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Ask James Caan – Issue 123

Written by Kimberley Startup | December 19, 2012 | 0 Comments

James Caan Online RecruitmentDear member,

As the year draws to an end, this will be my last column for 2012. In preparation for the year ahead, this week I’ve chosen to reflect upon the last 12 months to see what we’ve learned to help us fulfil our potential in the New Year.

I’ve covered a variety of topics over the months, including dealing with redundancy and career breaks, marketing yourself across a variety of sectors and using social media as a business and jobseeker.

I’ve also had the pleasure of inviting a number of industry professionals to guest write and quote for the column, including Chris Jones from Nymad and Dixie Dean, MD of They’ve offered some great advice to your questions, such as how to differentiate yourself in a candidate-rich market and make a career transition.

To help summarise the year, I’ve picked the top ten tips from this year’s columns that I hope will bring to light new opportunities in 2013 for both job seekers and businesses.

– Carry out an MOT on your skill set. Consider your interests and what you’re good at. Do you need to improve upon anything to make this year a success?

– To get the most from LinkedIn, ensure your profile is up-to-date, be active in group forums, follow companies of interest and reach out to people.

– Our attitude to employing and retaining an older workforce still needs a radical overhaul. But it’s important to remember, with age comes experience.

– Recruitment is a people business, and to be successful, it’s important to remember the basics – building relationships is key.

– When applying for a new opportunity, ensure to tailor your CV and covering letter to the position at hand. You might find it useful to have a few ‘bare bone’ CVs which you can tweak when a new opportunity comes along.

– Whether you use social media to source candidates, build your employer brand or create talent pools, consider the objectives you’re looking to achieve and develop a plan to monitor your progress.

– To grow your business, reassess your priorities. You must focus on what makes you successful and what’s holding you back. Demonstrate your value that will set you apart from your competition, build your brand and develop consumer loyalty.

– Networking effectively is one of the most powerful tools to advance your professional life. Make sure you leverage all available to you including casual connections, online networks and professional associations.

– Recession-proof your job and stand out from your colleagues by taking an active interest in issues. Offer constructive suggestions during team meetings, take a positive approach to getting to know people and ensure your boss is aware of your achievements.

– If you’re looking to set up a new business, to really stand out, research your potential market, get to know your competitors, what they offer and how you plan to be different.

To finish off, I would like to use this opportunity to thank all members who have provided some fantastic and useful content within the group this year.

With nearly 97K+ members, the group has continued to flourish, and there’s been some excellent content shared for job seekers, hiring managers and recruiters. I look forward to seeing how the group continues to develop in the New Year.

With nearly 50 Ask James columns this year alone, I’ve certainly not been short of content or engagement, so thank you for sending your questions in.

I hope you have all found the content useful and are able to take something from the column which you can successfully implement in your professional life.

I wish you all the best for the New Year and a very merry Christmas.


James Caan

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