Career Advancement with Social Networking TechnologyWritten by Scott Brown
We hear it over and over again. It's not about what you know, but who you know. If you're like most people, you probably have at least 200 people in your rolodex. Having contacts is one thing. Making most of those relationships is another challenge altogether.
With busy schedules, effectively staying in touch with people and using connections to get doors opened is difficult. Just within past few months, technology has been developed to meet these challenges and help people make most of their social networks. This technology is appropriately called "social networking software."
Of course most basic technology in this area is having an electronic address book. Microsoft Outlook is basically industry standard program to use. After inputting your contacts in Outlook, you can synchronize with a personal digital assistant (like Palm pilot). You can also use Outlook to interface with any of major social networking applications out there, including all of ones mentioned in this article.
Keeping in Touch
If you have 300 contacts in your address book but you only keep in touch with 40 of them on a regular basis, remaining 260 contacts are in danger of going "stale." Think of what happens when you flip through your card file or rolodex and come across a contact you haven't heard from for a couple years. Unless you knew person well, chances are you'll just throw out card. You may not ever remember how you met them!
A social networking software program called RelationshipSecure was developed to address this specific problem. It provides several features that help you maintain your existing relationships and keep them from getting stale. It provides a verification feature that lets you send out e-mail mailings to your contacts asking them if their information is correct. If it isn't, they can make any changes necessary and your Outlook address book is updated automatically. It also lets you send out other mailings like Birthday and Anniversary e-greeting cards.
Employers Requesting Background ChecksWritten by Scott Brown
This week's job searching tip addresses a question from one of our readers about about background checks. While many employers will hire people without them, some companies require background checks on some or all of their potential hires.
QUESTION FROM A SUBSCRIBER:
Q: If a person receives a job offer, and is told that there is going to be a drug test and background check, what are items relevant in background check? At what point can a prospective employer reject a person?
Dear M.B., When it comes to background checks, general rule is background check needs to be relevant to position you're being hired for. If background check being conducted is checking for information that is not very relevant to how well/competent applicant is likely to be in job, it could be challenged - especially if negative results of such a check would tend to disproportionately affect a protected class of job candidates (e.g. women, minorities, etc.).
Generally, even if you have been convicted of a crime, that fact alone should not disqualify you from a position unless crime you committed would tend to make you a less qualified applicant for job in question. For example, if someone was convicted for child molestation, they would probably not be a good candidate for a child care position, and an employer would in most cases be fine with using that as a reason not to hire person. On other hand, if someone was convicted of failing to taxes, it would be more difficult for an employer to use that as a reason not to hire them for that same type of position.