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Hiring and Preparing a Dossier
I. Answer the questions.
1.Have you got any work experience?
2.What sort of job would you like to do? Can you think of a perfect job for you?
3.What sort of working hours would you like to have?
4.Would you like to work from home?
5.Would you prefer to have a job for life or a more flexible career?
II. In your opinion, which factors below are important for getting a job? Choose the five most important. Is there anything missing from the list? Which do you think are not important? Why?
III. Discuss the statements.
1. At work, appearance is more important than performance.
2. You should keep your private life totally separate from your work.
3. People don’t change much during their working lives.
4. It is best to work for as few companies as possible.
5. Everybody should retire at 50.
Hiring and Preparing a Dossier
Obtaining a job involves a lot of hard work. You will have to do more than simply walk into a personnel office and fill out an application form if you want to see your name added to the payroll.
As a jobseeker, you will have to follow a certain schedule that will involve (1) analyzing your strengths and restricting your search; (2) preparing a dossier (placement file); (3) looking in the right places for a job; (4) constructing a resume; (5) writing letters of application; (6) attending an interview; (7) accepting or declining a job; (8) filling out a job application. You can secure a suitable job on today's highly competitive job market if you keep in mind that the basic purpose of all this activity is to sell yourself, preferably to the best employer and for the highest price.
A position can become open for two major reasons: either someone has left (resigned, was fired, promoted, transferred, passed away) or increased workload requires increasing the head count. Once the decision to hire is made, the employer writes a "requirement" (or "req" for short) which lists the qualifications (skills, education, personal traits, etc.) required of and desired in a candidate. A decision is usually made at this time about the pay range.
Some employers advertise their reqs by placing them in newspapers, on Internet, on the Intranet, etc. Most give their names in the ads, some place anonymous ads with a P.O. Box number for responses (so called "blind ads"), to avoid unwanted phone calls and even personal visits from job seekers. Most employers do not want their competitors to know vacancy information, turnover rate, position's salary and other information the company may not want revealed. That is why some people send out their resumes in response to every ad, figuring that even though they clearly do not match the req, the advertiser may have other open reqs.
Out of a pile of resumes, the employer identifies a few candidates to bring in for an interview. After one or more rounds of interviews, a job offer is made to the best candidate. If he or she declines, the offer is made to the second best candidate. If s/he also declines, the employer may choose to sweeten the offer to the first candidate, make an offer to the third best candidate, invite more people for interview, or solicit more resumes.
Before you start your job hunting campaign, it is your first responsibility to identify the careers and jobs for which you best qualify. Focus on skills that you have acquired in school or college, in jobs, from hobbies and interests. Decide if you are good at making decisions, or you may be better at original thinking, or at following directions. Make an inventory of your accomplishments and marketable skills and then decide which specialty within your chosen career appeals to you most. If you are enrolled in a nursing program, decide if you want to work in a large hospital, a nursing home, or a state health agency. What kind of patients do you want to care for - geriatric, pediatric, psychiatric? Once you have a general direction, you can begin your actual search.
Put all this information together to create your personal dossier, or placement file. It should contain information about you that substantiates and supplements the facts you will list in your resume and letter of application (or cover letter): letters of recommendation, unsolicited letters - those awarding you a scholarship, praising you the employer of the month/year, or honoring you for some community service; copies of these letters are made to send out to prospective employers. But be very selective about these kinds of letters if you do not want to crowd your dossier with less important items that will compete for attention with your academic recommendations. The dossier also contains biographical information, a listing of your job experiences, and your transcripts.
The most important part of your dossier is the letter of recommendation section. Whom should you ask to recommend you? Your present or previous employer is a logical choice. But if you are successfully employed and are looking for a new position only for advancement or better salary, you may not want to tell your present employer that you are looking for a new job. You have the right to request the prospective employer to respect your confidence until you become an active (and also a leading) candidate. On the other hand, if you are at loggerheads with your current employer and want very much to find a more suitable position, you need to prepare the prospective employer as honestly and professionally as you can with the least damage to yourself. No sure solutions exist.
Make sure that you ask permission of all the people whom you are going to list as references. This is not only a courtesy, but also gives them time to write an appropriate letter for you. It is important to stress that you need a strong letter of recommendation - a general or weak one will hurt your chances in your job search.