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Out of Work - Advice Needed

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olivia242
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Out of Work - Advice Needed

Postby olivia242 » Wed, 15 Feb 2012 2:50 pm

Hi,

I'm an experienced IT Project Manager but through no fault of my own, I have 2 recent short jobs on my CV. One I had to leave as they were not paying me and the other I was retrenched as part of a company restructuring.

The last event was in September and I have applied for around 160 jobs with very limited success. I guess everyone looks at my CV and sees a job hopper where on the previous pages, I have average employments of 3 to 4 years.

I am beginning to lose hope of ever finding work again in Singapore as the damage to my career from being retrenched seems to be too big to recover from.

Can anyone recommend a different approach to the scatter gun method of using sites like JobsDB or Jobstreet as it's clearly not working and I need to find work again for my own sanity as well as financial well-being.

Thanks.

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JR8
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Re: Out of Work - Advice Needed

Postby JR8 » Wed, 15 Feb 2012 4:11 pm

olivia242 wrote:Hi,

I'm an experienced IT Project Manager but through no fault of my own, I have 2 recent short jobs on my CV. One I had to leave as they were not paying me and the other I was retrenched as part of a company restructuring.

The last event was in September and I have applied for around 160 jobs with very limited success. I guess everyone looks at my CV and sees a job hopper where on the previous pages, I have average employments of 3 to 4 years.

Why not state on your CV the reasons you were retrenched? That would remove any initial doubts.


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Re: Out of Work - Advice Needed

Postby nakatago » Wed, 15 Feb 2012 4:13 pm

JR8 wrote:
olivia242 wrote:Hi,

I'm an experienced IT Project Manager but through no fault of my own, I have 2 recent short jobs on my CV. One I had to leave as they were not paying me and the other I was retrenched as part of a company restructuring.

The last event was in September and I have applied for around 160 jobs with very limited success. I guess everyone looks at my CV and sees a job hopper where on the previous pages, I have average employments of 3 to 4 years.

Why not state on your CV the reasons you were retrenched? That would remove any initial doubts.



+1

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sundaymorningstaple
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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Wed, 15 Feb 2012 4:17 pm

(S)he's a project manager? :o

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Postby olivia242 » Wed, 15 Feb 2012 4:22 pm

Hi,

I did have that on my CV but with no success. My next option is to list them as contracts because that can easily explain short duration positions.

And yes, for my sins, I am a project manager.

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Postby Strong Eagle » Wed, 15 Feb 2012 8:17 pm

What kind of a IT project manager? Would you work in KL? Send me a CV if interested.

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Postby BnJoe » Thu, 16 Feb 2012 3:57 am

Hi Olivia,

I'm not sure how you do your applications, but when I write one, it takes me at least two hours to adjust the CV according to the jobs needs and the cover letter, perhaps also change the attachments. To write 160 is kind of a lot, do you always use the same? I wouldn't consider it if it sounds like a mass sent out one.

Also, are you stating these two recent jobs in your cover letter? Why not explain the reasons and then strongly focus on your strenghts and achievements in the previous jobs? I think it is difficult with two short assignments, but certainly not impossible.

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Postby uscate » Sun, 19 Feb 2012 9:03 am

Hi Olivia -

I've been both an agency recruiter and a recruitment manager for the US division of a multinational insurance company for almost 23 years.

While I'm not yet in Singapore, and don't know the market well, my understanding is that IT experience is gold.

I would echo BnJoe in encouraging you to do the following:
1)put a brief note by the title of each job where you were released, giving a succinct thumbnail of why you left your job. This shouldn't be wordy, and shouldn't have a value judgement.
2)while cover letters (at least here in the US) are a bit of an anachronism (unless they're short and sweet), I'd recommend crafting a short (very short) cover letter that gives a brief, bulleted synopsis of your major achievements.
3)you should really do your best to tailor your resume and any cover letter to the particular job you're applying for. As BnJoe said, this may take some time, but it may also mean that your resume is taken more seriously by potential hiring managers.
4)I don't pretend to know standard operating procedures in Singapore, but in the US it is often easy to find out the name of the Director of IT for an organization. You could then forward your resume directly to this person along with a brief note and follow up with a quick phone message. This way you bypass the HR gatekeeper and might find your way toward a new job.

It appears from what you report that the market in Singapore may be skewed against folks with short stints at various employers (apparently regardless of circumstance around departure). I would not, however, recommend that you call these jobs "contract" or "temp" roles. Again, I'm not sure of how things work in Sing, but in general it is just better (and cleaner and easier) to tell the truth about reasons for departure.

I wish you a lot of success in your search - you may also want to heed the advise of some of the Moderators / regular posters who I believe are either HR professionals here in Singapore, or who have worked here for a bit.

All the best,

Cate

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Postby BillyB » Sun, 19 Feb 2012 10:14 am

BnJoe wrote:Hi Olivia,

I'm not sure how you do your applications, but when I write one, it takes me at least two hours to adjust the CV according to the jobs needs and the cover letter, perhaps also change the attachments. To write 160 is kind of a lot, do you always use the same? I wouldn't consider it if it sounds like a mass sent out one.

Also, are you stating these two recent jobs in your cover letter? Why not explain the reasons and then strongly focus on your strenghts and achievements in the previous jobs? I think it is difficult with two short assignments, but certainly not impossible.


Do you not find that you can get easily unstuck at interviews with this approach, if you're constantly changing your skills and experience?

Is this common practice these days for job hunters to spend so much time adjusting ones credentials, and has it been more successful in getting interviews in the first instance?

Just curious...

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Postby Tigerslayer » Mon, 20 Feb 2012 3:19 pm

Do you not find that you can get easily unstuck at interviews with this approach, if you're constantly changing your skills and experience?

Is this common practice these days for job hunters to spend so much time adjusting ones credentials, and has it been more successful in getting interviews in the first instance?

Just curious...


Surely this is common sense....

You are not changing your skills or experience but weighting those skills and experiences based on the position and company you are applying to.

This is especially important in IT where different companies and roles will value exposures to various software platforms differently.

As a basic example:

I wouldnt put alot of Linux based information at the top of my CV for a Wintel role and wouldnt put a whole bunch of in depth windows experience for a Linux role even though I have exposure to both. I would put depth and detail in the appropriate experience and footnote the rest.

Usually I find out the job requirement and skills the ~~individual employer~~ is looking for and expand on those and prioritise them where they apply to myself.

Of course you shouldnt be deceiptful but you are selling youself as a package and you can tailor that package based on the roles you apply for.

A one size fits all CV will cause certain employers to read the first few lines of your experience and put your cv in the trash even though you have the relevant experience way down the list. If you took the time to correctly weight your CV the employer will be impressed that the information they are looking for is that much more accessible :?


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