In light of International Happiness Day (and the fact my previous blog was about Blue Monday), I thought we could all do with some positivity today. If you’re looking for ways to celebrate and recognise happiness at your work then you’ve come to the right place. Check it out… Great co-workers with a smile and a cheery “hello” Doing this can make all the difference to someone’s day. Go beyond your normal circle, and offer a wholesome “good morning” to extend the feel good factor across the organisation. One thing can set the mood for the entire day – so why not make it a good day? Praise efforts from colleagues Taking a few minutes to offer positive feedback doesn’t just boost happiness, it can also have an impact on productivity. Chances are a simple “thank you for doing a great job” could go a long way to inspiring happiness and wellbeing, accomplishment and enthusiasm for your fellow employees. Surprise with kindness This doesn’t have to be a huge gesture or an expensive gift. It can quite literally be a single sweet on everyone’s desk in the morning, or buy some cheap donuts for everyone; it can make all the difference to employee’s work ethic if they feel appreciated. Host a “Happiness Hour” Some ideas for a Happiness Hour are: · Morning tea and coffee · Breakfast · Laughter hour – sit and watch funny videos · Cake and cookie hour Together, we can take action for happiness! Think we missed anything? If you can think of any other way to celebrate this International Day please post them in the comments below! Happy Day of Happiness Day everyone!
Did you know that 37% of staff with low mental health are more likely to get into a conflict with colleagues, 57% find it harder to juggle multiple tasks, 80% find it difficult to concentrate, 62% take longer to do tasks and 50% are potentially less patient with customers/clients? If you notice someone else’s mental health deteriorating in the workplace, then follow these tips… Time and place Ensure they are comfortable talking in the location that you’re in. If they aren’t comfortable then move to another place or schedule another time where you can go and meet them to have a chat. It is important to be in a location where you feel comfortable enough to talk, for a majority of people, the place they feel most comfortable is their own home so try to replicate this by sitting down with them at a table, make them a drink and a snack! When speaking to someone whose mental health is low, if they are speaking about it, it is important not to rush them or to make them feel like they are on a time limit. Active listening Being an active listener means being present in the conversation and being engaged in what the other person is talking about. Always give the person your undivided attention, don’t sit there on your phone barely listening, or looking all around the room. Acknowledge what you’re being told with head nods, gestures and friendly advice. Manage your feelings Ensure that you can handle listening to emotional things. Don’t act surprised or judgemental as this can make the other person feel like they are saying something wrong… but at the same time don’t give no facial expression at all. As I said in the point above, acknowledge them with gestures and head nods. Work as a team! If you can see someone is struggling then work as a team to solve the problem as best as you can, try not to leave that person to deal with a difficult situation by themselves. This can reduce the risk of stress. Be positive – focus on what they can do, rather than what they can’t… If a colleague is struggling with their confidence and is knocking everything they are doing, remind them of what they are good at. Think of tasks that they have completed before that were successful and encourage them to stick at tasks until they are finished. Do you feel like your mental health is deteriorating in the workplace? Click here to find out how you can support yourself! Can you think of any other ways to support mental health in the workplace? Drop them in the comments below!
Valentine’s Day is here, so now’s the perfect time to think about those in your life who aren’t getting the love they deserve. You know the ones I mean, they’re eagerly waiting by the phone for a call, the ones who show up to every single interview you arrange for them. These are the candidates who deserve all the love in the world for making your job that little bit easier. Are you the kind of person who finds expressing their feelings hard? Not to worry as we’ve got 5 ways you can show candidates some love this Valentine’s Day… 1. Don’t set unreal expectations Candidates want to know as much as possible about the jobs and companies they’re applying to, both the good and the bad. Setting a realistic picture of the company is better than trying to over sell and not being able to follow through. Tell your candidates what they can expect to be doing on the job. Also, it avoids wasting yours, the candidates and the interviewers time. Plus if you're selling a dream about a company and they happen to have google it won’t be long before they find a lot of bad reviews, it's going to be a bit embarrassing on your part. 2. First impressions A bad candidate experience often starts at the application stage. If candidates have to spend a great deal of time entering information into long applications, they can become frustrated… Don’t let this happen! Avoid losing out on great job seekers by creating a shorter application process. One way you could do this is by giving them the option of coming into your office or to do an online application – sometimes online makes it easier. 3. Find them the perfect match You should only be pairing your candidates with companies/clients you know they can progress and succeed with! Spending more time helping them with their job search will encourage them to gain more loyalty to you and your company, instead of feeling like you are just placing them anywhere for the sake of it. 4. Prepare candidates for the first (interview) date Your candidates will be feeling enough stress and nervousness going on, they are going to want some support and encouragement from you! Give them a call before they go into the interview to prep them with last minute tips about the company and who will be interviewing with and then you also know they arrived safe and sound. Also give them a message or a call after the interview for feedback and a chat about how they got on. This really goes a long way with the candidate! 5. Let them down gently Instead of giving candidates the classic "it’s not you, it’s me" routine, you can make the rejection process more positive and rewarding by giving constructive feedback on why they weren’t selected and what they can do to improve their interview or skill set. By doing this you can keep strong candidates engaged with the company and create a more positive experience. Now that you have everything you need to know, go and give your candidates some love! Can you think of any other ways to show candidates appreciation? Drop them in the comments below!
Fresh, crisp winter days can be amazing, but the lower temperatures can be detrimental to your health. Figures show that Winter weather can increase the risk of deaths from cold-related illnesses – and the elderly are particularly vulnerable. As the clocks have gone back and days turn short, dark nights have made an appearance and some very wintry weather too, here is our checklist for making the winter months safer and better for elderly people... Keep the house warm There are a few ways to ensure their house is kept warm. You need to ensure that the boiler is being checked and serviced before the Winter months begin as this will lessen the chance of the heating breaking. Also check all radiators to ensure they are producing heat. AGE UK advise to have the living room at 21 degrees, the bedroom at 18 degrees and the rest of the house at, at least 16 degrees. Also ensure that the house is well insulated as this will keep the heat locked in and create a warm environment. Also once it gets dark, draw the curtains so no drafts get in. Another tip is to get a keyhole cover. Many old houses have a large open keyhole instead of modern homes that have a more secure, little keyhole. Therefore, an elderly person is more likely to live in an old house so getting a keyhole cover will help to stop little drafts getting into the house. Keeping the house warm can help with avoiding Hypothermia, which is highly dangerous for the elderly. What is hypothermia? Older adults can quickly lose body heat and aren’t always aware of their temperature, making it easy for them to become too cold, too quickly. Body temperature below 35C (normal temperature is 37C) can cause hypothermia. Hypothermia is particularly dangerous and a high health problem for older adults; especially those living alone as there’s not someone around to notice the early signs. Early signs of hypothermia: Cold hands and feet Puffy or swollen face Pale skin Slow or slurred speech Anger or confusion Later signs of hypothermia: Slow or jerky movements including trouble walking and clumsiness Slow heartbeat Slow, shallow breathing Loss of consciousness Help with heating bills The cost of heating is a worry for many, especially the elderly but there is some help at hand in terms of UK Government payments. Most people born before 6 May 1953 were entitled to the Winter Fuel Payment in 2016–17 to help with heating costs. It’s a tax-free payment of between £100 and £300 paid out between November and December. This can help avoid feeling the cold weather from inside houses. A space heater is a great source of heat, however they possess high fire hazards if they are left on alone or near flammable objects. Never use an oven or cooker as a source of heat as this can cause Carbon Monoxide poisoning. Eating well and exercising Regular, daily exercise and a hot meal a day will help keep elderly parents warm and well over the winter; if its icy outside then encourage them to do exercises indoors. Staying active can warm up the body which can avoid a number of health issues including Hypothermia and heart attacks. A few examples of types of exercises are: Water aerobics Bicycle riding (stationary or on a path) Some activities of gardening, such as raking and pushing a lawn mower Bundle up! When going outside it is important to wrap up in order to keep them as warm as possible. Here are some examples of what the elderly should be wearing: Thick socks Thermals / multiple layers Dry / warm gloves Anti-skid soles are also good to put into shoes Infection protection Careful hygiene and hand washing will prevent the spread of colds, flu and other viruses. Follow our step by step guide on how to properly wash your hands: Wet your hands with running water - either warm or cold. Apply liquid, bar or powder soap to a cupped hand. Lather well. Rub your hands, palm to palm, vigorously for at least 20 seconds. Remember to scrub all surfaces, including the backs of your hands, wrists, between your fingers and under your fingernails. Rinse well. Dry your hands with a clean towel. Use the towel to turn off the running water. Hopefully now you have everything you need to know about keeping elderly citizens safe this Winter and feel confident in doing so! Is there anything you can think of that we might have missed? Let us know in the comments below!
In today’s age, it is important to construct an effective recruitment process. Traditionally placing job ads in the paper etc., usually results in a lot of costly panic hires for most companies, some of which have resorted to using Application Tracking Systems. An Applicant Tracking System is a software application designed to automate the recruitment process from sourcing to onboarding. It is referred to as an ATS in short, and can be used to post job openings on corporate websites, job boards, screen resumes as well as to generate interview requests to potential candidates by email. It is estimated that roughly 50% of all companies use some type of applicant tracking system to source and hire their candidates today. The first step in landing and hiring your dream candidate is recognising what type of candidates you’re looking for exactly. The ATS gives you complete control over your hiring criteria for each job-skills, traits, qualifications, as well as custom categories unique to your company. You can zero in on all of your exact specifications. According to a recently conducted study, 61% of all organisations feel that their main priority for hiring talent is to hire the best of it. According to a survey, hiring cycles tend to take longer than necessary ranging from 4 to 8 weeks. Your organisation should implement this type of system and start hiring the best talent at a faster rate. Efficient Collaboration Between HR and the Hiring Managers Allowing HR and hiring managers to contact the applicants via phone, lengthens the recruitment process unnecessarily. You can use the email interview scheduling capability built into all ATSs. ATS’s are extremely good for HR professionals and recruiters which target keywords rather than skills. An ATS helps any company filter and reduce the size of the talent pool without wasting any precious time, energy or money. ATS saves about 20% of company time during the hiring process. Roughly half of all companies have seen this trend and plan on making some major HR technology upgrades. Ensuring You Get Applications from the Most Qualified Candidates An organisation is suffering if it isn’t getting application requests from the best-qualified candidates. Posting jobs on online job boards becomes time consuming, of which most organisations may not know which job boards are the most productive for the various types of positions they have to offer. Using technology through the process can help with the position posting process. Most ATS’s can help automate systems, meaning that there are no delays in getting open jobs available and seen by as many talented candidates as possible, hence getting more applications from the most qualified candidates. Getting the Strongest Candidates On-Site for an Interview Once you have identified the best candidates through the ATS, the traditional method of phone tag can slow down and hinder the interview scheduling process. Getting the best candidates on site is a vital step if you want to catch the best talent. Currently, the best approach is to rely on the email interview scheduling capability which can be found in all ATSs. Planning with ATS Another key step to hiring better talent is planning. But planning will only work if you have reliable data. One of the better ways to get hiring data is through an ATS. Applicant Tracking Systems are a Powerful Component in Planning ATS can be a powerful component in planning because it can generate reports that identify the sources where the applicants come from. Allowing you to see which of your job postings got the most traffic from aspiring applicants. ATS also allows you to calculate the time to hire and generate other key talent acquisition metrics. An ATS streamlines your hiring process and also allows you to improve and optimize your overall hiring process. ATS can help all organisations bridge the gap between talent acquisition goals and reality. Providing the structure and automation required to hire the best talent, reduce time to hire and plan more effectively for the future of your organisation. Author Bio: Kelly Barcelos is a progressive digital marketing manager specialising in HR and is responsible for leading Jobsoid’s content and social media team. When Kelly is not building campaigns, she is busy creating content and preparing PR topics. She started with Jobsoid as a social media strategist and eventually took over the entire digital marketing team with her innovative approach and technical expertise.
First impressions are not only vital, but are nearly impossible to change. Did you know on average it takes just seven seconds for someone to create their first impression of you? In an interview, you are judged from the very minute you walk into the building, so greet everyone you come into contact with, with a smile and speak clearly… you never know who’s opinion could be the make or break of your job offer. We have put together some body language dos and don’ts for when you attend an interview. Check them out… DO’S Walk in confidently Don’t portray yourself as being scared of the interviewer or nervous around them. Walk in with confidence and give them a firm handshake, although don’t be too over confident that you come off as if you think you’re too good for the role. Sit right back in the chair and sit up straight, do not slouch – it can make the interviewer think you are not taking it seriously. Keep eye contact Keeping eye contact with your interviewer is the best way to show you’re actually paying attention and engaging with the situation. Of course this doesn’t mean stare blankly at them, but strive to hold eye contact for a few seconds at a time. If you’re meeting with more than one interviewer, be sure to make eye contact with all of them. Address the person who asked the question, then hold eye contact with the other interviewer for a few seconds, before returning your attention to the first interviewer. Smile Smile and nod where appropriate, and laugh when the interviewer does. You want to show you have a personality and you’re paying attention to what’s being said. It goes without saying that you should listen to the interviewer and try not to interrupt. Focus on keeping your tone of voice relaxed and polite. Too soft and you’ll seem timid, too loud and you’ll seem overbearing. DON’TS Slouch Sitting hunched forward, or lounging with arms and legs everywhere has the effect of looking a little too relaxed. You don’t want to sit there tightly clutching your fists in your lap, but you also don’t want to portray a casual, not bothered attitude. From the moment you arrive in the reception area, you need to keep your posture perfect. Always be aware of your body position. Sit up straight and lean forwards a little when you’re asked question, it gives a sense of curiosity and engagement. Zone out This is a big no-no! This could possibly be one of the worst things you could do in an interview as it says to the interviewer that you couldn’t be less interested in the opportunity possibly being given to you. It is likely that if you do zone out, the interviewer will just terminate the interview and ask you to leave! Fidget This includes tapping your fingertips in the arm rest or jiggling your leg up or down. It’s a sign of boredom and impatience. Keep both feet planted firmly on the floor to avoid the temptation. It’ll help to keep your posture straight and focussed on your interviewer, which in turn will make you seem more focused. Chew gum Do not chew gum in the interview room. This is really unprofessional and it can make the interviewer think you’re not interested in what they think of you. It also makes you look like you’re too comfortable meeting them, you should be a little bit nervous as this could be your new career! Do you have an interview coming up and are not sure what to where to look professional? Click here to follow our top tips. Can you think of any other Dos and Don’ts for interview body language? Drop them in the comments below!
When it comes to your job search, having previous experience to shout about on your CV and cover letter can help you stand out from other candidates. Not to mention that taking on work experience gives you an insight into the industry, enabling you to begin strengthening your skills. If you’re just starting out your career in the healthcare sector, work experience can be invaluable. Here are our top tips on finding and securing yourself the role that could kick-start your career. Put together a starting CV Putting together a CV is an important first step. This doesn’t have to be in depth, especially if you don’t have any relevant experience. Instead, talk about your education and hobbies and how these will be beneficial to your career in healthcare. You should also make a list of the types of experience you’re looking for and what you hope to gain from it. This will help you if you have to fill out an application, or can be used as a great tool when speaking to employers about the opportunities you’re after. Do your research A quick online search will reveal local businesses that offer work placements and even present you with a range of careers sites to explore. Alternatively, you could use networking sites like LinkedIn to search for opportunities or connect with other healthcare professionals who may be able to help you out. There are also a number of sites out there dedicated to finding and preparing candidates for work experience. For healthcare experience, Prospects and Health Careers are both useful sites. And don’t forget to check the NHS website as well. Start reaching out Once you have a good idea of the type of work experience you’re after, you can begin reaching out to local organisations. Before you begin contacting GPs directly, look at their careers pages and websites. They might have a dedicated page that can tell you everything you need to know about any work experience schemes they run and even let you apply for the role. Alternatively, if you can’t find what you need online, it’s time to pick up the phone or visit them in person. This will not only show that you’re keen, but allow you can have a proper conversation about the opportunities available to you. If you’re still in education, you might also have a dedicated career advisor that can help you by offering contacts, or pointing you in the right direction. If you have access to such a person, they can be a great resource for finding a work placement. Volunteering You should also consider volunteering, even if this is in a different area of healthcare to the one you want to work in. You could volunteer in the social care sector, or perhaps work with mental health charities to support those in need. All of these opportunities look great on your CV and can be a good way to gain relevant industry experience. And there are plenty of healthcare organisations out there looking for extra support! In summary Finding valuable work experience in the healthcare sector is about researching what opportunities are available to you and not being afraid to reach out! Right now the sector is suffering from staff shortages, making organisations all the more grateful for those looking to volunteer or take on work experience. CV-Library is the UK’s leading independent job board. For more expert advice on careers and the workplace, visit their Career Advice and Recruitment Insight pages.
Monday is the least favourite day of the week for many people. It's the first day back at work after a weekend of relaxing and it can often seem harder to motivate yourself to get started. January 21st otherwise known as Blue Monday… well, it's not only considered the worst Monday in January it’s actually considered the worst day of the year. The party season is over, we're already failing our new year resolutions and the grey days and potential of snow don’t make things easier! Luckily for you, we have put together some top tips on how to beat this depressing day and stay positive with your job search! Step one – Morning exercise Exercise has been proven to enhance your mood and to fill you with motivation. It is best to do this at the beginning of your day so you are motivated for the rest of the day and ready to be productive in your job search! Step two – Smile Smiling releases endorphins which are responsible for making us feel happy and they help to lower stress levels. With this in mind, try smiling whilst sat at your screen job searching – also listening to your favourite song can help to put a smile on your face and make you genuinely happy. It has also been said that listening to music can help you focus during tasks – so remember to have a listen whilst you job search! Step three – Avoid any last minute stress If you know that you have a lot to do on application day, then try to prepare yourself for it over the weekend. If something can be done in advance, such as CV preparation or completing a cover letter ready to be sent off, then find time during the weekend to do this. Doing so will mean that you have less to do on the day applications open and you will be less stressed at the thought of applying. Step four – Sleep well The amount of sleep you get is important to how you wake up feeling the next morning, as well as the quality of sleep you get. If you don’t sleep well or don’t get enough sleep then you are likely to wake up feeling irritable and unproductive! The best way to avoid this is to cut off all distractions for at least an hour before you fall asleep, this way you have more of a chance of waking up feeling refreshed and ready to start your productive day. Trust us, if you just pick even one of these ways to beat Blue Monday you will feel much happier! Can you think of any other top tips to get over Blue Monday? Let us know in the comments below.
Social networking sites in 2017 are a part of our everyday lives; they help us connect with people from all over the world in both a personal and professional manner. There’s just no getting away from it! From your laptop your phone and now even on watches, trying to avoid social media in some sense is near enough impossible. 10 years on from the creation of Twitter and 1.65 billion Facebook users later we find ourselves too often posting without considering the content of our posts and what the future ramifications could be from this. Try to remember when using social media that your main objective when job hunting is to promote yourself to potential employers. They want to see that you possess certain qualities that make you an employable candidate. Employers hold all the key information they need to find your online profile easily, some even use external screening companies. I don’t mean to alarm anyone because that’s not what I’m here to do; employers aren’t necessarily looking to find bad information about you by looking at your profile they are simply just using this process as a precaution as to see that by employing you would not draw any bad attention their way in the future. Be smart about what you post! Be more aware and take some consideration into whether your tweet or Instagram picture could be considered inappropriate in some manner. Examples of things employers have said that has turned them off a candidate are as follows: An unprofessional screenname or handle Bad mouthing previous employers/colleagues Evidence of excessive drinking or drug use Provocative photos Narrow-minded/offensive comments in regards to race, religion or gender Evidence of criminal behaviour Statistics found 73% of 18-34 year olds found their last job through social media. With the mases of users that are signed up and logged on to these sites daily you should utilise this tool and promote yourself well. If you want to read more about how we here at Swanstaff think you can use social media to find yourself a job use the link below… http://www.swanstaff.co.uk/swanstaff-blog/how-to-use-social-media-to-find-a-job