7 Tips For Working With Recruiters

January 22nd, 2018 by ifi-admin

Man meeting with a talented IT job recruiter in the Delaware ValleyPhoenix Partners works with employers to find established and rising talent for their technical and IT roles. The companies who engage with us most commonly:

A) Have a sense of urgency in filling a position
B) Have not been successful finding qualified applicants
C) Have a position that requires specialized skills, typically in IT and Technology

Also, it’s not uncommon for us to work with our clients on an exclusive basis, and we frequently have access to positions that are not public, otherwise know as the “hidden marketplace.”

We establish relationships with our candidates by increasing their comfort level, confidentiality and respect. You can stay “top-of-mind” with a reputable recruiter by following these guidelines: Read the rest of this entry »

The Win-Win of Widening the Net to Find Candidates Geared for Growth

January 9th, 2018 by ifi-admin

A photo of a man searching with binoculars, symbolizing looking in new places for top IT talent in 2018Employers who seek to win the IT Talent war need to develop new strategies in 2018 to remain on the leading edge and thus be able to hire the “best and brightest”.

Last week the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the unemployment rate remained stable nationally for the third consecutive month in a row at 4.1%. In the metropolitan Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington area the jobless rate dropped to 4.4%, .1% lower than the same time last year.

At the same time, information technology roles remain the fastest growing occupation, projected to add 546,000 new jobs to the workforce in the next decade. Read the rest of this entry »

Part II: 5 Goal-Setting Tips for Job Searching Success in 2018

December 26th, 2017 by ifi-admin

Photo abstractly showing the bright future for job seekers in 2018 through effective goal settingIn our last installment, we suggested that you take some time as the year winds down to review and define your career goals by being specific, examining your motivation, assessing the obstacles to achieving these goals and brainstorming ways to overcome the obstacles.

As we approach the end of the year, many people will be making New Year’s resolutions. Forbes Magazine reports that while 40% of the American population make New Year’s Resolutions each year, only 8% achieve their goals.

Why do so few succeed? According to the article, which surveyed the research on how the brain looks for answers, the trick is to keep it simple and make it tangible.

We’ll look at how this might apply to your career goals in 2018.

1. Create the Master Plan but Keep It Simple: If you want to succeed with your career goals, do not load yourself up with a bucket list of disparate goals for the year. Devote your focus and your intent to your job search, and map out what you think it will take to succeed. Create a master plan that builds logically on the elements that formulate success. In this plan, outline the discoveries you made in your review, and the action steps required to overcome obstacles. Put this plan in writing.

2. Create the Room, and Routine, to Succeed: If from your 2017 career review you’ve determined you’d like to begin a job search targeted at specific companies, now is the time to schedule blocks of time each week to make progress. For example, you may set aside a set number of hours each week and if possible, specific times of the day to review new job postings, research employers, chat with your recruiter, brush up your resume or work toward any certifications that will enhance your candidacy. Be realistic and give yourself time to make incremental progress toward finding exactly the right fit for your next career move.

3. Set Concrete Milestones: Setting vague or unrealistic goals is the cause of many failed New Year’s resolutions. Just like in business, personal goals need measurable elements to map the path to success. In this case, once you’ve mapped out your master action plan, formulate a way to measure your progress each week or month. Assign yourself a number of companies to research and a number of resume submissions to make. Trust that with dedicated effort, you will ultimately succeed in your career goals. Hold yourself accountable to your milestones.

4. Physically Track Your Progress: Whether it’s milestones written into your planner or on a dedicated cork board, being able to visually see the progress you’re making can move you forward. Posting visible reminders of your goals and the practice of telling others your plans creates a sense of accountability that will help you stay on track.

5. Be Flexible…and Unstoppable: Perfect plans are subject to the real world and sometimes it seems like “life” keeps moving the goal posts. On one hand, expect the unexpected and be prepared to be flexible with yourself. Revise your goals when new conditions or opportunities arise. On the other hand, be unstoppable in moving toward your goals. Setbacks are only failures if you stop trying.

If you need some help setting goals, or you are motivated to make a career move in 2018, please feel free to Contact Us today and get started!

Ways to Woo Millennial Tech Talent in 2018 & Why You Should

December 14th, 2017 by ifi-admin

Young, millennial tech professional helping your business grow in 2018 with new ideas

Happy Holidays!

As the New Year approaches, many employers are poised to increase their company’s hiring volume. The challenge will be to fill those new positions in a market where demand outpaces supply.

Last Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 228,000 in November, and the national unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.1 percent. Employment continued to trend up in professional and business services, manufacturing, and health care. In a separate report, BLS adjusted Q3 economic growth to 3.3%.

Engineering and IT Most Active Industries

Indeed, the popular job site, recently reported in their 2018 Employer Outlook Survey that 61% of employers say they will increase hires in 2018. The report found most companies in nearly every industry will see a jump in hiring in 2018, but some will be more aggressive than others. The most active industries for recruiting are architecture and engineering where 82% plan to hire, followed by IT/telecom companies and professional services firms at 75% and 71% respectively. A thousand employers were polled for the report.

Pitching Woo Through Perks

According to a Robert Half report that compiled survey responses from 8,000 technical professionals and 2,500 CIOs, many are using the following perks to woo IT talent:

  • Flexible work schedules (62%)
  • Regular social events (39%)
  • Remote work opportunities (34%)
  • On-site or free gym membership (25%)
  • A compressed schedule (17%)
  • Free food (17%)

Sharing the Spoils

To keep talent motivated, companies are also offering:

  • Incentives for individual and team achievements (37%)
  • Profit sharing (20%)
  • Retention bonuses (18%)
  • Stock options (18%)
  • Deferred compensation (16%)

More Ways to Woo Millennials:

  • Digital relevancy – Millennials will surreptitiously Google your company before they even consider applying. If there is little information, an outdated website and a tiny social footprint, they could perceive that the business is behind the times.
  • Emphasize mission and purpose – CIO magazine reports that attracting talent from industry titans is possible if a candidate feels they can make a major positive impact on the lives of end-users and customers. Be sure to connect the role to impact.
  • Know What’s Important – Millennials value flexibility, philanthropy, meaningful work, transparency and innovation. In other words, they value corporate culture. Find ways to convey yours.
  • Stay Current on Wage Expectations – Compensation across the board for workers is expected to go up about 3 percent this year, and a bit more than that in 2018, according to the Society for Human Resource Management. According to Robert Half, 44 percent of CIOs say they miss out on top talent because candidates are seeking higher salaries than they’re able to offer.

What are your hiring plans for 2018? Talk to us about ways we can help.

4 Tips & the Importance of Goal Setting for Jobseekers

December 5th, 2017 by ifi-admin

December is an off month in the realm of Human Resources. On one hand, employers who are deep in the hiring process may be anxious to close out open positions before the calendar year-end. On the other hand, it can be slow in terms of new openings because the majority of employers don’t want to start the interviewing and hiring process so close to the holidays. What’s a jobseeker to do? Review!

Research shows a direct correlation between goal-setting and success, and this fact holds true for your job search. People who set goals tend to be 60 – 80% more productive. Goal-setting is an important process for identifying how to get from “here” to “there” in your career.


Part 1: How to Review in Order to Revise or Define Career Goals

  1. Be Specific: If you’re looking to make a job move in the New Year, take stock of your past accomplishments, and write down the specific scenarios or activities you’ve enjoyed the most in your current role. Rank the elements you find the most satisfying about your work in order of preference. Create a list of talents that you’ve not been able to use and that you would like to incorporate into your next position. Imagine the type of position where you could spend the majority of your time doing the things you enjoy most.
  2. Examine Your Motivation: Are you bored in your current job? Is there conflict in your work environment? Do you feel that your true value has been unacknowledged, or that you haven’t had the opportunity to develop new skills through strategic risk-taking? Be certain you understand exactly why you’re looking for a new position, and what type of environment would produce the opportunity for satisfaction. Notice the things that have not worked well for you in past roles, and try to identify the source of dissatisfaction.
  3. Assess the Obstacles: Write a list of the obstacles you think keep you from finding your ideal career role. Will you have trouble finding time to conduct a job search? Is there additional education or certification you would need in order to move your career to the next level? Do you have difficulty getting past initial screening? Identifying the obstacles to your career goals will help pave the way to create a specific, concrete plan to execute. You cannot overcome obstacles if you’re not sure what they are.
  4. Brainstorm: You now should have a good idea of precisely what you want in your next job, why you want a change, and what type of environment would support this vision. You have a clear sense of obstacles to your success. Now brainstorm all the ways you might overcome the obstacles so that you’re ready for the next step in the process, which is to create your 2018 Career Growth plan.

Stay tuned for Part II of Goal-Setting tips to power your job search in the New Year.




Three Ways Gratitude Benefits Your Workplace

November 17th, 2017 by ifi-admin

Employer showing gratitude to employees in simple but effective ways can boost morale and productivity

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the things for which we’re grateful. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with many excellent companies. I enjoy helping you find the right team member to reach your goals, and for that I thank you.

In recent years, there has been a substantial amount of research into the physiological and psychological benefits of gratitude. In the workplace, expressing gratitude can mean the difference between employee engagement and employee apathy. The following are the three main takeaways from that research.

Employee Productivity:

According to Harvard Health, managers who remember to say “thank you” to people who work for them may find that those employees feel motivated to work harder. Researchers at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, randomly divided university fund-raisers into two groups. One group made phone calls to solicit alumni donations in the same way they always had. The second group — assigned to work on a different day — received a pep talk from the director of annual giving, who told the fund-raisers she was grateful for their efforts. During the following week, the university employees who heard her message of gratitude made 50% more fund-raising calls than those who did not.

These kinds of results may be explained in part because gratitude boosts brain function, activating brain regions associated with the neurotransmitter dopamine, the “reward” neurotransmitter. Dopamine plays an important role in initiating action. By contrast, stress suppresses activity in the prefrontal cortex which is home to executive function and creative thinking.

Employee Health:

Research cited by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests that showing gratitude can increase a person’s wellness, enhance sleep habits, increase metabolism and lessen stress. This occurs due to increased blood flow and activity in the hypothalamus, which controls a huge array of essential body functions and influences metabolism and stress levels. This phenomenon directly impacts work results and employee interaction. By showing employee appreciation, you’re not only boosting performance and engagement, but the employee’s well-being and health as well.

In an era of skyrocketing health costs, improving employee health is an outcome worth pursuing. You can reduce costs, improve performance, and improve retention all at the same time.

Employee Engagement Through Improved Corporate Culture:

The great thing about gratitude is that it’s contagious. When employees receive expressions of gratitude, they’re more inclined to social and pro-social interaction, expressing gratitude in return, according to Emergenetics.com

When gratitude practices are implemented into company culture, employees are more willing to spread their positive feelings with others, whether it’s helping out with a project or taking time to notice and recognize those that have gone the extra mile. This environment produces a great company culture and enhances both employee engagement and retention.

Jobseeker’s Market Continues to Improve in Delaware Valley

November 13th, 2017 by ifi-admin

Two colleagues walk through an office lobby, on their way to a Delaware Valley tech job

If you’re currently employed in IT and Technical Services in the Delaware Valley, your prospects of making a meaningful career move continue to improve as employers struggle to find talent to fill open positions. Now is a great time to consider finding your next challenge.

News from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) earlier this month showed that in the Delaware Valley, the jobless rate has decreased .5% from August to September (from 5.1 to 4.6%), for a .9% overall drop in the jobless rate year over year. Meanwhile, compensation costs for civilian workers increased 0.7 percent for the 3-month period ending in September 2017. Read the rest of this entry »

Jobless Rate Drops Again, Talent Market Tightens in Delaware Valley

November 6th, 2017 by ifi-admin

Delaware Valley Jobless Rate and Employment statistics depicted by businessman reading a chartNews from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) last week shows little relief for employers engaged in the talent war in the Philadelphia-Southern New Jersey-Wilmington area. In the Delaware Valley, the jobless rate has decreased .5% from August to September (from 5.1 to 4.6%), for a .9% overall drop in the jobless rate year over year.

Meanwhile, compensation costs for civilian workers increased 0.7 percent for the 3-month period ending in September 2017. Wages and salaries (which make up about 70 percent of compensation costs) increased 0.7 percent, and benefits (which make up the remaining 30 percent of compensation) increased 0.8 percent. Overall, that adds up to a 2.5 percent hike in compensation costs for the last 12 month period.

This continues the Delaware Valley trend for a tight talent market, and nowhere are companies feeling it as keenly as within the tech sector. Read the rest of this entry »

For Candidates: 5 Tips to Help You Evaluate Opportunity

October 31st, 2017 by ifi-admin

Man in business office to depict evaluating job opportunityAt Phoenix Partners, we understand that candidates are motivated by more than compensation, provided they’re working for a company that offers reasonable salaries according to industry standards. Over the last 30 years, we’ve helped thousands of IT and technical professionals make their next career move. In this article, we’ve rounded up some of the top reasons that talented professionals consider a move. If you’re considering applying for an open position, here are some considerations that extend well beyond compensation.

Growth Opportunity – Seeking New Challenges

One of the best reasons for leaving a job is to seek new challenges and to use the skills and experience you’ve acquired in present and past roles. We find this is often the single-most important factor among our candidates. When you’re considering an open position, be sure to talk to us about the types of challenges you seek and the ways in which your experience qualifies you to meet those challenges. Recruiters work closely with many companies and have a strong sense of what kinds of growth opportunities are available. We will be able to help you compare a specific opportunity with the challenges you seek and how this matches your skills and experience.

Embracing New Technology

In technology professions especially, a company’s attitude in embracing new technologies is often critical to job satisfaction. Be sure to explore the company’s status in terms of ERP and integrated software and also infrastructure environments. Find out if the company has training available to extend employees’ programming capabilities in order to stay on the leading edge of technology. If the company has languished with legacy software too long, find out if they’re seeking someone to upgrade their technology profile. It may be that they’re looking for someone to do just that.

Company’s Culture

Does the company culture demonstrate work-life balance, philanthropy, and a collegial environment dedicated to individual and collective success? Often, a company’s true culture is difficult to discern until you’ve had the opportunity to meet with top decision makers. This is another area where your Recruiter has valuable insight to share with you. Be sure to discuss what you’re looking for, and your Recruiter will help you find it.

Improving Your Commute

What is it worth to you to get back hours in your day to spend with family instead of with fellow commuters? While many professionals don’t mind commuting for the right role, commuting can take its toll on work-life balance. We’ve seen candidates accept a lower salary for a position they love closer to home. That doesn’t mean you have to compromise on your economic growth to gain back some valuable family time, but when you’re considering a move, do not underestimate the impact of the commute on your lifestyle.

Compensation Package

Provided that compensation is commensurate with the industry or better, salary is often the least important element on this list. Nonetheless, it’s a good idea to ensure that the salary range for the open position meets your expectations before seriously pursuing the position. At Phoenix Partners, we ensure transparency of salary range so that no one, candidate or employer, wastes his or her valuable time.

Are you looking for a new opportunity? Talk to us so that we can help you find the right position for the next stage of your career.



For Employers: Determining Whether to Counter an Offer

October 18th, 2017 by ifi-admin

Recruiters on Counteroffers to retain talent

In today’s tight job market, employers are tempted to do just about anything to retain talented professionals. However, the question many employers face is whether or not it is in the company’s long-term interest to make a counteroffer in order to keep an employee who has received a competitive offer elsewhere. The following article by NPAWorldwide Executive Director, Dave Nerz, offers even-handed advice and explores the statistics that will help determine the long-term prospects of an employee retained via counteroffer. His article also offers excellent suggestions for ways to retain institutional knowledge and experience.

Phoenix Partners is a proud member of NPAWorldwide, the global recruiting network for independent recruiters.  NPAworldwide is the oldest recruiting network of its kind, with an international membership of recruiting firms located throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa and the Americas. Please enjoy Dave’s excellent article compliments of NPAWorldwide. Read the rest of this entry »

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