The Best Interview Questions to Ask to Find Top Talent

February 28th, 2017

As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows when it comes to successful interviews, it’s all about the questions you ask. The wrong ones can lead to a hiring mistake, while the right ones can help you uncover your next top performer. But with so many options out there – and limited time during an interview – which ones are an absolute ‘must’ for you to ask? Here’s a look:

Why did you apply for this job?

This is a good ice-breaker question to ask. It gives the job candidate a chance to explain what interested them about the opportunity and the company, without being too aggressive or hard-hitting. It will also give you a chance to learn a little bit about what makes them tick.

Why do you think you’re the best fit for the job?

It’s important to ask this question for multiple reasons. First, it will showcase whether or not the candidate has done their homework. If they don’t understand what your company does or who it serves, they’re not going to be able to demonstrate fit. Second, it gives them an opportunity to talk about their unique strengths and abilities in relation to your job opening. So, if a candidate tells you about specific skills or accomplishments that relate directly to the role and your needs, it’s a good sign of a strong, well-prepared candidate.

What job on your resume did you like the most? The least?

Asking these kinds of questions will help you get a sense of what drives an individual candidate and whether that aligns with your company’s unique needs and culture. If their favorite job or company has similar qualities as the position you’re offering, then that’s a sign they could be a good fit. But the reverse is also true. If the job they liked least sounds like the role you’re hiring for, then it’s a good indicator the candidate wouldn’t stick around for long if hired.

Show me how you would…(fill in the blank).

When you ask a candidate to explain to you how they would complete a certain task or fulfill a certain goal that’s in the job description, it will give you some serious insight into how they think. It will also help you understand how they’d perform if offered the job.

Why do you want to leave your current role?

Finding out why a candidate wants to leave their current job can tell you a lot about their expectations, how they see themselves, and what’s important to them. It will also give you a chance to evaluate whether you can offer them what they’re seeking in a new role.

Every interview and every interview question is important. That’s why, if you’re not comfortable with the process or don’t have much time to invest in it, you should consider outsourcing it to the experts.

As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, Murray Resources has worked with the city’s leading organizations to identify their human resource needs, locate top talent, and maximize employee productivity. Let us help you too! Contact us today to learn more.

The #1 Secret to Better Hiring in 2017

February 14th, 2017

Hiring just got a whole lot harder. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment was at 4.8% in January 2017. That means it’s not a buyer’s market anymore and candidates have a lot more opportunities to consider. As a hiring manager or employer, what can you do? The answer’s easier than you might think: bring in the experts at a Houston staffing agency.

Here’s how a staffing agency can help you:

#1: They have in-depth knowledge of the candidate market.

While you might only hire a few times a year, recruiters at staffing agencies are constantly networking, sourcing candidates and hiring them – all year round. As a result, they know what kind of talent is available, how to best attract and recruit the best professionals, and what competitive compensation you should be offering them. This insight and information will help you recruit better candidates, faster.

#2: They can recruit hard-to-find or specialized talent.

Hiring today is challenging enough. But when it comes to a demanding position that requires hard-to-find skills, it can seem almost impossible to fill. But recruiters at a staffing agency know how to source active and passive candidates who are more selective about opportunities. They spend a lot of time recruiting top talent, including those with specialized skills, so you can leverage their network to find people with the background you need.

#3: They can speed up the hiring process.

When you’re inundated with resumes and cover letters, it can be hard to properly screen every candidate and also get your daily work done. But a recruiter at a staffing agency is trained to screen resumes and hone in on the skills you’re looking for. Not only that, but they can conduct phone screens and interviews to further qualify candidates. That way, the candidates you do end up seeing are those who are all a good fit for the job you’re offering.

#4: They can help you create a strong employer brand.

Your reputation in the candidate marketplace can have a big impact on the quality of talent you’re able to attract. A good staffing agency partner can help you develop an appealing employer brand. They’ll know where to advertise your company and openings, and how to position you as an employer of choice, including what it’s like to work at your organization, including culture, as well as perks and benefits.

If you need to hire – but are hard-pressed for time or resources – consider outsourcing the recruiting process to professionals who do it all day. You can benefit from the reach, network, and proven processes of a trusted staffing agency partner.

Interested in learning more? Let the experts at Murray Resources help you. As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, we’ve worked with the city’s leading organizations to identify their human resource needs, locate top talent, and maximize employee productivity. Let us help you too! Contact us today to learn more.

Considering Hiring a Staffing Agency in Houston? Ask These Questions First

January 17th, 2017

You know the benefits of working with a Houston staffing agency. But, with more than 6,000 across the country – and dozens in Houston alone, it can be hard to find one that’s right for you. If you’re interested in a partnership, but don’t quite know where to start, here are some questions to ask to ensure you hire the right staffing agency:

What can I expect from the relationship?

You might think that all staffing agencies are the same. While it’s true the end goal might be similar – to recruit the best talent – how they get there isn’t identical. So if you’re researching agencies, make sure the one you choose comes to your location to get a feel for your corporate culture, meets with hiring managers across departments, and takes the time to learn about your hiring needs and challenges. Look for an agency that views the relationship as a strategic partnership, not simply as a way to fill empty seats.

What kind of experience do you have?

How long has the agency been around? What kinds of companies do they work with? Who specifically will be working on your account and how long have they been recruiting for? It’s important to ask these kinds of questions to ensure the staffing agency you do choose can back up their claims with proven experience.

How do you screen candidates?

When it comes to recruiting and screening candidates, it should be all about quality. That’s why you need to ask about the specific steps a potential staffing partner takes in screening and vetting candidates. You need a company you can trust to focus on high quality, not just on sending the most candidates your way. Also, ask about background and reference checks and make sure the staffing agency you work with offers them.

What services do you offer?

If you have a range of staffing needs, make sure the agency you choose has the services to meet them. For instance, if you need temporary employees, as well as full-time ones in a variety of positions, you should be able to rely on the same staffing partner to fulfill those needs.

What are your rates?

It’s important to ensure you’re on the same page in terms of the costs. So ask each agency what they charge and how they structure their fees prior to signing an agreement.

Interested in partnering with an experienced staffing agency in Houston? Call Murray Resources. For more than 30 years, we’ve been helping companies in the area source, recruit and screen top quality candidates – and we can help you too. Contact us today to learn more.

How Your Houston Company Can Hire Top Employees (Hint: It’s All About Sourcing)

March 1st, 2016

Your interviewing and skills-testing abilities might be top-notch. But if your sourcing process is less-than-stellar, recruiting top people to your team is going to be a challenge. Why? Because if your candidate pool is weak, it will impact your ultimate hiring decision. You need to ensure you’re sourcing the strongest candidates from the start, so you can interview, test and eventually hire the very best. Here’s how:

Consider what the job entails.

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that sourcing the best candidates needs to start with a vision of what the job entails. So ask yourself this: What will a candidate need to do in order to be successful on the job? What are your goals and expectations for them within 90 days and six months of being hired? What will their specific tasks and responsibilities be?

Don’t just rely on what you think you know about the position. Talk the department head, as well as the people who will be working alongside the new hire so you can gain a clear sense of what this person will need to accomplish.

Focus on what makes your job better.

In other words, why should someone want to work for your company? In order for a candidate to want to make a move, you need to offer a compelling pitch. Most traditional job ads only focus on what the employer is looking for. Make yours stand out and advertise what you can offer to the candidate.

Sharpen your marketing skills.

Broadcast this message in your online job posts, as well as when you’re communicating directly with candidates. Make sure they understand not only what they will be doing, but what they also can be learning and becoming if they accept your offer.

Leverage your resume database.

Don’t forget about the resumes you keep on file. When you’re looking for your next great hire, now’s the time to tap into your resume database. You may have the ideal candidate right at your fingertips. Reach out to the strongest contenders with an email describing the opportunity and why they should consider making a move.

Tap into your network.

Candidates aren’t the only ones who should be networking during the job search process. When you’re sourcing potential employees, networking is one of the most effective tools in your arsenal. When someone refers a contact to you, call them immediately to find out whether they’d be open to a discussion.

Do you need more help sourcing and hiring Houston’s top talent? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, companies all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain talent for a variety of positions, ranging from entry level to C-level. Contact us today if you’d like to learn more.

How to Spot a Weak Candidate

December 1st, 2015

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that hiring mistakes are expensive. But the good news is that many times, they can be avoided. To help ensure you filter out the weak candidates – and focus on the strong ones – be on the lookout for these negative traits:

They give you ambiguous information.

When you ask a candidate a question, they should be able to offer you detailed information and examples from past work experiences that highlight the skill set and experience you’re interested in. However, when a candidate can’t go into a specifics, it’s a sign they lack the background you’re after.

They give long-winded answers.

Sometimes a candidate may ramble due to nerves. But in many cases, it’s a sign that they don’t really understand what you’re asking. In addition, not being able to offer a concise answer means their communication skills need improvement.

They’re too informal about the interview.

They may show up a few minutes late, dress in attire that’s not completely appropriate and keep their cell phone in hand during the interview. These types of behaviors shows a total lack of regard for both you and your company…and it’s also a sign of what’s to come should you hire this person. A strong job candidate doesn’t need to be overly formal, but they should know how to act professionally during the interviewing process.

They aren’t prepared.

It’s important for candidates to spend some time before the job interview researching your company. Doing so enables them to ask insightful question to assess whether the position is a good fit for them and also shows their enthusiasm for the job. However, when a candidate shows up ill-prepared, it demonstrates they’re not willing to put in the work…even during the interview process.

They focus on the negative.

Most people have had a boss or co-workers they didn’t care for at some point during their careers. However, when a candidate focuses on negative experiences like these, it’s a sign that they lack judgment and professionalism.

They focus on the money.

It’s only natural for a candidate to want to know about the compensation, benefits and perks associated with the position. However, if their first few questions revolve around salary and vacation time, then the candidate likely doesn’t care much about the job or the company.

When a candidate demonstrates the traits above, then it’s time to cross them off your short list. If you’d rather outsource the process to the experts, call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, 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.

Why Outsourcing to Technical Recruiters in Houston Can Save You Money

November 10th, 2015

The economy has changed dramatically in recent years, making recruiting the right technical candidates more challenging than ever. From fierce competition due to skills shortages to ever-evolving business conditions, finding and hiring the right people in this new recruiting environment requires a different approach.

However, when you outsource the task to an expert – in other words, technical recruiters in Houston – you can find the best technical candidates, avoid the risk of hiring mistakes, and save time and money in the process. Here’s how:

Less Time-to-Hire

When you work with technical recruiters in Houston, they have a proven process in place based on years of industry experience and insight. So when you need to fill a position – whether on a contract or full-time basis – they immediately know where to look and may even already have relationships with candidates who would be a good fit. Rather than spending your valuable time searching for strong candidates, you can focus on other priorities and leave the task to the technical recruiting experts.

Increased Access to Candidates With Specialized Skill

Finding technical candidates can be a challenge, but sourcing those with a specialized skill set can be downright impossible…unless, of course, you’ve partnered with reputable technical recruiters in Houston. Recruiters are always doing just that…recruiting. So they come across a wide array of technical talent with various competencies across all levels, including those who may suit your unique needs.

A More Efficient Process

Between advertising fees and time to interview candidates, there are many direct and indirect costs to hiring. And they can add up quickly. But when you work with technical recruiters in Houston, you pay one fixed fee, so you know the expenses walking into the partnership. An experienced recruiter is also far more efficient with the process in terms of both cost and time.

Top Technical Candidates

In many cases, a new hire will quit after just a few months on the job, oftentimes due to lack of fit. However, when you work with a technical recruiter who understands the industry, you can gain access to better fit candidates, make a better hiring decision and avoid the costly risk of a hiring mistake.

Finding the right technical talent for your job opening be both challenging and expensive. But when you outsource the task to a technical recruiter, you can lower costs, gain access to top talent, and reduce the hassles of hiring.

If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of working with a technical recruiter in Houston, call Murray Resources. As top Houston technical recruiters, we can give you access to the highest quality talent, whether you need a programmer, project manager, or desktop support personnel. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Are You Paying Your People What They’re Worth?

July 21st, 2015

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows when it comes to employee loyalty, salary isn’t the only reason people stay with a company. However, it’s still vitally important and can impact your ability to recruit and attract the best talent. If, on the other hand, you don’t pay people what they’re worth, they’re not going to stay with you for long and your company will develop a negative reputation as an employer. So how can you tell if your salary is competitive? Here are some tips:

Look to the competition.

If you’re assessing salary and find the competition pays more, you’re going to be on the losing end of the war for talent. It may take some time and effort to determine what other similar companies pay, but it’s certainly well worth it. Use resources such as Payscale.com or Salary.com to start your search. You can also look to sites such as the Bureau of Labor Statistics to find salary averages for certain positions. And finally, you can tap the expertise of a Houston recruiter to gain a sense of what other companies are offering.

Make sure pay grows with responsibility.

If you’ve expanded the roles of employees without offering them more compensation, you’re going to eventually lose them. People don’t mind taking on more for temporary periods of time, but if this is the new normal, they are going to look for better opportunities – with better pay – elsewhere. Don’t make your people feel underpaid and undervalued; make sure their compensation aligns with the level of work they’re doing.

Evaluate company turnover.

Turnover happens at every company and is even healthy in some cases. However, if your organization is experiencing a high level of it, then your compensation may be to blame. But the reality is that turnover will actually wind up costing you more (in the form of recruiting, hiring, and training new employees) then simply paying your existing staff more.

That said, offering an across the board raise might not be in your budget. If that’s the case, then identify your key players and offer raises to them. Down the line, when you can, you may then be able offer raises to your other staff members.

Do you need more help hiring and retaining top talent? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, 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.

 

Are You Hurting Your Job Search With This Bad Advice?

June 9th, 2015

Are you searching for a new job? If you are, it can seem like everyone under the son has a piece of career advice to help you during your hunt. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, Murray Resources knows that some of the opinions offered can certainly be valuable; others, on the other hand, can actually hurt your job search and negatively impact your ability to land a great new position. So what advice should you simply ignore? Here’s a look:

Your resume can only be one page.

Sure, this was the rule of thumb years ago. But today, it’s no longer the case. Your resume can be – and should be if you’re highly experienced – more than a page. It’s much better to have an easy to read and well formatted resume that’s two pages long, than a cramped one with tiny print that’s one page long. That said, don’t go overboard and submit a resume that’s more than two pages long.

A job search is a numbers game. Apply to as many positions as possible.

A hiring manager can discern fairly quickly whether or not you’re a good fit for a position. So if you’re sending your resume to any job – just because “hey, you never know” – a hiring manager will be able to tell. You’re only wasting your time – and their time too – by applying to every position that sounds good. Instead, spend your time crafting customized resumes and cover letters for the few positions you truly are a fit for.

Companies only advertise when they have an opening.

Considering that most job openings are filled through referrals, not ads on job boards, this certainly isn’t the case. So if there’s a company you’re interested in working for, apply anyway – even if they haven’t posted a position. In your cover letter, be sure to communicate why you want to work for the company and what types of skills and talents you bring to the table that could make a positive impact there.

Staffing agencies are for people without any real skills or experience.

Gone are the days when staffing agencies were simply used to fill administrative and industrial type positions. Today’s staffing agencies place highly skilled professionals in fields ranging from accounting to IT to human resources. So if you’re someone with plenty of experience under your belt, and you’d like some professional help finding your next job, a staffing agency can certainly help get you there.

If you’re ready to tap into the expertise a staffing agency can offer you, call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, we can assist you with the entire job search process – from resumes to salary negotiations – all so you can secure a job opportunity that is a great fit for your skills and background.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Murray Resources Announces the Launch of its Murray Technical Division

December 26th, 2014

New Business Unit will House the Firm’s Engineering, Information Technology (IT), and Technical Sales Recruiting Services

(Houston, TX – December 26, 2014) – Murray Resources, a leading Houston staffing agency and recruiting firm, today announced it has launched the Murray Technical business unit to house the firm’s Engineering, Information Technology (IT), and Technical Sales Recruiting Services. The company will continue to fill roles on a temporary, contract, contract to hire, and direct hire basis in all three areas.

“While Murray Resources has been successively placing Engineering, IT, and Technical Sales professionals for almost fifteen years, we felt that our firm’s substantial growth in those areas over the last 36 months necessitated the launch of a standalone business unit that focuses specifically on those lines of business,” said Keith Wolf, Managing Director of Murray Resources.

The launch of Murray Technical coincides with the hiring of Jeremy Tyler, who joined the firm’s business development team in October, and who will lead the Murray Technical sales team. Jeremy brings over fifteen years of technical recruiting industry experience to Murray Resources, with a specific focus on IT / Technical staffing for Fortune 1000 and mid-market clients.

Murray Resources will continue to place Accounting/Finance, Manufacturing/Operations, Sales/Marketing, Human Resources, Customer Service, and Administrative professionals from within its Murray Professional division. The Murray Technical and Murray Professional divisions will both have distinct teams of recruiters who focus on matching talent within their specializations.

“The launch of Murray Technical is an exciting and significant milestone in our firm’s evolution. Fifteen years ago several of our longtime clients requested that we help them find technical talent. That piece of our business has continued to grow and today, Engineering, IT, and Technical Sales is a significant portion of our firm’s business. It was the right time to officially launch the Murray Technical brand,” said Marsha Murray, President of Murray Resources.

About Murray Resources
Founded in 1988, Murray Resources is a leading Houston recruiting firm and staffing agency. In 2014 the company was named by the Houston Business Journal as one of Houston’s top 25 largest direct hire firms. In 2013 the firm was named to the Inc. 500/5000 list of fastest growing private companies in America. The company serves a base of over 800 client companies, including numerous Fortune™ 1000 companies and high-growth small and medium-sized organizations, in the areas of administrative, accounting, customer service, engineering, finance, human resources, IT, manufacturing, marketing, operations, and sales. The company has been named a “Best Places to Work” and the #1 Fastest Growing Woman Owned Business in the Personnel Category by the Houston Business Journal. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009 or visit www.murrayresources.com.

Posted in: Press Releases

Houston Recruiting Firm – Murray Resources – Announces Key Addition to IT Staffing Team

November 12th, 2014

(Houston, TX – November 12, 2014) – Murray Resources, a leading Houston staffing agency and recruiting firm, today announced that Jeremy Tyler has joined the firm’s business development team as Senior Business Development Manager.

Jeremy brings over ten years of recruiting industry experience to Murray Resources, with a specific focus on IT / technical staffing for Fortune 1000 and mid-market clients. With an extensive IT recruiting, sales, and sales management background, Jeremy offers a unique and well-rounded perspective to his client’s businesses, helping them fill some of their company’s most critical and time-sensitive positions.

In his most recent role, Jeremy served as the Business Development Director at Itsa Energy, an oilfield services company. Before joining Itsa, Jeremy held Director of Client Development and Manager of Strategic Sourcing positions at Triad Resources, an IT staffing firm.

“We are thrilled to have Jeremy join the Murray Resources team. His deep IT staffing experience will be an asset to our clients and his consultative, high-touch approach fits perfectly with our firm’s dedication to providing the very best employer and candidate hiring experience,” said Marsha Murray, President of Murray Resources.

About Murray Resources
Founded in 1988, Murray Resources is a leading Houston recruiting firm and staffing agency. In 2013 the firm was named to the Inc. 500/5000 list of fastest growing private companies in America. The company serves a base of over 800 client companies, including numerous Fortune™ 1000 companies and high-growth small and medium-sized organizations, in the areas of administrative, accounting, customer service, engineering, finance, human resources, IT, manufacturing, marketing, operations, and sales. The company has been named a “Best Places to Work” and the #1 Fastest Growing Woman Owned Business in the Personnel Category by the Houston Business Journal. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009 or visit www.murrayresources.com.

Posted in: Press Releases

Why Do Companies Use Houston Staffing Agencies?

December 3rd, 2013

If you’re out there searching for a new job, you may have come to the realization that many of the positions you’re applying for aren’t actually posted by employers…they’re posted by staffing agencies. And if you’re new to the world of recruiting and staffing, you may be wondering why.

To educate you as to why companies use staffing agencies – and how working with one can benefit you – here are a few thoughts to consider:

Staffing agencies help companies save time.

There are a lot of people out there looking for new jobs. And many companies simply don’t have the internal resources to handle the applicant screening process. So they call in staffing agencies to help.

A staffing agency will essentially work with the employer to learn about the position, create job postings, screen applicants via their resumes and phone interviews, and conduct face-to-face interviews with a handful of candidates.

The staffing agency will then present the top 3-5 candidates to the employer, who will conduct additional interviews and make a hiring decision.

Staffing agencies help widen a company’s talent pool.

When most companies need to hire, they generally don’t have a robust talent pool to tap into. That means they’re essentially starting from scratch.

But a staffing agency’s job is to build strong candidate networks. So when an employer comes to them with a certain need, they already have relationships with many different candidates who can fill that need.

Staffing agencies can help company’s dig deeper into a candidate’s background.

An employer may want to learn more about a specific aspect of a candidate’s background, but may not have the time to investigate. A staffing agency can take the directive from the employer and run with it. The employer gets the information they need to make a hiring decision, without having to spend a lot of time verifying details and learning more about each candidate’s background.

Now you know a few primary reasons why Houston companies use staffing agencies. The question: how can you benefit from a relationship with one?

First and foremost, staffing agencies can help you expand your access to job opportunities.

Oftentimes, they’re the ones who know about jobs not advertised or positions about to open up. When you work with a staffing agency, they will be able to connect you with such opportunities.

Staffing agencies can also help you polish your image as a job candidate.

Staffing agencies know what employers want in candidates. With that in mind, they can help you craft a stronger resume, prepare for interviews and give you tips and advice on how to answer tough interview questions. It’s essentially like having an expert career counselor coaching you through the process so you find the job that is just right for you.

If you’d like to learn more about how working with a Houston staffing agency can help you advance your career, give Murray Resources a call. As one of Houston’s top 25 recruitment firms, we can assist you with the entire job search process – and connect you with rewarding opportunities throughout the area.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog, Job Search Tips

Avoid ‘Fluff’ On Your Resume! Here’s How

May 21st, 2013

Imagine you’re a hiring manager for a minute. You post a job opening and within 24 hours, you’re flooded with resumes from job candidates. You do your best to efficiently filter out the bad candidates and hone in on the good. But realistically, you can only spend a few moments scanning each resume.

Discouraged? Don’t be.

As one of the top Houston staffing agencies, Murray Resources knows that while today’s job market is certainly challenging, you can put your best foot forward via your resume…if you know how to grab attention and make the case that you’re the best candidate.

Unfortunately, many job seekers fill their resumes with “fluff” – that is, vague and unsubstantiated claims that may sound good, but really mean nothing. For instance:

• Dynamic visionary
• Independent thinker
• Committed team player
• Driven team player
• Proficient multi-tasker
• Strong communication skills
• Strong interpersonal skills
• Highly organized with meticulous attention to detail

Filling your resume with these kinds of phrases typically means it winds up in the trash bin. Instead, stick with the facts. If you want the hiring manager to know you’re a “dynamic visionary,” then offer them relevant accomplishments (quantified by numbers, statistics, percentages, etc.) that support your claim.

For instance:

Spearheaded and executed a direct mail campaign that resulted in improved awareness, a 5% increase in leads, and $10,000 in new sales.

Another type of fluff to avoid on your resume is listing your hobbies or interests. If they’re directly related to the position you’re applying for (for instance, you love to bike and you’re applying for a job at a sporting goods store), then include them. If they’re not, however, then skip them. You don’t want a hiring manager wasting valuable time reading about your passion for yoga instead of your skills and experience. In addition, if a personal hobby or interest doesn’t appeal to a hiring manager, it could actually negatively impact your chances of getting an interview.

Need More Resume Help?

Let Murray Resources know. As one of the top Houston staffing agencies, we can help you craft a strong resume, making you more marketable, as well as match you with job opportunities that are a great fit. Contact us today if you’re ready to get started.

 

Posted in: Blog, Job Search Tips

4 Reasons to Give Your Top Pick Candidates Homework

April 2nd, 2013

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, Murray Resources hears horror stories about it time and again. A candidate looked great on paper, performed well during the interview, and fell apart once on the job.

What gives?

It’s scary but true that there are many job candidates out there who are really good at interviewing and selling themselves. But once they’re actually hired, they simply don’t meet expectations. Clearly this isn’t the kind of person you want to bring on board. But how can you avoid it?

While there are no guarantees in the recruiting game, there are some things you can do to minimize the chance of making a hiring mistake. One of them involves handing out homework to your top pick candidates.

Here are a few reasons why this will help you when it comes time to make your final hiring decision:

Reason #1: Assess a candidate’s eagerness.

If you hand out a homework assignment and the job candidate rolls their eyes, sighs, or protests that they have a “really busy week,” then this is a good indication that they’re not as eager to get the job as you thought. On the flip side, if a candidate takes on the assignment with a smile, asks some insightful questions about your expectations for it, and then submits it on time and done well, then you just likely found yourself your next hire.

Reason #2: Overcome any biases.

Everyone has biases; we’re only human after all. But biases can be seriously harmful when it comes to hiring. They can lead you down the wrong path because someone “seemed” like they’d do a better job. But when you ask candidates to actually complete a homework assignment, you can push biases aside. The work they submit will help you gain a much better sense of whether their skill set matches up with their resume and interviewing abilities.

Reason #3: Evaluate a candidate’s quality of work.

When you receive homework assignments from candidates, you’ll likely be able to tell in a few seconds who put in a lot of effort and who just plain didn’t. When you receive work that is well thought out and insightful vs. sloppy and poorly planned, you’re hiring decision just got a whole lot easier.

Reason #4: Serves as a tie-breaker.

Have two candidates you’re equally interested in and just not sure whom to hire? Giving them a homework assignment will offer you real, tangible pieces of work that you can compare side by side…and gain a better understanding of which one is the right hire for you.

Need Help Hiring Top Candidates?

Hiring is hard work, plain and simple. And if you need some help with the process – whether because you don’t have the time or the resources – let us know. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, Murray Resources can handle the hiring process for you, from start to finish. And you can rest easy knowing your chances of a hiring mistake have been minimized greatly. Contact us today to learn more.


What Happens To My Resume Once I Submit It To A Recruiter?

March 25th, 2013

Have you ever sent your resume to a recruiter and then waited – sometimes for several weeks – before hearing back? Fear not, your resume hasn’t fallen into a black hole. Here’s some insight from Houston staffing agency, Murray Resources, on what happens to your resume after you click ‘send’ or ‘submit.’

Step #1: The Six-Second Once-Over

It’s not uncommon for recruiters to receive hundreds, even thousands, of resumes for a single job posting. While ATS’s (applicant tracking systems) are commonly used by larger companies to sort through resumes, most external recruiters still view each resume manually (some recruiting firms employ junior recruiters or researchers to help screen and sort the influx of resumes).

So how do recruiters possibly review that many resumes? According to a recent study performed by TheLadders.com, recruiters spend an average of six seconds scanning resumes for fit. But don’t let that short amount of time fool you – most recruiters are highly-experienced professional resume screeners and know exactly what they’re looking for. According to the study, 80% of those six seconds are spent on the following information:

  • Name
  • Current Title / Company
  • Previous Title Company
  • Current position start and end dates
  • Previous position start and end dates
  • Education

Tip: Increase your chances of getting through this step by making sure your resume is clear, concise, and easy to follow – and that you are applying for a job that fits your qualifications. If a recruiter is unable to easily find the information they’re looking for, they’ll move on.

What if I haven’t heard back at this point?

Don’t panic if you don’t hear right away. For some jobs the process of sorting through resumes and setting up interviews can take a few weeks. It’s also not uncommon for employers to make changes to a job’s requirements, which can delay the process. If you haven’t heard from a recruiter in 2-3 weeks, feel free to call or email the firm to follow-up.

Step #2: The Short Phone Call

If the recruiter is optimistic about your chances of being a good fit for the particular job for which you applied – and/or they believe you may be a good candidate for other jobs for which they recruit – the second step is typically a phone call with the recruiter. Treat this like a formal phone interview and make sure to be prepared with questions about the job and reasons that you’d make the perfect candidate. The call is usually short, but may last as long as 15 or 20 minutes.

Tip: Stay positive when talking about past employers and experience. This call serves as your first real contact with the recruiter and is a chance for them to get to know you. Make sure to put your best foot forward. Murray Resources’ Phone Interview Preparation document can help you get ready.

Step #3: The In-Person Meeting

For many recruiting firms, including leading Houston staffing agency Murray Resources, the next step is to meet the candidate in person. This allows both the recruiter and the candidate to learn more about the candidate’s potential fit for the position. Arrive for this meeting in professional dress and with extra copies of your resume, as you would for an interview with a potential employer. Be prepared to walk the recruiter through your background, your current work situation, and discuss why you are the perfect person for the job.

Step #4: Recruiter Presents Candidate’s Resume

If after the in-person meeting, the recruiter and candidate both feel there is a strong fit with the position, the recruiter will then present the candidate’s resume to the client as someone they would recommend for the position. If, however, either party thought there wasn’t a strong match for the particular job, recruiters will keep the resume on file for when a better fit comes along.

How often to check in? Unless a recruiter has specifically asked that you call to check in about job openings or to inquire about a position, try to resist the temptation to consistently call recruiters. Murray Resources, a leading Houston staffing agency recommends that if you are looking for a temporary position, to call no more than once per week. For permanent or direct hire positions, the firm recommends calling to check in every few weeks. Another approach is, instead of calling, periodically email the recruiter to let them know you are still in the job market. Outline steps you have taken to build your resume or to otherwise improve your marketability. For more tips, view our tips for working with recruiters.

Murray Resources

Founded in 1988, Murray Resources is a leading Houston staffing agency. The company serves a base of over 800 client companies, including numerous Fortune™ 1000 companies and high-growth small and medium-sized organizations.

Murray Resources has been named a “Best Places to Work” by the Houston Business Journal and the #1 Fastest Growing Woman Owned Business in the Personnel Category by the Houston Business Journal. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009.

Holiday Networking Do’s and Don’ts

November 30th, 2012

With ample parties, gift-giving opportunities, and old-fashioned goodwill, the holidays just might be the perfect time to expand your professional network. Our recruiting team at Houston staffing agency Murray Resources has compiled a list of do’s and don’ts for you to keep in mind as you enjoy your holidays – and build your network:

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Do- Attend as many holiday parties as you can bear. If you’re serious about expanding your network, the more highly-populated events you attend, the better your chances are to make connections with fellow partygoers. If you’re new to town and don’t know anyone throwing holiday soirees, check your local paper and local networking social media accounts to find out about events hosted for the public.

Don’t Overcommit. Notice in the above tip how we said to attend as many holiday parties as you can handle? It means don’t wear out your holiday cheer. If you really can only have fun at one or two events max, that’s fine; and if you can handle 5 booked weekends full of festivities, then more power to you. Bottom line, no one wants a Grinch at their party who spends the whole time griping about how many holiday parties they have to go to. Remember, you’re at a celebration- have a good time!

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Do- Enjoy yourself at holiday events. Even if you’re goal is to capitalize on an event’s networking potential, remember that it’s still a party! People will naturally gravitate towards you if you’re exuding positive energy, so have fun!

Don’t Get egg-snockered. While everyone enjoys holiday spirits, Houston staffing agency Murray Resources would like to remind you that there is a limit. Too much of a good thing can often lead to embarrassment and regret the next day; don’t step on your own goals by driving away potential connections with crass or unruly behavior.

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Do- Send gifts. While normally this might be construed as sucking-up throughout other points in the year, the holidays give you the perfect excuse to stand out in the eyes of a desired contact by sending them a little something to show your appreciation of or admiration for them. A thoughtful gift that caters to the recipient’s interests is a small gesture that can go a long way when it comes to making a genuine connection.

Don’t- Splurge on gifts for people you don’t know. While you may think sending Mark Zuckerberg a $300 bottle of wine for Channukah might get you a job at Facebook, chances are things probably won’t work out that way. Sending a stranger an expensive or extremely valuable gift can be very off-putting for the recipient- it makes them feel awkward or unjustifiably indebted to someone who they don’t know. Like we said before, a simple and thoughtful gift is the best route to go if contacting a stranger.

———

Do- Follow up with the contacts you made at holiday events. Don’t let offers to meet for coffee or to discuss a business proposition become unrealized party-talk. Send a follow-up email a day or two after the event to your new contact proposing a concrete time to meet and follow through with the plans you discussed. The prospect of a new year always brings with it an air of opportunity and new beginnings- capitalize on that energy by presenting your ideas as fresh and innovative.

Don’t- Harass a new connection. If a new contact fails to respond to your follow-up correspondence immediately, wait a week before reaching out again. The holidays are an extremely busy time of year, so be patient and flexible when it comes to respecting others’ schedules.

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By sticking to these do’s and don’ts, you’ll be sure to have a merry holiday season while expanding your professional network!

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

Turn to Murray Resources, award-winning Houston staffing agency, for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

How the Best Employees Approach Their Jobs

November 19th, 2012

The best Houston staffing agencies take pride in helping employees find the right positions to fit their needs. At Murray Resources, we know how important it is for you to make the right impression at your new job, especially if you foresee yourself looking to advance within the company.

In order to help you set yourself up for success, we’ve created a list of tips that will help you approach your job the right way and get you on track for career advancement:

Look For New Ways to Create Value

The best employees are always looking for new ways to create value at their jobs. This may mean learning new language skills or becoming acquainted with new technology. Learning new skills makes you a more valuable asset to the organization and can lead to new opportunities with the company down the road.

Volunteer to Take On New Challenges

Do you see ways in which you could help your manager or someone in your department with a difficult task? Helping your colleagues tackle new challenges is a great way to stand out as a star employee.

Find the Tasks Nobody Wants to Take On

Sometimes the most valuable work that needs to be done is avoided by everyone else because it is too challenging or time-consuming. By showing supervisors that you are not afraid of hard work, you can make the kind of impression that will stick out in their mind when they consider people for promotions and advancement opportunities. If no one else wants to do it, you should view this task as an excellent opportunity to make an impact.

Have a Positive Attitude

Though it may sound cliché, this is one of the best ways to provide value to your employer. Positive attitudes are contagious and will spread around your department quickly. As a premier Houston recruiting firm that’s been around for almost twenty-five years, we have hard evidence to testify to the impact a positive attitude can have in the workplace. This kind of energy boosts employee morale across the board and increases productivity, and your supervisors will be sure to take note.

Staying Engaged With Your Work No Matter What It Is

Some of your tasks may be more exciting than others, but if you want to make a good impression, approach everything you do with the same level of commitment and urgency. Consistently taking on every challenge with enthusiasm distinguishes you from other employees who don’t give their best effort on things they don’t find interesting.

Always Look For Ways to Improve

There is always a way to make your workday more productive and efficient. If you have a chance, sit down with your supervisor and ask for ways that you can improve your performance. The best employees are always looking for new ways to improve and produce better results, adding value to both their company and their own personal brand.

Houston staffing agencies like Murray Resources are here to help you find new ways to improve your performance on the job. By following the tips we have listed above, you will establish yourself as a valuable asset to any company and are setting yourself up for future success.

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

Turn to Murray Resources, one of the top Houston staffing agencies, for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

 

Five Ways to Prepare for Your First Day on the Job

November 12th, 2012

It’s a great feeling when Houston staffing agencies like Murray Resources set you up with an employment opportunity that turns into an actual job. But how can you ensure that your first day will be the lasting, positive impression that you want it to be?

Below we’ve compiled a list of important details to keep in mind when preparing for a successful first day:

1)      Look up the office address and parking situation – There are few worse feelings in the world than showing up late to an important event, especially in an unfamiliar environment. Running late to work on a normal day is stressful enough, but spending an unplanned extra 15 minutes of your commute driving around lost on unfamiliar roads or turned around in the parking garage on your first day at a new job puts you in a frenzied, negative mindset that can ruin what was supposed to be an exciting and fresh start. Many times, interviews are conducted by Houston staffing agencies or at a company’s corporate office and not the actual location where you will be working, so be sure to double check the address and directions to where your actual office is.

2)      Dress to impress – In any unfamiliar professional setting, especially on your first day at a new job, it’s always better to err on the side of overdressed rather than under. The first impression you make often happens before you even open your mouth, so wear something that makes you feel comfortable and confident within the boundaries of professionalism. Something you would wear to church or a nice dinner with your grandparents is always a safe bet for an office environment.

3)      Did you bring your papers? – Most of the time, your first day will be spent filling out paperwork, signing forms, and watching training videos. This new employee paperwork usually requires certain kinds of official documents to prove your identity, citizenship, proof of residence, etc. Get in contact with an HR representative or the new hire advisor at the company who can tell you what documents to bring on your first day so you can get all of the necessary paperwork out of the way. Commonly requested official documents include driver’s license or State issued Identification Card, Social Security Card, Passport, Birth Certificate, or Right to Work permits.

4)      Get to know your company – As we’ve already touched on, an unfamiliar environment can easily feel intimidating and overwhelming. A great way to curb these anxieties is to conduct some research about the company you’re starting with so that you’re more familiar with what to expect upon your arrival. Learning about your new employer’s industry, recent news, and corporate policies and values is usually just a matter of browsing through the company website. Showing up well-informed on your first day leaves a great first impression on colleagues and supervisors when they see how much you care about your new position and are willing and eager to learn.

5)      Connect with fellow co-workers – Utilizing social networking sites such as LinkedIn is a great way to connect with people you’ll be working with before you even step foot in the office. Engaging your soon-to-be-colleagues in conversations about shared interests or even just questions about the company can greatly help lessen the stress of feeling alone when you first arrive, and you can learn a lot more about a person through their social media profiles than in that 15-second introductory break room conversation.

Your first day on the job plays a major role in determining your attitude towards your new company and setting the tone for your time with them. These five helpful hints will help you to start off on the right foot for what’s sure to be a new and exciting journey!

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

Turn to one of the top Houston staffing agencies – Murray Resources – for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

 

Helpful Hints on How to Make a Successful Career Transition

October 28th, 2012

Making a career transition can be an exciting opportunity to do new things and accomplish bigger goals. Before you make the leap, however, it’s important that you prepare yourself for this important change in your life.  Murray Resources—one of the leading Houston staffing agencies—has assembled 7 tips to help you make a successful career transition.

1) Do Your Homework

Prepare yourself for your new career by doing as much research as you can. A new career path may require you to develop new skills or learn new technology, so start researching and following industry publications, blogs, and thought leaders. The more you read, the more comfortable you will be with industry specific news and jargon. If there are particularly companies you’re interested in following, set up a Google alert to notify you when those companies are in the news.

2) Discuss the New Career With Other People

Start talking to friends and acquaintances in your target industry to learn as much as you can about the business. Ask for introductions to contacts who are on similar career paths and offer to take them to lunch. Learn about their day-to-day life and the pros and cons of their position. The more data you have about the industry and your potential career path, the more likely you are to make an informed decision.

3) Prepare yourself mentally

Most Houston staffing agencies advise their clients to prepare mentally before attempting a career transition. Have a clear idea of the steps you need to take to move seamlessly into your new role. A new position may require more responsibilities than your last one, added pressure, and an steep learning curve. Be prepared with an effective strategy for tackling the additional workload.

4) Be Prepared for Uncertainty

Even the most successful career transitions come with a period of uncertainty. Your new company may do things quite differently than the last one you worked for and it takes time to learn new policies and procedures. If you prepare yourself for uncertainty, you’ll be more likely to adapt to unfamiliar situations.

5) Have a Clear Idea of Where You Want to Go

Another way to ensure you will have a successful career transition is to map out your desired career path. If you are moving on to a different career track entirely, you should have a good idea of what that work entails. Sitting down to work out a 1, 3 and 5 year plan for yourself is a great way to be sure you are working towards your long-term goals.

6) Make Sure Your Finances Are in Order

Before you make a big change in your professional life, it’s always a good idea to make sure you have your financial situation under control. As soon as you can, build a savings fund that you can rely on during this transition period. Keep any debt under control as well. If you keep your finances in order, it’s one less thing to worry about during your transition.

7) Stay on Good Terms With Your Former Coworkers and Employer

In addition to just being the “right thing to do”, it makes good business sense to stay on good terms with your former employer. You’ll likely find yourself in need of a professional reference at some point in your career and you want your future employers to hear glowing testimonials about your performance.

Making a career transition can be the start of an exciting new phase of your life and the more prepared you are for this change, the less stressed and happier you’re likely to be. Whether or not you’re working with one of the leading Houston staffing agencies, following the above 7 steps will help ensure a more successful career transition.

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

Turn to one of the top Houston staffing agencies – Murray Resources – for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

Also, if you’re in the Houston area, be sure to attend the  Murray Resources “Resume and Cover Letter Tips and Techniques” workshop November 8! Receive individualized feedback and advice on how to craft an effective cover letter and resume that will successfully convey your interest to prospective employers.

Advance tickets are being sold for $25 through November 7th, and tickets purchased on the day of the event will be $35. Purchase your tickets online with a friend and receive a 20% discount for the both of you!

 

7 Top Job Seeker Tools and Apps

October 27th, 2012

In recent years, new technologies and online resources have changed the job search game. While looking for the perfect job still requires research and effort, professionals looking to make a change have access to more jobs than ever. Murray Resources – one of the leading Houston staffing agencies—looked beyond the more commonly known job search tools such as Monster, Careerbuilder, and Craigslist to compile a list of 7 top job search tools.

1) LinkedIn

You’re likely already aware of LinkedIn, the widely used social network for professionals. Most people are aware of its networking and status update functions, but it’s also a powerful job search tool. You can use LinkedIn to create an online resume, as well as search and apply for jobs by keywords, job title, location, and even salary level. The paid job seeker premium tool allows users to see who has been viewing their profile, which could be a source of job leads. It also allows you to send personalized InMails to hiring managers and recruiters, where normally you would need to have a connection.

2) Indeed.com App

If you have a smart phone, the Indeed app is worth a download. Indeed is essentially a job board aggregator – a one-stop (free) shop where you can view most jobs posted online. For example, if Houston staffing agencies such as Murray Resources post a new job on their website, it’s likely that the position will show up on Indeed’s app. You can use the app to search, save, and e-mail job postings. The app will also show new jobs added since your last search, a great time saver.

3) Job Compass App

Another useful smart phone app, Job Compass uses satellite technology to map potential jobs within a specific radius of your location. If you are looking for a short commute to your next job, this app could be a great place to start.

4) Twit Job Search

Twitter is one of the fastest social networks where users can follow other users’ updates for entertainment, news, and discussion purposes. Because of the enormous amount of twitter traffic, recruiters and employers are increasingly posting job openings on the site. Twit Job Search is a third party site that will search Twitter for keywords related to your job search. This can be an excellent way to find out about jobs that you may not find on your usual job search sites.

5) JobServe Connect App

JobServe was formed in 1993 and bills itself as the world’s first internet recruitment service. With headquarters in the UK, it serves the United Kingdom, US, Australia, New Zealand, most of Europe, Canada, Thailand, and the UAE. The company’s app allows you to search job postings on the JobServe web site. The Jobserve app uses the GPS technology in your smart phone to search for postings near you with an easy-to-use interface.

6) iPQ Career Planner App

More of a career planner than a job search tool, the iPQ Career Planner app can help you identify the type of job that’s most likely to be a match. The app provides a detailed questionnaire and will analyze the results to identify your strengths and weaknesses as a job candidate. It will then suggest jobs and career tracks to pursue based on your profile. This tool allows you to be more specific with your job search, which may help you find your ideal job more efficiently.

7) LunchMeet

LunchMeet is a networking app that can help you find people in your area who are interested in meeting up for coffee or lunch. All you need to do is enter your location and the times you are available and it will match you with potential contacts. The concept behind the app is to build your networking base – potentially leading to industry contacts and job opportunities you may not have otherwise known about.

Thanks to evolving technology, job hunters have many new resources to help them locate their dream job. It’s a good idea to try multiple tools to maximize your exposure to new opportunities.

 

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

Turn to one of the top Houston staffing agencies – Murray Resources – for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

Also, if you’re in the Houston area, be sure to attend the  Murray Resources “Resume and Cover Letter Tips and Techniques” workshop November 8! Receive individualized feedback and advice on how to craft an effective cover letter and resume that will successfully convey your interest to prospective employers.

Advance tickets are being sold for $25 through November 7th, and tickets purchased on the day of the event will be $35. Purchase your tickets online with a friend and receive a 20% discount for the both of you!

 

Can’t wait until next Saturday for more tips on how to utilize online job search tools? Check out our last Social Media Saturday post to stay plugged in to the most innovative ways to use the web.

Tips for Starting Your New Job on the Right Foot

October 22nd, 2012

Congratulations – you’ve landed a new job and you’re eager to get started on the right foot. Whether you got the job on your own or through one of the premier Houston staffing agencies, first impressions are critical whenever you start a new job. Follow these steps and you will be sure to put your best foot forward.

Thoroughly Research Your New Company

Prior to your first day on the job, it’s important to start gaining as much information as you can about your new employer and their core business. A simple internet search should turn up a wide variety of information about the company; if the company has a corporate website, study the content. Read trade journals, blogs by industry insiders, and public filings to start familiarizing yourself with competitors. This is particularly important if you’re making a transition to an unfamiliar industry.

Get to Know Your Coworkers

In your first two weeks on the job, reach out to as many of your new co-workers as possible. Ask them to lunch or coffee, so that you can get to know them in a more casual setting. You’re only a new-hire once, so utilize the opportunity to ask questions that you may be embarrassed to ask later. Ask them about their role, what challenges they face, and how you can help them. Letting them know you’re looking forward to being part of the team can help strengthen your relationship early.

Be Remarkable

Being remarkable means standing out when it comes to your work responsibilities. Do an outstanding job on every task you’re assigned, even the simple ones. Your managers and co-workers will notice your effort and performance.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions

Understanding your role and the tasks you’ve been assigned are key to meeting (and exceeding) expectations. If you’re not clear on something, be sure to ask your manager for more information. Plus, by asking questions, you’re demonstrating that you are detail-oriented and that you take your work seriously.

Let Your Personality Shine Through

Be sociable when appropriate and don’t be afraid to get to know people during your breaks. Your co-workers should see you as a human being and getting to know them on a personal level will help strengthen your bond and trust.

Make an Effort to Learn Names and Use Them

There’s something powerful about hearing one’s own name. When you are introduced to your new co-workers, use whatever technique works for you to help you remember their name. Houston staffing agencies such as Murray Resources may be able to prep you with the names of some your new co-workers – ask them.

Take Note of the Company Culture

Every business has a unique culture, which can include everything from dress codes to a distinct business vocabulary. You may have had a similar position in the past, but it’s important to adjust yourself to how your new company operates.

Congratulations on your new job and the opportunity to establish yourself as a leader in your profession. Follow the above steps and you will be on your way to building a strong foundation for success.

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

Turn to one of the top Houston staffing agencies – Murray Resources – for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

How to Stay Productive While Looking for a Job

October 19th, 2012

Finding the right job takes energy and dedication and if you’re not working with one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, you’ll be using multiple job-search tools and resources. This takes time and energy, so it’s important to stay motivated and productive while you are searching. If you are trying to find out how to stay productive while looking for a job, consider the following tips.

Develop a Plan of Action

In order to be most effective during your search, you will need to have a clear set of goals as you proceed through the process. Write down the steps you need to take and refer to the list as you go along. If a particular step seems overwhelming, narrow it down into manageable steps.

For example, one of your steps may be to compile a list of all of the companies in your area who may be hiring for a particular position. Break this down into manageable steps, such as searching the Internet, building a spreadsheet, and highlighting the companies that are closest to you.

Dedicate Specific Hours Every Day to Your Search

You should apply the same work ethic that you have at your job to your job search. Schedule a specific amount of time every day in which to set out to accomplish your tasks. Keep track of your progress as you go along so that you can keep yourself accountable.

Enlist the Help of a Friend

Do you have a friend who is also looking for a new job? If so, you should consider teaming up to increase your productivity during the search. Use this person to critique your cover letters and search for any typos in your resume. You may even consider conducting mock interviews with each other. Enlisting the help of a friend is a great way to stay productive and make progress.

Avoid Burnout

If you’re not working with one of the staffing agencies in Houston, TX, such as Murray Resources, it’s easy to find yourself spending hours on the Internet looking for the right job. One way to avoid burnout is to take breaks frequently during your job search so that you can return to the task refreshed and more focused.

Exercise frequently

One of the best ways to keep yourself healthy and focused during a job search is to exercise on a regular basis. Exercise will help regulate your mood by providing your brain with needed endorphins; regular exercise also has the added benefit of helping you sleep better at night, allowing you to return to the job search refreshed the next day.

Set Goals

Most staffing agencies in Houston, TX will recommend that you set goals during the job search process. These goals may be daily, weekly, or even monthly. If you are submitting your resume to multiple employers, track your activity. When you have a measurable goal to shoot for, you will feel much more productive as you progress.

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

Turn to one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX – Murray Resources – for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

Office Workouts

October 10th, 2012

Wednesday always seems to be the day when the weight of the workweek really seems to settle in, doesn’t it? You feel that fresh start, beginning-of-the-week vigor start to slip away, but you’ve yet to gain that Thursday/Friday, make-it-to-the-weekend motivation; you’re a little more tired, a little more stressed than you were three days ago, but you still have half the week ahead of you. In short, Wednesdays can be deflating for both mind and body.

But Murray Resources, one of the leading Houston staffing agencies,  is here to help you break up the mid-week monotony! What better way to alleviate stress than to get the blood pumping with a little office exercise? Today’s installment contains thirteen workout moves you can do while at your desk- all it takes is a chair, a water bottle, and a little creativity!

http://exercise.about.com/cs/exerciseworkouts/l/blofficeworkout.htm

P.S. Even though we’re only posting these kinds of tips on Wednesdays, they can (and should!) be used throughout the week to keep you physically energized and mentally focused everyday!

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

Turn to one of the top Houston staffing agencies – Murray Resources – for help in exploring your next career opportunity.  Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

 

Murray Resources’ Best Of: Career Tips, Tricks, & Advice Columns

October 5th, 2012

Whether you’re a fresh-faced college grad looking to enter the work world, a seasoned veteran of the job hunt, a professional looking for a career change, or even an employer seeking guidance for best hiring practices, the Houston recruiters at Murray Resources want to help!

There is a seemingly infinite amount of self-help literature out there aimed at hopeful hires and active employers alike. With mountains of well-intentioned advice available online and in print today, the sheer magnitude of search results returned for phrases such as “career advice” or “job seeking tips” is enough to overwhelm even the most enthusiastic of applicants.

Beginning next Monday, we’ll be exposing our blog readers, Twitter followers, and Facebook fans to the best of what the career gurus of the Web have to offer. The Houston recruiters at Murray Resources have compiled an assortment of what we think are the some of the most effective and comprehensive tips, tricks, and advice columns, and will be posting one article per day that we hope our followers will find useful in their career-related endeavors.

Each article we post will correspond with the daily theme:

o Market Yourself Monday
o Interview Tips Tuesday
o Workplace Wellness Wednesday
o Rally That Resume Thursday
o Network to Get Work Friday
o Social Media Saturday

The journey toward your ideal career should be one of excitement, opportunity, and intellectual challenge, not stress, frustration, or disillusionment. Our goal is to create an organized collection of resources that will provide you with the tools necessary to carry out a positive, successful job search, and we hope you’ll find our compilation inspiring and beneficial in helping you to reach your full potential.

Stay tuned for exciting updates to follow!

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

Turn to the Houston recruiters at Murray Resources for help in exploring your next career opportunity. Contact Murray Resources today to get started.

How “Saving” Money Now on Understaffing Costs You Later

September 7th, 2012

Leverage. Optimization. Streamline. Lean and mean. Do more with less. Maximize resources. Right size. Over the past decade, the challenging economic times have driven some of the most commonly-used corporate phrases into becoming actual management strategies.

While quality improvement, re-engineering, and right-sizing initiatives have resulted in unparalleled gains for American businesses, the long-term effects of cutting too deep and staying understaffed are often hidden. In many instances, understaffing has become a real threat to future prosperity.

Below are just a few of the hidden costs of understaffing:

Stressed employees – Understaffing virtually ensures employees are stretched beyond the limits of what they can sustain over extended periods. The result is a stressful environment, where employees battle to get the same (or more) amount of work done with less help. In this environment, workers are generally concerned with just getting through day. Value-added initiatives typically stall, while teamwork and morale often suffer.

Higher personnel costs – Years of research supports that stressed employees are much more likely to get sick, stay home, and require workers’ compensation. In addition to the related hard costs, tending to personnel issues can be a significant drain on management resources.

Mistakes – When organizations try to produce more work using a constrained workforce, attention to detail will inevitably suffer. Whether it’s paying an engineer rework a project or replacing incorrect orders, those mistakes cost money.

Missed deadlines – How much do you have to pay for late deliveries or projects that aren’t completed on time? Empty desks (that need to be filled) mean the rest of the workforce pushes products out the door later than you (and your clients) will want.

Unhappy customers – Customers notice when we’re one day (or hour) late with a promised product. They also notice when the product isn’t perfect. Unhappy customers do not result in repeat business. How much would it cost you per year to lose even one of your best customers? Chances are, it’s more than the cost of the extra assistant your staff needs.

Missed opportunities – One of the most commonly overlooked consequences of stretching your staff too thin is missing new business, partnership, and related opportunities. Networking lunches, ‘thank you’ dinners with top customers, and breakfasts with prospects tend to take a back seat to the more pressing issues, such as getting orders out the door and satisfying current clients. Yet reductions in business development activities will eventually take a toll on the new business flow for an organization, ultimately costly your company significant revenue.

Employee turnover – Even if you continue to pay your current workforce well and offer the same benefits you always have, burned-out employees will not stick around indefinitely. Chances are, there is another company offering similar benefits while maintaining a well-equipped staff.

Disadvantage against competition – Compound all of the above repercussions of a too-lean staff, and it’s obvious why competitors will enjoy another company’s  “cost-cutting” methods. While the cost-cutting company stretches the remaining employees too thin, competitors will jump at the opportunity to produce quality products, on time, and with a smile on their faces.

Yes, running lean can save money in the short term, but don’t underestimate the costs associated with lost business, reduced productivity, and increased workplace stress.  A well-staffed business not only allows your employees to do their best work, but it also gives you the best chance of remaining successful in today’s competitive marketplace.

What’s your take on understaffing? Have you experienced it? How did it go?

Ready to build your team?

Hiring is difficult, but it doesn’t need to be. As one of the leading Houston staffing agencies, Murray Resources can take the hassle out of hiring for you – so you can bring an exceptional candidate on board that meets your needs. Contact Murray Resources today to learn more.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Hiring Overqualified Employees

September 4th, 2012

As one of the leading Houston staffing agencies, Murray Resources knows there are plenty of people out there who are hard working, highly skilled, motivated…and unemployed. Whether the victim of downsizing, a diminishing industry, a lack of seniority, or just plain bad luck, they may apply to a position at your company that they’re completely overqualified for.

So the question becomes: Should you hire them?

After all, they have tons of experience and a clear record of accomplishments. At the same time, they may jump ship at the first opportunity that comes along to take a step up.

There are certainly advantages and disadvantages to hiring someone who’s more than qualified. To help you make a decision, here’s a look at some of them:

The Good

• Value. When you hire someone who’s overqualified, you’ll likely get more bang for your buck than if you were to hire someone less experienced. Not only that, they may be able to offer some valuable intangibles, such as mentoring to entry level employees.

• Ability. If you hire someone who’s overqualified, then there will be less of a learning curve, if there is one at all. This means they can become productive faster and positively impact your bottom line.

• Contributions. Someone who’s overqualified has probably “been there, done that.” So they may be able to offer you a unique perspective or innovative ideas that you might not get from a less experienced employee.

The Bad

• Lack of Value. An overqualified employee may demand pay that’s less than what they’re used to earning, but still more than you can afford.

• An Attitude. Just because an employee is overqualified doesn’t mean they’re going to bring a good attitude with them. Some might be bitter about taking a step back in their careers, while others might be arrogant know-it-alls.

The Ugly

• Quick Turnover. This is the biggest drawback because not only does it reduce productivity and morale, but it also means you’re back to the drawing board when it comes to hiring for the position.

Still not sure whether to hire an overqualified candidate?

Then consider a contract or temporary to hire arrangement, where you try out the candidate (and the candidate tries out the position) for a set period of time, then you both make your decisions after that time. Who knows? In the meantime, a higher level position may open up in your organization that’s the perfect fit for the candidate.

Want to Outsource the Hiring Process?

If you’d like to outsource some of the hiring process to staffing experts, you’ve come to the right place. As one of the leading Houston staffing agencies, Murray Resources can take the hassle out of hiring for you – so you can bring an exceptional candidate on board that meets your needs. Contact Murray Resources today to learn more.

Ignore Call Waiting and Other Tips for a Successful Phone Interview

August 23rd, 2012

As a Houston staffing agency devoted to matching talented candidates with top employers, Murray Resources sets up lots of phone interviews. Read on for tips on how to make yours a success.

Work with your recruiter to set up a specific time for the call. You certainly don’t want the call coming right in the middle of your P90X routine. “Gasp – hello!?” As your Houston recruiter, we can help you avoid that.

Use a landline instead of a cell phone. As much as we love our cell phones, it’s still safer to trust a landline for a call this important. And test it out beforehand if it’s been a while since you’ve put it to use.

Make sure your voicemail message is courteous, professional, and includes your name. Got one of those quirky “Hello? [Pause] Hello?” voicemail recordings? Change it. And double check your message either way. Some people unknowingly leave outdated or awkward messages on their phones for years.

If you have given your home line as your point of contact, be sure to let your household know that potential employers will be calling. Try to answer the phone yourself, but just in case you can’t, ask your family or roommate(s) to answer the phone in a professional manner and to pass along messages promptly.

Conduct the interview in a separate room in order to avoid any potential distractions. Make sure the caller hears nothing except your voice. Got a yappy dog? It might be a good time to give him a new chew toy. You can also create a calm signal to let your roommates know that it’s the call you’ve been waiting on, instead of the standard frantic hand wave/shushing motion some employ.

DO NOT interrupt your conversation to answer another call. Silence your other phones, and if a call does come through via call-waiting, creating that distinctive break in the conversation, either ignore it or make light of the situation – “I told the telemarketers not to interrupt this call, but apparently they didn’t listen. Sorry about that!”

Talk directly into the mouthpiece. Most of us have talked on the phone to someone who holds the phone at their neck. Please don’t be that person. And if you have a bad connection and/or have difficulty hearing the caller, either have the person call you back, adjust the phone, or ask them to speak louder. Either way, do not move forward in the conversation if you can’t hear what’s being said.

Be fully prepared with notes in regards to: 1) the company, 2) the position, and 3) yourself (resume). All the interviewer is going on is how you sound, so sound organized and well prepared.

Prepare (but don’t memorize) responses to 5-10 common interview questions. We’ve made this part easy. For sample questions, consult our Typical Interview Questions resource document.

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About Murray Resources
Founded in 1988, Murray Resources is a leading Houston staffing agency, providing quality professional-level placement services, as well as temporary, temp-to-hire, contract, payroll and direct hire administrative/clerical services.

Over the past 24 years, Murray Resources has developed a unique placement process to match candidates based not only on experience and skill set, but also on how well a candidate can put that skill set to work within a particular corporate culture. Murray Resources’ 95% Performance Evaluation Score represents one of the highest placement satisfaction rates in the industry. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009

Why You Shouldn’t List Your Uncle as a Reference (and Other Tips)

August 20th, 2012

At some point in the job search, you’ll need to provide references. Do it the right way. As Houston recruiters, we at Murray Resources get asked lots of questions about references. And with over twenty years of experience as a Houston staffing agency, we’ve got answers.

Can I use my uncle/BFF/pastor/ex-wife as a reference?
We don’t recommend it. Your potential boss won’t be hanging out with you on weekends, and likely isn’t interested in how devoted of a niece or nephew you are. Sure, it’s probably a nice bonus if your new employer discovers you feed the homeless on Thursday evenings, but when asked for references, employers are really wanting to know how you perform in the workplace.

I’m just out of school. Who are my references?
In this case, your reference could easily be a professor who is intimately familiar with your work, or a supervisor from an internship.

How should I ask someone to be a reference?
First of all, stay in touch with past supervisors and co-workers by providing  periodic updates. Most of us enjoy hearing from past co-workers (and if someone doesn’t enjoy hearing from you, they aren’t the best reference anyway). Not only does this help maintain valuable connections, it also won’t feel so forced when the need for a reference does arise. “Hey Jim, it’s Danielle. You may remember me from 1998? So uh…” becomes “Hey Jim, how’re the kids? Also, I was wondering if I could use you as a reference?”

When do I line up my references?
Before an employer even asks for them. That way you won’t have to scramble about finding up-to-date contact information at the last minute.

What is the best way to prepare my list of references? How should it look?
Don’t make your potential employer have to guess anything. A good reference list will include the name of the reference, the company where you worked together, their title, your relationship (supervisor, co-worker, etc.), their email address and phone number, as well as where they are currently working (if different). Also include their preferred method of contact and the best days/times to reach them, if possible.

What will the potential employer ask my references?
Potential employers ask questions relating to the responsibilities of the job you’re seeking. For example, if the job requires a strong leader, they’ll probably ask a battery of questions about your leadership capabilities, including past examples. In most cases, employers are looking for a clear picture of your qualifications to find out if you fit the role.

What are the most common mistakes job-seekers make when crafting or submitting references?
Not adequately preparing references for the calls and providing friends or relatives as references. Give your references a heads up, and ask them to make an effort to connect with the caller. We’ve seen the hiring process drag on for weeks when references cannot be reached – and in some cases it cost the candidate the job.

And as far as providing friends and relatives, don’t do it unless asked. Of course your BFF thinks you’re grand, but employers aren’t interested in your best friend’s opinion.

Should I include “References Available Upon Request” on my resume?
Nope. These days, it’s obvious that you will provide an employer with references if requested. It’s like saying, “Will come in for interview upon request.” Of course you will! No need to waste valuable resume real estate with these fillers. Instead, use that line to add just one more example of how you saved your last employer some money, or to list another project you drove to completion.

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Founded in 1988, Murray Resources is a leading Houston staffing agency, providing quality professional-level placement services, as well as temporary, temp-to-hire, contract, payroll and direct hire administrative/clerical services.

Over the past 24 years, Murray Resources has developed a unique placement process to match candidates based not only on experience and skill set, but also on how well a candidate can put that skill set to work within a particular corporate culture. Murray Resources’ 95% Performance Evaluation Score represents one of the highest placement satisfaction rates in the industry. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009

Top 10 Ways Applicants Strike Out When Interviewing

August 15th, 2012

You’re qualified. You’re smart. So why didn’t you get the job? In a survey of 153 companies, the following reasons were most commonly given as to why they did not hire an otherwise qualified candidate. Avoid these common mistakes and you may just increase your chances of landing the job.

1) Poor personal appearance – If you refuse to have your slacks hemmed or style your hair for an interview, chances are you won’t put forth the effort to excel at your job.

2) Lack of interest and enthusiasm – Remember, employers are thinking about what you’ll be like as an employee. Not interested in the interview? Then you won’t be interested in your work, either.

3) Over-emphasis on money – Think, “I care more about pay than contributing to your company.” Next, please.

4) Condemnation of past employers – Nobody wants a sourpuss trolling around their water cooler. Keep things pleasant.

5) Failure to look at interviewer while conversing – Staring at your pants during an interview says, “I’m a nervous wreck and I won’t have confidence in this job.”

6) Limp, fishy handshake –Some are keen to dole out the limp fish specifically to women. Appalling! Give everyone you meet a solid grip, which conveys confidence, as opposed to fear.

7) Late to interview – Sure, traffic was a nightmare. It’s always a nightmare. Plan ahead.

8) Failure to express appreciation for interviewer’s time – If you don’t thank your potential employer, they’ll take note that you likely won’t thank their clients, either.

9) Asks no questions about the job – Employers will translate this to mean you don’t put much thought into details, like the projects for which they’re considering hiring you.

10) Indefinite response to questions – Houston recruiters look for confident candidates. Practice articulating what you can do for a company.

Founded in 1988, Murray Resources is a leading Houston staffing agency, providing quality professional-level placement services, as well as temporary, temp-to-hire, contract, payroll and direct hire administrative/clerical services. Over the past 24 years, Murray Resources has developed a unique placement process to match candidates based not only on experience and skill set, but also on how well a candidate can put that skill set to work within a particular corporate culture. Murray Resources’ 95% Performance Evaluation Score represents one of the highest placement satisfaction rates in the industry. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009 or visit www.murrayresources.com.

Houston Recruiting Firm – Murray Resources – Launches 6 Month Guarantee Program

July 23rd, 2012

(Houston, TX – July 23, 2012) – Murray Resources, an award-winning Houston-based staffing agency and recruiting firm, today announced the launch of its innovative 6 Month Guarantee program.

Murray Resources’ 6 Month Guarantee ensures that any full-time, direct-hire placement made through Murray Resources before the end of 2012 is guaranteed to still be employed 6 months following the candidate’s date of hire or Murray Resources will refill the position at no charge.

“We’re excited to launch the program because it embodies Murray Resources’ commitment and reputation for finding quality matches between companies and candidates. With our 25-year track record of placing candidates in roles where they truly excel, we’re able to offer a guarantee that is three times the industry average,” said Marsha Murray, president of Murray Resources.

Facts about Murray Resources:

– Historical 95% client satisfaction rate
– Client referrals are the company’s largest source of new business (43%)
– 11 Fortune™ clients as customers
– Average employee tenure over 5 years
– A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau

Founded in 1988, Murray Resources serves a base of over 800 client companies, including numerous Fortune 1000 companies and high-growth small and medium-sized organizations throughout the greater Houston area. The firm places administrative and management talent in the accounting, engineering, finance, human resources, marketing, operations, and sales functions and has a database of over 8,000 candidates.

In a study commissioned by the firm, Murray Resources’ clients reported a 95 percent match satisfaction rate versus an industry rate of between 50 and 60 percent. The company has been named a “Best Places to Work” by the Houston Business Journal and the #1 Fastest Growing Woman Owned Business in the Personnel Category by the Houston Business Journal.

Prospective employers who are interested in working with Murray Resources to build their teams are advised to visit the company’s website at www.murrayresources.com or call 713.935.0009.

Prospective candidates may view current job opportunities by visiting Murray Resource’s job board at jobs.murrayresources.com.

About Murray Resources
Murray Resources is a leading recruiting firm and staffing agency based in Houston, Texas, providing quality professional-level placement services, as well as temporary, temp-to-hire, contract, payroll and direct hire administrative/clerical services. Over the past 30 years, Murray Resources has developed a unique placement process to match candidates based not only on experience and skill set, but also on how well a candidate can put that skill set to work within a particular corporate culture. Murray Resources’ 95% Performance Evaluation Score represents one of the highest placement satisfaction rates in the industry. For more information, contact Murray Resources at 713.935.0009 or visit www.murrayresources.com.

Are Your Employees Motivated & Engaged – Or Ready to Jump Ship?

September 27th, 2011

Company ABC and Company XYZ are in the same industry, offer similar products, and are both experiencing a cash crunch due to the economy. But whereas employees at Company ABC are feeling either overworked and stressed out or completely disengaged, employees at Company XYZ are motivated and optimistic about the future.

How can two such similar companies have employees with such different attitudes?

As one of Houston’s top staffing agencies, we know that the simple answer lies in leadership. Employees at Company XYZ are feeling optimistic because company leaders know how to motivate them and navigate them through a high stress environment.

So how can you keep your employees on board and moving forward during tough times? Below are 4 tips that can help:

1. Get Connected

Great managers are great because they know how to connect with their employees. They know the importance of getting to know their employees on a more personal level, and therefore, they have a good understanding of each employee’s strengths and weaknesses and of what makes them tick. As a result, if it does come down to layoffs, they know how to best reposition people in order to fill in the talent gaps, while still maximizing strengths.

2. Set Clear Expectations

This might sound like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised at how few employees know, in very certain terms, what’s expected of them on the job. Setting clear expectations becomes even more important if your company has experienced layoffs and remaining staff are unclear as to where to pick up the slack.

3. Communicate a Vision

Managers should let their employees know what their vision is for the future of the company – and how each employee fits into that vision. Why? Because without a strong vision, employees don’t really know what they’re working toward or why their roles matter. It’s also important to communicate new opportunities on the horizon and how the company plans to take advantage of them.

4. Recognize Employees

It can be easy to focus on mistakes and correcting weaknesses, and forget about recognition altogether. But when times are tough – and people are being bombarded with bad news everywhere – recognition becomes even more important. So what’s the easiest and least expensive way to boost recognition efforts? Praise often and generously when employees do great work or go the extra mile.

Click here for more ideas on employee recognition efforts.

And if you have a talent gap you need to fill at work, Murray Resources can help. In fact, for more than 23 years, we’ve helped high-performance organizations – including numerous Fortune 1000 companies – build strong teams. If you’d like assistance from one of Houston’s premier staffing agencies, please contact us today.

Posted in: Blog, Tips

5 Ways Staffing Agencies Can Help Your Houston Small Business

August 16th, 2011

As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, we know that staffing is one of the most difficult, yet critical tasks, a business can undertake. If you have a top tier team in place, you can get more done, improve customer satisfaction, and increase profitability.

However, one bad hire can cause your entire staffing function to suffer a big blow. Hiring the wrong person for a job can lead to decreased morale and lower productivity, not to mention that it can cost you a lot of money.

So how can you avoid staffing mistakes?

By working with a reputable staffing agency in Houston. An agency has the knowledge, skills, and resources in place to help you hire the most qualified candidate for your team. They know where to look to find the top talent and know the right questions to ask to uncover weaknesses.

That said, a staffing agency can do more than just help you avoid hiring mistakes. Here’s a look at four other ways an agency can help your small business:

1. A Staffing Agency Can Help You Save Money

While there is obviously a cost to working with a staffing agency, you can actually save money in the long run. Rather than having to implement an expensive recruitment campaign, as well as develop your own screening, interviewing, and testing processes, you can hire an agency that has the knowledge, experience, and processes in place to perform these tasks more efficiently.

2. A Staffing Agency Can Help You Save Time

When an employee quits, you can quickly lose productivity until you fill the position, especially if they give you less than a few weeks notice. But most staffing agencies have a candidate database with pre-screened and qualified individuals they can tap into to speed up the hiring process for you.

3. A Staffing Agency Can Help You Avoid Hiring Hassles

If you’re like many small businesses, you don’t have a dedicated HR department. Or you may have an HR professional on staff who is already busy with many duties, like handling benefits and payroll.

If this is the case, a staffing agency can take on the many time-consuming hassles associated with hiring, including recruiting, screening, interviewing, conducting background checks, verifying references, and conducting skills testing – and then send only a handful of highly qualified candidates to you.

4. A Staffing Agency Can Improve Your Flexibility

While a staffing agency can give you access to candidates for full-time positions, they can also help fill temporary job openings, as well. So if your company experiences busy seasons or you have an employee going on an extended leave, you can leverage the power of temporary staffing to ensure you have the right people in place…when you need them.

So what can Murray Resources do for your small business? Give us a call. Together, we can explore staffing solutions that can help you more easily manage your staffing function – and help your company grow. Contact us today.

Should I Hire a Bookkeeper, an Accountant, or Both?

July 5th, 2011

When you’re running a small business, today’s software and technology solutions have made it easier than ever to handle accounting tasks yourself. However, there are likely times when you’re uncertain if you’re doing things correctly or when these tasks are cutting into the time needed to grow your business. If that’s true for you, it may be time to hire a bookkeeper or an accountant. But which do you need?

A bookkeeper is responsible for the day-to-day accounting tasks, such as:

  • Paying and submitting invoices; following up on them if necessary
  • Paying bills
  • Making bank deposits
  • Tracking and recording company expenses and other transactions
  • Ensuring new employees complete the proper paperwork for payroll
  • Managing payroll

An accountant is responsible for the larger picture tasks as they relate to a company’s finances, including:

  • Analyzing the numbers and offering strategic advice and guidance
  • Preparing and filing company tax returns
  • Preparing financial documents, such as profit and loss statements

So the answer may be that you need both. Possibly, you can hire a bookkeeper – whether full-time or part-time – and then just work with an accounting firm to handle those strategic accounting needs. Whatever the case, when you have the right team in place to handle your finances, you’ll benefit from:

  • More organized records
  • More accurate billing for your clients
  • A better understanding of how much money you’re really making
  • A better understanding of how much money you’re really spending
  • More time to focus on managing employees, increasing sales, and growing your business
  • Money saved from any late fees you’ve been accumulating as a result of inefficient bill paying
  • Being able to make better-educated decisions about your finances and your business
  • Peace of mind that comes with knowing your accounting functions are being properly handled

Whether you think you need a part-time bookkeeper, or a full-time accountant, Murray Resources can help. As one of Houston’s leading staffing agencies specializing in accounting and finance, we have the knowledge and experience to source the finest candidates for your contract and full-time job openings. Contact us today to learn more.

How to Evaluate Houston Job Candidates

August 17th, 2010

As a Houston staffing agency, we know that hiring is a lot easier – and much more successful – if you use the right candidate assessment tools. So beyond the basic interview, what tools can you use to evaluate candidates? Here are a few:

1. Qualification questionnaire.
This is simply a questionnaire that will help you determine whether the candidate has the right qualifications to perform the job. You may ask questions such as “How many years of related experience do you have?” and “What is your availability?”

2. General abilities test.
These tests are used mostly for entry level positions or jobs that don’t require advanced degrees. They measure abilities such as verbal, written, spatial, and reasoning.

3. Specific ability test.
These tests evaluate a very specific ability, such as typing speed, mechanical aptitude, or reading comprehension.

4. Job simulation test.
A job simulation test requires a candidate to demonstrate that he or she can actually perform the job. There are a variety of options for job simulations, including role-playing, exercises on the computer, and written tests.

5. Knowledge tests.
These tests are typically used to determine how much knowledge an individual has about a very specific subject matter, such as mortgage laws or OSHA regulations.

6. Personality measures.
These tests evaluate a candidate’s personality traits, such as leadership skills, self-confidence, communication skills, and problem-solving ability, to ensure they are a good fit for the position.

7. Background investigations and drug screening.
These checks are important because they can help you to avoid potentially catastrophic hiring mistakes. With a background investigation, you can gather information about a candidate from outside sources, such as police records and former employers. With a drug screen, you can determine any drug use, which can help prevent accidents and work-related injuries.

If you would like to know more about these assessments or need help evaluating job candidates, please contact Murray Resources.

Murray Resources Provides Discounted Fees To HCDE Purchasing Cooperative Members

May 5th, 2010

HOUSTON, T.X. – Murray Resources has recently been selected to receive a contract from the Harris County Department of Education (“HCDE”) cooperative purchasing program. As a program vendor, Murray Resources can provide temporary staffing and substitute teachers for the government entities, school districts and other public, nonprofit agencies and organizations made available through the HCDE Purchasing Cooperative.

Upon completion of all program paperwork and application, Murray Resources was subject to a thorough verification of its credentials. As one of three staffing vendors selected for participation in the cooperative, Murray Resources can now market its services to more than 300 member organizations. The HCDE Purchasing Cooperative member organizations are entitled to a significant discount in fees for utilizing Murray Resources’ services.

“HCDE has worked for more than 100 years to advance public schools in the Greater Houston Area. Murray Resources is proud to receive this designation from HCDE, and to utilize this new relationship to provide superior service to our clients,” said President Marsha Murray.

Murray Resources is a 100 percent certified, woman-owned small business providing recruiting and staff augmentation and payroll services nationwide for more than 20 years. For more information, visit http://www.murrayresources.com.

Posted in: News, Press Release
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