Monday, September 24, 2007

Diversity Job Fair At Mellon Arena Coming October 9th

The Employment Guide and The Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh will host The 2007 Pittsburgh Diversity Employment and Career Education Expo at the Mellon Arena on Tuesday October 9th from 10:30AM to 3:00PM. The job fair is free for all job seekers and no prior registration is required. Geared toward hourly entry level to mid level skilled positions, approximately 30 companies are expected to be on hand looking for qualified and motivated job seekers in multiple categories. Categories such as healthcare, nursing, skilled trades, office / clerical, retail, drivers, law enforcement, customer service and more, with career training opportunities as well. Some of the companies attending include Manpower, Boscov's, Giant Eagle / Market District, SMG, CareerLink, Maronda Homes, Transitional Services, First Student, Leeds, Lenzner Coach Lines, Mainstay Life Services, Pennsylvania State Police, Best Buy, New Century Careers, Student Transportation of America, Inc., Kaplan Career institute, United States Post Office, Army National Guard, Sunrise Assisted Living, Academy of Court Reporting, All State Career School, Verizon Wireless and more. Stay tuned for more updates as we get closer to the event.

Monday, September 17, 2007

City County Career Day Set to Get Underway Tuesday September 18th.

In what is being billed as the largest job fair event in Pittsburgh history, City County Career Day, or C3, will be held tomorrow at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in downtown Pittsburgh. Approximately 250 companies, including over 50 social service organizations, will be on hand offering employment, information and advice to what could be over 4,000 job seekers. Although centered on the building trades due to the large number of Pittsburgh area building projects slated to get underway over the next year, employment opportunities from all categories and skill levels will be available.

The event is a partnership between the Three Rivers Workforce Investment Board, PA CareerLink, the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, the Pittsburgh Partnership and the Western Pennsylvania Builders Guild. Hours will be 10AM until 3PM with free admission to all jobseekers. Services that will be offered include tips on resume writing, interviewing skills, finding community resources and even how to get the most out of a job fair.

If you plan on attending try to get there early and make it a point to smile and shake hands. This is an opportunity to make a good first impression.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Mary Serves Up a Lesson to Pittsburgh Recruiters, Very Well Done With a Side of Reproach

We were reading other Pittsburgh related Blogs last night when we saw Pittsblog had endorsed the reading of a frustrated job seeker's blog outlining her search for a higher level position in the Pittsburgh area with nothing but frustration and unprofessionalism from the Pittsburgh recruitisphere to show for it. Our biggest interest came from Mary’s post concerning the attendance of a job fair that was held at PNC Park last June. We also decided to publicize her travail, because her experience relates to all job seekers and recruiters, whether entry level hourly jobs or highly experienced professional positions.

As an organization that also produces multiple large job fairs each year, we hear most often from the “other side”, that is, recruiters who have attended our job fairs. Though many successes have occurred for employers and job seekers at these events, we have seen a common thread running among the recruiters who complain the most about not finding qualified job candidates for the positions they have open. Mary makes the point very well from the job seekers standpoint.

Many recruiters, though with the best of intentions, simply are not people persons. That is, whether they are in Human Resources or head a department for their organization, they are not trained and are not good at engaging people in a public forum. We suppose most people who do this well are currently in Sales or Public Relations or Politics.

Unfortunately for Mary her disappointment in the behavior of recruiters came from expectations that were too high for what a job fair is all about (or of most value to job seekers). Job Fairs, especially for higher end positions, are more of a research mechanism than an actual interview opportunity. Also, she is correct that going to a job fair during the last hour of an event is less likely to get her quality time with the companies that remain (another bad habit of local recruiters is leaving before an event is over)

This does not offer to excuse the behavior of recruiters, only to explain them. Blog postings like Mary’s should go a long way in educating company decision makers about how much they are missing out on available Pittsburgh talent because they are so enthralled with their systems that they forget what their purpose is. Rude or belittling behavior is unprofessional. Period.

As for any other advice for Mary in her job search, please leave your comments and suggestions on her blog. It will be a shame for yet another intelligent professional job seeker to leave Pittsburgh for lack of opportunity (which are actually out there but unaccesable to those without connections). We suggest she contact The Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, as they offer job search assistance for professionals as well as hourly.

To read Mary’s postings and blog, here is the link.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Will the Pittsburgh Region See It’s Best Quarter of the Year Yet to Come?

With the advent of multiple very large construction projects set to get under way within the next 4 months, southwestern Pennsylvania’s job market is poised to see its best quarter in over 5 years. This year to date has seen the first bit of growth for this market since 2001. Year to year growth (July to July) was just over 4,600 jobs created (only .4%).

The upcoming September to December time period should see that and more. Although paltry from a total percentage standpoint, it is the beginning of what should be decent economic news for at least the next 2 years, barring a major unforeseen shock to the economy.

In the hourly Pittsburgh jobs arena, we are seeing very strong demand in the hospitality market, retail, security and sales, along with the always growing plea for healthcare workers. Manufacturing, though anemic by historical standards, has stabilized in the region.

Another symptom of the improving job climate is the continued reduction in applicants for career training schools. As jobseekers gain employment they are less likely to seek retraining. We’re not talking about 4 year college degree programs but the 1 and 2 year programs favored by job seekers seeking retraining. This is something we have seen very strongly in the south and west as those job markets heated up in 2005 and 2006. Look for an announcement coming within the next 3 months of a major Pittsburgh career school closing it’s doors.

Truly a 'Burgh Thing!

Truly a 'Burgh Thing!
by Randy Bish, Pittsburgh Tribune Review

Job News and Information for Job Seekers and Recruiters

Job News and Information for Job Seekers and Recruiters