when it comes to writing their CV they can’t remember any of it. So when in a rush to throw a CV together they end up using the same words and phrases as everyone else. Your CV is your marketing tool for getting you an interview and you need to utilise it to distinguish you from the other candidates. As recruiters, we want to see career progression, concrete examples of achievements and your growth within the company. Anything else is considered filler. Rather than listing your skills and job duties, demonstrate your accomplishments with specific examples. Providing examples will allows us as recruiters the ability to relate you to a specific role. Whilst some clichés are unavoidable here’s our guide to working around the most common offenders; Team Player Probably the most overused phrase of the lot is ‘team player’, ‘thrives in a team environment’, ‘loves working as part of a team’. Don’t state one of these phrases, rather talk about an accomplishment that shows you’re a good team player. For example; ‘Headed up a team of sales people to create a new sales model that increased sales by 41%’. Proven Track-Record In what? What did you do to get this track record? Have you saved your company money? Have you reached ambitious targets? Quantify your results; ‘Over a period of 6 months, I brought in €150,000 of business and 15 new clients’. A company would be far more impressed with this statement than a vague comment. Hard-Worker/Highly Motivated Well, you’re not going to write that you’re a bit lazy are you? You’re not the only one using these clichés, so clean up your CV by stating how you go that extra mile. Did you take a class to improve your skills? Did you meet some really tough deadline? Show the HR manager what makes you this person with a strong work ethic, instead of using another cliché. As you can see strong CVs make claims but then back them up with evidence. Smarter job hunters realise that trying to sell your personality on paper sets you up to fail. So to sum up make fewer claims and offer more evidence matched to the employer’s shopping list.