Attracting the Right Talent

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Now is a great time for business! When the sun is shining and consumers venture out to frequent their favorite shops, many of us need to increase our staff to cover the higher demand.

But what do you do if the number of applicants you’re receiving isn’t as great as the number of openings you have?

 

Since unemployment is lower now than it has been in years, it’s increasingly more difficult to find the right candidates for your company.

 

There are a few things you can do to attract the right talent:

 

1) Increase wages

While it’s not feasible for everyone to up their pay scale, if you can manage to bump it up some, it will not only attract more applicants, but more experienced applicants.

 

2) Offer Benefits

Paid time off, health insurance, 401K plans, gym memberships, lunch on Fridays…

While some of these don’t seem like much, if you can offer just a little extra, you’re more likely to get a higher number of applications. If you are a small business and can’t offer health insurance, maybe try paying for annual flu shots for your employees. If you’re making the effort, your employees will notice.

 

3) Get Referrals

One of the best ways to get good candidates is to ask your friends, family and current employees if they know anyone who needs a job or wants to transition to something new. Even if you don’t get any immediate hits, someone might show up later when you’re hiring again. If you don’t ask, you won’t get an answer!

 

Lastly, if you need only temporary employees for a season, or want someone else to attract and hire talent while you run your business, Priority Staffing Group has years of experience placing individuals in both temporary jobs and in long-term careers.

 

We can give you a free consultation if you request a meeting from the location closest to you.

Marion, IL: 618-969-8800 | Vandalia, IL: 618-283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN: 615-295-2127

Employee PTO

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Employee benefits often include some kind of paid time off. And every year, your employees will take advantage of cashing in that time and enjoying a few days away from work.

But, what if, like many other companies, your employees see the summer sunshine and all want to take off the same days. If you want to keep your employees happy, you need to make accommodations for their summer plans, but it’s just not feasible to close down your facility if you find yourself short-staffed.

 

So, how do you handle multiple requests? The following tips will help you find a solution.

 

1) Have a time frame for requests

Not having a time-off policy in place is the easiest way to find yourself in a bind. A good start is to set a time frame for requests – like a minimum of two weeks before. Some businesses may need more to find coverage for an absent employee. Evaluate your needs and make a reasonable rule you can hold your employees to.

 

2) Encourage time off during other seasons

Your employees won’t always request time off for spring, fall or holiday trips, but suggesting some time off when the business is slower (or when it seems your employee needs a break) may spark a trip idea. If you’re accommodating the whole year, you won’t have a flood of requests during the summer season only.

 

3) Cross-train

While each employee at your company likely has a specified role, it is good to have a backup person. If your office manager needs to take a vacation and no one else at the company knows how to turn off the alarm system or where to check the mail, those tasks can seriously hinder your operations. Make a point to have at least two people at your company who can perform all vital tasks.

 

4) First Come, First Served

At the end of the day, if the other suggestions don’t work, you need to have the rule to follow when multiple employees request off and you can’t run the business without them. Make it clear when someone is hired that requests will be approved if at all possible, but the first person to submit a request will be given priority.

 

If you have questions about our own PTO policies, or how we can help your business, give one of our offices a call!

 

Marion, IL: 618-969-8800 | Vandalia, IL: 618-283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN: 615-295-2127

Business After Hours 2018

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Priority Staffing Group was excited to host the Marion Chamber of Commerce’s Business After Hours program on Thursday, May 24th.

From 4:00 – 7:00 in the evening, chamber members and friends gathered with Priority Staffing Group employees at their headquarters.

 

Gail Barger and Heather Goines, PSG Partners

“We love hosting parties,” Gail Lannom, CEO said. “We always have a good time!”

 

Priority Staffing Group brought in a bartender from Pookie’s Bar as well as the bagel cart from Winston’s Bagels to provide food for the event attendees.

 

Heather Goines-Evans, COO, said, “Hosting events like these After Hours programs is a great opportunity to show the community where we are as well as let us network with our current clients and community members.”

 

Pookies

Bagels

 

We greatly appreciate everyone who came and entered our drawing with their business cards.

 

IMG-9505Congratulations to our winners:

 

Becky Barger (Wine Basket)

Janet Jensen (Bluetooth, Waterproof Radio)

Rick Richert ($50.00 Car Detailing Gift Card).

 

We hope everyone who came out to the event had a good time. Follow our blog to keep updated on our next big event!

RoomRoom 2

 

Gail and Gail Laughing

Heather and Priscilla

IMG-9485

Staffing Agency, group photo

We Do Care

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Staffing Agency, group photo

We get it. We know why you shy away from using a staffing agency when you’re job searching. You don’t want to just be another body in a warehouse. Well, Priority Staffing Group is different for one simple reason: We care.

It’s easy to take everyone who comes in for a job and throw them into the first open position we have. But we don’t do things the easy way; we do things the right way. Three things happen in our office that you won’t see other agencies do.

 

1) We Ask

When you come in for an interview with Priority Staffing, we ask a series of questions that don’t just determine if you are able to do a job, but determine if you will enjoy the job. Our belief here is that no one should get stuck doing a job they hate. Life is too short for that and we want to see people both successful AND happy. Taking the extra time to ask you the right questions helps us figure out what your next steps will be.

 

2) We Listen

After asking our interview questions, we don’t just tell you what job we want to put you in. We listen to your feedback and hear your concerns. If you say “I hated my last job because it was too dirty,” then we are not going to put you in a cleaning job that we know you won’t like. We take the time to listen and understand you so that you’ll have a placement that you enjoy.

 

3) We Care

Above all else, our Recruiters and Account Managers at Priority Staffing Group genuinely care about our applicants. Many of us came to this company with a desire to help people and make a difference. Having that passion for people is what makes us different. Priority Staffing Group hires our internal staff with the same patience and thoughtfulness we use to hire for our clients’ positions. We hire people who match our company culture and fit in with our values.

Everyone at our staffing agency is out to make your success our priority.

 

If you’re a job seeker ready to make the leap, call any of our office locations so we can get you on the way to the career you want.

Marion, IL – (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL – (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN – (615) 295-2127

Best Practices: Interview Questions

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For those of us who have been on the candidate side of an interview, it can be difficult to answer the question about, well, questions.

 

So what are interview question dos and don’ts? Read on for some suggestions on what to ask and not to ask in your next job interview.

 

The Dos:

 

The Basics

You probably came into your interview with some questions about hours, expectations of the job, reporting supervisor, etc. Asking questions they didn’t answer is the best place to start. It shows you have genuine interest in the job and what you’ll be doing at the company. Just make sure to focus on aspects that show you care about the right things, rather than how you can cut corners.

 

Business Structure

As you prepared for your interview, you probably spent some time online gathering information about the company. That’s a great start, but what didn’t you find out? Did their website tell you how many locations they have, but not when the company was founded? Ask how long they’ve been in business.

Did you find a detailed history of the company, but nothing about their current staff? Ask how many employees they have locally/regionally/nationally. Show an interest in the company you’re auditioning for and you’ll make a good impression.

 

Company Culture

No one likes to start a job and find out on the first day that everyone there works in shared office space as a team, when you prefer to work independently, away from distractions. It is important to know what culture you’re coming into. Teams who like each other tend to work better together, making everyone’s job a little easier.

Ask what kinds of team building activities they do as a company, but also ask about the business’ mission statement and if they have a set of Core Values. You’ll sound impressive to your interviewer and also get some inside info that other applicants probably didn’t think to ask.

The Don’ts

job interview

Monetary Gain

If this is your first interview at the company, don’t bring up salary or benefits unless the interviewer brings it up first. If they ask, it has opened up a door. But if they don’t, it probably isn’t their biggest concern and shouldn’t be yours either.

Don’t make it seem like you’re only in it for the money, vacation time, insurance or 401K match. Business owners want to see that their employees are engaged in the work and their goals more than their compensation.

 

People

Don’t ask about race, gender, marital status, age, religion, etc. of your interviewer or anyone else who works at that company. Just like you don’t want them to ask you about those things, it is inappropriate to ask that of them.

 

Lifestyle

Do I have to take a drug test? This question is a sure way to get rejected for a position. Even if the company doesn’t require drug testing, you have caused concern for your reliability and responsibility. Always be prepared to take a drug test for work, but never worry your interviewer about whether you’ll pass or not.

 

Overall, be prepared to ask two to three good questions and shy away from asking anything too personal or too specific. If you need help preparing, Priority Staffing Group provides interview coaching and resume writing help to our applicants. We want to see our applicants succeed. Call any of our offices to find out how we can help connect you to your next opportunity.

 

Marion, IL: (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL: (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN: (615) 295-2127

professional hiring

Myth Buster #3

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Myth: Staffing agencies only have industrial jobs

 

Staffing agencies don’t do professional hiring, right?

Wrong.

 

It’s common to think that staffing agencies only have hard labor or industrial jobs, like warehouse and factory. And while we do hire for those types of jobs, they are not the only options we offer. The truth is, we provide opportunities for everything from entry-level to specialized technical and professional roles.

 

At Priority Group, we recruit for vocational positions like CNC machinists, welders, electricians and all sorts of mechanics and engineers. Many of our locations even offer banking, call center, IT, marketing, and a variety of clerical or customer service positions in addition to our clients who offer warehouse, factory and general labor work.

Apply for clerical jobs here!

 

For professional positions, we recommend applying through our Direct Hire Placement Service. Megan Jones, Priority Staffing’s Direct Hire Operations Manager, takes the extra time to place professionals in positions such as Accounting, Nursing and Upper Management. If your qualifications more closely identify to what we offer in this department, send your resume to get started.

 

If you know someone who is looking for a new opportunity, no matter what walk of life they’re in, send them to us! Priority Staffing Group is here to help.

 

You can get submitted for multiple positions with one interview here, making it easier to find a job you’ll love. Read why your odds are better through a staffing agency here.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn Profile Tips for Job Seekers

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LinkedIn

If you are looking for a new career opportunity, your social media presence, especially your LinkedIn profile, can play a very important role in your success.

In Illinois it is actually illegal for employers to use social media in determining whether or not to hire someone. Employers can, however, use sites like LinkedIn to find qualified applicants and notify them of career opportunities. For this reason, you want to make sure your profile depicts you in an accurate and professional manner.

If you’ve created your profile, but are not getting any attention, think about making a few changes. It could be that your profile does not portray a professional look. Unlike other social media platforms, LinkedIn is almost all business. Your profile, posts and comments should keep with that fact. For those of you struggling to gain traction on LinkedIn, here are some simple tips that you can implement today.

1. Add a Professional Headshot

With LinkedIn, it’s all about being professional. Therefore, your photo should depict a professional image, not an inappropriate, blank or casual one. Most phones now have a camera with high enough resolution to capture a good photo – so no excuses! Remember, your photo could be the first impression an employer has of you, so dress accordingly.

2. Use Keywords in your Headline

Your headline should contain keywords that relate to the position you are seeking. Think about some of the most likely terms or phrases a potential employer looking to hire candidates might search for and add them to your profile. It will make you more visible to searchers.

3. Create a Results-Driven Summary

Given that it’s the first section people read after your header and headline, be sure to include any key achievements, career milestones, awards, endorsements and success stories. Instead of focusing on tasks you completed, focus on the results your actions yielded.

4. Ask for Recommendations

Recommendations can help readers understand the types of problems you solve, how you make decisions and how you handle tough situations. Ask supervisors from past jobs and others you have done business with to leave you a recommendation outlining your skills and achievements.

5. Make Regular Updates

Being “top of mind” with potential employers can be very beneficial. Aside from staying in front of them, sharing insights about your career field will show that you are serious about your profession and work to stay current in your field.

6. Become Active in LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn groups are a great place to connect with potential employers while demonstrating your knowledge on a particular topic. You should search out groups specific to your profession and actively engage in those groups. You may be unknowingly demonstrating your expertise to a future employer.

7. Turn off LinkedIn Activity Broadcasts

Turn off your account’s activity broadcasts if you don’t want potential employers to know that you are updating your profile. If you are reading this and have just realized your entire profile needs an overhaul, you may want to turn off updates to stay off the radar of potential employers until your profile is ready for action.

While the tips above are pretty simple, making sure your profile is professional, up to date and demonstrates your expertise is more than worthwhile when you are looking to change careers. Take a few moments today to make sure your profile is making the first impression you want it to.

 

If you are looking for professional career opportunities, be sure to apply for positions you are interested in and call any of our offices to schedule an interview.

Marion, IL – (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL – (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN – (615) 295-2127

Happy Holidays!

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From everyone at Priority Staffing Group, we wish you and yours a happy holiday season!

 

Please note that we will have varied hours for the week of Christmas so that we may spend the holiday with our families.

For questions regarding our open hours, please call any of our offices.

Marion, IL – (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL – (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN – (615) 295-2127

resume writing

Resume Writing: The Beginner’s Guide

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Resume writing can be difficult, but, trust us, it doesn’t have to be. All you need is a little time and attention to detail. Follow these tips and soon you’ll be on your way to the job of your dreams!

 

Make a List

Oftentimes, recruiters receive resumes that are pages long. While you should have a list of all your past jobs, you should never send that list to a prospective employer. Start by writing down every job you’ve had and the major responsibilities from each one. This doesn’t need any special formatting since it’s simply a guide to use while creating your tailored resume. While you’re making the list, it helps to name your supervisors and anyone you worked with who you could use as a reference later.

 

 

Choose a Format

Once you have the information you’re going to include on your resume, you should choose a format. If you don’t already know how to format a resume, you can find templates in Microsoft Word or by searching the internet for resume templates. Find something that looks clean and professional.

Your name and contact information should always be at the top of the page. Experience should be next, followed by education and special skills.

 

Include Relevant Details

One you start to write your resume, you’ll want to think about the job you’re applying for, the description of that job and what experience you have that lines up with it. If you worked as an assistant on a construction site, that should be included if you’re applying for a construction job; however, that experience probably isn’t relevant when applying to an administrative or customer service position. The included experience should be tailored to fit each job you apply for. Some exceptions include management positions of any kind or if you don’t have very much job history.

Unless you have 20 years of relevant experience, your resume should be one page only. Cut down on irrelevant job duties. For example, if you worked as the manager of a retail store, you don’t need to include that you know how to operate a cash register. Recruiters will be more interested on whether you know how to make schedules, train employees, and control inventory. Give the big picture with the most important details only.

 

Sell Yourself

 

So, what details should you include? You should tell the things that make you stand out. Remember, the reviewer is receiving several other resumes. Tell them why they should call you before anyone else. Did you increase sales by 20% at your last store? Did you cut down on packing time in the warehouse? Do you know how to use a special computer program? Let the recruiter know what is unique about you!

Make sure to sell yourself and the skills you know, but don’t ever lie. If you only used Adobe Photoshop once in your high school yearbook class, don’t put Expert at Adobe Photoshop on your resume. When you’re asked to prove your skills, you don’t want to embarrass yourself (not to mention, waste your time and the recruiter’s time). Just be honest about what you know and sell those attributes. It will likely land you a job you’re happy with and well-suited for.

 

Proofread

Most importantly, don’t forget to use proper grammar and spelling throughout your resume. Then, read it over again to make sure it’s all correct. If spelling and grammar aren’t your strongest skills, ask someone else to look at it for you.

Finally, Priority Staffing Group is here to help you. Our website has a resume builder that helps you get started. And when you apply with us, we’ll look at your resume and make suggestions for you too. All you have to do is ask! Make an appointment today so that we can get you on your way to a new job!

 

Marion, IL – (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL – (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN – (615) 295-2127

holiday hiring

Hiring Holiday Help

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As the busy season comes around, we know how difficult it can be to hire holiday help for your company.

Read on to find out how to get the right help for your business this year, or call any of our offices to ask about seasonal workers.

Marion, IL – (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL – (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN – (615) 295-2127

 

Hire Quickly

One of the biggest mistakes we see companies make around the holidays is not hiring quickly enough. It can seem tempting to hold off until right before the holiday rush, but unless you have already experienced staff, you have to train these new employees. Seasonal workers need to be able to handle the day to day tasks of your business during the most stressful season. It takes time to hire and train workers to that level of comfort, so don’t delay!

 

 

Ask Questions

Make sure to ask the right questions when interviewing holiday workers.

Ask about their availability. It’s important to know if they have plans to be out of town for certain days or can’t work weekends when you’re the busiest.

Find out how they handle stress by asking them to tell you a time when a shopper was angry at their last job. You need to know they can handle the heat of the holidays, including the frustration many customers can express.

 

Be Clear

Part of finding the right people for the job means advertising clearly. Don’t advertise for a full time, permanent position if you only need workers from November to January. Misleading your applicants will cause wasted time for them and for you when it turns out they don’t have the schedule or skills to perform your job duties. Be clear and be honest.

 

Persuade them

While being honest is important, being persuasive will go a long way too. It’s crucial to explain both the stressers of the job AND the benefits. Do you offer a 30% discount even to your seasonal workers? Tell them! Do you give holiday pay for Christmas Day? Don’t leave that out! You know why your company is such a great place to work – make it clear to the candidate too.

 

 

Call Us!

When hiring for the holidays becomes too stressful, or you need to focus on all the other aspects of running your business, call us! Priority Staffing Group has a database of high-quality candidates we want to share with you.

Many of our applicants would love to work during the holidays for extra money or as a test run for permanent employment. Temp-to-hire contracts are a wonderful way to get extra hands during the holiday season and then keep the best workers all year.

Call any of our locations to speak to an account manager about seasonal workers.

Marion, IL – (618) 969-8800 | Vandalia, IL – (618) 283-9533 | Murfreesboro, TN – (615) 295-2127