Career Best Practices

6 Habits of Highly Successful Job Seekers

November 20th, 2018

Launching a job search is a daunting task. There’s so much as stake, plus plenty of work to do. In fact, it can almost feel like a full-time role. However, the good news is that there are certain habits you can develop today, so that your job search pays off faster tomorrow. Murray Resources, leading job recruiters in Houston, TX, has the answers you need. Here’s a look:

#1: Identify what makes you different.

For every job opening, there are hundreds of candidates that apply. How are you going to set yourself apart in the sea of them? To do that, it’s important that you understand the unique value you can offer an employer and where you can contribute the most. Then communicate this on your resume, in your cover letter, during interviews and throughout the hiring process.

#2: Enhance your credentials.

Look for ways to improve your credentials, so they’re more attractive to potential employers. There are any number of ways to do this, from attending career seminars and participating in professional development opportunities to reading career and industry books and staying on top of the latest trends and technologies in your field.

#3: Spread the word.

When it comes to finding a new job faster, it’s important to network and let people know you’re looking. While you might take a cautious approach to this if you’re currently employed, it’s still important to step out and inform people you’re on the hunt. With so many jobs filled through word of mouth, this is an easy and effective way to find out about leads you might not otherwise know about.

#4: Explore social media.

You might be more comfortable sticking to the online job boards. But in today’s world, so many opportunities are listed and broadcast on social media. That’s why it’s important to develop a firm presence, whether on LinkedIn, Twitter or industry-specific sites.

When you do, you can interact with job recruiters in Houston, TX and hiring managers and better sell yourself to them directly. Not only that, but you’ll gain a better sense of what it’s like to work at each company, so you can assess whether it’s the right environment for you.

#5: Practice interviewing skills.

The interview is your opportunity to set yourself apart among other candidates. But you can’t walk into one unprepared and expect to perform well. It’s important to practice your skills. To do so, ask a friend or family member to conduct a mock interview with you. Record it and review your answers and performance after. Once you do, you’ll have a more insight into the area’s where you need to improve.

#6: Get help from a professional.

Job recruiters in Houston, TX can help your job search in many ways. Not only will they be able to assist when it comes to polishing your resume and interview skills, but they’ll also be able to connect you with the best-fit opportunities for you. Along the way, they can give you plenty of feedback and advice, so you stay on track toward finding that right job for you.

Ready to learn more about how a professional job recruiter in Houston, TX can help you?

Contact Murray Resources. We work with companies to fill a wide variety of permanent, temporary, temp-to-hire, and contract positions. Many of these are not available through other recruiting firms, so we’re able to provide you with access to jobs you won’t find elsewhere. Search our jobs in Houston now or connect with our team today.

Ask Houston’s Accounting Recruiters: How Do I Get Promoted?

November 6th, 2018

Happy in your current job in accounting? You should still be mapping out your future. In fact, if you want to advance your career – even if it’s down the line – there are some important steps to be taking now. Your career is and should always be a work in progress. To help you make the most of it, Houston’s accounting recruiters at Murray Resources offer some tips for setting yourself up for success:

#1: Identify advancement opportunities at your company.

Depending on the organization you work for, there are likely many different pathways to promotion. It’s up to you to determine which works best for your career and interests. For instance, if you’re in general accounting, do you want to get on the audit track or into tax accounting? While it’s always a good idea to be open to different possibilities, knowing where you want to go will make it easier to identify and plan out the best pathway for getting there.

#2: Find out what education you need.

In the field of accounting, there are many different degrees and certifications you could earn. Which is best for the type of accounting you want to do in the future? As Houston’s accounting recruiters, Murray Resources knows if you’re interested in the world of public accounting, then earning a CPA is critical. Or, if you’re focused on auditing, then obtaining a certification as a CIA is important. Other certifications that could be valuable to your accounting career include CISA, CPP and CCEP. Also, if the management track piques your interest – and you want to become a comptroller or CFO someday – then you’re likely going to need an MBA, as well.

#3: Focus on soft skills.

In the world of accounting, technical skills are king. But that doesn’t mean soft skills should completely fall to the wayside. In order to advance your career, especially into a leadership position, you need to ensure skills like communication are top-notch. In addition, make sure you’re coming to work each day with a positive and professional attitude. Your manager likely won’t want to promote you if you have a reputation as a naysayer or constant complainer.

#4: Volunteer for challenging assignments.

You’re not going to get ahead by staying in your comfort zone. That’s why it’s important to put yourself out there and volunteer for the tough assignments no one else wants to take on or those that you find especially challenging. For instance, if you need to hone your public speaking skills, go after those assignments that require presentations and verbal reports, so you can focus on improving those skills.

#5: Communicate your ambitions to your boss.

Your boss will often be the one who will refer you for promotions, so tell them about your career ambitions. They can be a source of valuable information and advice, including what specific steps you need to take to get ahead in your career with your company. They can suggest continuing education courses, stretch assignments, or even a mentoring program you could get involved in. But you won’t know what’s available until you ask.

Ready for a promotion to a new accounting job outside your company?

Houston’s accounting recruiters at Murray Resources can help. Whether you work in banking, billing, credit, taxes, or another accounting- or finance-related area, we can connect you with top opportunities and leading employers across Houston, TX. Contact us today to learn more.

6 Killer Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Your LinkedIn Profile

October 2nd, 2018

When it comes to your LinkedIn profile, it can make or break your job search efforts. When you have a strong one in place, it will further convince a hiring manager you’re the right person for the job. A weak one, on the other hand, will do the opposite, sabotaging all that hard work you’ve put into your search.

To ensure that doesn’t happen to you, here’s a look at a few LinkedIn mistakes candidates make and how to avoid them:

An unprofessional photo.

As professional Houston recruiters, Murray Resources knows this is the first part of your profile a hiring manager will see. It’s therefore critically important. It doesn’t have to be highly formal or even taken by a professional photographer for that matter. However, it should make you look capable and confident. So avoid posting anything that’s blurry, fuzzy or grainy in any way. Also, skip the group shots where you’ve cropped others out.

A confusing headline.

Your LinkedIn headline is usually the second feature a hiring manager will see since it’s right after your name. The one you use will say a lot about you. When writing it, keep in mind it doesn’t necessarily have to be your job title, which might be relevant only in your company. Instead, it should give recruiters an understanding of your skills and abilities without any fluff (e.g. skip statements like “Strategic, Results-Driven Project Manager”).

Skipping the summary.

Summaries are undoubtedly hard to write. After all, how do you sum up your entire professional career in a few lines. However, don’t skip this part just because it’s a challenge. Instead, invest the time to write (and often rewrite and edit many times) a summary that’s going to showcase your strengths and why Houston companies should consider you.

A career history that doesn’t match your resume.

Whether you’re sending in your resume to HR, a hiring manager or a professional Houston recruiter, they’ll likely look you up on LinkedIn. If your profile is dated or doesn’t match what you sent in on your resume, it will leave them confused over the accuracy of your background information. Avoid this by updating your resume and LinkedIn profile and ensuring the two align with each other. They don’t need to be an exact match; there just shouldn’t be any major discrepancies between them.

No Skills, Recommendations or Activities listed.

The beauty of LinkedIn is that it can offer hiring managers a more well-rounded view of you not just as a candidate, but as a person too. This can help you to stand out in a sea of other candidates that they must screen on a daily basis. But to do so, you need to make sure sections like Skills, Recommendations and Activities are filled in with content that sets you apart.

Vague language.

If you’re stuck when it comes to writing your LinkedIn profile, you’re not alone. Many strong candidates experience writer’s block when it comes to this task. But don’t simply use vague language or copy and paste a generic or boilerplate profile from online. Instead, try to write the way you’d speak to a hiring manager. That means skipping statements, such as “I’m a detail-oriented team player,” and instead striving to come across as authentic, experienced and friendly.

Need help with your LinkedIn profile, resume or finding your next job?

Call the professional Houston recruiters at Murray Resources. We can assist with every aspect of your job search, so you find and secure the position that’s an excellent fit for you. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

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.

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.

How to Search for Your Next Job…In Secret

January 26th, 2016

Looking for a new job? Then you probably don’t want your existing employer to find out. However, as experienced Houston recruiters, Murray Resources knows that in today’s world of social media and online connections, that can certainly be a challenge, especially if you work in a smaller industry. So how can you keep your job search a secret, until you get offered your next great position? Here are 3 quick tips you can put into action:

Quick tip #1: Take care with your LinkedIn profile.

One red flag to your employer that you’re searching for a new job is if all of a sudden you make dramatic changes to your LinkedIn profile. If they’re connected to you via LinkedIn – and get emails about changes to their network’s profiles – then they might assume you’re searching for a new job. The good news is that you can change your settings on your profile to avoid this scenario. Simply visit “Settings” and then select the “Turn on/off your activity broadcasts” under Privacy Controls. That way, you can fly under the radar of your boss and co-workers.

Quick tip #2: Take a planned approach to network.

You probably know that networking is the fastest way to find a new job. But it can be tricky when you’re already employed and don’t want to broadcast your search. That’s why you need to take a more strategic approach to networking. For instance, if you work with someone who knows the hiring manager at the company you want to work for, don’t automatically ask them to connect you. You need to assess your relationship with that person to ensure they are someone you can trust not to leak your job search news.

In general, when you’re in this position, you need to evaluate each situation on a case-by-case basis and network only with those you know you can trust to keep your search in the strictest of confidence.

Quick tip #3: Take aim at the right opportunities.

If you don’t like your current job, it’s tempting to apply to any position that sounds ok or to take the first offer that comes your way. But this is a recipe for disaster. Instead, take the time to research opportunities and the employers to ensure the ones you’re applying to are the best fit for you. It’s better to search for job for six months to a year and land the one that’s a great fit and a terrific next step in your career, then get a new job in a month and find out you dislike it soon after.

Unfortunately, there are no guarantees when it comes to keeping your search a secret. No matter how careful you are, your boss still might find out about your hunt. That said, you can greatly reduce the odds of that happening by following the tips above.

Would like you expert help with your Houston job search? Call the Houston recruiters at Murray Resources. When you work with us, you can rest assured that your job search will always be kept completely confidential. At the same time, we can offer you access to a variety of rewarding opportunities that may not be always be advertised. Contact us today to learn more or get started!

Houston Accounting Professionals Job Outlook

December 3rd, 2012

This is an excellent time for Houston accounting professionals in search of challenging, new opportunities. While some industries and functions have experienced a decline in the recent economic downturn, the demand for accounting professionals is strong and predicted to continue to increase well into 2014. CFO’s, controllers, accountants, AP managers, payroll managers, and bookkeepers are all in high demand.

This increase in demand means that accounting professionals can generally enjoy better work environments, salaries, and opportunities for career advancement. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, the median annual wage for bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks was $34,030 in 2010, with job growth of 14% expected by 2020. The median annual salary for accountants and auditors was $61,690, with job growth of 16% expected by 2020.

According to Yahoo! Education, financial analysts and financial advisors can expect a 38.8% increase in available jobs in the next few years. As older generations begin retiring, this will open up new opportunities in many different organizations across multiple industries. New financial regulations and an increase in financial management processes within corporations are also driving demand.

Murray Resources works with Houston accounting professionals to match them with employment opportunities that fit their skill-set and work-style preferences. We work with employers in various industries that are actively seeking accounting professionals. If you are considering a transition in your career, then now is the right time to contact us.

Are you a talented Houston accounting professional looking for your next career move?

Turn to Murray Resources, a leading Houston recruiting firm with experience helping talented Houston accounting professionals exploring their next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

How to Use LinkedIn to Find a Job

June 22nd, 2010

Not on LinkedIn? Then you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to promote your skills and search for jobs in Houston. In fact, the professional connections you make on LinkedIn can truly give you an advantage in your job search – and in your career.

Here’s how to get started:

Create your profile.

Think of your LinkedIn profile as your online resume. Create a detailed profile, including past employment, education, and qualifications. Also be sure to include keywords (such as Houston civil engineer) so that you will be easily found. If you have a professional headshot, you may also want to upload that to your profile.

Build your network.

The more connections you make, the more opportunities you will have. With that said…don’t go crazy with your connections. Only connect to people you know and trust.

Reach out.

Let your network know that you’re looking for a job in Houston, TX. The more people who know you’re looking, the faster you may be able to find a job.

Get recommendations.

Recommendations from people you have worked with in the past carry a lot of weight. A variety of positive recommendations will put you in the best possible light to potential employers in Houston.

Search jobs.

Use the job search section to find job listings you may be interested in.

Ask & answer questions.

The Answers section in LinkedIn is a great way to increase your visibility, as well as enhance your credibility within your particular field. Respond to questions, and ask a question if you need information.

Check if a company is still hiring.

Many companies today have their own pages on LinkedIn. So if there is a Houston company you’d like to work for, go to their LinkedIn profile and check out their “New Hire” section to see if anyone new has recently joined the company. Also, look to see if you know any of the company’s current employees so you can make a connection.

Get to the hiring manager.

If you do know someone at the company, ask that individual to forward your resume to the hiring manager. Hiring managers are much more apt to review a resume that comes from someone they know.

Find out about the company.

Again, if you know someone at the company, ask them for the inside scoop on getting hired at that company. If you don’t have an “in” at the company, then take a look at the profiles of existing employees to get a better sense of the backgrounds and experience of people who already work at the company.

Searching for a job can be a daunting challenge. But by leveraging the power of social media, you may be able to find the job of your dreams a lot quicker. And if you still need helping finding the right job opportunity here in Houston, TX, please contact Murray Resources. As a premier employment firm serving the Houston area, we can connect you with a variety of Houston job opportunities in fields such as administration, engineering, accounting/finance, and sales and customer service.  We look forward to helping you!

 

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