Newton’s Job Search Class Now Open to Anyone, Anywhere (Plus a Few Extras)

June 9, 2011

The Process:  Over the winter I have been updating, refining, and adding to everything related to the library’s “Applying for a Jobs Online” class. Just as this was completed, Newton purchased a new software package called LibGuides.  Since it takes time to learn to use it, our Assistant Head of Reference, John Walsh, took the material that had been created for the class and created a design for it. Once everything had been put together, I went through the Guide again, updating and tweeking it, learning how to use the program at the same time.

The Result:  If you have Microsoft PowerPoint and Word on your computer, you now have direct access to the library’s class materials no matter where you are located.  If you don’t have these programs, you can still access a wealth of information  in the LibGuide by clicking on the tabs at the top of the Guide.  Under the first tab on the left (Home) you will find contact information for the library, for me, and for John.  There is a brief explanation of the guide in the center.  The material in the right frame gives you you  complete access to all the PowerPoints, handouts, and supplementary materials I present  in my class.  If you are interested in using any of this,  I have two requests.  First, read the syllabus at the top of the list. You may not need everything that you find here.  Second, give credit where credit is due. Tell people where you got the material so they can use it too, if they like.  That’s it.

Tips on Content:  Make sure you check out the tabs.  Besides presenting information on the Library’s Online Career Center and this blog, you will also find RSS feeds, book and website recommendations, as well as  information on several databases that can be used for job and company research.  Especially important is Handout 8 on Plain Text, located  in the right frame of the Home page, and the tab above on “Applying Online”.  The handout gives you step-by-step instructions (screen shot by screen shot) for changing formatted text into ASCII/plain text as well as explaining why you need to do this.  Clicking on the tab will give you information on using online job applications as well as plain text.

Interested?  Just click on LibGuide: Applying for a Job Online.

Let me know what you think. Whether you are looking for a job or helping others become reemployed, good luck. I hope you are able to put this material to good use.

Ginny

vea/ 9 June 2011
Newton Free Library
Newton, Mass.
http://www.newtonfreelibrary.net
http://jobsearchchatter.wordpress.com
http://guides.newtonfreelibrary.net/jobs


A Word About the Usefulness of Books

January 21, 2011

Career and Job Hunting Books at the Newton Free LibraryThe postings you find here usually point to online resources, classes, or programs held at the library.  Let us not forget another very important source of information –  books.  Whether you are flipping through pages looking for a more effective resume format or are reading closely to learn  how to do something that is complicated or unfamiliar, there is nothing quite like a book to help you with your job search.   If you take a look at this blog, you will see several tabbed subjects at the top, between the blog title and the latest posting. “Books” is one of these tabs.  Click on it and take a look.

I have just finished [20 January 2011] revamping this list, attempting to set in up in the order of a job hunt.  Starting with broader topics, like overall guides and reference books, I then list books that help you find job information on the Internet, including broad topics like search strategies down to specifics like job banks. Towards the beginning a job search, a person  will begin composing a basic resume, then cover letter . These are the next two categories. When a person finds a job listing, the process of refining a resume and cover letter begins. This hopefully leads to an interview, the next category of books.  At some point in this process, people start seeing references to the potential of social networking, especially LinkedIn, the next set of books. Looking for work in government offers a whole different set of demands and challenges. You will find books on that topic.  Questions or problems with career skills? There are books that help here as well.  The last section is on staying safe online.  Though not specifically related to your job hunt, you need to keep yourself out of the clutches of identity thieves.  And believe me, they prey on vulnerable people, and people looking for work are vulnerable.  Think about it.  How often have you been tempted to take chances that you might not do otherwise while you are hunting for a job.  A tip or chapter from one of these books might help keep you out of trouble.

An additional software format that is relatively new to the library is called LibGuides. Clicking lists of useful books will bring you directly to the Jobs’ LibGuide tab that includes books.  Updates to the various job booklists will now appear here first. [20 September 2011]

Take a look and give me some feedback if you have the chance.  Feel free to offer suggestions if a book has helped you that you don’t see on my list. Also books that you used but did not find especially useful.  Your comments are deeply appreciated.

vea/revised 20 January 2011/updated 20 September 2011
Newton Free Library
Newton, Mass.
Library website:  http://www.newtonfreelibrary.net
Newton’s Job Search Blog:  http://jobsearchchatter.wordpress.com


Job Search Class for September and Access to Handouts

August 5, 2010

The September class for “Applying for a Job Online” will be held at the Newton Free Library on Thursday, September 30,  from 2:30 t0 3:30.  There is a large amount of material to go over, so classes can sometimes run overtime.  You will be given handouts of everything covered in class. You should be able to  follow the handouts and  do at home what we do in class.  There are only ten computer stations so we ask you to call us and register to save your place.  The phone number is 1-617-796-1380.

Copies of the handouts have recently been added to the library website.    If you live too far away to come to class, you should still be able to put the handouts to good use.   Click  here to get to them directly. This brings you to the “Class Materials and Other Resources.” To get here from the Newton Free Library homepage, go to www.newtonfreelibrary.net and put your cursor on the “Services” option near the top right of the page. Then choose “Computer, IT & Classes.”  Near the bottom of the list that appears is “Class Materials and Other Resources.”   Handouts 3, 4, and 5 have been completely updated as of June 11th.  Handout 6, “Saving a Resume to Plain Text,” was updated on June 4th.  All contain instructions combined with screenshots. You may have to wait for a second or two for the screenshots to download.  Click on each handout to look at them online.  Feel free to print  out any of interest.  If you teach a job search class, you may use any of this material if you credit the source.  See the end of each handout.  If you have any difficulty downloading a handout in Internet Explorer, try it in the Mozilla Firefox browser.

vea/updated 16 August 2010


USING THE OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK ONLINE TO HELP YOU WITH YOUR JOB HUNT

May 25, 2010

In both the print and online versions of the Occupational Outlook Handbook, you will find key information you need when deciding on career choices and alternatives.  Do you want to expand your options in a current career, jump to a related job, or switch completely? The Occupational Outlook Handbook can help you make an informed decision.  Each occupation based article has sections that describe the nature of the work; training, other qualifications, and advancement; employment opportunities; job outlook; earnings; related occupations; and sources of additional information.

The online version has much more information for the job hunter if you know where to find it. The rest of this article will show you where to look and what you will discover,  On the homepage of Occupational Outlook Handbook (http://www.bls.gov/oco/) look down the left frame until you see “Special Features” (just above the search box).  Click on it.  The top two categories are of special interest to job seekers.

The first, “Sources of Career Information” categorizes useful sites into several subject areas. Take a look at them.  Pay special attention to the State Sources heading.  Here you will find the states listed in alphabetical order.  On the Massachusetts site provided, please note that you do not have to register.   You can skip the user name and password at the top of the screen.  Choose a city or fill in a zip code at the bottom of the screen.  That gives you full access to all of the site’s information.

The second option under “Special Features” is “Finding and Applying for Jobs and Evaluating Offers.” Again, take a look at the headings listed here.  Under “More Information” it suggests you visit us, your local library.  It also provides links to five articles from Occupational Outlook Quarterly.  All in all, there is a treasure trove of information here provided at no cost from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.  You can take the information at your own pace, checking out a little or a lot.

You can find the print copy of the 2010-11 Occupational Outlook Handbook in the reference stacks of the Newton Free Library.   Look for the call number R 331.7 O15O. You can find the online version on your home computer at http://www.bls.gov/oco/.


Employment and Training Resources Schedule of Workshops

February 6, 2010

ETR offers both career and computer classes at their three full-service career centers in Newton, Norwood, and Marlborough.  These classes are free and they full up quickly.  Click either here for a link to the class schedule,  locations, and what you need to do to sign up.


The Dirty Dozen Dangerous Online Job Search Assumptions

February 5, 2010

“The commercial Internet is now over 10 years old, and it has become a richer, but also a more complex and potentially dangerous environment. Don’t ignore the Internet in your job search, but keep your guard up. Identity theft is a major problem, and [job-hunt.org has] been warning job seekers about it since 1999. In this environment, you are responsible for protecting yourself. Verify before you trust! Both the article and the above introduction were by Susan P. Joyce,  editor and publisher of job-hunt.org.   Click either here or the logo above to link to the article.


Massachusetts Law About Employment

February 5, 2010

If you need to find information on employment law, check out the website for the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries.  This site recommends both printed material and websites to search.  Many suggested websites require their library card for access.  Any Massachusetts resident is entitled to this library card.  The Trial Court Library website explains what you need to do to obtain a card.  Once you have a card, you can use it to access the websites that interest you.  You can also borrow books from any one of their seventeen branch libraries.  To start searching either click  here or the picture to the left.


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