Hobson Associates


8 Ways to Set Your Company Apart From the Competition

Men wearing suits and bright colored socksNo matter what industry you’re in, you’re certain to have competitors-- whether it's someone selling a similar product or service, or someone who wants to snag your top job candidate. Whatever the competition is, we all want to beat them and stand out to our clients and consumers.

Yet, in today’s world where everyone claims to be # 1, it’s not so easy to differentiate and build your own authentic identity. Effective differentiation happens to be one of the main challenges small businesses face, as they are forced to compete against the big dogs.

Here are some effective ways to help your company stand out from the rest of the crowd:

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It's About More Clay….

Hands molding clayOur President Danny Cahill is never one to lack the perfect words to motive, encourage or help close deals... Below is an email he recently sent to our team of recruiters. Hope it makes you think, or at the very least - motivate you on this wintry day!

Subject: A Morning Metaphor on a wintry Friday...

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No End in Sight for Low Unemployment: Prepare Now for 2019!

Woman looking out horizonUnemployment is currently at historic lows. A really positive thing, right? The flip side: think it’s tough to find great talent NOW?  New research from the Korn Ferry Institute shows that finding new talent is only going to get more challenging in the coming years.

  • The skills gap is widening, unemployment in the U.S. is at its lowest rate since 2000, and nearly 60% of employers struggle to fill job vacancies within 12 weeks.
  • By 2030, the global talent shortage could reach 85.2 million people—costing companies trillions of dollars in lost economic opportunity.

Industries such as technology, financial services, and manufacturing will be some of the most affected, as they require a high volume of skilled workers—and as demand outpaces supply, competition for qualified candidates will continue to soar.

  • Two-thirds of organizations are not adequately addressing the infrastructure and operations (I&O) skills gaps that will impede their digital business initiatives, according to Gartner, Inc. Successful I&O organizations will need to implement vastly different roles and technologies during the next five years.
  • Gartner forecasts that, by 2019, IT technical specialist hires will fall by more than 5 percent. Moreover, by 2021, 40 percent of IT staff will hold multiple roles, most of which will be business-related rather than technology-related.

With these stats in mind, what does this mean for your organization, and what should you do?

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A Recruiter’s Observations at a Conference

Smiling businesswoman at a trade showApril 2018 was my second year attending the RSA conference in San Francisco. The conference is an annual gathering of leading information security companies and professionals from around the world. Since I specialize in recruiting top talent for cybersecurity technology leaders, RSA is a MUST on my calendar each spring.

The conference tends to remind me a bit of a carnival for adults:

  • There are popcorn machines at every corner
  • Each vendor booth competes to be the flashiest and most eye-catching
  • Free stuff everywhere: t-shirts and other swag, artists drawing caricatures of people, you name it.
  • All the way down to the cheap attempts to draw visitors to their booths by having attractive women dressed up in pigtails and short skirts (THAT is a whole separate blog topic…)

I remember that first year thinking “where the hell am I?” Yet once the glitter and shine faded away, I was able to make a better assessment of the experience in its entirety. This year I wasn’t as distracted by the masses of people, food, amusements and flashing lights. I was a smarter, less distracted and way more successful attendee.

I’d like to share some of my observations and experiences–in the event you will be attending the RSA conference, or any large conference in the future, and help you get the most out of it:

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Candidate Rocks Your World? Then Pull the F***Ing Trigger!

Attractive woman looking at her watchAs a seasoned executive recruiter, I cannot stress enough how difficult it has been lately to get the dots connected between my clients and candidates. By dots I mean it being a "candidate-driven" climate, with unemployment at an all-time low of 4%.

The candidates of “today”, including recent college grads, have many, many employment options. Most industries, including manufacturing, are booming and companies need to hire many more talented folks. Great problem to have, right? One would think so. Yet, I have recently experienced most clients not moving fast enough with their offer letters and losing great candidates to their competitors. 

So WHY are employers wasting time over extending job offers? If I can make one important suggestion it is this: PULL THE [email protected]#$ING TRIGGER IF THE CANDIDATE ROCKS YOUR WORLD, because I assure you that he/she will be gone tomorrow!!

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Want to Be an Awesome Boss? Learn These Skills

Like a bossThe world of work is rapidly changing, particularly when you hear stats like the shelf-life of a skill today is just 5 years. The skills managers need to possess will rapidly change as well.

So what skills will become critical for managers to master over the next few years? Check out what this article by LinkedIn had to say about it.

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Anniversary and Mentor Appreciation Day!!

Attractive woman with her index finger pointing June 26 was my 1 year anniversary as an Insurance Recruiter with Hobson Associates, and what a year it has been! Deals came together, deals fell apart, I traveled to Texas for my first conference, learned an ENTIRE industry from the ground up, got over my fear of cold-calling, and was promoted to Associate! How did I achieve all of this in 365 days? I came in early, worked through lunch many times, and some days I made close to 100 recruiting calls! I won’t lie, putting in the hours is not exactly easy, but compared to the mental stamina required to thrive in any career, it’s a walk in the park. That’s why the #1 best piece of advice that I received from my mentor, Robin, this past year-even above all the terminology and protocols for doing my job-was this:

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My Petition for a Better Hiring Experience

Woman with clipboardI have been signing a lot of petitions lately. Perhaps it’s naïve of me to think it will make a difference, but I exclaim a loud “YES!” to myself each time I digitally sign to save endangered animals, build a new community playground, or keep a beloved TV show on the air. Most times I am not even sure who the petitions go to for consideration. Probably a database that now knows to target me for merchandise with elephants on it because I really do think hunting them for their ivory is gross … Maybe Oprah. I hope so.

What a world it would be if people wanting something positive to happen could do so just by figuratively putting their hand in the air. With that thought in mind, I decided to start my own set of "petitions". Based on my many years of experience in the recruiting industry, I just think that the world would (or at least in my world!) be a better place if the following were to happen:

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What’s More Valuable-a Degree or Job Experience?

Man sitting on floor with laptop and booksI remember taking my last collegiate final at the University of Hartford. I literally walked out of my Entrepreneurial Studies classroom with a smile that was far from scholarly, giving an overtly jubilant high-five to the nearest bystander.

Yet as I would soon discover, there was a lot more than that kid I didn’t know (and still don’t!)

Go to college,” your high school teachers would say,“get a degree,” they continued, “get a job,” they promised…

More than 65% of high-schoolers who graduated will go to college that following fall semester. One thing I still don't understand is the societal norms that emphasize and push high school students into college. Realistically speaking, a piece of paper isn’t going to pick-a-lock that’s going to open the door that is opportunity. So, what separates you from everyone else in America who is graduating in 2018 and about to enter the workforce?

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The Simple Fact- NO room for Passive Hiring Processes

Unsure womanHere are some simple facts that can impact your company’s productivity and profits:

-The unemployment rate is at the lowest it has been in the last 17 years + There are 6.6 million job postings in USA = An unprecedented candidate-driven job market.

-Said candidates have multiple offers for employment, as well as a high rate of counteroffers from their current employers.

What does that mean to a hiring authority?...

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