Tag Archives: employer perspective

In Case You Missed It: Day In The Life at Time Inc.

Did you miss a day in the life at Time Inc?  Click on the image below for a recap!

 Follow us on Twitter @NYUWassEmployer for tweets on a day-in-the-life of employees at different organizations. A professional will take over our account for the day and give you live updates about the projects they work on, meetings they attend, and the culture of their office.

Employer Insights: How the Engineering & Technology Fair Worked For Me

by Anthony Giorgio

Way back at the turn of the millennium, I was studying Computer Science at Polytechnic University, on the former Long Island campus.  During my freshman year, I learned about the annual on-campus career fair that was held in the spring.  I had visited the career services office, and they were offering students the chance to volunteer at the fair to help setup the various tables and booths.  I decided to take them up on their offer, and arrived at the fair early in the morning.  I carried boxes of tchotchkes and  marketing materials from the recruiters’ cars into the gym, and struck up a few conversations.  Eventually the fair started, and the horde of students arrived.  Being a lowly freshman, I didn’t have much to offer, and was politely rejected from every table.  I didn’t expect anything different, and resigned myself to a fate of again spending summer break working for McDonald’s.  

As the fair wound down, I helped the various recruiters pack up their booths, and they gladly rewarded me with a plentiful supply of keychains, pens, stress balls, and other items emblazoned with corporate logos.  There was one company, however, that I spent more than a few minutes chatting with.  They were a local Hewlett-Packard reseller, who also employed software engineers for consulting work.  The recruiter seemed to like me, and said they would be in touch.

A week or so later, they called me up and offered me a summer internship.  I was elated, since I didn’t expect to be doing technical work as a freshman.  I ended up working there for the entire summer, performing a variety of intern-related IT roles.  As my role was winding down, and I was preparing to return to school, the company hired another intern to replace me.  He was another student at Poly, but he was a senior and preparing to graduate.  In the few weeks we worked together, we became acquaintances, and learned to respect each other’s abilities.  I sometimes spoke to him during the school year, but since he was older than I, our social circles didn’t cross very much.

The next summer I again attended the career fair, and this time I managed to land an internship at Symbol Technologies (now part of Motorola).  I was fortunate enough that my resume had the right key technical terms, and the recruiter gave me a callback.  I spent the next two years working there, as my class schedule permitted.  It gave me excellent insights into how the corporate world worked, and invaluable experience in software development.

As I entered my senior year, I began to look for full-time employment, since I needed a “real” job.  I decided to attend the fall career fair at the Brooklyn campus, since I felt that waiting for the spring one on Long Island might be too late.  I put on my interview suit, printed out a stack of resumes, and climbed on the coach bus the school chartered for the occasion.  I felt confident, since I had three years of work experience, and I was about to complete a combination BS-MS program in Computer Science.   Still, I was nervous – what if nobody hires me?  What if I can’t get an offer?  I put those thoughts to rest as the bus parked in downtown Brooklyn.  

When I entered the career fair, I was surprised at how crowded it was.  The Long Island fairs usually had a decent turnout, but the Brooklyn one was on an entirely different level.  The popular companies had lines 20 students     deep, and there were so many tables they spilled over into the lobby of the library.  As I made my way around the fair, I met with the recruiters, shook their hands, passed out resumes, and recited my spiel innumerable times.  Eventually I made my way to the IBM table.  As luck would have it, my former classmate and colleague from my first internship had returned to recruit!  After the perfunctory greeting, he introduced me to the hiring manager, and we chatted briefly.  He seemed to like me, and told me to head to the career services office after the fair.  I wasn’t quite sure what would happen next, but I eagerly agreed.

After a nervous lunch, I headed over to the career services office, where I saw a number of other students.  Some I recognized from my campus, while others I had never seen before.  The woman in charge of the office said that the representatives from IBM would be individually interviewing us, since we had passed their pre-screening.  When it was my turn, I met with the recruiter once more, and talked for about a half-hour in a private office.  He asked me about my academic career, my work experience, and a number of other things to feel me out as a candidate.  The interview drew to a close, and he congratulated me, shaking my hand.  He promised that the hiring manager would be in touch, and to prepare for a phone interview.  I was pleased, but somewhat unsure.  I had never interviewed on a phone before, and didn’t really know what to expect.  

A few weeks later, I received an email from the hiring manager, asking when it would be convenient for me to talk.  We set up a date and time, and proceeded to have a pleasant conversation with each other.  This interview was rather similar to my previous one with IBM, where the interviewer seemed more interested about my personality and how I would fit in, rather than my technical skills.  At the end of the call, the manager said that he was going to recommend I come up for an in-person interview, and that someone from Human Resources would be in touch.  Within a few days, I received another email, this time inviting me to the IBM facility in Poughkeepsie, NY.  The HR representative gave me all the details, including directions to the site, what hotel I would be staying at, how to be reimbursed for my travel expenses, and what restaurants I should eat at.

As my in-person interview date approached, I realized that this would be the longest drive I have ever taken, and I would be doing it solo.  It was also before GPS or smartphones were common, so I made sure to print the route out using Mapquest directions, and brought along a paper map backup.  I packed an overnight bag, climbed into my old Honda, and headed north.  After two hours, I arrived in Poughkeepsie, and managed to find my hotel.  I checked in, grabbed a bite to eat, and prepared my suit for the interview tomorrow.  

The next morning, I headed over to the IBM facility on Route 9.  Once inside, I joined a large number of other candidates preparing to take the IPAT exam (a standardized test given to job applicants).  I spent about 90 minutes taking the test, and then we were all instructed to wait for our hiring managers to pick us up from the lobby.  A short while later, my manager came by, and I recognized him as being the same one from the career fair.  He explained that his job was to take me around the site and bring me to various groups that had job openings.  We drove around to a number of different offices, and I met a few different hiring managers.  Each one had a specific opening, for either software development or test.  The management team also took me out to lunch, which I later found out was so they could see how I handled social situations.  At the end of the day, the recruiting manager asked which of the positions I’d like to work in.  I ended up picking the sole development one, since it seemed the most interesting.  

I drove home the next day, retracing the hundred-mile journey downstate.  I thought I did well, but I wasn’t sure if I would get a written job offer.  After the weekend, I returned to school, and resumed my classes.  As the weeks went by, I became more nervous about my chances.  I had another written job offer, but it had an expiration date attached.  I was hoping that I would simultaneously have two job offers in hand so I could pick the more appealing one.  Finally, in mid-February, a letter arrived from IBM with my official offer.  I decided to accept, and began communicating with a Human Resources representative on all the things required to start my employment.

In conclusion, pursuing a job opportunity with a large corporation can be a long journey.  Decisions take time, and multiple people are involved in many steps.  From the candidate’s perspective, the interminable wait can be nerve-wracking, but it’s all part of the process.  It’s also important to differentiate yourself from the rest of the candidates.  If you tell the recruiter what makes you a good hire, it will help them to recall you later on.  Remember, having the smarts to do the job only gets you so far, but effective communication, teamwork, and a positive attitude will get you to the prize!

If you’d like to work for IBM, we’re hiring!  We have a number of openings available in the Systems & Technology Group.  These are for both co-ops and entry-level positions.  If you’re interested, check out the following links:

System z Software Developer – Intern (Poughkeepsie, NY or Tuscon, AZ)

System z Software Developer – Entry Level (Poughkeepsie, NY; Tuscon, AZ; or San Jose, CA)

IBM Wave Software Developer – Entry Level (Poughkeepsie, NY)

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO MEET WITH IBM, STOP BY THEIR BOOTH AT THE ENGINEERING & TECHNOLOGY CAREER FAIR. RSVP THROUGH NYU CAREERNET BY CLICKING HERE!

Startup Thoughts and Considerations by 9th Dot

9th Dot is a consumer insight platform that gives individuals a “blank canvas” through which they can share their innovative ideas for improvements with businesses, and  rewards consumers for successfully doing so.  From the businesses’ perspective, they receive insightful information in the form of answers to questions they often don’t even know to ask. Last week, they offered up some advice for the interviewing process. Today, they share what to consider when starting your own business.

So you’re ready to take the plunge?  You’ve got a great idea for a product or service that solves a problem with a huge market size, you’re well underway with developing the technology and have written more code than you ever thought possible, you’re already crafting your go to market strategy and you’ve thought through a business model that will scale seamlessly as your startup grows like a weed.  Think again, and again after that.

Starting your own business is one of the most gratifying things a person can do. Take it from us, we thought careers in banking were exactly what we wanted until we had a taste of what entrepreneurship had to offer.  From seeing your app published in the app store to hearing your first potential customer express interest in your product, starting a business will give you countless ups, but also plenty of downs.

The advice we never received, well, maybe we never sought out, is what exactly to expect before starting a company.  Hindsight, 20/20 as it may be, will never provide all the answers, but it’s certainly given us some perspective that we’d like to share with other budding entrepreneurs.

With that in mind, we asked ourselves, what would have been most helpful for us before we started out?

First, for any milestone you set or any hurdle you want to cross in which you think things will become easier, guess again.  For all the progress we’ve made, from writing the business plan, developing the technology, getting covered in TechCrunch, receiving a formal offer to join an accelerator program, and delivering our first demo to a customer, we’ve continued to learn one thing – it doesn’t get easier.  No matter what your strategy for building your business, whether it be widespread user adoption, monetization from corporate clients, or a combination of both, be prepared for a long slog ahead with progress likely to come at a rate slower than you expect.

The reality is that it takes time to build a business.  Viral marketing, hair on fire problem solving and growth hacking are all great buzz phrases, but none will be your cure all panacea as you look to build awareness of your startup and the problems it solves.  Be creative in your go to market strategy.  Ask friends and family what they think – they’ll likely give you feedback that will lead you to think and rethink ways in which you position your product in the marketplace.

Talk to your co-founders and then talk to them again.  Communication and candor is paramount.  As most investors will tell you, the number one reason startups fail is due to differences in opinions that co-founders are unable to reconcile.  Founders agreements and incorporation papers are a great start, but nothing takes the place of addressing key questions early on:

– Do all of the co-founders share similar risk appetites?  The idea of launching a startup is appealing to everyone, but tolerable by few.  Make sure from the get go that everyone is prepared to give your startup the time and attention necessary to succeed before doing anything else

-Do all of the co-founders have the financial cushion necessary to give it a shot? No matter how much progress you make, and how quickly you make it, you’re a long way from being comfortable.  Assuming you all have the patience to remain uncomfortable for a while, make sure everyone is prepared to forego a meaningful income for a while.

– Be prepared to change and change often.  Pivoting is another one of those buzzwords in the startup industry, but it’s much simpler than that.  While plenty of companies do truly pivot, in many cases more than once, we learned to simply not commit to anything other than having a clear vision to experiment and experiment often.  We thought we had it figured out – our idea solves a major problem, a problem we vetted across several major VCs by sharing our business plan before embarking on our journey.  We thought, “let’s get a little bit of media coverage and run some campaigns over Facebook and Twitter and we’ll be off to the races” – were we ever mistaken.  Dampen your expectations and then dampen them again.  Building a business and a brand takes time, endless amounts of energy, and above all a passion to see your idea grow into a business. Regardless of how good you think your go to market strategy is, think of as many ideas for building awareness for your product or service as you can, you’ll test them all and then think of some more.

Above all, don’t launch your startup because it’s cool to say you launched a startup or because you want to make a lot of money – neither of these reasons are likely to lead to success.  Start a business because you see a solution to a problem that will only seem obvious after you’ve exhaustively told your story to customers and investors, and likely the rest of the World.  We started 9th Dot, a crowdsourcing consumer insight platform, because we saw a tremendous opportunity to create a “win-win” situation for both consumers and businesses. Creating a platform that enables consumers to deliver insightful solutions to businesses and rewards them for doing so made a lot of sense to us, but it was the realization that we couldn’t live with ourselves if we did not that made us decide to slog it out.  As we were told by one VC investor early on, “Remember, entrepreneurs are mostly irrational, driven by a passion for creating something where there was nothing and realizing a vision they couldn’t ignore. It’s like jumping off a cliff and having to build a plane before you hit the ground!”

Innovative Interviewing Tips from 9th Dot

9th Dot is a consumer insight platform that gives individuals a “blank canvas” through which they can share their innovative ideas for improvements with businesses, and  rewards consumers for successfully doing so.  From the businesses’ perspective, they receive insightful information in the form of answers to questions they often don’t even know to ask. Here, they offer up some advice for the interviewing process.
Demonstrate an Approach to Problem-Solving

With such a competitive dynamic in today’s job market, individuals often try to do anything they can to gain an edge and differentiate themselves from other candidates. Interviewers want to be convinced you will be able to solve tough problems and help the corporation achieve its objectives.  Demonstrating your ability to think critically and provide innovative solutions to problems is a skill that can help you both secure the job during the interview, as well as climb the corporate ladder after you’ve landed the job.

It’s widely known that one of the best ways to answer interview questions is to make reference to situational experiences in which you successfully solved a problem.  Success stories tend to be tales of the defining moments in one’s career when an individual overcame significant challenges to succeed. These stories create a memorable impression and give the interviewer anecdotes about you that identify your ability to think creatively, solve complex problems and provide a solution.

While many experts suggest relating interview questions to similar situations from earlier in one’s career to demonstrate specific experience in dealing with similar situations, this can prove challenging for students preparing to enter the job market for the first time.  As we all know, challenges also tend to present opportunities.  When preparing for an interview, think of where you use or have used the company’s products or services.  Think about the context in which you used a product or service and ask yourself “what could have made that experience even better?”  Chances are that you’ve had several occasions like this where the proverbial “light bulb” went off in your head as to what would have made your experience better.  With the rise of crowdsourcing, businesses have quickly realized the value that can be derived from the consumers of their products and services – so much so that many large corporations have built full scale social media, consumer insight and guest experience teams to learn from and incorporate their customers’ innovative ideas for improving their products or services.

For instance, while preparing for a job at the corporate office of McDonald’s or Starbucks one may consider addressing an interview question centered around problem solving or critical thinking by drawing on an experience in which you observed an opportunity to improve something and exactly what your solution would entail.  Starbucks, through its MyStarbucksIdea platform, solicits and reviews ideas from its customers and has implemented just over 300 ideas over the last five years.  Things like WiFi, splash sticks and cake pops all originated through their crowdsourcing platform.  McDonald’s recently began testing third drive-thru windows after its social media team picked up a tweet from one customer who decided to share his idea over Twitter by saying, “I hate waiting in line for 20 minutes during the lunch rush at McDonald’s when all I want is a simple McFlurry.  Why doesn’t McDonald’s have a third drive-thru window for express orders?”  Innovative ideas like these gain the attention from senior leadership throughout an organization.

Companies like 9th Dot, a crowdsourcing consumer insight platform, are gaining traction by serving as the connection point between consumers and businesses.  By providing consumers with a “blank canvas” through which they can share their innovative ideas, and potentially earn rewards, 9th Dot enables consumers to showcase their bright ideas to businesses.  Having the right portal through which you can share your idea effectively gives you the podium in front of a large lecture hall filled with businesses wanting to learn what they can do better.

Consider that the next time an interviewer asks you to describe the last time you’ve solved a problem and how you went about doing so!

 

Wall Street Services Presents Tips for Resume Success

Have you always wondered what makes a resume stand out to a recruiter? Ideally, you want to provide evidence that your skills and experiences are a match for the job description as closely as possible. Apart from that, we want to share one specific insight that will boost your resume’s potential to entice a recruiter to give you a call.

The truth of the matter is that managers want people who get things done. The world is full of people who do things with little eye on the result. We look at hundreds of resumes each week and one of the key mistakes we see is listing tasks rather than accomplishments. By listing your accomplishments you will stand out and be noticed. Having your resume stand out as noticeable is the point of having a resume. If you are responding to a job posting, it is likely that hundreds of other people are responding as well. If your resume does not stand out, it will be lost in the sea of job seekers vying for the same few positions. In fact, the great probability is that your resume will first be screened by a junior person who knows little about the job you are applying for and is looking for three or four specific items.

Some Tips

AVOID: Listing your day-to-day tasks and responsibilities – for example:

-Researched breaks on aged swap payments to determine the cause for each.

-Prepared and analyzed daily reports

-Communicated with clients

INSTEAD: Detail an accomplishment that explicitly informs the tasks and technical abilities you have – for example:

-Extremely productive in risk reduction: reduced breaks from more than 6,000 to less than 100, completing the project ahead of target date

-Designed and implemented new daily reporting schematic which provided management with a wider range of critical information 2 hours earlier

-Provided critical information to over 4,000 clients

Highlighting your accomplishments will indicate to your recruiter that you are a motivated go-getter able to complete projects and ultimately bring value to their organization. To see more resume, interview and job search tips, visit our blog.

If you are interested in having your resume critiqued by an experienced recruiter in the finance industry, be sure to come to our Resumes & Cover Letters That Work: Presented by Wall Street Services event.  It will be held at the Wasserman Career Center at NYU on March 13th at 4:30pm.

Wall Street Services is a boutique recruiting firm in the finance industry. We place financial consultants on a project basis with well-known firms in New York City. Our mission is to place people into positions they love and provide the best consultants to our clients.

In Case You Missed It: Day in the Life at Macy’s

Did you miss Saul’s day as an Assistant Buyer at @Macys? If so, click on the logo below for a recap.

Sound like a place you’d like to work or intern? Be sure to check CareerNet for future opportunities.

“Incredibly Challenging, Incredibly Rewarding”: Profile of a Teacher at Success Academy

Six weeks into the start of the current school year, Corey Inslee, a second-grade teacher and NYU alumnus, received heart-stopping news: a student in his class had been hit by a car and was in the hospital with serious injuries. Corey had taught the student the year before and knew him and his family well. For a week, he visited him every day after school. “It was devastating to see him suffering,” Inslee says. “But it did give me a chance to witness something amazing.”

That amazing thing was the rest of his class expressing overwhelming empathy for their classmate. “They asked what they could do for him,” Inslee says. “They wanted to visit him. They picked out books from the class library that they thought he would like. They made him cards.” When the student finally returned to school six weeks after his accident, a giant scar stretching from the top of his head to his jaw, his fellow students organized a surprise welcome-back party for him. “They truly celebrated him,” says Corey. “No one asked him about his scar. They made him feel so good — you could see it. That was a high point in my teaching career. Academics are important, and my students perform at incredible levels, but when you see kids genuinely and openly caring about each other — that’s when you know you’re doing something right.”

Corey didn’t always know he wanted to teach, though adolescent experiences as a baseball camp counselor on his native Long Island, New York, led him to want to work with children. He enrolled at New York University with a major in sports management and quickly realized he was more interested in the development of young athletes than in the business classes he was taking. During his sophomore year, he switched to an education major. A couple years later, an NYU alum who worked at Success Academy came to talk to soon-to-be graduates about the organization. “I was intrigued,” Inslee says. “I appreciated their mission.”

To land the job, Corey had to show just how passionate he was about that mission — how much he cared about helping to develop the social, emotional, and intellectual characters of mostly underprivileged kids. He also had to demonstrate his commitment to growing as a teacher; at Success Academies, teachers consider themselves professionals who continually seek to improve their practice and who hold the bar as high for themselves as they do for their students. They don’t choose a teaching career because they get their summers off — they choose it because they want to provide opportunities for children to become the best human beings they can be. “That’s the real work,” Corey says. “And to do that you have to try to be the best human being you can be. It’s incredibly challenging and incredibly rewarding.”

Recognized nationally for its innovative education reform efforts, Success Academy is a network of 22 New York City charter schools (and counting!) that serve Kindergarten through 8th grade, with a new high school opening in the fall. It employs a large number of New York University alumni. “I would encourage anyone who is passionate about educating kids to apply to Success,” says Corey Inslee, a second-grade teacher and NYU alumnus. “With the amount of professional development we receive and the rare chance for even a novice to start as an Associate Teacher, you have a huge opportunity to grow here.” For more information about employment opportunities, visit www.SuccessCareers.org (and check out these documentaries: Waiting for Superman and The Lottery).

Apply now on NYU CareerNet, Job IDs: 911554, 918666, 910184, 911820, 910215, 911554, 917348, 919316, 918579, 914996, 919632, 916063, 919717, 916062, 915777, 916362, 911081, 914994, 915542

In Case You Missed It: Week in the Life at Deloitte

The good folks of @lifeatdeloitte recently tweeted about their lives at work. Click the logo below for a recap.

Sound like a place you’d like to work? You are in luck because there are positions open. Apply on NYU CareerNet for the following positions:

Consulting:

Business Analyst Summer Scholar – Job Id 909961

Business Technology Analyst Summer Scholar – Job Id 909965

Human Capital Analyst Summer Scholar – Job Id 909970

Deloitte National Leadership Conference (Human Capital) – Job Id 916435

Deloitte National Leadership Conference (Technology) – Job Id 916434

NextGen Leaders National Conference – Job Id 916436

AERS/Tax:

Deloitte Summer Programs (AERS/Tax/FAS DNLC & Mentor Program) –917316

NextGen Leaders National Conference (AERS/Tax/FAS) – Job Id 920112

Alternative Spring Break – Job Id 920113

Additionally, Deloitte will be on campus at the following events:

Deloitte Spring Information Session on 2/4 at 7:45pm at The Wasserman Center

Diversity Deloitte Bootcamp on 2/5 from 6-8pm

Engineering & Technology Career Fair on 2/6 from 11am-3pm at NYU-Poly

BAP/SAS Spring Information Session on 2/11 from 12-2pm at Tisch Hall

 

 

5 Tips to Help Your Job Application Stand Out

As a campus recruiter, students are often asking what they can do to stand out among the sea of applicants. While nothing is foolproof, here are 5 tips that will improve your chances of landing an interview with a prospective employer:

  1. Complete the full application. Due to the need to track applicants in two systems (both the school’s career site AND the company’s applicant tracking system), you’ll often need to complete two applications for one job. The application may also call for a cover letter, letter of reference, or completion of an online assessment. Oftentimes if you don’t complete all steps, you’re automatically out of the running! Completing every step demonstrates that you’re detail-oriented and that you really want it.
  2. Know your audience. Tailoring your resume and any other documents to the company, industry, or role you’re applying for shows that you’re serious! If you’re blanket-applying to many different organizations, create a template for each industry you’re applying for and the fill in the blanks. Warning: don’t forget to swap out the generic “Insert Company Name” for the actual company you are applying for.
  3. Keep it short, sweet, and scannable. Seeing a two-page (or sometimes three!) resume from a college junior is frustrating. While I know that you only want to show your success over time, recruiters often have thousands of resumes in their queue. My recommendation when it comes to your resume is to demonstrate key deliverables you completed and how you contributed to the team or organization. You also need to ensure that your resume is easy to scan through for the highlights. If you’re applying for a marketing role, highlight marketing-specific tasks or roles you’ve had in the past. And it’s okay if you don’t have the experience yet – you can use a cover letter to demonstrate how your skill set will translate into the role you’re applying for!
  4. Show that you can deliver. Metrics are a huge deal these days, and your resume should use metrics to show your success and impact. While it may be easier to do for some experiences than others, you know more than you think you do.  For example, if you were a camp counselor for 5 years, use metrics to demonstrate your loyalty to the camp and how you kept your campers coming back year after year.
  5. Lastly: the devil is in the details. I learned this from the CEO of the first company I worked for, and it’s never truer than in the application phase. I’ve seen candidates send in cover letters with the wrong company and resumes with the wrong phone number or no email address. To avoid this, have as many people as you can review your resume. You can also print it out and read it aloud, line by line, to catch errors (trust me, it works). Also ensure that the attachments you’re uploading online aren’t labeled with another company’s name; it’s a dead giveaway that you’re not truly interested in a company. It also makes it easier for recruiters if you clearly title each document you submit. An example of this is titling a document with your first and last name, followed by the item description (i.e., “John Smith_Resume.pdf”).

Sophia McMaster is the Talent Acquisition Specialist for University Relations at RB, a Parsippany, New Jersey-based CPG firm focused on health, hygiene and home. If you’re interested in opportunities with RB, please visit rb.com/careers and attend their employer presentation session in Wasserman Presentation Room A this Monday, 1/27 at 5:00pm.

In case you missed it: Day in the Life of Entrepreneur Jeff Zhang NYU ’08

Jeff Zhang (NYU ’08), tells us all about a day in the life at his start-up,  @ShopSpectre! Click the logo to view!

If you are interested in getting more information about startups, or are looking for an internship at one of the many emerging start-ups in NYC, don’t miss out on our Start-up Expo taking place on November 21st at Kimmel. Register today for more information!