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13 Easy Questions to Ask to Find Out About a Company’s Culture

August 21st, 2018

When you’re interviewing for a job, you know it’s important to ask about the details of the position and what would be expected of you if hired. But are you also asking about the company’s culture and what day-to-day life is like at the organization? If not, then you’re missing out on an important opportunity to truly assess whether the role is right for you.

At Murray Resources, we can help. As experienced Houston recruiters, here are a few questions you should be asking to give you more insight into whether a culture is a fit for you:

#1: What do you like most about working here? What do you like least?

#2: Do employees spend time socializing outside of work? If so, how?

#3: Does the company offer training and development opportunities to its employees?

#4: Are employees recognized for results? If so, how?

#5: How does the company celebrate achievements and successes?

#6: How would my manager share feedback with me about performance? How often?

#7: How much collaboration is there across teams and departments? Is it done primarily in person or electronically?

#8: Is there room for growth with the company and opportunities to advance?

#9: Do employees generally work a lot together or more independently?

#10: Does the company invest in team-building activities? If so, what kind and how often?

#11: Does the company give back to the local community or to any charitable causes?

#12: What types of personalities seem to thrive most within this organization?

#13: Is there a focus on work-life balance at the company?

Some of these questions might be more relevant than others depending on the position you’re interviewing for, as well as your particular wants and needs. So you can certainly pick and choose among them. In addition, come up with your own list to address topics and issues related to culture that are especially important to you. That way, if you are offered the position, you can accept or decline it based on an accurate sense of what it truly entails and what it’s like to work at the organization.

Need more help with your job search or evaluating offers?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As Houston recruiters, we can assist you with all aspects of your job search from start to finish. Not only that, but we can connect you with rewarding opportunities at some of the city’s leading employers, all so you can get the job that’s a great fit for you.

Contact our Houston recruiters today to learn more – or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Why You Need to Practice Before a Job Interview & How to Do It

August 7th, 2018

Congratulations! You just got a call for an interview. Now comes the hard part: preparing for it. If you want to make the best impression possible, it’s important to practice your interview skills. Not only will you feel more confident walking into the interview, but you’ll also stand out among other candidates in the process. Murray Resources, leading job recruiters in Houston, TX, explains what you need to know:

Research common interview questions.

Go online and start researching common interview questions. There are some that you might be more likely to get asked than others. However, most hiring managers typically inquire in a general way about your background, strengths and weaknesses, why you’d be a good fit for the job, and why you’re leaving your current position.

Think of other industry-related questions you might get asked.

In addition to general interview questions, there will be those that are specifically related to your industry or the role you’re interviewing for. You can go online to research some of these, as well, or simply list a few you think you might get asked.

Write down your answers.

Rather than speaking them out loud, write them down first. This will help you to think through your responses and expand on them so you can offer the most detailed information possible. Once you’ve completed this process, then create condensed versions of your answers on flash cards. Shuffle them up so they’re in a random order and then start practicing them out loud. The more you practice, the more prepared you’ll be.

Record yourself practicing.

Use your phone or your computer’s web cam to record yourself. Don’t simply assess what you’re saying, but look too at your body language and the tone of your voice. This will help you gain more insight into the impression you’ll be giving to hiring managers.

Ask a friend to perform a mock interview.

You can also ask a friend or family member to interview you. Give them your list of questions and ask them for feedback on how well you answered them. This will help you hone your interview skills in an environment that feels safer and more comfortable than an actual interview.

Walk through what you’ll wear and how you’ll get there.

As job recruiters in Houston, TX, we know that another important part of the preparation process is to figure out what you’re going to wear ahead of time. Whatever you choose should be business formal attire. You’re also going to want to ensure your suit is cleaned and pressed ahead of time and that you have shoes to match.

Likewise, if you’re not sure where the company’s location is, do a test run before the interview day so you can determine which route to take and the amount of time it takes to get there.

Preparing for an interview certainly takes a lot of time and effort. However, the more you put in, the more you’ll get out in the form of a possible job offer.

Need more help with your job search?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As job recruiters in Houston, TX, we can assist you with all aspects of your job search, from resumes and cover letters to connecting you with top jobs throughout the city. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Speed Up Your Job Search with These 5 Simple Strategies

July 17th, 2018

It’s easy to get into a rut when you’re searching for a new job. Once you do, the process can slow down, which is a frustrating experience. But don’t panic. There are steps you can take to speed up your hunt and find a new job faster. Here are a few tips from our Houston headhunters to consider:

Expand your network.

Most job opportunities come by way of networking. While it’s a good idea to search the job boards for positions, it’s also vital that you schedule regular networking events into your week. These can be online, in-person, or a mix of both. Also, make sure you notify friends and family of your job search. When you do, you’ll increase your odds of finding out about new opportunities.

Review your resume.

If your resume isn’t aligned with the positions you’re applying for or if it’s full of vague language like “team player,” then you’re not going to get a lot of calls for interviews. Instead, read through each job posting first and make a list of your skills and qualifications that are most pertinent. Then, before you apply, modify your resume so it’s as relevant as possible. The less generic your resume, the more you’ll stand out to a hiring manager.

Polish your interviewing skills.

Interviews are stressful for even the most experienced candidate. One way to offset the associated nerves is through practicing your answers. As Houston headhunters, we recommend making a list of common interview questions and then respond to them one by one. You can even record yourself so you can evaluate your body language, tone of voice, and interview effectiveness. To further polish your skills, ask a friend or family member to conduct a mock interview with you.

Evaluate your online presence.

What happens when a recruiter or hiring manager Googles you? Do the search results reflect positively on you? If not, then you’ll need to take some steps to clean things up. In addition, make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated and that it matches the resume you’re sending in.

Rethink your approach.

If you followed the steps above and still aren’t getting calls for an interview, it’s time to take a step back and consider the positions you’re applying for. Are you truly qualified for them? Or are you under- or over-qualified? If you want the best results from your search, then it’s important to make sure you’re applying to the jobs you’re best-suited for.

Need more help finding a new job in the Houston area?

Connect with the Houston headhunters at Murray Resources. We offer talented, highly-motivated candidates opportunities across a broad range of industries and job functions. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Can Old Posts on Social Media Hurt Your Job Hunt?

July 3rd, 2018

Your personal social media profile and job search are two separate aspects of your life, right? Wrong. As Houston headhunters, Murray Resources knows that in today’s world of recruiting, social media plays a big part in hiring. In fact, according to a Jobvite survey, 92% of recruiters use social media to find high-quality candidates.

What’s more is that even when you have accounts set to private, nothing really is ever so on the Internet. A friend could share your comments or an image, and it could easily wind up in the hands of a hiring manager.

So if you have some concern about past social media posts, what should you do? Here are some tips to put to use:

Google yourself.

This is the first step many recruiters will take, so it’s important for you to see what they will find. Once you know what comes up, you’ll better be able to assess where you need to focus your efforts.

Take down inappropriate content.

If you have some incriminating photos online or mean-spirited or offensive comments on your profiles, take them down. Make sure that whatever you leave on your profile is saying something positive about you.

Ask friends to un-tag you.

If there’s content that reflects poorly on you, but a friend posted it and tagged you in it, ask them to take it down or to un-tag you. In most cases, they’ll comply, so it’s worth the effort.

Be mindful about what you post.

In the future, be careful about what you post. It’s tempting to go on a rant about someone you don’t like, but this simply makes you look immature. So post wisely. Also, don’t ever post any content that could be construed as offensive or profane.

As leading Houston headhunters, we know the last thing you want is to be rejected for your dream job based on something silly you posted three years ago. But it happens every day since so many recruiters and hiring managers vet candidates online and in their social media profiles. Follow the tips above to help ensure it doesn’t happen to you.

Need more help with your job hunt?

Let the Houston headhunters at Murray Resources assist you. We can become your go-to partner in your job search success, whether you need help with your resume and interviews or connecting with great-fit opportunities in a broad range of industries. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

5 Tips for Acing a Sales Interview

June 19th, 2018

You sell for a living. But when it comes to promoting your background and skills during a job interview, it can be a struggle. Sound familiar? As leading sales recruiters in Houston, Murray Resources knows there’s certainly an art behind effective self-promotion.

The good news is that if it isn’t your strong suit, there are steps you can take to improve your approach and increase your odds of landing the job. Here’s a look at 5 of them:

Do your homework.

Research is imperative before meeting with a prospect. The same holds true for hiring managers. Look up the company online, read through their website – learning about their mission, vision, services and customers  – search for news articles pertaining to the company, and talk to anyone you know who already works there. Not only will you be able to answer questions more intelligently but also walk into the interview more confidently.

Know your strengths.

Beyond simply selling, what specific areas are you strongest in? Do you love building relationships with clients, are you great at closing, or do you thrive on putting data and analytics to use during the sales process? Whatever the case for you, be prepared to discuss these key strengths and tie them into the position you’re interviewing for.

Talk about results.

Clients want to see tangible results and a proven track record. Hiring managers are no different. They want to know about your accomplishments complete with facts, figures, dollar amounts and other numbers to back them up. It’s therefore important to be prepared to talk about a few specific achievements and the impact they’ve made financially for past employers.

Prepare answers.

Before meeting with a potential customer, you’d think ahead about their objections and pain points, as well as how to respond to each. The same goes for the interview process. Before your next interview, research and think through the different kinds of questions you’ll be asked so you’re well prepared to provide the strongest answers possible. You don’t want to walk in sounding scripted. But when you’ve taken some time to think about how you’d answer questions, you can ensure you don’t stumble over your responses.

Ask your own questions.

So much of good selling is about asking questions and listening. The same goes for interviewing. If you want to make the best impression and learn what you need to know about the specifics of a particular job, then asking thoughtful questions – about the company, the sales department, the challenges and performance goals and metrics – is key.

Interested in professional help finding your next sales job?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As leading sales recruiters in Houston, we can give you access to the top local employers along with positions not always advertised, from account executive to sales associate to national sales manager. Find out more by contacting our Houston sales recruiting team today.

Posted in: Blog

4 Tips for Dealing with Job Search Fatigue

May 15th, 2018

You’ve been at it for months, sending in resumes, interviewing and following up. And still, you haven’t had any luck with your job search. You’re growing frustrated and more stressed out by the day. Should you just give up and stay where you are?

As one of Houston’s trusted employment agencies, Murray Resources knows if you’re really not happy in your current role, it’s important to keep up your hunt. The good news is that there are some steps you can take to push through job search fatigue and find the right opportunity for you. Here’s a look at 4 of them:

Tip #1: Expand your search.

If you’re simply looking for Houston jobs online, then you need to broaden your horizons. While there are many great opportunities posted every day, you need to search beyond the major job boards if you want to find a position faster. This includes looking to other niche or specialty sites, networking both online and offline, and getting help from professional employment agencies in Houston.

Tip #2: Invest in yourself.

If you’re not finding the job you want because you don’t have the right skills or certifications, then now’s the time to invest in yourself professionally. Take some time out from your search and sign up for the development courses you need. Read books about the skills you’re looking to acquire or get started earning that advanced degree if that’s what you need to take your career to the next level.

Tip #3: Have some fun.

If all you’re doing is working and searching for a new job, you’re going to burn out. Instead, make sure you balance your day. If you’re unemployed, then structure it like you would a work day, where you take breaks, have lunch and end the day at 5. If you’re employed, set aside a certain number of hours each day or week devoted to your job hunt. When time’s up, walk away and focus on something you enjoy.

Tip #4: Take time out.

If you’ve been searching for a new job for months without any success, there’s a reason. Take a step back and evaluate your efforts. Are you applying for jobs in Houston you’re truly well-suited for? Are you getting interviews? Are you interviewing and not hearing back?

Asking these kinds of questions will help you gain a sense of where things are going wrong and also what it is you want out of your next career move. After all, you don’t want to get a new job just to make a switch. You want to find something you truly love that’s a great fit for you.

Ready for professional help with the process?

Call Houston’s leading choice for employment agencies: Murray Resources. For over 30 years, we’ve been working with many of Houston’s top employers, including leaders in the energy industry, Fortune 500 firms, financial services firms, and more. We know who’s hiring and what local employers want from candidates. To learn more about how we can help you, please contact our team today.

Posted in: Blog

Ask the Houston TX Headhunters: What to Do When the Job Offer Isn’t Your First Choice

May 1st, 2018

When you’re searching for a new job, the end goal is an offer. But what should you do when one comes in, yet it’s not your first choice? It’s a good opportunity with a reputable employer. At the same time, you’re hoping to get the offer from the dream company you’re interviewing with next week. Should you take a risk and turn it down? Or should you err on the side of caution and accept a solid opportunity?

As Houston, TX headhunters, Murray Resources can help. Here are some questions you should ask yourself so you can make the best decision going forward:

Do the job responsibilities interest you?

Think through the tasks you’d have to handle on a daily basis. If you’re going to be put into a role that doesn’t excite you in any way, then the job isn’t right for you. If, however, you think you’d be interested in and challenged by the responsibilities that come with it, then it’s certainly worth considering.

How does the compensation stack up?

If you’ve done your homework and know your worth on Houston’s employment market, then you should have a good sense of whether the compensation is fair, or if you’re being undercut. When evaluating the offer, don’t forget to weigh the benefits, like health insurance, flex scheduling, retirement options, and all the other perks and rewards.

What’s your financial situation?

If you’re crunched and feeling the pressure, then you might need to bite the bullet and accept the job offer. You don’t want to put yourself and your family at risk for a position that might not come through, even if it is your dream role.

Do you want to work there?

If you ask yourself this question and your gut says “no,” then you have your answer. If, however, you’re not sure, then make a list of the pros and cons of accepting the offer. Consider aspects of the opportunity like work culture, commute and who your manager would be. Once your list is complete, see which side is longer. It should be pretty clear about whether or not you think the opportunity is a good fit for you.

Will this position help you achieve your career goals?

If the job offers you the opportunity to gain the skills and experience you need to reach a higher goal, then consider taking it. This is true too if the company has an internal promotion policy and advancement opportunities. With it, you’ll be one step closer to your goals, plus you’ll have the chance to move up and take on even more responsibility in the future.

Are you confident you can succeed in the role?

If you’re not, then the job might not be right for you. Every role comes with its fair share of challenges and learning curves. But if you’re hesitant about whether you’re going to be successful in the role and able to meet performance expectations, it might be time to reject it.

How likely is it you’ll get your dream job?

If there’s a good possibility, then you might want to hold out and wait to see if another offer comes in. But if it’s a stretch with little chance of you getting the job, then the offer you have on the table is certainly worth considering.

Are there any deal breakers?

In other words, is there any aspect of the job that you really don’t like, such as a long commute? If there is, these must enter into your decision-making process, so you make the right choice going forward.

Interested in job search help from Houston, TX headhunters?

Connect with the team at Murray Resources. If you’re not getting the offers you want, we can work with you to learn about your background, career goals, and skill set, all so we can connect you with rewarding jobs that are a great fit for you. Contact our Houston, TX headhunters today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

5 Common Mistakes Job Seekers Make That Scare Employers

April 17th, 2018

Spring is here and a great time for new beginnings. For many professionals, that means starting up a job search. But, as top headhunters in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows if you’re making certain mistakes during the process, you could actually be scaring off employers. What are they – and how can you avoid them? Here’s a look:

#1: Sending in a boilerplate resume.

Resume writing is tedious task. However, your resume is your ticket into the interview process. So it’s vitally important you submit one that’s polished and professional. If, however, yours sounds like you copied and pasted from the Internet, you won’t stand out or get a call for an interview.

What to do: To avoid this, make sure you read through the job posting and tailor your resume so it highlights your most relevant skills and experiences.

#2: Submitting a long resume.

As leading headhunters in Houston, TX, we know when a hiring manager gets a resume, they spend a few seconds looking it over. If yours is long-winded and hard to follow, you’re sabotaging your job search efforts. Keep in mind, your resume should offer a snapshot of your career, abilities and track record. It doesn’t need to delve into every detail of your background.

What to do: Keep it short and simple when writing your resume. Focus on using clear and concise language, bullet points, and bold-faced fonts to call out your job titles and past employers. Make your resume easy-to-scan with the pertinent information first.

#3: Showing up late to an interview.

The interview is the first in-person impression a hiring manager will have of you. If you show up late, you’re starting the process with points against you.

What to do: Know how to get to the interview location ahead of time and give yourself plenty of drive time in case of an accident, construction or heavy traffic. If you’re unfamiliar with the location, you might even want to take a test drive there before the day of your interview.

#4: Not being prepared.

If you get to the interview and it’s clear you don’t really know anything about the company, then the hiring manager will see it as a lack of enthusiasm or interest in the job. Noy asking questions can also make you seem unprepared.

What to do: Do your homework ahead of time and learn all you can about the company, their hiring needs, the people they serve and the solutions they offer. You’ll not only be able to answer questions more intelligently, but you’ll feel more confident walking into the interview.

#5: Offering vague interview answers.

The interview is your opportunity to show employers the value you can offer and why you’d be a good fit for their team. But if you offer answers that are lacking in detail or inconsistent with your resume, it’s a red flag for hiring managers.

What to do: Read through some common interview questions and think about how’d you answer them. Also, come up with a list of your accomplishments you think would most interest the hiring manager and be prepared to weave those into your interview answers.

If you’re making any of these mistakes, now’s the time to correct course, so you can put your best foot forward. If you need help with the process, call the experts at Murray Resources. As top headhunters in Houston, TX, we can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests, whether you are looking to move up the corporate ladder, re-enter the workforce, get more experience, or just gain more control over your schedule. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Applying for a New Job? Don’t Let These Resume Spelling & Grammar Mistakes Sabotage You

April 3rd, 2018

As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources knows that your resume is the first impression a hiring manager will have of you. Submit a polished and professional one, and you’ll increase your odds of getting a call for an interview. If, however, your resume is full of spelling and grammar mistakes, you’ll likely get pushed out of the running, even if you have the right experience.

To help ensure that doesn’t happen to you, here’s a look at a few common mistakes candidates make when it comes to spelling and grammar, and how to avoid them:

The wrong word choice.

Called homophones, these words – like “to”, “two” and “too”, and “there,” “they’re” and “their” – sound the same but completely change the meaning of what you’re trying to say. What makes it even harder is that most auto spelling and grammar checks in software programs can miss these words. That’s why it’s so important to carefully proofread your resume multiple time before sending it in to a potential employer.

Some other homophones to be careful of on your resume include:

  • Affected / effected
  • Insure / ensure
  • Than / then
  • Are / our
  • You’re / your

Misusing apostrophes.

The apostrophe is one of the most misused punctuation marks in the English language, with many job seekers mistakenly using the mark whenever they make a word plural. But apostrophes are only for indicating possession or creating a conjunction. For instance, consider the following usage:

Correct: “Authored business plan and initiated company’s new product line.”
Incorrect: “Managed 10 employee’s.”

Using only the past tense.

As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources knows that tense is another important consideration when it comes to proper grammar on your resume. When you’re talking about past positions you held, then the past tense (“worked,” “spearheaded,” etc.) is the correct tense to use. However, when discussing the current job you hold, switch to present tense to indicate that you’re still employed. Using only the past tense to describe your background will leave hiring managers confused.

Typos.

Sending in a resume with a small typo on it isn’t going to be the end of the world. But if there are several, then it’s going to reflect poorly on you. Instead, invest the time to carefully spell check your resume; even better, ask a trusted family member or friend to do the same. That way, you can cut town considerably on the risk of submitting a resume with embarrassing typos and spelling errors.

Need more help creating a resume that gets results or with your job search in general?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, we can help you craft a polished resume, prepare for interviews and connect you with leading jobs often not advertised – all so you can secure the opportunity you want. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Tips for Acing Your Interview for a Houston Temp Job

March 20th, 2018

When it comes to temp jobs in Houston, the interview process is just as important as if it were a full-time position. Recruiters, hiring managers and employers still want to know that you’ve got what it takes to perform well on the assignment and meet their needs, even if it just is for a short period. But if this is your first time interviewing for such a role, it can be difficult to know what to expect. To help you make a positive impression, here are 4 quick tips to keep in mind:

Tip #1: Research the company.

Whether the first step of the process is interviewing with a temp agency or directly with the company’s hiring manager, it’s important to show that you’re well prepared. To do this, research the company that’s hiring ahead of time. You’ll have a better understanding of what they do, who they serve and how you can contribute as a part of their team. You’ll therefore be able to answer questions more intelligently, tying your background and skill set to their needs.

Tip #2: Look the part.

Just because you’re interviewing for temp jobs in Houston doesn’t mean that you can dress down for an interview. Even if you have an interview first with a recruiter, they are looking at you as a potential ambassador for their agency. So if you don’t walk in and make a professional impression, then you’re not going to get sent along to the hiring company for an interview. That means no jeans and sneakers, and no gum. Also, aim for business casual at the minimum with the attire you do wear.

Tip #3: Be prepared for the interview.

In addition to researching the company, go to the interview prepared with copies of your resume, as well as pen and notepad for writing down any important instructions the recruiter or hiring manager might have for you. Also, make sure you follow directions and bring along any other documentation you were asked to, such as your driver’s license or a list of references. Finally, be ready to answer questions about your background and experience. Some common ones you might get asked include: “What interests you most about this assignment?” and “Why do you think you’d be a good fit?”

Tip #4: Think through scheduling.

During your first interview, the recruiter and hiring manager will likely ask about your availability and the hours you can work. Be ready with an answer and be honest if you have any restrictions, such as that you can’t work nights and weekends. Also, know when you can start and if have any other engagements or commitments, such as vacations, that could impact your schedule during the assignment.

Interested in learning more about temp jobs in Houston – and how you can land one?

Connect with the recruiters at Murray Resources. We’ll take the time to learn about your background, skills and career aspirations, all so we can connect you with temp jobs in Houston that are the right fit for you. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

How to Decline a Job Offer with Grace

February 20th, 2018

As top headhunters in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that when you’re looking for a new job, it’s thrilling to get an offer. However, sometimes it can be tough when it’s not really the job you wanted. So how do you go about turning it down, without burning any bridges in the process? Here are a few tips to consider:

Call them up.

You might be tempted to send a quick email or text when you want to turn down an offer. After all, it’s an uncomfortable situation. However, picking up the phone and making the call is the professional thing to do. The hiring manager will appreciate your response and you’ll be able to soften the blow a little easier on the phone.

Be grateful.

Even if you don’t want the job, it’s still important to show your appreciation and be grateful for the opportunity. After all, the hiring manager likely spent a lot of time on you, reviewing your resume, conducting a phone screen and interview, and checking your credentials. So offering a sincere and heartfelt thank you will go a long way in easing a stressful situation like this.

Make your reason clear and simple.

You don’t need to go into great detail about why you’re turning down this job offer over another. Simply explain that you’re declining the position and if it’s relevant, that you’re accepting a job elsewhere. You can simply say something like:

“After thinking about this position, I don’t think it’s the best fit for me at this current time” or “This is such a great opportunity, but after careful consideration, I’ve decided to go with another company’s offer.”

Stay in touch.

You never know what could happen down the line. You could re-launch a job search in the next year or two. Or the hiring manager could land at a different company where you two cross paths again. That’s why it’s always a good idea to stay in touch and ask if it’s ok to connect on LinkedIn.

Need more help with your job search?

Contact the professional team of Houston headhunters at Murray Resources. Organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in: Blog

How Often Should You Update Your LinkedIn Profile?

February 6th, 2018

In today’s world, you know you need a LinkedIn profile to put your best professional foot forward. But do you also know how often you should update it? In other words, should you be polishing it every day, every month or just once a year?

The answer is: all of the above. As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources knows that if you want the strongest, most compelling LinkedIn profile possible, you should really update it on a regular basis. Don’t leave this all-important task until you’re just about to launch a job search. Instead, when you consistently keep it updated, your profile will be more detailed and persuasive, making a stronger impact on recruiters and hiring managers.

So check in on your LinkedIn profile on a regular basis and plan to spend about 20 minutes reviewing and enhancing it. This can be tough with a busy schedule. To make sure you actually do it, schedule this task into your routine. Whether you decide to do it weekly or monthly is up to you. Just commit to making ongoing changes so you can ensure your LinkedIn profile is as current as possible, as well as easier to find by recruiters and hiring managers.

Some other tips to help your LinkedIn profile get noticed:

  • Post a headshot that’s polished and professional. It doesn’t have to be from a pricey photographer; it can simply be a shot you take at home.
  • Rework your headline. This is one of the first elements of your LinkedIn profile that recruiters will see. So you want to ensure it’s compelling and also clearly explains what you do.
  • Focus on accomplishments and your successful track record. Just as you would on your resume, focus on what you’ve produced in the way of results for past employers. Don’t simply talk about tasks and responsibilities.
  • Customize your LinkedIn profile. So rather than it being Courtneycampbell12349, it’s simply CourtneyCampbell or something similar.
  • Ask for recommendations. Another area recruiters will take a look at is your recommendations. So reach out to those in your network who could provide you with positive ones and ask if they’d be willing to recommend you.

Need more help getting noticed by recruiters and hiring managers?
Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, we can connect you to top employers and rewarding jobs in a variety of fields. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

2018 Houston Oil and Gas / Energy Conference Calendar

January 18th, 2018

As the oil and gas capital of the U.S., Houston is home to some of the largest energy conferences in the world. Below is a conference calendar for Houston energy professionals looking to network in the industry. To suggest a conference for this list, please email info@murrayresources.com

(Last updated January 2018. Dates and locations subject to change – please verify)

Private Capital Conference

January 25, 2018

JW Marriott Houston Galleria, 5150 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

http://www.ipaa.org/events/private-capital-conference-2018/

 

Oil & Gas Overview Course

February 5, 2018

George R. Brown Convention Center, 1001 Avenida De Las Americas, Houston, TX

http://www.ipaa.org/events/oil-gas-overview-course-february-2018/

 

State of the Industry – Houston 2018

February 6, 2018

Petroleum Club of Houston, 1201 Louisiana Street, 35th Floor, Houston, TX

http://louisianaoilandgas.memberzone.com/events/details/state-of-the-industry-houston-2018-105

 

NAPE Summit Week 2018

February 5-9, 2018

George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston, TX

http://napeexpo.com/summit?/shows/about-the-show/summit

 

NAPE Summit 2018

February 7-9, 2018

George R. Brown Convention Center, 1001 Avenida De Las Americas, Houston, TX

http://www.ipaa.org/events/nape-summit-2018/

 

Rice Global E&C Forum Roundtable

February 9, 2018

Grand Hall Rice University Ley Student Center (Parking details at www.forum.rice.ed)

http://www.forum.rice.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Flyer-Roundtable-1802092.pdf

 

17th Annual Liquefied Natural Gas Conference

February 12-13, 2018

The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa, Houston, TX

https://www.platts.com/events/americas/liquefied-natural-gas/index

 

Leaders in Industry Luncheon

February 14, 2018

Petroleum Club of Houston, Total Building, 35th Floor, 1201 Louisiana Street, Houston, TX

http://www.ipaa.org/events/leaders-industry-luncheon-february-2018/

 

CERAWeek

March 5-9, 2018

Hilton Americas-Houston, 1600 Lamar Street, Houston, Texas

https://ceraweek.com/

 

AADE 2018 National Fluids Technical Conference and Exhibition

April 10-11, 2018

Hilton Houston North, 12400 Greenspoint Dr, Houston, TX

http://www.aade.org/2018-fluids-technical-conference-and-exhibition/

 

7th Annual North American Crude Oil Summit and Inaugural Mexican Refined Products Seminar

April 11-12, 2018

The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa, Houston, TX

https://www.platts.com/events/americas/north-american-crude-oil/index

 

2018 Machine Learning in Oil & Gas Conference

April 18 – 19, 2018

Hyatt Regency Galleria, Houston, TX

https://www.machinelearning-oilandgas.com/

 

Offshore Technology Conference 2018

April 30-May 3, 2018

NRG Park, Houston TX

http://2018.otcnet.org/

 

2018 Esri Petroleum GIS Conference

May 9-10, 2018

George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston, Texas

http://www.esri.com/events/petroleum-energy

 

22nd International Petroleum Data Integration, Information and Management Conference

May 22-24, 2018

Marriott Houston Westchase, Houston, TX

http://www.pnecconferences.com/conference.html

 

Unconventional Resources Technology Conference

July 23-25, 2018

George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston, TX

http://urtec.org/2018/

 

Pipeline Week

September 11-13, 2018

The Westin Galleria Houston, 5060 W Alabama St, Houston, TX

http://www.pipelineweek.com/index.html

 

2018 North America Assembly and Dinner

September 13, 2018

Marriott Marquis, Houston, TX

http://www.oilandgascouncil.com/conference/northam-oil-and-gas-assembly

 

Turbomachinery and Pump Symposia

September 18-20, 2018

George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston, TX

https://tps.tamu.edu/

 

2018 Deloitte Oil & Gas Conference

October 30, 2018

Marriott Marquis Houston, Houston, USA

https://10times.com/deloitte-oil-gas-conference

 

16th Women’s Global Leadership Conference in Energy (WGLC)

November 2018

Hyatt Regency, Houston TX

http://www.wglconference.com/events/wglc-2018-houston/event-summary-a8d440539a9444928abb75e896d406e6.aspx

 

Posted in: Blog

4 Resume Mistakes That Will Get You Rejected

January 16th, 2018

When it comes to your job search, your resume is a mission-critical document. As leading job recruiters in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that’s how potential employers decide whether or not to bring you in for an interview. So you need to make the best impression possible with it. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for job seekers to make mistakes when crafting and submitting their resumes. To help you ensure you avoid them, here’s a look at 4 of them:

Mistake #1: It’s too long.

When it comes to your resume, don’t go longer than two pages.As job recruiters in Houston, TX, we know that anything more than that is not only unnecessary, but will make you come off as unprofessional. Hiring managers will wonder about your judgement, or think you have an exaggerated sense of your value as an employee. But when you keep it to two pages, you’ll have enough space to give a good overview of your background, without being too long-winded.

Mistake #2: It’s not customized.

If you’re sending in the same exact resume to every employer, hiring managers will notice. It’s going to seem boilerplate and generic. That’s why it’s important to customize your resume for each job you apply to. That way, you’ll make it easy for hiring managers to connect the dots about why your background and their opportunity are an ideal fit.

Mistake #3: There’s too much or too little information.

As job recruiters in Houston, TX, we know that writing a strong resume is often akin to striking the perfect balance. You want to include enough detail to ensure the hiring manager is clear on your strengths. At the same time, you don’t want to include so much that your resume becomes difficult to read. So look at your resume as your highlight reel. What strengths and accomplishments are most important to include? Focus on those, but don’t create a laundry list of your entire career.

Mistake #4: You’re extremely over-qualified or under-qualified for the job.

If you’re under-qualified for a job, the chances of getting a call for an interview are slim. However, if you’re over-qualified, and you explain in your cover letter why you’re applying to the job anyway, then there’s a good chance you could be in the running for the position. It’s when you have 15 years of experience and apply for a job that requires two years – without explanation – that hiring managers will wonder.

Does your resume need work? Do you need expert help with your job search?

Either way, call in the experts at Murray Resources. As job recruiters in Houston, TX, we can help you with all aspects of your job search, from resumes and cover letters to connecting you with top jobs throughout the city. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

How to Climb the Ladder in Your Career in 2018

January 2nd, 2018

Are you feeling stuck in your job? As leading Houston headhunters, Murray Resources knows that whether you’re interested in a promotion, or a new opportunity at a different company, you can’t sit idly by and wait for the right possibility to come along. Instead, you need to be proactive in your efforts, all so you can uncover and attract great new opportunities in the year ahead. To help you in the process, here are some tips to consider:

Tip #1: Be open.

It’s easy to get stuck in your comfort zone and stay where you are. That’s fine, but it’s also not the way to move forward and achieve your career goals. Instead, if you want to take your career to the next level, you need to be open to new and different opportunities. Whether it’s taking on a stretch assignment, chairing a volunteer committee, or spearheading a new initiative at work, these are the kinds of challenges and roles that will enable you to acquire valuable skills, meet new people, and make yourself more marketable for a promotion or new job.

Tip #2: Build a strong network.

When it comes to getting ahead in your career, your network can play a big part. When you’re connected to the right people, you can find out about opportunities faster or that are not always advertised. Beyond that, you can also gain valuable insight and use your network as a sounding board when you’re trying to make important decisions about your career.

Tip #3: Be flexible.

Today’s workplace is changing quickly. If you want to keep up and get ahead, then you need to be flexible. Sometimes that might mean taking on a role or task that’s not necessarily part of your job description. Or it could be changing the way you do things in order to streamline processes and make your company more competitive. Whatever the case for you, you need to be flexible and roll with the punches if you want to achieve long-term career success.

Tip #4: Learn new skills.

If you want to be the best, then you should always be learning. Whether you’re reading industry publications and blogs, going to trade shows and seminars, or enrolled in online training, your goal should always be to sharpen your existing skills, as well as to gain new ones. When you do, you’ll become more valuable to your current employer, as well as more marketable to new ones.

Interested in professional help from Houston’s trusted headhunters?

Contact Murray Resources. As top Houston headhunters, we offer talented, highly motivated candidates opportunities across a broad range of industries and job functions. Call us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Ask Headhunters in Houston, TX: Can Social Media Posts Hurt My Career?

December 19th, 2017

Fifteen years ago, no one heard of social media. Today, however, it’s a normal part of our everyday life. But did you know that if you don’t take the right approach with it – even in your personal life – it could wind up having a negative impact on your career? Here are some ways how:

Bashing your employer or company.

Sure, you might butt heads with your boss or be angry about a new company policy. But, as headhunters in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that never means it’s a good idea to go online and rant about it. Even if you think your posts are private, they never really are and they can get back to people you never intended to see it. Not only that, but these kinds of angry diatribes tend to paint you in a negative light. And if there’s someone in your network in charge of hiring at a company, they might think twice about bringing you on board if you ever applied with them.

Making fun of customers.

Bashing your boss is a bad idea. But what’s worse is taking it out on customers. You might have had a completely miserable experience with a customer; however, never post about it online. It makes both you and your employer look bad, which they won’t appreciate.

Poor grammar and spelling.

You might not be a writer or a proofreader for a living. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to display good grammar and writing skills when you’re posting online, even if it’s in your personal network. Want more proof? According to a Jobvite survey, 66% of employers look negatively upon poor spelling and grammar on social media. So if a hiring manager sees your post, it’s not going to look good for you.

Posting inflammatory or derogatory comments.

When it comes to sharing online, sometimes it’s best to hold your tongue…or in this case, your fingers. Even when you feel passionately about a particular issue, you should never post anything that could be misconstrued as bias, racist, or obscene. If you do, and a hiring manager finds it, then you can kiss the chance of any job offer good-bye.

Posting unsavory photos.

So, you’d never post anything hate-filled. But what about those drunken photos of you at the New Year’s Eve party last year? It’s best to skip those, as well. And if a friend posts and tags you in those kinds of photos, kindly ask them to remove the tag.

The bottom line? Yes, as headhunters in Houston, TX, we know that social media posts can hurt your career. However, if you’re committed to posting opinions that are thoughtful and well-written – and you avoid the mistakes above – then you don’t have to worry about that happening to you.

Need more career tips and advice, or help finding a new job?

Call the expert headhunters in Houston, TX: Murray Resources. Whether you are looking to move up the corporate ladder, re-enter the workforce, get more experience, or just gain more control over your schedule, Murray Resources can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

4 Career Mistakes to Avoid When You Want to Get Ahead

December 5th, 2017

It’s almost a New Year – and if you’re ready to get ahead in your career, then there are some important steps you should take. At the same time, there are several common mistakes you should avoid. For instance, here’s a look at a four:

#1: Being too ambitious…or not ambitious enough.

As leading recruiters in Houston, Murray Resources knows that a desire to get ahead in your career is healthy. However, if you’re willing to do anything to climb the corporate ladder – from stretching yourself too thin to accepting a promotion you know you’re not qualified for – then it’s going to catch up with you eventually. At the same time, a lack of ambition or staying in your comfort zone for too long can also negatively impact your career, as well. Instead, try to strike the right balance by aiming higher, but also being willing to work on your shortcoming and skills gaps before you make a big move.

#2: Not acquiring new skills.

Years ago, people learned on the job with minimal training. Today, however, workers are expected to be proactive about acquiring new skills and expanding their knowledge base. This is especially true if you want to get ahead in your career. So if there’s a certain specialized skill set that would help you advance in your current position, or a new one, do all you can to learn it. Read a book, take an online course, ask your boss for stretch assignments and enroll in a certificate program.

#3: Not taking feedback seriously.

It’s the end of the year, which means it’s time for performance reviews. If you receive some constructive criticism during yours, take it seriously. If you don’t, then you’re not going to be able to work on your weaknesses and get ahead in your career. It’s understandable if you don’t like negative feedback; nobody does. However, do make sure you take it to heart and put it to good use so you can learn and grow from it.

#4: Burning bridges.

Whether you resigned without two weeks notice or got caught talking about a co-worker behind their back, these kinds of actions constitute burning a bridge – and they’re tough to recover from. Instead, aim to be ethical and professional in all your workplace dealings. Don’t engage in gossip. Always try to do the right thing. And never point the finger of blame at others. Chances are, it will come back to haunt you.

Looking to advance your career in a new job with a new employer?
The trusted recruiters in Houston – Murray Resources – can help. We can assist you with your resume, interviews and connecting you with top positions – at top employers. Whether you are looking to move up the corporate ladder, re-enter the workforce, get more experience, or just gain more control over your schedule, give Murray Resources a call today.

Posted in: Blog

Ask a Houston Employment Agency: How Do I Make a Great Impression During an Interview?

November 14th, 2017

As the saying goes, you only get one chance to make a first impression. And, as one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources knows if you ace your opportunity, it could lead to an exciting new job offer. To help you get there, here are some tips to remember:

Show up on time, looking professional.

It sounds like a no-brainer. But too many times, candidates show up a few minutes late, or wearing clothes not appropriate for an interview. Just because the company comes across as more casual than corporate doesn’t mean you should don anything less than a suit for an interview.

Be friendly with everyone you meet.

You may not realize this, but if you’re rude to the receptionist or parking attendant, it could very well get back to the hiring manager. So make sure you’re respectful and friendly with everyone you meet, whether it’s an entry level employee or the chief executive.

Know when to talk and when to listen.

During an interview, you don’t want to drone on endlessly about your skills and experience, talking over the hiring manager as they try to ask follow up questions. Make sure you’re a good listener. That means staying quiet until the interviewer is done talking or asking their question. This will also help to ensure you have the full question before you attempt to answer it.

Ask smart questions.

Go beyond the basics and ask more sophisticated questions that will help you a) better evaluate the opportunity and b) impress the hiring manager with your preparedness. These include questions such as:

  • How will my performance be measured?
  • What are some common traits among the company’s top performer?
  • What do employees like most about working at the company?
  • How does this position fit into larger company-wide goals?

Don’t forget about body language.

Sometimes, it’s not what you say, but how you say it that has the most impact on a hiring manager. So smile and make eye contact. Offer a firm handshake. And don’t slouch or fidget during the interview. Even if you are anxious, try your hardest not to show it.

Need more help acing your next interview – or getting one?

Call Murray Resources, one of Houston’s top employment agencies. We can connect you with leading jobs often not advertised and help you prepare for your interviews – all so you land the job you want. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

5 Ways to Stand Out on LinkedIn

October 24th, 2017

Updating your LinkedIn profile is kind of like polishing your resume. Nobody likes to do it, but in today’s world, it’s a must during a job search. So if you’re getting ready to dig into your profile – so your background and experience are more attractive to recruiters and hiring managers – which areas should you focus on? Here are few tips to help you stand out on LinkedIn:

Include a professional profile picture.

As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources knows that your photo is actually one of the most important elements on your LinkedIn profile page. It instantly sends the message about your level of professionalism. Not only that, but according to LinkedIn, those profiles with photos are seven times more likely to get clicked on than those without them.

Turn your LinkedIn summary into a compelling story.

This section should offer a brief bio that explains what you do and offers a few select career highlights. While it’s always important to be professional in terms of tone, you should infuse some personality into it, too. If it’s dry and dense, no one is going to read it.

While writing or re-writing this section on your LinkedIn profile might take some – and a few drafts – don’t skip it. Both leaving this section blank, or writing information that is too personal in nature, can be a big turn off for recruiters and hiring managers.

Update and polish your Skills & Expertise.

If it’s been a while since you updated this section, then chances are you’ve gained some new skills and experience. You’ll want to reflect that by updating this section. Also, focus on skills that are most relevant to the kinds of job opportunities you want. You don’t need to list every skills you’ve picked up during the extent of your career; just those that will make the best impression on prospective employers.

Skip the clichés and buzzwords.

Too many times, candidates use terms like “detail-oriented,” or “focused,” and “strategic.” But these words are empty for most hiring manager.As one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources knows they want to see hard facts and figures when it comes to your background, along with a proven track record. That’s why you should always skip the fluff and instead focus on quantifying your accomplishments and getting LinkedIn recommendations from reputable sources.

Share content and publish your own.

One of the best ways to stand out on LinkedIn is through sharing and publishing content. Not only will this help to expand your reach, but it will make you more credible and relevant to hiring managers and recruiters.

Following these few simple steps can help you make the most of your LinkedIn profile, so it can work harder for you during your job search. Another way to improve your job search results is by partnering with a local employment agency. For instance, as one of Houston’s top employment agencies, Murray Resources can offer you helpful advice and tips on finding your next great job, and can even connect you with leading employers – and rewarding opportunities – in and around the area. To get started, contact us today or search our Houston-area jobs now.

 

Posted in: Blog

6 Tips for Having Serious Conversations with Your Boss

October 10th, 2017

You’re thinking of leaving. You want to respond to criticism you think is unfair. Or you’re interested in getting promoted – and getting a raise. Whatever the case for you, as leading Houston recruiters, Murray Resources knows these kinds of conversations are often awkward for employees. How can you approach them and get the results you want?

#1. Be prepared.

Before you walk into your boss’s office, be prepared for the conversation. For instance, if you’re asking for a raise, make sure you have hard facts and numbers to back up why you deserve a bump in salary. If, however, you think you’ve been criticized unfairly by your boss, be prepared with evidence that proves your point.

#2. Structure the conversation.

When it comes to difficult conversations, don’t wing it. It’s easier if you think through how the meeting should flow and also write down key points you want to get across. That way, you’ll be more effective and thorough when you’re communicating.

#3. Stay calm.

As Houston recruiters, Murray Resources knows if you’re upset or nervous about the conversation, it’s easy to get flustered and lose your confidence. Likewise, if you’re angry about a situation at work, you might be tempted to barge into your boss’s office and confront them. But this isn’t effective. Even if your boss was in the wrong, you need to approach the conversation in a way that’s both calm and diplomatic.

#4. Maintain eye contact and sit up straight.

Don’t let your body language give you away. Instead, it’s important to appear confident, maintaining eye contact and sitting straight. When you do, your boss will have more confidence in what you’re saying.

#5. Be honest.

Don’t exaggerate or make things up to get your point across. Instead, simply be factual and honest when talking to your boss.

#6. Don’t let them blow you off.

If you have something important to say to your boss, you’re probably desperate to get it out and put it behind you. But boss’s are busy and the chance of a reschedule are high. While if this happens one time, it’s not a big deal, do insist on a meeting if it keeps happening. Your boss owes it to you to hear you out.

When it comes to having a difficult conversation, focus on preparing, staying calm and being upfront. Your boss might not agree with you, but they’ll respect you for it.

Interested in advancing your career with a new position?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As leading Houston recruiters, we can give you the inside scoop on getting hired at some of the city’s top employers. Contact us today to learn more – or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Ask a Houston Headhunter: What Do Employers Look For in Candidates

September 26th, 2017

You want a new job, but competition is fierce. How can you stand out to a hiring manager? First, it’s vital that you understand what’s important to them. As leading Houston, TX headhunters with over 25 years of experience, we know what employers look for when they’re hiring. Here’s a quick overview to help you in your search:

Good attitude.

You can have the strongest skills in the world, but if you have a bad attitude or come across as difficult or hard to work with, you’re going to be searching for a new job for a long time. Employers want people who are positive, motivated and enthusiastic. They don’t, however, want people who are going to poison their teams with negativity. That’s why during the interview, it’s important to demonstrate that you’re open to new ideas, learning new things and can handle stress in a healthy way.

Strong values.

Employers also want people who can demonstrate strong core values. This includes intangibles like work ethic and integrity, as well as more tangible activities, such as community service and mentoring. Hiring managers know that those with strong values are more likely to be committed and consistent team members.

Flexibility.

In today’s work environment, one thing is constant: change. And employers need people who can roll with the punches and who are willing to adapt. They also want those who can jump right into different projects and roles and help be a valuable player across them all.

Ambition.

Hiring managers want people who have some vision for their careers and are also motivated to succeed. They know these are the people who bring fresh ideas to the table and new innovations to the company. They also don’t want to do a lot of hand holding, and instead want people willing to take the initiative to achieve positive results.

When it comes time for your next interview, it’s important to demonstrate your technical skills and work experience. However, don’t forget to showcase the areas above either. When you do, employers will see a well-rounded candidate who can contribute positively to their bottom line.

Looking for professional help with your next job search?

Contact Houston, TX headhunters at Murray Resources. For over 30 years, we’ve connected high-performance individuals with leading-edge organizations. Search our jobs now, or contact one of our Houston, TX headhunters to learn more.

 

Posted in: Blog

Tips from Houston Job Recruiters: How to Avoid Burnout During a Long Search

September 12th, 2017

When you first began your job search, you were excited and ready to hit the ground running. Now, months into it and without an offer in sight, you’re wondering where you went wrong and thinking about giving up. Don’t do it! As leading Houston job recruiters, Murray Resources knows it’s likely that you’re simply burned out. It happens to the most experienced job candidates, so you’re not alone there.

To get over it and get it on with your search, here are a few helpful tips:

Take a break.

If you’ve been looking for a new job for a long time without any success, take a vacation from your search for a few days if you can. Doing so will help you to come back to it renewed and refreshed.

Limit your daily job search time.

If you’re spending eight or more hours each day fruitlessly searching for a job, you can burn out quickly. Instead, set a daily limit of three or fours hours, complete with specific goals on how you’ll spend that time each day. That way, you’ll be more productive and also get more done in less time.

Reward yourself.

If you meet your job search goals each week, reward yourself. Whether it’s indulging in a dinner at your favorite restaurant, a date night at the movies with your spouse, or scheduling in some much-needed down time, giving yourself rewards will help you stay motivated through the process.

Make social connections.

As experienced Houston job recruiters, we know that if you’re unemployed, it can be easy to feel isolated during the day. That’s why incorporating networking opportunities – even if it’s simply lunch with a past co-worker – can help you get more connected and even find out about new opportunities.

Stay focused – and inspired.

A long job search can suck the life out of you. But there’s a reason you’re looking for a new opportunity. Perhaps you want a more flexible lifestyle, a shorter commute, or better pay. Whatever the case for you, make a list of the reasons you want a new job and keep it somewhere that’s easily visible. That way, when you’re starting to feel drained or overwhelmed, you can look to it as a source of inspiration.

Stuck in a job search that isn’t getting good results?

Let the experts at Murray Resources help. As one of Houston’s top job recruiters, we can assist you with every aspect of your job search, from resume writing to securing and preparing for interviews. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

5 Tips for Staying Sane After a Job Interview

August 22nd, 2017

As one of Houston’s leading employment agencies, Murray Resources knows that one of the worst parts of the job search process is waiting – waiting for a response after you apply for a job, waiting to hear back after a phone screen and waiting for an offer after an interview. You may feel anywhere from mildly stressed to totally agonized. How can you manage such an intense process and stay sane during it? With these tips:

Tip #1: Keep up your search.

Your interview went well, really well. But that doesn’t mean you should stop your search and wait around for an offer. Once you leave your interview, the decision is in the hands of the hiring manager, so mentally move on from it. If you get the offer – in writing – then and only then can you call your search quits.

Tip #2: Manage your stress.

As one of the leading employment agencies in Houston, we know job searches are stressful even for veteran professionals. But if you have healthy coping habits, then it’s going to make the process much easier. So after an interview, rather than sitting around, wondering and waiting, engage in some deep breathing exercises, or hit the gym and work out. If you’d rather socialize, find a friend and go to lunch or grab a drink. Whatever you do, just balance out the stress of your search with something relaxing.

Tip #3: Stay busy.

When you’re not busy, it’s that much easier to check your phone and email 15 times in an hour for any sign of communication from the hiring manager. But this will simply add to your stress level. Instead, stay busy with other activities, whether it’s a hobby or volunteering.

Tip #4: Write about the experience.

When you’re in the middle of a stressful experience – like a job search – it’s easy to let anxiety rule your mind. Instead, put pen to paper and get those thoughts and feelings out. When you do, you can gain some perspective, relieve stress and feel better overall.

Tip #5: Do something fun.

Whether it’s dinner and a movie, or a weekend road trip, do something you’re going to enjoy. Not only will it fill your mind as you’re getting ready for it – replacing thoughts about your interview – but you’ll also feel more relaxed and engaged when you get back to your search.

When you really want a certain job, managing your stress level after an interview – as you’re waiting to hear – can certainly be a challenge. But follow the tips above for staying sane and well balanced throughout the process.

Need more help with your job search?

As one of the leading employment agencies in Houston, Murray Resources can assist you with the entire search process – from crafting a strong resume and preparing for interviews to giving you access to job openings that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

5 Myths About Working with Employment Agencies

August 8th, 2017

In our area, more professionals than ever are using employment agencies in Houston to find new job opportunities. However, if you’re not one of them, you might be operating under some misconceptions about agencies and how they work. What are some common ones – and what’s the truth behind them? Here’s a look at 5:

Myth #1: Job postings by employment agencies aren’t real jobs.

The truth is many companies don’t even post their own job openings; they partner with an employment agency to do the work for them. So if you cut out jobs listed by employment agencies in Houston from your search, you can actually wind up missing out on a challenging and rewarding opportunity.

Myth #2: You have to pay to work with an employment agency.

A reputable agency will not charge candidates for job search assistance Rather, the hiring company pays the costs of the process. Not only is the job search help free, but so are many of the resources, such as training opportunities, offered by an employment agency.

Myth #3: Employment agencies only fill administrative or industrial jobs.

This might have been true decades ago. But today’s employment agencies in Houston fill jobs in fields ranging from IT and accounting to sales and marketing. What’s more is that companies ranging from those on the Fortune 500 list to smaller organizations rely on employment agencies for hiring help. So when you work with an agency to find your next job, you’ll have access to a wide variety of opportunities.

Myth #4: Employment agencies only fill temporary jobs.

Yes, it’s true that employment agencies fill temporary assignments. However, they also fill full-time, part-time, contract and temporary-to-hire roles, as well. It simply depends on the needs of the hiring company at any given time.

Myth #5: Employment agencies just want to fill an empty seat.

On the contrary, when you work with an experienced recruiter at an employment agency, they’ll take the time to learn about your background, experience and where you want to take your career. They can also help you polish your resume and interview skills so you make the best impression possible on employers. In the end, they’re focused on making a great match between candidates like you and potential employers.

If you’re just starting a new job search, or been at one for a while, an employment agency can be a valuable source of job leads for you. Not only that, but they can help you with every aspect of your job search, from resumes to interviews and more, start to finish.

If you’d like to learn more about getting started with employment agencies in Houston, put Murray Resources on your list. We can assist you with the entire search process, including crafting a strong resume, preparing for interviews and giving you access to job openings that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

Ask a Houston Job Recruiter: 8 Little Resume Tips that Will Make a Big Impact

July 25th, 2017

As leading Houston job recruiters, Murray Resources knows that when it comes to your job search, there’s a lot on the line. And success in it can sometimes hinge on one vital document: your resume.

But during school, most people are never taught how to put together a powerful resume, or how hiring managers read them. The end result is a long, tedious, and ineffective resume. On top of that, you’re competing with hundreds of different candidates – for just one position. So if your resume isn’t completely on target, it’s not going to do much good.

In the end, it’s the little things that make the biggest different if you want to put together a stellar resume. Here’s a look at 8 of them to help you get started:

#1: Customize your resume.

That means creating a resume for every job you apply to. If you’re applying to similar jobs, they won’t be wildly different. But small tweaks that correlate to each particular employer can make a world of difference.

#2: Include keywords in your resume.

Take a look at the job description and pick out three to five keywords to include in your resume. This will ensure you won’t get shut out by an applicant tracking system that’s screening resumes.

#3: Be mindful of length.

A two-page resume is fine, just don’t go beyond that length. If you’re an entry-level employee, however, your resume should only be one-page long.

#4: The formatting of your resume is key.

That means a 12-point font size, a professional-looking font, bolded employer names and employment dates, and bulleted lists. Hiring managers don’t read; they scan and skim. Make it easy for them.

#5: Include a summary of qualifications section at the top of your resume.

This should include the highlights of your background that demonstrate you meet the minimum qualifications for the job.

#6: Use action verbs, not passive language when writing your resume.

This will infuse more energy into the document.

#7: Make sure grammar and spelling are correct.

Use the correct words and tenses. Spell check, proofread and then have a friend or family member proofread the document.

#8: Focus on your accomplishments.

Including tasks and duties is fine, to a point. Just make sure you also highlight your positive track record, preferably quantified with dollar figures, percentages and other numbers.

Need more help with your resume or job search?

Call the Houston job recruiters at Murray Resources. Whether you’re looking to move up in your career, re-enter the workforce, gain more experience, or just more control over your schedule, Murray Resources can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Ask a Houston Headhunter: What Should I Consider Before Deciding to Relocate for a Job?

July 11th, 2017

As experienced Houston headhunters, Murray Resources knows that making the decision to relocate for a job is a big one. You don’t want to pass up a golden opportunity out of fear of change. At the same time, it’s a gamble – and what if you don’t end up liking your new position?

To help you choose, here are 7 questions to ask yourself before you make a move.

1. Have you done your homework on the new location?

Before you make a decision, it’s important you do some research not only on the new job and company, but also your potential new hometown. Where would you want to live? If you have kids, where would you send them to school? What’s the cost of living and quality of life like? It’s important to do some leg work and answer these questions so you can make an educated decision.

2. Who will pay for moving expenses?

Moving within the same town or city is expensive. But moving to a completely different state or part of the state is even more so. That’s why it’s important to find out who foots the bill for moving expenses. Are you expected to pay or will your new employer?

3. Do I have a good handle on the job and company culture?

If you’re vague in terms of the job details, or if what you’ve learned about the culture doesn’t sit quite right with you, then is it really worth uprooting your life for the job? Probably not. Also, make sure you’ve had a chance to meet your potential boss and co-workers so you can gain a clearer sense of what your work environment and work relationships will be like.

4. Is the compensation package competitive?

If you’re leaving your hometown behind, you want to make sure the salary is worth it. When you’re pondering this question, you’ll also want to take into account cost of living in the new area. For instance, if the cost of living is much higher, then you could actually wind up taking home less money after you pay your bills – even with a larger salary.

5. Does the company have a strong reputation and track record?

If you’re giving up your job and moving your family, you want to ensure it’s to work at a reputable company with plenty of growth potential. So do your due diligence and research them online. Also, talk to anyone you know who has worked at the company or currently does.

6. What does my family think?

If you’re single, then this may not be a consideration. However, if you’re married and especially if you have kids, you’re going to want to get input from your family.

7. What’s my gut instinct?

If the job offer checks all the right boxes in terms of responsibilities, company reputation, and compensation – plus your gut it telling you to accept it – then congratulations! It sounds like you have a new job. If, however, your instincts are holding you back, then it’s either not the right job for you or you need to do more research before making a decision.

Whether you live in the Houston area, or are looking to move here, we’re your local job search experts.

As experienced Houston headhunters, Murray Resources can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests. Our clients are always looking for talented individuals for a wide variety of positions that oftentimes aren’t advertised. Ready to learn more? Search our jobs now or contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

Top 3 Places Engineering Recruiters Find Job Candidates

June 27th, 2017

It’s certainly a good time to be an engineer. The field offers a positive job outlook with several specialty areas expected to grow substantially:

  • According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of biomedical engineers is projected to grow 27% from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations.
  • Likewise, employment of civil engineers is projected to grow 20% from 2012 to 2022, which is also much faster than the average for all occupations.

Despite this rosy future, finding the right engineering job still takes a lot of time and effort. And if you’re focusing on major job boards alone, you could wind up spinning your wheels and not finding the best-fit opportunities out there. The good news is that if you understand how engineering recruiters at companies fill their openings, you’ll have a much better chance at finding and securing the right job for you.

Referrals.

Even with today’s technological advancements, employee referrals are still the top source at many companies for job candidates. When a trusted employee can talk up your skills and experience and vouch for your character and professionalism, it’s going to go a long way with an engineering hiring manager and give them far more confidence in the prospect of hiring you.

What you can do: If you’re launching a new job search, reach out to your network of professional colleagues and let them know you’re in the market for a new job. Also, if there’s a company in particular you’re interested in working for – and you know someone who is employed there – give them a call and ask about openings.

Networking.

Another way engineering recruiters find candidates is through networking, both in person and online. Not only do many of them turn to their personal network of contacts and colleagues to find prospects, but also to online engineering communities.

What you can do: From electrical and mechanical to civil engineering and beyond, there are online forums, message boards and communities devoted to these specialty fields. Find one in your field and get active on it.

Recruiting companies.

Many engineering firms outsource their hiring function to a professional recruiting company. That’s why forging a connection with one will expose you to career opportunities that you might not learn about otherwise.

What you can do: Do some research and find engineering recruiters who can help you find the right career next step for you. For instance, at Murray Resources, we have an engineering division that is exclusively focused on recruiting for the field. For over 30 years, we’ve recruited engineering professionals, from chemical, drilling and civil engineers to geophysicists and gas schedulers, for leading companies all over Houston and the country.

If you’re interested in making a move in your engineering career – and connecting with top employers – we have the knowledge and expertise to help you. Contact us today to learn more or get started, or search our engineering jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

5 Simple Steps for Working with Houston Job Recruiters

June 13th, 2017

Are you spinning your wheels with your job search? Are you applying for endless openings without getting a call for an interview? Or are interviews coming in, but no offers? Then it may be time to call in professional Houston job recruiters. But if you’ve never worked with a recruiter before, how can you get the most from the relationship? By following these 5 steps:

#1: Be honest.

First and foremost, it’s important to always be honest with your recruiter. Tell them what you’re looking for in your next job, what your salary expectations are, and whether you’re willing to travel. If you lie, exaggerate, or say you’re open to traveling or accepting a certain salary – when really you’re not – then it’s only going to sabotage the relationship from the start.

#2: Keep it confidential.

Throughout the job search process, you’ll be meeting with various employers and hiring managers. Just as you would expect your recruiter to keep your job search quiet, you should likewise make confidentiality a priority. Your family may ask about certain details, but if it involves a sensitive matter, stay quiet about it.

#3: Talk about communication.

Every recruiter is different. Some might call you as opportunities arise; others will email you each week to check in. Just make sure you understand how your specific recruiter plans to communicate with you and when you should follow up with them. Throughout the process, be open and polite, but not pushy. Also be sure to respond to their messages and emails as quickly as possible.

#4: Be open to feedback.

If your recruiter tells you your resume needs polishing or that you need to sharpen your interview skills, don’t take offense. Take their advice to heart. At the end of the day, they want to connect you with a great job. However, if you have questionable interviewing skills or a weak resume, then they’re not going to give you access to the companies they represent.

#5: Take advantage of any resources offered.

Some recruiters in Houston offer training and education for their candidates in areas ranging from software to job interview etiquette. Take advantage of these opportunities. You can learn something new, connect and network with others both inside and outside your field, and also make yourself a stronger candidate in the process.

Interested in learning more about how a professional recruiter in Houston can help you?

Give Murray Resources a call. As a leading job recruiters in Houston, we can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests – whether you are looking to move up the corporate ladder, re-enter the workforce, get more experience, or just gain more control over your schedule.

Posted in: Blog

Getting Ready for a Temporary Assignment? Here’s How to Succeed

May 16th, 2017

Gearing up for your first temporary assignment? Just as with a full-time job, it can be a nerve-wracking experience. To help you get the most from it, here are 5 tips to follow:

Listen carefully.

As one of the leading temporary job agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that one of the challenges of working on a temporary basis is that each company you’re assigned to has a different set of rules. That’s why it’s important to listen carefully and ask for clarification. Don’t ever assume that one company operates the same way as another.

So when your boss is giving you direction, take notes and ask questions. If you’re not clear about something, don’t be afraid to ask for more details. It’s better to ensure you fully understand what’s expected from you – even if it takes longer – then to be unclear and make a mistake.

Be friendly, but steer clear of drama.

Make an effort to introduce yourself around and make as many connections as you can. Always be friendly and respectful to everyone you meet. That said, don’t get involved in office politics or gossip. If people around you are talking about others, ignore them and focus on your work instead. If there’s conflict at work that’s making it difficult to get your job done, let your recruiter know immediately.

Bring your best to every job.

Just because this isn’t a full-time position doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it your best. In fact, many temporary workers turn positions into permanent opportunities by demonstrating a good work ethic and positive attitude. So show up on time. Be prepared. Don’t whine or complain. And, above all, do your job well.

Take on more.

If you’ve finished your work for the day and there’s an hour left before closing time, then ask for another assignment. When you do, you’ll earn the reputation as a go-to person and hard worker. Keep in mind, those who are proactive and productive are the first ones offered full-time employment when the opportunity comes around.

Stay in touch with your recruiter.

Throughout your assignment, be sure to stay in touch with your recruiter. Before you begin, make sure you’re clear on the assignment details, including hours and location. Also, if you’re going to be out sick, are encountering issues on the job, or are offered a full-time job, contact your recruiter immediately. They’re there to help you!

Interested in learning more about temporary jobs in Houston?

Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading temporary job agencies in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire search process – from crafting a strong resume and preparing for interviews to giving you access to job assignments that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

How to Nail Behavioral Interview Questions

May 2nd, 2017

As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows that during an interview, you’re going to be asked a lot of questions. Why do you want to work for us? What do you know about our company? How do you see yourself contributing in this role? But beyond these common questions about the basics, you’ve also got to be prepared to answer behavioral interview questions.

These are the questions that dig deeper and require you to give specific examples of your past experience. For instance:

  • Tell me about a career goal you set for yourself and how you achieved it.
  • What’s the biggest mistake you ever made on the job? How did you handle it?
  • What career success are you most proud of? Why?

These questions can certainly take more thought to answer and make candidates more nervous as a result. But here are some tips to help you answer them more effectively:

Understand why they’re asked.

The purpose of asking behavior based questions is that employers believe past success is a predictor of future success. And in many cases, they’re right. So if you can demonstrate with your answers that you have a track record of positive results, an employer will feel more confident in hiring you.

Do your homework to prepare for them.

Preparation is essential to get your answers right. But how can you prepare if you don’t know what you’re being asked? A few ways:

First, learn all you can about the company – their history, vision and mission, products and services, key company players, and industry trends affecting them. That way, you’ll have a better chance of tying in your background with their specific needs.

Second, re-read the job description and focus on the key essentials the company is looking for. Make a list of them and think through how your background fits in. For instance, if the company is looking for someone with experience with a software program and you have five years working in it, you’ll want to highlight that.

To prepare even further, you can also research common interview questions associated with the requirements they’re looking for. This will not only help you prepare, but also feel more confident walking into the interview.

Have numbers ready to go.

Did you increase sales? Save money? Save time? Manage a team? Acquire new clients? Whatever your past roles, think of the numbers associated with your accomplishments in them so you can quantify your track record. Solid numbers to back up your answers always goes a long way in impressing an interviewer.

Create a stockpile of examples.

What work accomplishments or projects are you most proud of? Think of three to five and then flesh them out. Consider the problem you were tasked with solving, how you went about doing it and why you chose that method, and the results it produced. This is a surefire way – with a beginning, middle and end – to effectively answer interview questions.

Need more help preparing for interviews or finding job leads?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the top job agencies in Houston, Murray Resources can not only help you locate the opportunities that best match your skills and interests, but also prepare for interviews. Contact us today to learn more, or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

7 Questions Every Candidate Should Ask in an Interview

April 18th, 2017

As one of Houston’s top job agencies, Murray Resources knows it’s every candidate’s worst nightmare. You accept an offer and eagerly await your start date. But once on the job, you realize the position just isn’t for you. What can you do? Avoid this situation in the first place by asking plenty of questions during the hiring process. If you don’t, you could wind up in a position that’s not a good fit.

So with that in mind, what are some key questions to ask – and why? Here’s a look:

#1: Can you explain the daily tasks and responsibilities of this job?

If the hiring manager doesn’t communicate clearly about what the role entails, it’s up to you to ask. Otherwise, you won’t know whether or not you really want the job. By learning about the daily tasks, you can also get a better grasp on whether you have the right skills and experience to perform the job.

#2: What are your expectations for this role in the first three, six, and 12 months?

Beyond duties, you want to gain a big picture sense of what you’d be expected to accomplish in your first months and year on the job. You also want to ensure that what the hiring manager is asking seems reasonable. If, on the other hand, they start outlining goals that are beyond your capabilities, that’s a red flag the job might not be a good fit for you.

#3: What’s the culture like at the company?

This is one question that many candidates neglect to answer – but it’s just as important as inquiring about the position. If you don’t have a good grasp on the culture and it winds up not being a good fit for you, then you’re not going to be happy in it.

#4: Where do you think the company is headed in the next few years?

You want to work for a company that’s growing and innovating. Otherwise, it will remain stagnant and even begin to shrink. On the other hand, when a company has big plans – and a big vision – for the future, you have a better chance at accessing opportunities for advancement there.

#5: What are the biggest opportunities and challenges in the department?

When making a decision about a potential job opportunity, it’s important to have an accurate sense of both the good and the bad. You shouldn’t only look at the upside of a job – and ignore the down side – unless you want to be blindsided once you start. That’s why it’s important to get a good handle on both the challenges and opportunities you could be facing.

#6: What do you like about working here?

Asking this question can give you further insight into the culture. Also, if the hiring manager pauses and stumbles over their answer, then you might want to think twice before accepting an offer.

#7: What’s your timeline for hiring?

Before you leave an interview, be sure to ask this question so you know what to expect going forward. That way, you’re not sitting around, wondering and waiting for your phone to ring. You’ll also have a sense of when to follow up if you don’t hear back.

Have more questions about the hiring process?

We have answers. As one of Houston’s top job agencies, we can help you with every aspect of the job search process, from start to finish – all so you land the rewarding job you want. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

6 Easy Ways to Update Your Resume

April 4th, 2017

You want to find a new job. But when’s the last time you looked at your resume?

If the answer is “a few years ago,” or worse, “I don’t remember,” then you have some work to do before you can submit it to potential employers. As one of Houston’s leading placement firms, Murray Resources knows a great resume is like a ticket into the interview process. And if you don’t have one, then you’re going to miss out on top opportunities.

To help you in the process, here are 6 easy ways to update your resume:

#1: Think about goals.

While your resume gives an overview of your career history, it should also be about future goals. That means when you’re thinking about what to highlight, consider it through the lens of where you want to go in your career. If job duties at a past position don’t align with future career goals, then don’t put a lot of emphasis on them. Concentrate your attention, instead, on the experiences and credentials that relate to your current career objectives.

#2: Eliminate the objective.

Unless you’re changing careers, get rid of the objective. This simply takes up valuable space without offering a lot of return. Instead, replace it with a summary of qualifications that offers a few key highlights of your professional career.

#3: Focus on the “wow” factor.

The strongest resumes promote results, not just duties and responsibilities. Some questions to ask yourself to find your “wow” factor for each position include:

  • What have you been best at in past positions?
  • What accomplishment(s) are you most proud of?
  • Which achievements can you back up with figures, dollars, and percentages?
  • What information would make a hiring manager want to call you in for an interview?

#4: Refresh the look.

Most hiring managers scan resumes. So make yours easy to quickly skim. Use bolded job titles and three to four bullet points under each. Also, don’t use a tiny point size for your font; 11 or 12 are standard. In addition, make sure there’s plenty of spacing so your resume doesn’t look cramped.

#5: Update your contact information.

If you just have your name and address, it’s time for an update. Your cell phone number and email, as well as a link to your LinkedIn profile, should be front and center instead.

#6: Use keywords.

Most companies today use an applicant tracking system to find candidates. So if you don’t use keywords from the job posting, you could get filtered out – even if you’re the right fit.

Need more help polishing your resume for better job search results?

Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top placement firms, we can learn about your background and career goals, then get to work helping you create a powerful resume and matching you with rewarding new opportunities. Contact us today to get started.

Posted in: Blog

Are You Making These 5 Common Phone Interview Mistakes

March 21st, 2017

Gone are the days of the initial interview being a face-to-face one. Most employers today first conduct a phone screen. These are usually shorter and less in-depth than a full in-person interview. But they give the employer enough to go on to decide whether a candidate should move forward in the hiring process.

That said, as one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, we see some candidates make the same common mistakes in phone interviews, which impact their job search success. What are they – and how can you avoid them? Here’s a look:

1. Not setting aside a quiet, private time to talk.

When it comes to successful phone interviews, it’s important to schedule them at a time when you can focus and will have total privacy. That means doing phone screens while you’re driving, or while your kids are all at home isn’t a good idea. Nor is it wise to schedule one while you’re at work, sitting at your desk. Keep in mind, if the environment isn’t quiet and distraction-free, you’re not going to be able to focus and provide the best answers.

2. Not preparing.

Just as you would for an in-person interview, it’s important to prepare for a phone screen. That means researching the company ahead of time and developing a list of questions you’d like to ask. That also means reviewing the job postings again ahead of time so it’s fresh in your mind and thinking through how your background and skills are a good fit for the position.

3. Eating and drinking during the interview.

It’s ok to keep a glass of water next to you in case your throat gets dry. But other than that, don’t eat or drink during the interview. Nothing makes a worse impression in a phone screen than the sound of chewing or slurping.

4. Using call waiting during the interview.

If another call comes in during your phone screen, ignore it unless it’s an emergency. You should never put a hiring manager on hold, unless you want to send the message that you don’t really want the job.

5. Talking too much or too little.

It’s up to you to persuade the hiring manager that you’re the best fit for the job. That means providing persuasive answers that showcase your strengths and proven record of success. That does not mean droning on, or giving one-word answers to interview questions. If there’s a pause in the conversation, don’t jump to fill it with mindless chatter. Let the hiring manager take control.

Phone screens are the new interview. So avoid the mistakes above so you can ace yours – and move onto the next step in the hiring process.

Are you a hard-working, experienced professional looking for your next job?

Call Murray Resources. As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, we can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests. Contact us today or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

5 Smart Interview Strategies for Job Candidates

March 14th, 2017

You’ve managed a successful career and earned plenty of accolades along the way. But job interviews still make you nervous. You’re not alone. Whether you have five or 30 years of experience, interviews are stressful situations for most job candidates, no matter how high up on they corporate ladder they are. But the reality is, if you want the job, interviews (and sometimes many rounds of them) are a process you’ll have to endure.

That said, as one of Houston’s most experienced job agencies, Murray Resources knows there are some steps you can take so you’re more comfortable during interviews and perform better as a result. Here’s a look at 5 of them:

1. Be confident; you already got an interview.

It’s normal to be nervous. There’s a lot at stake. However, keep in mind you’ve already passed an important first milestone – getting the interview. Not all candidates are called in for one. So when you are, there’s a reason.

2. Memorize information about the company.

The more you know about the company, the more confident you’ll feel walking into the interview. Read about and memorize a few key facts about the company so you can weave those details into your interview answers and questions. You might say something like, “I noticed on your website your company is acquiring XYZ firm. Can you tell me how that would impact this role?”

3. Know your audience.

Before the interview, know the format (e.g., is it a panel interview or a one-on-one?), the players, and the position details. Then create a list of questions you’ll likely be asked and practice your answers. Also, consider any weaknesses or gaps in your experience and how you’ll address them with interviewers.

4. Sell your accomplishments.

When you’re in an interview, don’t simply tell the interviewer about your accomplishments. Sell them. That means being able to quantify specific accomplishments, as well as talk about the impact they had on the overall company bottom line.

5. Re-frame any negatives into positives.

Even when an interviewer asks you about a skill you don’t have, or a weakness, turn the negative into a positive. For instance, when talking about an area where you fell short, make sure you talk about what you learned from the experience and how you were able to apply that knowledge at work. Or, if a particular project got off track, explain the corrective action you took and the end result you were able to achieve.

In addition, a few other tips to keep in mind for interview day success:

  • Keep your answers concise and on target.
  • Be mindful of your body language.
  • Don’t crack jokes.
  • Smile and be engaging.
  • Ask about next steps before leaving.
  • Follow up with a thank you note to those you interviewed with.

If you’d like more help acing interviews and finding your next job, turn to the experts at Murray Resources.

As one of Houston’s most experienced job agencies, we can connect you with top employers in the city, as well as rewarding jobs in a variety of fields. Contact us today to learn more.

 

Posted in: Blog

How to Get Employers to Hire You

February 21st, 2017

Nobody likes the job search. And for good reason. You send in dozens of resumes, sit around and wait, then wonder why you’re not getting called. Or you set up an interview for what sounds like an ideal position – only to find out halfway through they’re paying 20% less than what you’re already making.

Finding a new job is certainly a struggle. And when you consider the competition – for instance, for every corporate job available, there are about 250 applicants – the situation can seem even more hopeless.

However, as one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, TX, we can make the process a little easier (and hopefully more successful) for you with these strategies:

Don’t apply to positions that aren’t a good fit for you.

It sounds like a no-brainer. But all too often, candidates have a “hey, you never know” approach to applying for jobs that they’re really not a good fit for. In fact, according to the Wall Street Journal, recruiters report that over 50% of candidates for a typical job fail to meet the basic qualifications for that job. That’s not to say you should never apply for a dream job that you’re slightly under-qualified for. You just shouldn’t apply for every position out there – and then wonder why you’re being ignored.

Make your resume easy to scan for humans and ATS programs.

Many studies today find that hiring managers only spend a few seconds reviewing each resume they receive. That’s not much time to take in your full background and experience. So, what do they look for when they’re screening? Job titles, past employers, start and end dates, and education.

That means, when you’re creating your resume, it’s vitally important to make these categories easy to find and scan with bold-faced type and bullet points. In addition, with many companies today using a computerized applicant tracking system (ATS) to screen resumes, it’s important to make sure you customize yours with keywords from the job posting.

Get referrals.

The single best way to get hired is still through personal referrals. For hiring managers, these are the most reliable source of good quality, good fit candidates. That’s why, if you know someone who works at the company you’re applying to, you should leverage that relationship. Ask them to either walk your resume to HR, or ask for permission to use their name as a referral source in your cover letter.

Need more help getting hired by a great employer?

Call Murray Resources. As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, TX, we can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests. Contact us today or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

4 Quick Tips for Stand Out Cover Letters

February 7th, 2017

As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows that having a polished resume and LinkedIn profile are both critical for job search success. But so is a great cover letter. Your cover letter is your opportunity to show some personality, demonstrate your interest in the company, and explain why you’re a terrific fit for the job.

The trouble is, so many candidates simply send in a boilerplate cover letter that doesn’t make much of an impression on a hiring manager. The good news for you, though, is that in a sea of standard cover letters, yours can stand out and get noticed. Here’s how:

1. Talk about how you can help the employer.

Your resume is all about your background. Make the cover letter all about the employer. In other words, talk about what you can do for them, how you can help them overcome specific challenges, and what unique value you can bring to the table. Use your cover letter to convince the hiring manager you are their answer to everything they need in a new hire.

2. Address specific points from the job description.

Most cover letters are bland and generic. That’s why, if you dig into specifics, you’re going to stand out to a hiring manager. To do so, choose a few requirements from the job description and explain how your background meets those needs.

For instance, if the company needs an office manager to supervise other administrative staff, then talk about a specific example of how you have experience leading a team and the results you delivered in this role. You want to demonstrate that you understand the job, and then relate to the hiring manager how your background is a fit for it.

3. Don’t presume you’re the best.

You’re applying for a job that sounds tailor made for you. But don’t assume you’re the best fit candidate and make statements along those lines. After all, you don’t know who else is applying for the job and making saying that you’re “the best suited candidate” has no basis. Instead, focus on the facts and why your background is a strong match for the role.

4. Infuse some enthusiasm in your cover letter.

Employers want to hire those who are enthusiastic about their opportunity. So use your cover letter to talk about why you want to work there and what’s most appealing to you about the job.

For instance, perhaps you’re a fan of the company products and already buy them; or you know how involved the organization is in the community and admire them for that. Don’t be phony here; but do articulate why you’re excited about the potential for working at the company.

Creating a great cover letter certainly takes some time. But in the long run, it’s one element of the job search that can truly help you stand out.

Need more help with your job search? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, we can assist you with the entire job search process – from writing a strong resume to preparing for interviews to finding job opportunities that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

Resume Not Getting Responses? Here’s What to Do

January 24th, 2017

As one of Houston’s top job agencies, Murray Resources knows you only have a few seconds to make a positive impression on a hiring manager. It’s not a lot of time to stand out and get noticed. The good news is that just a few small tweaks can lead to big improvements on your resume. Here’s a look at 5 you can make right now:

#1: Stick to standard.

In other words, unless you’re applying for a job in a creative field, don’t get flashy on your resume. Instead, format it in a traditional way, with bolded job titles and bullets underneath. In addition, when emailing your resume, always send a PDF. That way, the formatting will look the same regardless of the computer it’s being opened on.

Also, stick to traditional fonts on your resume. That means no Comic Sans or script fonts. Times New Roman, Helvetica, and Arial are always good choices.

#2: Keep it concise.

Get rid of unnecessary verbiage. This includes stating that “references are available on request.” It also means ditching the objective at the top of your resume. In addition, don’t include more than six or seven bullets under each job title. And make sure each one is succinct and makes sense for the reader.

#3: Pull out that personal information.

Details such as your marital status, the number of kids you have, or your religion don’t belong on your resume. In fact, it’s illegal for an employer to consider these factors when hiring and including them makes you look out of the loop.

#4: Concentrate on accomplishments.

The single best way to get noticed by a hiring manager is to promote your proven track record. That means highlighting awards, successes, achievements, praise, and positive comments you’ve received over the years – and that are most relevant to the job you want. Add numbers and percentages to quantify accomplishments wherever you can.

#5: Phone a friend.

Once you’ve polished your resume and think it’s as good as it’s going to get, ask a friend or colleague to review it. Not only can they check for mistakes and typos, but they can also offer you some insight and inspiration into how to position your background.

Need more help creating a strong resume – and finding a new job? Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top job agencies, we can help you with your job search from start to finish – all so you land the rewarding job you want. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Unemployed? Here are 4 Things You Should Be Doing

January 10th, 2017

You’re unemployed. So obviously, you should be looking for a job. But beyond that, what can you do to make this scary and frustrating time a little more manageable – and increase your odds of finding a new opportunity? Here are 4 tips:

#1: Network.

As one Houston’s most experienced job agencies, Murray Resources knows there’s almost always a collective groan when the topic of networking comes up. However, it really is one of the best ways to uncover potential opportunities. To effectively network when you’re unemployed, make sure you:

  • Connect with existing contacts. Reach out to old and existing contacts, including former co-workers, fellow alumni, friends, family, former professors and college advisors, and old bosses. Ask them to lunch. Get together over coffee. And inquire about job opportunities opening up in their companies and organizations.
  • Make new contacts. Attend networking events and industry conferences and seminars. Network online, network in person. Go to a lecture. Sign up for a class. Or join the local chamber of commerce. Not only can you significantly expand your network, but you can have some fun in the process.

#2: Develop a routine.

Your job gave your days and weeks structure. Without it, it can feel like you’re floating aimlessly in a giant abyss. That’s why it’s so important to develop a regular routine.

For instance, get up and dressed at the same time each day. Spend the first half of the day job searching and the second half networking. Designate certain days – such as every Tuesday – as days to follow up on job leads. Be sure to make time for getting out of the house, as well. For instance, a couple mornings a week, bring your laptop to the local coffee shop and work on your resume and job search there.

#3: Volunteer.

According to the Corporation for National and Community Service, a U.S. federal agency that promotes volunteerism, those who volunteer have a 27% better chance of finding a new job when compared with those who don’t. Not only is volunteering a productive way to spend your time, but you can acquire new skills and meet new people along the way. In addition, it makes a positive impression on hiring managers when they see it on your resume.

#4: Get a temporary job.

Worried about income or long employment gaps on your resume? Then consider temporary work through a job agency. That way, you can earn money, gain new skills, expand your network – and perhaps even find your next full-time job.

Interested in learning more about the possibilities available with temporary work? Contact Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s most experienced job agencies, we can connect you with top employers in the city, as well as rewarding temporary jobs in a variety of fields. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

3 Quick Tips for Listing Accomplishments on Your Resume

December 27th, 2016

As one of Houston, Texas’s top staffing agencies, Murray Resources knows that hiring managers spend, on average, six seconds scanning resumes. That means you need to grab their attention and make an impact…quickly. How can you do it? By focusing on accomplishments. Hiring managers want strong performers who deliver results. Highlighting your achievements is the best way to prove that you have a track record of success. Here’s how:

Brainstorm your accomplishments.

Accomplishments don’t necessarily mean industry awards or big recognitions. They’re simple ways you’ve contributed to past employers. For instance, did you complete an important project ahead of time? Turn angry customers into happy, loyal ones? Improve a process that ended up saving a past employer time or money? These are all ways you’ve contributed and added value.

So take a few minutes and write down a list of accomplishments – big and small – for your most recent position. Once you’re done, move onto past positions and list accomplishments for those as well. Don’t filter anything out in the process. If you’re having trouble coming up with examples, ask yourself some of these questions:

  • What are you known for in the company or department?
  • Did you serve on any special committees or receive any commendations from past bosses or customers?
  • What accomplishments or projects are you most proud of? Why?

Focus on the best examples.

Now that you have a full list of accomplishments, consider the ones that are most relevant to the job. Take a look back at the job description and read through it again if you’re not sure. Then decide on which accomplishments from your current and past positions best showcase the skills and abilities the employer is most interested in.

Use action verbs to describe your accomplishments.

Finally, on your resume, when you’re describing your accomplishments, use high impact, action statements, such as “re-engineered account reconciliation process to provide a more systematic and efficient process.” Whatever industry you work in, or jobs you’re applying for, use action verbs like executed, spearheaded, led, and initiated when explaining your accomplishments.

If you’re still having a hard time coming up with good examples, ask a trusted colleague or co-worker. They may be able to offer you some perspective on what an employer will value most about you.

If you need more help with your resume – or any aspect of the job search process – contact Murray Resources. As one of Houston, Texas’s top staffing agencies, we’re able to provide you with access to jobs that you will not find anywhere else. Contact us today to learn more or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

Answering Interview Questions When You Don’t Know the Answer

December 13th, 2016

Have you ever been in a job interview and asked a question you didn’t know how to respond to? It can be an embarrassing and awkward situation. As the candidate, you want to have all the right answers for the hiring manager who’s interviewing you. But when you don’t, what should you do? Here’s some advice to help you:

When You Can’t Answer a Behavioral Based Interview Question

Behavioral based interview questions are simply those that ask you to give an example; for instance, “explain a time when you handled a conflict with a customer.” As one of Houston’s leading job placement agencies, Murray Resources knows the purpose is to get away from the “what-if” scenarios in an interview and talk about real world situations. Employers want to know how you handle conflict, communicate with others, and deal with change. These kinds of questions help them delve deeper into how you respond and operate – so they can understand how you might perform in the future.

Behavioral questions should be easy to answer when you have a specific example. But if you don’t, then just be truthful. It’s ok to say something along the lines of:

“Honestly, I can’t think of a time when that happened. I haven’t encountered a situation like that in the workplace. I can tell you how I would approach it if I had, though.”

When You Can’t Answer a More Traditional Interview Question

When you can’t answer a behavior based question it’s because you’ve never faced a certain situation before. But what about when you’re asked a more traditional interview question – and you’re stumped? Here are some tips to help you handle the situation:

Take a deep breath and calm down.

Getting asked a question you don’t know the answer to can make you look like a deer caught in headlights. But don’t let your nervousness get the best of you. Otherwise, you won’t be able to think clearly and work through an answer in your head.

Ask a follow up question.

The reason you don’t know how to answer may be that the hiring manager didn’t ask a clear question to start with. So follow up with your own question to ensure you fully understand what they’re asking you. It’s better to ask for clarification then try to make something up.

Explain what you do know.

If there’s a part of the question you do have a good answer to, then start there. You might be able to work through the rest of the answer as you’re talking.

Be honest.

Don’t fake your interview answer. A hiring manager will be able to see right through it. So if you can’t come up with an articulate answer, then be honest. Tell them:

“That’s a great question, but I don’t know the answer off the top of my head. Can I follow up with you on that after the interview?”

Remember too, it’s not always the details of an actual response a hiring manager is interested in. They want to know how you think on your feet and respond under pressure. And when you follow the tips above and you’ll be able to handle any interview question that comes your way.

Need more help with resumes, interviews, and finding a new job in Houston? Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s leading job placement agencies, we work with employers all over the city to fill positions in a variety of fields on a contract and full-time basis. If you’re ready to put our expertise to work for you, contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

Job Search Stuck? Here’s What to Do

November 22nd, 2016

You’ve been searching for a job for several months now. You’ve had some good leads, but nothing that’s actually panned out into an offer. You’re spending hours each day sending out resumes. But more and more, you’re feeling like you’re just spinning your wheels.

Sound familiar? If your job search isn’t yielding the results you want, here are a few tips for jump-starting it:

Take a break.

As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows when you’re spending hours each day searching for a job online and submitting resumes – with no results – it means something isn’t working. It could be your resume or your cover letter. Or it might the kinds of jobs you’re applying for.

Whatever the case, it’s time to turn off your computer and take a break to gain some perspective. When you give yourself some needed time off from your search, you’ll come back with fresh eyes – and hopefully be able to spot what needs fixing.

Make sure you sound like a human.

Sometimes candidates can take a too-formal approach to writing cover letters and resumes. The end result is that they sound more robot than human. So avoid boring and overly corporate language. Instead, strive to infuse some personality into your cover letter and resume.

Get out into the world.

Rather than spending your entire job search online, go to an event and network. Check out your local chamber of commerce or attend industry seminars or conferences. Whatever you do, just aim to meet new people, make connections and expand your network. It will energize you and can open the door to exciting new possibilities.

Set small goals.

Your goal is to get a job. But sometimes that can seem overwhelming. Instead, divide that larger focus up into smaller daily goals – for instance, to send out three resumes a day. Not only will this help you prioritize and structure your day, but it will make you feel more productive, as well.

Market yourself to hiring managers.

If you’re not getting call-backs for interviews, then revamp your resume and cover letter. When you do, keep in mind that hiring managers are more interested in relevant accomplishments and results then a list of job duties. So the next time you apply for a job, make sure you focus on outcomes rather than responsibilities.

Do you need more help igniting your job search? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, it’s our mission to connect great people with great jobs. Contact us today to learn more or search our jobs in Houston now.

Posted in: Blog

Found Your Dream Employer? Here’s How to Get Your Foot in the Door

November 8th, 2016

It’s a sad reality. But so many people aren’t happy in their jobs. In fact, according to a Gallup poll, only around 13% of employees report being engaged and feeling a sense of passion for their work. Don’t be one of them!

When you come across an employer who checks all your boxes, you have to do what it takes to get your foot in the door. As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources is here to help. Below are several tips to keep in mind when you’re trying to get a job at your dream company:

Leverage your network.

The best way to get an interview is through people you already know. From former colleagues to past classmates, reach out to anyone you know and trust who already works there or who has a connection at the company. Ask if they’d be willing to put in a good word for you or walk your resume over to the hiring manager. Having a contact in the company is the best – and fastest – way to get noticed.

Ask for an introduction on LinkedIn.

Do some online digging to find out who heads the department you’re interested in. Ideally, they’ll be on LinkedIn, so you can see if you share any connections. If you do, ask your mutual connection for an introduction. If the hiring manager is not on LinkedIn, try to find out their email address and then reach out to them directly with your resume. When you do, you have to make a strong case for why you’d be an asset to the company.

Connect on social media.

Whether the company has a blog on LinkedIn, or an active Twitter presence, find out where they are on social media…and follow them. If they post a tip on their blog that inspires you, comment on it. Re-tweet posts you want to share with your network. And ‘like’ their Facebook page if they have one.

Not only can this potentially raise your visibility and send the message that you’re interested in the company, but you’ll also gain insight and understanding about the organization that can help get you hired. While it may take some time, you can get your foot in the door at your dream company with some persistence and creativity.

If you’re interested in a new job, but don’t know where you’d like to work, we can help. As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources can give you access to a wide variety of rewarding temporary, temporary-to-hire, and direct hire opportunities at dream employers across the area.

Contact us today or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

Working With a Job Placement Agency? Here’s How to Succeed

October 25th, 2016

As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that partnering with a recruiter is a great way to find a new job. However, if you want to enjoy successful results, you have to take the right approach from the start. To help you in the process, here are 6 tips to keep in mind:

Always be honest.

If you’ve been looking for a job for a while, it’s tempting to exaggerate to make your background look better. But whatever you do, don’t lie or overstate your background or experience to your job placement agency or recruiter. After all, how can they truly help you find a new job that’s a good fit if you’re not giving them accurate information? Plus, if they find out you lied, you’ll look unprofessional and burn bridges.

Be clear about expectations.

When you’re meeting with a recruiter from a job placement agency – and they ask about salary and travel – be completely upfront with them about your goals, needs and expectations. If you absolutely cannot travel, don’t say you’re open to some light traveling. If you expect a certain salary, communicate the amount to your recruiter. There’s nothing more frustrating then telling a recruiter you’re open to a certain salary, when really you’re not.

Keep your recruiter in the loop.

If you have an interview or anything changes with your situation, contact your recruiter as soon as possible. It’s their goal to help you find a new job – and they can’t do that if you don’t communicate with them openly and often. That doesn’t mean you need to call them daily. But if you haven’t touched base in a while, then it’s important to reach out.

Take their advice to heart.

If a recruiter has suggestions about improving your resume, or interview skills, then take it to heart. It’s never fun to get constructive feedback. But keep in mind, your recruiter simply you wants you to find a job that’s a great fit – and the advice they’re giving you can improve the odds of that happening. So take it!

Help them out.

If your recruiter calls you about a position – and you’re not interested, but know of someone who’d be a good fit – pass along their name and information. Your recruiter will be grateful and won’t forget the favor.

Maintain confidentiality.

Keep confidential any sensitive information you learn about a potential employer or that a recruiter shares with you about a company.

Are you interested in working with a professional recruiter to find a new job in Houston? Call Murray Resources. As one of the top job placement agencies in Houston, TX, we can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests. Contact us today or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

How to Deliver a Great Performance in a Phone Interview

October 11th, 2016

Phone interviews seem like just something to get through on your way to the main event – the in-person interview. However, as one of Houston’s top placement firms, Murray Resources knows if you don’t take these screens seriously, you’re not going to get very far in the hiring process.

How can you deliver a great performance and move onto the next step? Here are 6 tips:

Tip #1: Be prepared.

Just like you would for an interview at an employer’s office, you need to prepare for your phone screen. That means reading through the job description again and researching the company and the position. It also means developing a list of questions you’d like to ask, as well as bullet points of your own relevant experience to highlight.

Also, be sure to have a hard copy of your resume and cover letter by your side. The beauty of a phone screen is that you can reference these documents as needed throughout the interview. In addition, you can take notes while the interviewer is talking and jot down any important questions or points that come to mind so you can bring them up later in the conversation.

Tip #2: Have a quiet time and place set aside.

Scheduling a phone interview at 3 pm, when your kids get off the bus at 3:30 isn’t a good idea. Even if the interview is only supposed to last 20 minutes, what happens if the interviewer is running late or the conversation goes over? Nor is it wise to have the interviewer call you when you’re at work, or at a place where there’s loud noise or the potential for disruption. Instead, ask the interviewer to call you at home during a time when you know you won’t get interrupted.

Tip #3: Smile when you’re answering questions.

The interviewer can’t read your body language. But when you smile during some of your responses, it infuses more energy and life into your answers. Also, be mindful of the pace you’re speaking at during a phone interview. Don’t talk so quickly that the interviewer has a hard time understanding you.

Tip #4: Use the mute button as needed.

If you need to take a drink of water, or you want to type in the company’s web address into your browser, take advantage of the mute button. Your interviewer will never know you hit it – and you can minimize any potential noises or distractions. Just make sure you remember to un-mute your call once you start answering questions.

Tip #5: Promote yourself.

It’s up to you to convince the hiring manager that you deserve an interview. So take every advantage you can to promote your experience, skills and successful accomplishments throughout the conversation. Show your enthusiasm and be prepared to explain why you’d be a good fit for the job.

Tip #6: Follow up with a thank you note.

A few hours after the interview, send a follow up thank you email. Reiterate your interest in the job and why they should consider hiring you.

Need more help preparing for interviews and finding your next job? Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top placement firms, we can learn about your background and career goals, then get to work matching you with great new opportunities. Contact us today to get started.

Posted in: Blog

How to Respond to Job Interview Questions (When You Don’t Know the Answer)

September 27th, 2016

As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows interview questions aren’t necessarily hard. Yet, they can sometimes be hard to answer. For instance, when a hiring manager asks about your weaknesses, why you’re leaving your current job, and where you see yourself in 10 years, it can stump even the best candidates.

For starters, you’re afraid to talk about weaknesses that could impact your chances of landing the job. As for why you’re leaving, you really don’t like your current boss, but you know not to bash an employer in a job interview. And when it comes to your career aspirations, you have no idea where you’ll be in 10 years, let alone next year.

But obviously, you don’t want to say all this in an interview. So what should you say? Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Tip #1: Be honest.

Sure, it’s tempting to gloss over weaknesses that could impact your ability to get the job. But be honest with both the hiring manager and yourself about challenges, weaknesses, skills and strengths. For instance, if you’re really bad at numbers and you’re interviewing for a bookkeeping job, then there’s an extremely good chance you’ll end up in a position you hate or struggle in. And if you don’t perform well, this can impact your reputation, as well as your ability to find a new job in the future.

Tip #2: Don’t rush your answer.

When a hiring manager asks you a question that you’re not really sure about, don’t immediately start talking just to fill empty space. It’s ok to take your time to articulate your answer. Buy yourself a few extra moments by saying something like “That’s a great question, let me think about that for a second.” It’s better to take a beat to gather your thoughts than to blurt out a half-baked response.

Tip #3: It’s ok to say “I don’t know.”

The hiring manager just asked you a question about your experience with Excel, which you don’t have any in. You know the software isn’t critical to the role, just a skill that’s nice to have. And you know you can get up to speed quickly if you’re offered the job. So what do you say?

Be honest, but sell yourself too. For instance: “Honestly, that’s not really an area I have a lot of experience. But in my last job, I learned a new project management and timekeeping software system within a matter of weeks. So I’m confident if I get the job, I can get up and running with Excel quickly. Actually, I’m excited for the opportunity to learn it.”

Sometimes it’s hard to walk the line between being candid – and not throwing yourself under the bus during a job interview. But follow the tips above to ensure you respond gracefully to every question you’re asked.

Need more help with your interview or job search process? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, Murray Resources can help you craft a great resume and cover letter, prepare for interviews, and locate the opportunities that best match your skills and interests. Contact us today to learn more, or search our Houston jobs now.

Posted in: Blog

6 Cover Letter Rules to Follow When Searching For Houston Jobs

September 13th, 2016

Are you spinning your wheels trying to write a cover letter that’s going to stand out? You’re certainly not alone. In fact, as one of Houston’s top job placement agencies, Murray Resources knows most job candidates struggle with composing the perfect cover letter. It’s one of the most dreaded parts of the job search process – right up there with an interview.

So if you’re having trouble, what can you do? Start by following these tips – and increasing your odds of landing an interview:

Tip #1: Don’t repeat yourself.

This is one of the biggest mistakes job candidates make – simply repeating what’s already on your resume. But your cover letter is an opportunity to provide new information to a hiring manager. And it can be the difference between winning an interview and getting passed over. So focus on something fresh, or expand upon a point you made in your resume.

Tip #2: Don’t focus too much on education.

Sure, you might hold a pricey degree from a fancy institution of higher education. But what hiring managers really want to know is: What can you do for them. So don’t focus too much on your education credentials. Instead, talk about your work experience and how you can make an impact at the company. Even if you have limited work experience, highlight volunteer or internship positions you’ve held.

Tip #3: Do focus on relevant experience.

You might have worked on a big project in your last job. But if it has nothing to do with the position you’re applying for, don’t write about it. Instead, think about the accomplishments that are most relevant to the job – and highlight those in your cover letter instead.

Tip #4: Start with a story.

Having a hard time getting the creative juices flowing? Start your letter with a story. For instance, why are you applying to the company? Have you been a fan of it for years? Do you dream about one day working there? Stories are a great way to stand out and bring your background to life.

Tip #5: Throw in a few numbers.

Hiring managers love numbers. So if you can quantify an accomplishment, all the better. For example, rather than just saying you managed a team, talk about how you managed a team of 10 people and were responsible for a $100k departmental budget.

Tip #6: Be mindful of your tone.

Don’t write in a way that’s too formal, or robotic. You want to come across as a human being. So be engaging, approachable, and friendly – but still professional.

Need more help with your cover letter or job search? Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top job placement agencies, we can help you create a stellar resume and cover letter, as well as locate positions that best match your skills and interests – whether you’re looking to move up the corporate ladder, re-enter the workforce, get more experience, or just gain more control over your schedule. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

6 Tips for Surviving Your First Day as a Temporary Worker

August 23rd, 2016

So you just landed your first temporary assignment. Congratulations! To help you survive your first week – and beyond, here are 6 tips to follow:

Tip #1: Know your stuff.

Before the first day, make sure you know important details, such as where you have to report to and when, who you supervisor will be and what time your shift will begin. Also, make sure you find out about the proper work attire and how you’re supposed to track your hours.

Tip #2: Be prepared on your first day.

If you interviewed with a temporary job agency in Houston – rather than the actual employer, make sure you know the location and how to get to the company you’re assigned to. Also, give yourself some extra time to get there in case of traffic or construction, so you’re not late. Finally, bring a pen and notebook with you in case you’re not given these items so you can take notes throughout the day. Bring a lunch, as well, in case there aren’t nearby restaurants or a company cafeteria.

Tip #3: Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Before your first day, take some time to read through the company website so you can learn about their mission, vision, services and executive leadership team. Formulate questions you have about the company and your assignment. Don’t just ask a question for the sake of it. But do ask insightful questions that will help you perform your job better. When you do, you’ll get up and running faster.

Tip #4: Be friendly and strive to connect with others.

It’s easy to feel shy and awkward during your first days on the job. But make an effort to put yourself out there and try to meet and get to know your new colleagues. Always be friendly, polite and helpful to everyone you encounter and participate in social activities when you’re invited.

Tip #5: Work hard.

Even though this is a temporary assignment, work just as hard as if it was a permanent, full-time job. Complete tasks to the best of your ability and don’t be afraid to ask questions if you need extra help. Be positive and demonstrate a good attitude through your words and behaviors. And go the extra mile so you make a great impression.

Tip #6: Follow up with your temporary job agency.

Stay in touch with your temporary job agency so you can ask about any performance feedback they’ve received about you. Also, if you have any questions or concerns, bring them up to your agency immediately.

Working as a temp can be a great experience. Just be sure to follow the tips above so you put your best foot forward when you start your new assignment.

Interested in learning more about temporary jobs in Houston? Contact Murray Resources. As one of the leading temporary job agencies in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire search process – from crafting a strong resume and preparing for interviews to giving you access to job openings that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

How to Answer – Why Are You Leaving Your Current Employer?

August 9th, 2016

As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows that when it comes to the interview, there are a lot questions that might make you squirm. “Why are you leaving your current employer?” is probably top on your list. After all, you aren’t leaving because you’re happy, engaged and motivated. So how can you be honest and authentic, without sounding bitter or resentful?

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when answering this tough interview question:

Tip #1: Don’t badmouth your current employer…

If your instincts are telling you not to talk badly about your current employer – even if you’re leaving because of weak leadership or a toxic work environment – then they’re definitely right. Even if you’re miserable at work, save the negativity for your spouse or best friend.

Tip #2: …But be honest.

It may sound contradictory to be honest without being negative. But that’s exactly what you need to do. Start by considering what you’ve learned from the experience. Even if it wasn’t a good one, it probably taught you about the kind of leadership or work environment you should be looking for in your next job.

You can say something along the lines of:

“I appreciate the opportunities I’ve been given at my current employer. However, it’s a small business environment and I’ve learned that I work better in a larger work culture with more room for growth. So I’m really looking for an opportunity where I can continue to learn different things and acquire new skills.”

Also, if you were fired from your last employer, it’s important to be honest about that situation, as well. If you’re not – and the hiring manager calls the company – they will quickly find out you lied. Instead, give an answer to show what you learned from the experience and how it will benefit you in this new position.

Tip #3: Practice your answer.

It’s important you know what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it ahead of time. Your goal is to come off as self-aware and open. You don’t want a hiring manager to have any questions or red flags in their minds as to why you’re leaving your current employer. So assume this question will be asked and be well prepared to answer it in a positive way.

Whatever you do say, don’t talk about how you simply want to make more money or are looking for a more senior job title. These kinds of statements will sound shallow and self-serving to a hiring manager.

Need more help finding great job opportunities and preparing for interviews? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, we can assist you with the entire job search process – from writing a strong resume to preparing for interviews to finding job opportunities that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

4 Red Flags When You’re Searching for a New Job in Houston

July 26th, 2016

If you’re searching for a new job, you’re likely focused on cover letters, resumes, and preparing for interviews. But don’t get so absorbed in these details that you lose sight of a potential employer’s red flags. If you do, you could wind up accepting a position you’re not a good fit for. To help ensure that doesn’t happen, here are 4 red flags to be aware of:

You’re not sure you can do the job.

You’ve heard about the details of the job – now you’re not sure you have the abilities to perform well in the role. You may be desperate for work, buts as one of the leading job placement agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows accepting an opportunity that you won’t thrive in can only result in frustration and misery. So if you’re concerned you don’t have the skills and experience to get the job done, then it’s probably best to keep up your search.

You only get vague job details.

You’re asking questions about tasks and responsibilities, short- and long-term goals and how your success will be measured. All you’re getting in response are vague answers. If the hiring manager can’t or won’t get into specifics about the job, then take it as a big warning sign that things could change significantly after you’re hired.

You had a poor interview experience.

You met with the hiring manager – who would be your boss if you accept the job – and the experience wasn’t great. They were rude, judgmental, critical, or just didn’t seem to understand the value you could offer. Keep in mind, if you walked away from the interview feeling badly, just imagine having to work there each day. Your boss is going to make a big impact on your job satisfaction and ability to get ahead. So if you’re not comfortable with them, then it’s not the right job for you.

It just doesn’t feel right.

Whenever you think about the job, you get an uneasy feeling. You can’t exactly put your finger on it, but something about it just doesn’t sit right. If this sounds familiar, it’s your intuition kicking in and you should listen to it.

If you’ve been unemployed for a while, it’s tempting to take the first job offer that comes your way. But before you make a move, make sure the employer isn’t showcasing any of these big red flags.

Need more help finding a job – and an employer – who’s right for you? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading job placement agencies in Houston, Murray Resources can help you locate the position that best matches your skills and interests – whether you’re looking to move up the corporate ladder, re-enter the workforce, get more experience, or just gain more control over your schedule. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

4 Tips for Working With Houston Job Agencies

July 12th, 2016

Sometimes, when it comes to job hunting, it’s not what you know – but who you know. Enter job agencies.

Job agencies can be especially helpfully if you’re looking for a new position in or around Houston and want some professional help with the process. Not only do recruiters within these agencies have long-standing relationships with many top employers in the city, but they can also assist you with creating a great resume and cover letter, and polishing your interview skills – all so you can make the best impression possible.

That said, not all job agencies are created equal. So how can you find one that’s a good fit for you? Here are 4 tips:

Tip #1: Research.

Before you sign on the dotted line with any job agencies in Houston, make sure you do your homework. You want to ensure the one you do select is a good fit for the kinds of jobs and companies you’re after. For instance, some job agencies specialize in certain industries, or types of employment – like temporary or full-time. It’s important you find an agency with experience placing candidates like you – so you can get the most out of the relationship.

Tip #2: Prepare.

You’ll have a much better chance of finding a great job through a search agency if you’re well prepared. That means going into your first meeting with an understanding of the types of jobs you’re looking for, and also being able to explain your skill set and experience. Also, make sure you’re familiar with the salary expectations for the types of positions you’re qualified for so you can properly evaluate any job offers.

Tip #3: Listen.

When you work with a job agency, expect for your recruiter to offer you advice on your resume, cover letter and interview skills. Don’t get defensive. Remember, they want to connect you with great job opportunities in Houston. But to do so, you need to know how to position yourself in the best possible light. So listen to and follow their guidance and recommendations.

Tip #4: Be patient.

Don’t worry if you don’t hear back immediately from your recruiter about job opportunities. It can take some time to find the right assignment for you. So be patient and stay in contact with your job agency so you can find out about any new developments.

Also, if you come across any jobs that interest you in the meantime, let your recruiter know. They may be able to offer you advice on how you can make the best possible impression when you apply.

Interested in learning more about working with a job search agency? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading job agencies in Houston, we can assist you with the entire search process – from crafting a strong resume and preparing for interviews to giving you access to job openings that are a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog
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