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Advice and Insights for Finance Professionals
Updated: 19 hours 19 min ago

3 common mistakes hiring mangers make (and how to fix them)

Thu, 08/11/2016 - 09:30

Hiring new employees is a long process. There are bound to be hiccups along the way, whether it's a candidate rejecting your job offer six months into the process or mixing up candidates during interviews. A number of these incidents might not be in your control as a hiring manager. However, these three mistakes are often at the hands of the recruiter and are constantly overlooked. Don't worry though, they're easy to fix if you know where to look for them.

1. Not recording notes on a candidate

Whether it's your first interview or your last, you're bound to mix up candidates if you're not taking notes during the interview process. It may be easier to remember certain conversations over others but without a reference sheet to look back on, chances are you'll confuse who said what. To fix this, make sure you're recording notes on candidates directly on their resume and storing them electronically. Many recruiting technologies are starting to incorporate CRM-enabled functionality that allow you to keep these records organized during the recruiting process, so make sure to take full advantage of an integrated talent management system.

2. Only considering candidates for one job

Candidates that applied for a certain role are often reviewed in light of the job's responsibilities and requirements. Although this should certainly be your first step, a common mistake hiring managers make is to only review them in regards to that position. Otherwise you'll miss out on valuable talent that might be a good fit for a different role. Share resumes with colleagues if you come across a strong candidate and store any resumes that aren't necessarily perfect at the moment, but might be for a job in your department down the road.

3. Forgetting to follow up

It's a hassle following up with every candidate that applied for an open position, but it's necessary. It may be easier to remember following up after speaking with a candidate, but it's much more common to forget to follow up with candidates who did not even make the first cut. Every application deserves to be acknowledged and by doing so, you'll build better relationships with candidates in the long term. Managing your company brand is an important factor in attracting competitive talent so going the extra mile will ensure candidates have great things to say about applying for your company.

Mistakes are unavoidable during the hiring process, especially if you hire frequently. Even a small mistake though can have a detrimental impact so be aware of the mistakes you might be making as a hiring manager. Feel like you're still struggling to stay on top of the hiring process? OneWire's talent management system can help you manage the entire recruiting cycle, from sourcing to hire.

The post 3 common mistakes hiring mangers make (and how to fix them) appeared first on Career Resources.

What these Wall Street executives look for while hiring

Thu, 07/28/2016 - 13:55

Every finance company is looking for qualified applicants with a top-tier education, and these Wall Street executives are no exception. After narrowing down the candidate pool by competence for the job, what are the intangible factors that these leaders look for in potential employees? Check out some snippets from our exclusive Open Door interview series to hear which traits Wall Street executives prioritize while hiring.

Culture Fit

Lyon Polk, Managing Director of The Polk Wealth Management Group, considers culture fit to be one of the most important factors during the hiring process. "We are all here long hours," Lyon answers in his interview. "I want to make sure that everybody gets along, wants to be here, and fits into my culture." Lyon isn't the only one factoring in company culture while making hiring decisions. Gordon DuGan, CEO of Gramercy Property Trust, also weighs in with the same argument. "We try very hard at Gramercy to try to have that culture. Work hard, have fun and find like-minded people."

Diverse Background

Every finance career can take a different path, but it's still typical to start off with the two-year investment banking program. Though for Bob Nolan, Managing Partner of Halyard Capital, an atypical background is what he's looking for. He contends that his law degree gave him a different perspective than the traditional MBA and is also a huge proponent of receiving a liberal arts education.

"Had I only been an investment banker, had I only been exposed to business school, I don't know that that would have been enough. It certainly is in many instances but I also think undergrad degrees should be as broad as possible. The more skills you can bring in terms of analytical ability, the better served you are as an investor."

Communication Skills

In finance, it's not only important that you know the numbers, it's important that you can communicate them well. Leon Cooperman, Founder & CEO of Omega Advisors, outlines exactly what he expects from each of his employees before he hires them. "My analysts here, I have fifteen of them, they can't get anything in the portfolio without writing up a report. So can you write a report? Do numbers speak to you? Because you have to communicate your thoughts in writing to someone like myself."

Perseverance 

Wall Street is an environment where even the most intelligent are pushed to their limits. Art Samberg of Hawkes Financial says that the number one quality he is looking for while hiring is perseverance.

"Somebody once told me early in my career, don't confuse bull markets with brains. And it's definitely true. There are times when you just feel you're the stupidest person in the world and you've got to persevere through that. It's easier said than done. I like to sense whether a person is that kind of person," he goes on to say. "Whether they're just going to shrink and fold when they're on a cold streak or if they're going to rise to the occasion, work harder, maintain their composure and overcome."

Hates to Lose

Sean McCarthy, CEO of Build America Mutual, has one thing on his mind when interviewing candidates. Do you like wining or do you really just hate to lose? "The first thing, especially on Wall Street," he says in his interview, "is the concept of distinguishing between liking to win and hating to lose. What I've learned over a long period of time is people who hate to lose are much more effective. Everybody likes to win. But if you hate to lose, you do everything in your power to make sure that experience doesn't happen."

As veterans of the industry, these Wall Street executives have tried and true methods of hiring the right talent for their firm. If your firm is looking for qualified candidates, make sure to check out OneWire's innovative recruiting solutions.

 

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The do’s and don’ts of an eye catching job description

Thu, 07/14/2016 - 12:03

Writing a job description may not be the most exciting task as a hiring manger, but it’s one of the most important ones. Your job description is one of the first interactions a candidate has with your company and with thousands of others to compete with, you need to ensure your description captures the attention of competitive talent. With less than a minute to capture their attention, a compelling description of the role is not just encouraged, it's necessary.

There are right ways and wrong ways to write an eye-catching job description. Follow the tips below to make sure you’re on the right track.

DO use formatting. Formatting is one of the most important and underrated elements of a job description. As long as you don’t overdo it, emphasizing certain areas of the job description with bold, italicize, underline or even colors is a great way to make your job more visual. Focus on parts of your job description that might be different from the typical one for that role. Need an accountant that wears hats beyond accounts payable/receivable? Bold or italicize those responsibilities to ensure candidates see it if they're just skimming through.

DON’T use hard-to-read colors. If you do incorporate colors into your job description, make sure the colors are easy to read on a computer screen. Navies and dark greys, for example, are professional and easy to ready yet different enough to make your description pop. Stay away from yellows, oranges, neon colors, etc and make sure you can easily read it on both your phone and computer before posting publicly. Remember, the colors you choose are part of a bigger company brand so don't pick them too carelessly.

DO think outside the box. When was the last time you saw a job description that made you excited about applying? Was it your typical list of job requirements and responsibilities? Most postings that truly catch the eye of a job seeker have an "IT" factor. Whether it’s a sense of humor, a killer company page, or a video invite to apply, don’t be afraid to add some factors that go outside the traditional job description box and really showcase your company's voice.

DON’T forget your company description. One of the most common mistakes in a job description is to exclude a company description. You’re not just selling someone on a position, you’re selling them on their new home. The finance industry has long hours, no matter the role, so emphasize what makes your firm different from all the others. An investment banking analyst is an investment banking analyst. Why is your program different? Are there any benefits that are unique to your firm? Do you value certain qualities above others? Differentiating your brand will not only help you stand out, it will draw candidates that fit better within your company culture.

Attracting the right talent starts with the perfect job description. Don’t be afraid to test out different templates to see which ones resonate more with candidates (just make sure it’s for the same job when testing). See which ones work, and make sure to incorporate the tips above to set your company apart from the rest of the crowd.

The post The do’s and don’ts of an eye catching job description appeared first on Career Resources.

How to perfect your millennial interview

Thu, 06/23/2016 - 11:00

Millennials are growing up. The oldest are in their 30s now, and many of the others are graduating college and entering the workforce. Is your interview process attuned to them?

To perfect your millennial interview, you'll need to take into consideration their unique expectations and perspectives. Here are some tips for properly shaping your interview to achieve success:

Paint a big picture
Perhaps more than any generation in history, millennials are especially concerned with the social impact and public good of their employer. According to The Deloitte Millennial Survey 2016, millennials prioritize providing services and goods that make a positive difference to peoples’ lives over growth and profit maximization.

"Millennials are a socially conscious generation, and your interview needs to reflect that."

How does this translate to the hiring process? In an interview, you must communicate to millennial applicants how your firm - and their position in particular - plays a positive role in the industry. When interviewing candidates for investment banking jobs, for instance, you might play up how these jobs mean building savings and retirement funds for thousands of people nationwide.

Discuss long-term goals and career growth
Firms too often fail to highlight the benefits of hard work and loyalty during an interview. Talented millennial candidates have a number of firms vying for their attention, and they certainly aren't afraid to seek other options if you fail to woo them. It's important that you lay out a plan for advancement from the start. Build an idea of a future with your firm.

Instilling a sense of value early on pays dividends later. By presenting candidates with achievable rewards for their effort, you lay the groundwork for a shared sense of purpose. And don't hesitate to bring up salary or bonuses. Millennials have no problem frankly negotiating finances, so you shouldn't either.

Focus on flexibility
Work-life balance is of well known importance to the millennial generation. As the age cohort that embraced smart phones and social media, they are always connected with friends and family - even while they're at work. Within reason, firms can do a lot to attract great millennial talent by embracing this.

Offer the options of telecommuting or occasional four day work weeks. Working from home a set number of days every month is another big draw. What's essential is that your firm adapts to changing generational circumstances. Millennials place a lot of value on having a life outside of work, and you'll need to accommodate that if you're going to attract top talent.

A work-life balance is essential to attracting top millennial talent.

Emphasize firm perks
While an industry benchmark salary is always going to be important, millennials care less about money than their parents did. What they want instead are great perks. If your firm is going to stay competitive with other employers, you'll need to offer the same high level perks.

These include, but are not limited to, time allocated for exercising in the company gym, extended paid personal time off, tickets to local sporting events and travel opportunities. Keep an eye on what the industry leaders are offering and construct your perks/benefits package accordingly. You don't need to offer it all, but you do need enough to keep pace.

Make it personal
Top millennial applicants are smart, passionate and eager to talk about where they see themselves in your firm. Let them do it. Talk about interests both inside and outside of work. Chances are that your questions will reveal a prospective employee has much more to offer than what was described in his or her resume.

When you ask questions, make some of them relevant to the candidates tastes and personality. Business Insider, for example, recommended asking millennials to describe their work ethic by relating it to a favorite TV character, or to choose which TV office sitcom they would most like to work in. These questions are fun but they also give you an insight into a candidate's creativity and personality.

As important as all these factors are to keep in mind, it’s even more important to remember what your firm is willing to give. If you’re not giving these perks and benefits to your current employees, you’re bound to get some backlash by offering it to younger hires only. In order to truly perfect your millennial interview, know ahead of time what you’re willing to offer for the best candidate and make sure you’re not setting a precedent that you can’t meet moving forward.

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The interview guide for first-time hiring managers

Tue, 05/24/2016 - 12:00

It is generally agreed upon that job interviews are stressful. What is less discussed is how nerve-racking the process can be for hiring managers, particularly those who are doing it for the first time.

Considering how costly a bad hire can be, it's important that hiring managers hit a home run their first time at bat. Here are six steps to make finding the right candidate easier:

Understand the position
Before an interview begins, you must understand the requirements, duties and nuances of the open position. Even if you’ve been recruited to interview candidates for different departments, make sure you do your homework. If conducting interviews for technology jobs for example, study your firm's software and programs. Talk to tech colleagues about the position requirements and what they're looking for in a co-worker.

If you’re interviewing a candidate for a different type of role, stick to behavioral interview questions as opposed to technical ones. It's best to target one or two essential personality requirements for an open position. Assess each candidate for their viability based on these qualities. Remember, however, that not every requirement must be met from the start. With a solid foundation, employees can pick up new skills as they grow with your business.

Know what you're looking for
Don't waste your time interviewing candidates who aren't a match for the role. Set yourself up for success by first drafting an accurate job description. This will help narrow down the number of resumes you receive and better ensure their suitability.

An effective job listing identifies the traits of an ideal candidate, including both hard and soft skills. It emphasizes the position title, responsibilities and expectations in clear language. Understanding the position well is a prerequisite to a great job description. You'll appreciate the effort you put in later on, as the description helps you to draft focused interview questions.

Recognize your company's culture
The difference between a good hiring manager and a great one is often decided by their grasp of company culture. Have you bought into your firm's values and beliefs? Chances are the answer is yes. That's why you're in this role, trusted with securing talent for your firm's future.

Look for the qualities your company espouses in job candidates. You are in the best position to recognize them. Take the time to learn about each interviewee's background and assess their personalities. Do they align with their potential work environment? Are their non-measurables well-suited to the role? The interview is your opportunity to decide.

Be prepared
You may be nervous for your first interview, but don't rush into it unprepared. From organizing paperwork to establishing an interview team, you want everything ready to go before the candidate arrives. Enlist the assistance of colleagues whose judgments you trust. They can help you thin the candidate herd.

Preparing a list of questions ahead of time is crucial. Don't go into an interview counting on winging it in the moment. You'll likely find yourself losing focus or forgetting the answers to questions. Instead, draw up a plan and keep it in front of you throughout the interview. This will help you stay in control and keep track of the process.

"Questions should reveal information not divulged by an application."

Ask the right questions
Direct, open-ended questions that invite candidates to explain and expand on their work histories are the essential tool of every great hiring manager. Remember that questions should reveal information not divulged by an application. Don't be afraid to press on issues candidates seem hesitant to explore.

You might ask a candidate how they organize their time, or what they enjoyed about their last workplace. Questions that expose behavior and competency are useful as well. For example, you could ask them to elaborate on a moment where their leadership proved critical in successfully managing a large project.

Take down notes
Write down important points as the interview progresses. These include new information, relevant details and potential red flags. Once the candidate has left, build out the notes you've taken with overall impressions from the group. An even better option is to record these notes electronically since paper resumes are easily lost.

If you don’t have a recruiting technology to help you consolidate candidate feedback, create an excel document for each position. By recording this feedback, you’ll be able to jog your memory when sitting down and reviewing candidates once more before making the hire.

Your first interview as a hiring manager may seem daunting but sticking to these tips will help anyone become their own recruiter.

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What you need to know about hiring Generation Z

Thu, 05/19/2016 - 10:02

Hiring managers take note - Generation Z has arrived. This cohort born between the mid 1990s through 2010 will account for 20 percent of the workforce in just four years. Are you prepared for them?

Recruiting and retaining Generation Z isn't as easy as just carrying over the strategies created to address millennials. They come with their own specific set of experiences, behaviors and expectations that hiring managers must take into account to be successful.

"Generation Zers are driven by a strong desire to work for themselves."

In late 2014, Northeastern University led the way with an extensive survey of Generation Z. What they found was surprising. A highly self-directed group, Generation Z is driven by a desire to work for themselves exceeding that of any other cohort before them.

"A new generation of Americans is on the rise: highly entrepreneurial, pluralistic, and determined to take charge of their own futures," said Northeastern President Joseph E. Aoun.

Firms must begin to prepare for this new wave of professionals. Rather than wait for 2020 to implement a hiring strategy, here are four things you need to know about hiring Generation Z.

Money is important to them
The Great Recession had a deep impact on Generation Z. They came of age when the economy was at its weakest point in recent memory. Seeing their parents lose their savings and be forced to put off retirement left an indelible impact on the generational consciousness.

While millennials are willing to take a lower salary in exchange for other benefits, Generation Z places a higher importance on money. Debt, particularly that accrued for student loans, weighs heavily on their minds. In order to attract top talent, you'll need a very competitive salary and benefits package.

They are always connected
Generation Z is composed of digital natives. They've grown up with technology at their fingertips. Instant access to information and a do-it-yourself problem solving mentality dictate how they behave both at work and in their private lives. Despite their reputation for hiding behind screens, however, Generation Z actually prefers face-to-face communication.

Despite their reputation, Generation Z prefers face-to-face conversations.

Text, social media and email are all important for staying connected, but Generation Z flourishes when they can develop authentic relationships with management. Hiring managers shouldn't hesitate to be personable with them in interviews. Talk in person and keep solely digital conversation to a minimum.

They expect to be rewarded for loyalty
Generation Z doesn’t think that they'll be promoted overnight, they do expect to be rewarded for their hard work and loyalty. Unlike millennials who have depended on part-time and contract work, those in the upcoming generation foresee only working for about four companies over the course of their careers.

Four employers in a lifetime is probably unrealistic. Generation Z's expectations for what life will require of them, however, is soberingly pragmatic. According to U.S. News & World Report, the majority predict they'll have to work harder than past generations for a successful career. More than half also expect that they'll be working until age 70.

Feedback is desired
Like the baby boomers before them, Generation Z workers are loyal, realistic, motivated and prefer talking over texting. Where they differ somewhat is an openness to feedback. While the next age cohort is more than capable of managing their own projects in hedge fund jobs and other high-energy positions, they actually desire input from management.

How does this play into the hiring process? Generation Z wants to know that they can make a positive impact on your business. In your pitch, play up their responsibility and offer a vision of where the candidate's career path would go in a future with your firm.

The post What you need to know about hiring Generation Z appeared first on Career Resources.

The benefits of temporary staffing

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 09:56

Hiring quality finance professionals is time-consuming. From writing job descriptions to reading resumes to conducting interviews, hiring managers can often spend weeks searching for the perfect candidate. The search is worth it, but it comes at a cost.

Empty desks take a toll on efficiency. They also cost firms money in lost business. Thankfully temporary staffing provides an immediate solution to firms trying to bridge the gap between employees.

Would your firm benefit from temporary assistance? Find out below.

Improved productivity
Reputable temporary professionals are motivated, goal-oriented and determined to succeed within a short time frame. They aren't showing up to just sit idle. The Atlantic reported that in a 2014 Harris Poll of full-time employees at large U.S. companies, respondents said they only spent 45 percent of their workday on primary job responsibilities. The rest of the time was spent sending emails, attending meetings or on activities unrelated to work.

Temporary professionals consistently put their time toward tasks at hand. Rather than engage in office politics or the myriad other distractions that disrupt productivity, they are engaged in the duties you've contracted them for. Firms looking to boost their efficiency at peak business periods would do well to consider temporary staffing.

Allows staffing flexibility
Every company goes through workload and workforce fluctuations. Demanding projects and busy periods are inevitable, as are employee illnesses and unexpected departures. Temporary staffing gives firms the flexibility they need to adapt to changing situations without forfeiting high performance.

Consider a situation in which one or more of your firm's accountants resigns during tax season. Rather than rush to permanently fill the open accounting jobs, you can instead call up temporary accounting professionals to fill in until the workload returns to normal. Then you can worry about hiring a full-time accountant when the season dies down.

Short-term specialists
Firms occasionally face important projects that call for expertise none of their current employees have. Rather than hire a full-time professional whose role may be limited upon the project's completion, hiring managers should look to a short-term specialist. These individuals are well-suited to initiatives of finite time and focus.

"Paying a temporary specialist or consultant saves firms money without sacrificing talent."

Paying a temporary specialist or consultant saves the firm money without sacrificing talent. There is also the chance that, should a professional prove especially effective, your business can enlist their services on a more permanent basis. What's so appealing about temporary staffing is that you aren't forced to choose.

A built-in trial period
Much of short-term staffing's appeal is that it allows firms the opportunity to evaluate a hire on an interim basis. Many businesses employ temporary professionals as a cost-effective means for recruiting and testing the worth of new employees before signing them to full-time contracts.

Some firms prefer to rely on the services of a temporary specialist who has proven to be an asset in the past. Others use short-term staff as a stop-gap solution until their hiring team recruits an ideal candidate for an open position. In short, there's no one right way to use temporary professionals. Their utility is adaptable to circumstances.

Not yet ready for a full-timer
Growing firms regularly find that to operate at peak efficiency they must expand their staff. The decision can be difficult however for companies hesitant to make long-term commitments. Temporary professionals allow an effective middle ground. They give firms a comfortable staffing solution without forcing both parties into a big contract.

If your firm is looking to expand but nervous about doing so, consider engaging employees on a temp-to-hire basis. You fill an immediate demand for personnel and leave making decisions about full-time employment to the future, when your firm's hiring position is clearer.

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