Cultural tutors

Globalization has had a major impact on how companies conduct business. Markets that were once remote and out of reach are now easily accessed by motivated businesses. Doing business in a new country brings with a host of cultural challenges that must be acknowledged and understood.

This has resulted in an increase in the number of Cultural Tutors as companies strive to carve out a global competitive advantadge. This may be a trend that could provide opportunities for you. Read more about it here.

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Cover letter tips

Let’s start off the week by looking at some articles on cover letters which will give you lots to think about.

Top 5 Tips on How to Create an Effective Cover Letter
Keep Negative Info Out of Your Cover Letter
10 Reasons Why this Cover Letter Rocks

Non-anglo names barrier for job hunters: Study

Some of you may have noticed this high-profile news story from yesterday. A new study indicates that job applicants with English-sounding names on their resumes are 40 per cent more likely to be called for an interview than those with Chinese, Indian or Pakistani names.
You should read the whole study(40 pp. pdf)if you are curious about this or want more information but I would like to point out a couple of items of interest.

Even when applicants had identical Canadian work experiences and educational backgrounds, every 100 resumes with English names resulted in roughly 16 calls from employers. For every 100 resumes with Asian names, only 11 generated calls from employers. That means a resume with an English name was 40-per-cent more likely to generate a call back.

Leaving apart the obviously distressing implications of the above paragraph this confirms the conventional wisdom about sending in resumes for posted jobs. The call-back rate from employers is very low (16% and 11%) in this case. If you are not networking and meeting employers this would mean you would only get between 11 and 16 call-backs for every 100 resumes you send out. Only sending out resumes to posted jobs is a very passive approach.

The other item I wanted to point out from the study was this interesting point about Canadian work experience:

Employers valued experience acquired in Canada much more than if acquired in a foreign country. Changing foreign resumes to include only experience from Canada raised callback rates to 11 percent.  Among resumes listing 4 to 6 years of Canadian experience, whether an applicant’s degree was from Canada or not, or whether the applicant obtained additional Canadian education or not had no impact on the chances for an interview request.

 This underlines the importance of gaining work in your field. Employers seem to value this more than gaining further credentials in this country.

Career Solutions news

Because of renovations taking this place at Camosun College the Career Solutions office has been temporarily relocated. We are still in the same building but have moved to office # 134.

Call us at (250)370-4790 if you have any questions.

Growing your network

This excellent blog post has 37 tips for building you offline and online network. Check out the whole article but I want to highlight a few important tips below:

1. Get an easy-to-remember email address. A good format is firstname.lastname@webmail.com where “webmail” is Gmail, Yahoo Mail, etc. Use this address for job search/work purposes only.

3. Prepare an elevator pitch. In 30 seconds you need to be able to describe who you are and which problems your expertise can solve. Practice until it comes naturally. Tweak as you go, judging by listener response.

28. Find a mentor or mentoring community. You want people who have achieved your goals and can help you achieve similar success. Take your mentor out for lunch and pick their brain.

The in-demand programming skills

Software Engineers and Programmers will want to take note of this postfrom the Career UpShift blog which identifies the skills tech employers are looking for.

Companies are looking for specific skill sets: Anything that is hard core algorithms, pattern recognition, statistics — applying algorithms to real world data. If you have these skills you are likely to have a better chance to find an opportunity. You may even find you’ll get multiple offers.

Other timely skills: AJAX/Javascript, Objective C, Java, PHP or Ruby on Rails. Demand for iPhone programmers…

Custom House sold

Custom House is a Victoria-based currency exchange company which employs 150 people in the Capital Region. They operate on a 24 hour basis and have employees who work in a variety of roles. Custom House has been purchased by Western Union for $370 million dollars.

Currency house is the second high- profile local business to be sold to a major American company in about a month.

Also see: Custom House job postings