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Friday, July 27, 2012

Temping your way to Happy

Like test driving a vehicle, temping is your opportunity to 'test drive' a job before you make a serious commitment. Benefits are clear to employers, but people choose to be temps and freelance for a variety of reasons. Combining the benefits with your requirements, you can temp your way to happy!

The unemployment rate resting at 8.2% for the second month in a row the traditional way of finding work isn't cutting it. Many have created their own small businesses and switched their skills to freelance-only contract work. 

While some may say this type of work unpredictable, many are seeing the benefits of choosing path of least resistance. We reported last week that Temp work is on the rise based on June's employment numbers, and we wanted to dig a little deeper and investigate why people are choosing this route in their career path?

Top reasons we found? Money, flexibility, skill-building and potential permanent placement.

The Test Drive
Long time temporary worker David Shea advises on analyzing each placement, "All jobs should be considered independently, and on their own merits, as to what they offer, and what they require of you to change/sacrifice. Be flexible, and you will find yourself more often employed than not."  

Trying a new opportunity as a temp, you have to put your best foot forward and are then an easy and obvious choice if/when your position may become permanent. Michelle Tillis Lederman, founder of Executive Essentials, a corporate training and coaching company believes that doing temp work dissolves an employers belief that certain tasks will be 'below' you and also gives the impression of work ethic and a good attitude. Can we say HIRED?!

Skills Built
Every job will require a different set of skills. Many entry-level jobs are mostly skills you can perfect, while picking up a few new skills as you go. "Having a temp job will often allow you to learn many new skills to add to your repertoire, in addition to honing and increasing your current skills. These sometimes involve soft skills, such as customer service, time management, attention to detail, etc. But often, you'll learn hard skills as well, such as how to operate new technology, or learn new software, which is a great benefit to highlight on your resume," says Shea. A good question to ask yourself is, what will this job teach me? 

FREE lancing
Choosing to be a freelancer, contract/shift based worker means you are in charge. Business depends on your own schedule and motivation. "I chose temping because a permanent position in a corporate environment felt like a noose around my neck. Being with the same company for 15 years seemed like a death sentence to the 20-something artist in me," said Stefanie Petersen, 41 in article "Take this temp job and love it."

Freelancing allows to you follow your interests more specifically. Internet and Fashion Entrepreneur Loren Ridinger gives on her blog the top reasons she chose to do freelance writing. "I get to spend more time with my friends and family (no 9-5). I decide which projects I want and which projects just aren’t the right fit. I can work right from my own home (even in my pajamas!). I can always look for more freelance opportunities. I get to write about the things I love!"

What are your major selling points for temp and freelance work? Why does it work (or not work) for you?

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A Solution to Unemployment: Temp Work!

Are you unemployed? 
More importantly, how long have you been unemployed?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the Unemployment rate at 8.2% in June. For the past nine months we've been hovering with an average of 8.37% which is admittedly better than 2009 which averaged 9.27% for the year, but it it still not where it should be.

Many reasons are attributed to this unemployment rate include government’s lack of creating jobs and loss of corporate profits by way of consumer sales flat lining. What does that mean? If people aren't buying, retailers aren't hiring.

College graduates reportedly have the worst prospects for employment. Huffington Post's stated that "more than two million college graduates are now unemployed and millions more are underemployed."

So what does this mean to you? Here are a few suggestions to help find a solution to your unemployment:

1. Identify what type of jobs are hiring
"About one-third of the jobs gained in June were in temporary services," reports Christopher Rugaber"Manufacturing added 11,000, its ninth straight month of gains. Health care added 13,000 jobs and financial services gained 5,000."

Based on reports, we know temp work is on the rise! There is an ease that temp and shift work provide, especially for young workers. "Temporary work can be like a paid internship, where an employer gets to try you out without making a long-term commitment. You also get to check out different employers and explore various types of workplaces, which can be eye-opening and can reveal your career passion," says Dr. Bonnie Snyder. "If you do a good job, it's likely that the employer will seek ways to try to keep you on and that you will be the first to get the nod when the economy finally rebounds."

Don't just look at what's hiring now, but look long term and start experimenting with different fields on an entry level basis. Check out the U.S. News & World Report's '25 Best Jobs' - "We’ve ranked them, comparing their projected growth to the year 2020 to their industry’s employment rate." Many careers stick out to us - particularly #1 Registered Nurse, #6 Web Developer, #11 Maintenance and Repair Worker, and #16 Meeting, Convention & Event Planner. 

2. Get involved - Register on
By registering your expertise and availability, this will link you into a network of owners looking for your specific skill. Owners can hire you over the web and hire you for one or many shifts based on their need. Just like a temp agency setting you up with a job, instead you are in charge. 

For example this shift for a Front Desk Representative in Rolling Meadows, IL could be a perfect way to work on your customer service skills. Or apply your event planning skills with this tradeshow event staff posting in Glenview, IL.

It's easy to find different job options and experiment with your strengths to find a career path. Check out our long list of expertise available and register today. Follow our blogFacebook and Twitter for valuable career advice and job postings.

3. Overcome your obstacles
It is never to late to re-evaluate where your career path will take you. It's easy to get into the bad habits of unemployment, but be sure to start with the good ones.

Keep a regular routine, check in with your family for positive reinforcement, and network wherever and whenever you can. That includes online. "With online networking, you have access to more professionals — and will inevitably make faster connections — as your connections expand throughout your industry," says Mona Abdel-Halim

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, July 6, 2012
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, "Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey"
Snyder, Dr. Bonnie. "A Temporary Solution for Jobless College Grads" July 16, 2012
Rayburn, Robin L. "With Forecasts Gloomy, Can We Spread Hope?" July 6, 2012
Rugaber, ChristopherU.S. Employers Add 80,000 Jobs as Economy Struggles July 6, 2012
U.S. News & World Report "The 25 Best Jobs
Miller, Valerie L. "Five Good Habits for the Unemployed" March 29, 2012
Abdel-Halim, Mona. "20+ Online Networking Opportunities for Job Seekers" February 19, 2012

NextCrew is a job maintenance website that allows owners to post open shift-based work and people to provide their expertise by applying for the positions and working the shift. Make some extra money during unemployment. Sign up for shift-based work that fits into your job search schedule so you are making money while finding the perfect job for you.

Photos by: Jbndl & Rebecca Anne 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Introducing NextCrew iPod Giveaway Winner: Lisa Grisolia!

Meet Lisa Grisolia winner of our spring iPod Nano giveaway promotion! Anyone who registered on NextCrew between April - May 31, 2012 was entered to win.
Lisa is from Elmhurst, IL and is a self-employed freelance musician and teacher. 

"I heard about NextCrew from a friend. As a freelance musician and teacher, the majority of my work comes from connections. I'm always interested in making more connections," says Lisa. Being part of NextCrew is a step to making more connections professionally and to post her expertise for shift based music gigs and teaching.

What is Lisa's dream job? "Right now I'm mostly teaching in multiple locations and gigging here and there.  I'd love to have more of a balance between teaching and performing and teach in just one location," says Lisa.

We had to ask Lisa what will be her first picks for her ipod playlist "Midnight City by M83, 1901 by Phoenix, Helplessness Blues by Fleet Foxes, Simple Song by The Shins and Windows are Rolled Down by Amos Lee"

Check out Lisa's profile on NextCrew to see a good example of setting up your own profile today! 

Congratulations Lisa on winning a new iPod Nano!