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Boston Ranks 6th Best City To Find a Job Top 10 Happiest Jobs Four things an employer should tell their new hire on their first day Top Jobs and Majors for 2018 Grads The Art of the Thank You Note 6 Questions Tech Hiring Managers Should Ask to Find the Perfect Fit Jobs, Jobs, Jobs! February Jobs Report A “Dream” for Wall Street The Top 15 Jobs in America in 2018 Four Hiring Trends For 2018 And How To Apply Them To Your Hiring Strategy Resume Building: Top Attributes for 2018 Grads Why Employers Should Reconsider Requiring Degrees for Middle-Skill Jobs The Top 10 Industries for 2018 Graduates Using Your Network is Key to Job Searching in a Good Economy Five Reasons Bay State Search Was Named #37th Fastest Growing Company Bay State Search Ranked #37 on the 2017 Inc 500 Strong July Jobs Report Indicates The Economy Is Still Growing Four Career Lessons You Can Learn from Game of Thrones Job Growth Soars in June As Attention Shifts to Wages Four Things You Should do When Starting a New Job Four things an employer should tell their new hire on their first day Unemployment Rate at 16-Year Low, But Weak Job Growth Dominates the May Jobs Report Conversation The Strength of the Job Market is Proven with Job Growth Rebounding in April Applying the Traits of a Marathon Runner to Your Career How to Answer Abstract Interview Questions March Jobs Report: Job Growth Slows, Unemployment Rate Falls to Post-Recession Low Why Employers Should Evaluate Emotional Intelligence in Candidates March Madness Final Bracket: Office Productivity Vs. Morale February Jobs Report Beats Expectations, Fueling Confidence in Fed. Rate Hike Most Promising Finance Careers of 2017 January Jobs Report: 2017 Starts With Surprisingly High Job Growth Do Your Job: Applying the Patriots’ Mantra to Your Career Tech Careers Account for One Third of Top 100 Jobs for 2017 December Jobs Report: Year Ends with 75 Consecutive Months of Job Growth 2017 New Year’s Resolution: Stop Making These Common Workplace Mistakes 5 Job Trends to Watch for in 2017, According to Glassdoor November Jobs Report: Unemployment at 9-year Low Top Careers for Veterans October Jobs Report: Post-Recession Highs A Testament To Strengthening Market Successful Morning Rituals: Eight Tips To Starting Your Day Off Right September Jobs Report: “Solid” Growth Makes for a Well-Balanced Market How to Emphasize Your Soft Skills for Employers August Jobs Report: Growth Respectable, But Not Spectacular Hiring Managers: 5 Tips for Finding the Right Fit Accounting & Finance Ranked Top Majors for 2016 Graduates July Jobs Report: Another Great Month Eases Worries of Hiring Slowdown Midyear Staffing Forecast: Top Industries and Positions for Jobs Bay State Search Named 15th Largest Temporary Placement Firm in Mass. June Jobs Report: Job Growth Surges, Smashes Expectations Ask a Recruiter: Interviewing for Your First Job May Jobs Report: “Shocking” Massachusetts Ranked #4 for Number of Tech Jobs Added in 2015 April Jobs Report: Job Growth Slows Amid Weak Economic Growth Boston Ranks in Top 10 Best Cities to Launch a Career Millennials and Job Hopping: The New Norm? March Jobs Report: “Close to a Goldilocks Scenario” Five Questions Employers Should Ask Candidates Massachusetts Unemployment Rate at a 15-Year Low February 2016 Jobs Report: Hiring Eases Recession Fears Leap Day: One Company’s Quest to Make Feb. 29 a National Holiday 11 Careers of the Future…That Don’t Exist Yet Ask a Recruiter: First Impressions January 2016 Jobs Report a “Mixed Bag” What do 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies have in common? Employment & Wages Profile: Accountants and Auditors December 2015 Jobs Report: Robust Job Growth Caps off the Year “Hello from the other side”

Boston Ranks 6th Best City To Find a Job

by Megan / 10/17/2018

With over 7 million unfilled jobs in the US right now, a record high, employers are struggling to recruit top talent. This is good for job seekers, depending on the market they live in. That’s why Glassdoor ranked the Top 25 cities for job seekers based on: ease in finding a position, the city’s affordability, and job satisfaction among employees who work there.

Boston ranks the 6th best city to find a new job, according to a new report from Glassdoor released this week.

Surprisingly, big cities like New York and LA didn’t make the list due to their high cost of living. Instead, many of the cities in the top 25 list are in the Midwest or Rust Belt. Here is the list:

  1. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  2. St. Louis, Missouri
  3. Indianapolis, Indiana
  4. Cincinnati, Ohio
  5. Hartford, Connecticut
  6. Boston, Massachusetts
  7. Memphis, Tennessee
  8. Raleigh, North Carolina
  9. Cleveland, Ohio
  10. Detroit, Michigan
  11. Kansas City, Missouri
  12. Washington, D.C.
  13. Birmingham, Alabama
  14. Chicago, Illinois
  15. Columbus, Ohio
  16. Louisville, Kentucky
  17. Baltimore, Maryland
  18. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  19. Atlanta, Georgia
  20. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  21. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota
  22. San Francisco, California
  23. Seattle, Washington
  24. Richmond, Virginia
  25. Charlotte, North Carolina

If you’re considering looking for a new job, there has never been a better time! Take a look at Bay State Search’s open positions, by visiting our job postings, here.

Top 10 Happiest Jobs

by Megan / 08/15/2018

How happy are you in your career?  Not your company, or your team, but the actual day-to-day tasks you perform?  Do you enjoy going to work every day, or do you daydream about calling in sick?

A recent survey conducted by CareerBliss aimed at determining what careers had the happiest professionals.  The company evaluated employees' attitudes toward boss-employee relationships, work environment, compensation, professional resources, growth opportunities, etc to come up with the Top 10 Happiest jobs.

In descending order, here are the Top 10:

#10:    COO

#9:      Software QA Engineer

#8:      Lead Developer

#7:      Lead Engineer

#6:      CTO

#5:      Android Developer

#4:      Senior Java Developer

#3:      Research Assistant

#2:      Full Stack Developer

And the number one happiest career is…

#1:      Recruiter

Not surprisingly, technology jobs are dominating the list.  The IT industry is extremely competitive, especially for employers who often have to compete with not only high salaries and bonuses, but also perks such as fully-stocked kitchens, game rooms, and work from home policies. 

Not in Tech? Don’t worry, US News reported that three of the top ten best business jobs are Accountant and Financial Advisor, and Financial Manager. 

Does this have you thinking about a career change? If so, check out our current open Accounting and Technology positions. 

Four things an employer should tell their new hire on their first day

by Megan / 07/15/2018

It’s Monday morning and your new employee is waiting in the lobby. You’ve eagerly been waiting for this day, the day when you’ll finally get the help you’ve been waiting for.  During the interview process you went into detail on the job’s responsibilities so once you show them to their desk you’ll be able to continue about your day while they get right to work, right?

Of course not! Even if your employee has experience in every aspect of the role’s responsibilities, they don’t have any experience at your company.  While most employers have standard onboarding and training topics for a manager to cover, how can you make sure you’re setting up your newest team member for success? An article published on Inc.com last week highlighted four things great bosses say to their employees on their first day to get them off to a great start.

Thoroughly describe how the business creates value. Start by talking about the products, the clients, and what differentiates your company from competitors.  Then talk about how their role fits into the company’s landscape and the value they’ll bring to the business.

Map out the employee’s internal and external customers.  As a new employee, it’s important for them to learn early on who will benefit from their work, either directly or indirectly.  Introductions to internal customers can help an employee better understand how their job will add value and what is expected of their tasks.

Set immediate goals -- and explain that you will start giving feedback right away. The first few weeks of every job will consist of paperwork, introductions, and training.  The article suggests that in addition to standard onboarding, give your new hire a task to complete on their first day.  This will establish that results are important as well as give them a sense of personal achievement.  In addition, peppering in small tasks each day will help them break down larger processes and ultimately retain the information more effectively. Starting with small tasks will also give you the opportunity to provide feedback quickly and establish an open dialogue.

Reinforce the reasons you hired them. During the interview process, there was something (or a few somethings) that set your new employee above the rest and ultimately drove your decision to hire them. Being candid about what you liked about them in the interview process will not only make them feel valued at a time when they aren’t producing results yet, but will also motivate them to use those skills.

Any manager can run through an onboarding checklist and tick the boxes when a new employee starts, but a great manager will spend the time making their new team member feel valued and prepared from day one.

Top Jobs and Majors for 2018 Grads

by Megan / 06/03/2018

Congrats 2018 Graduates! You made it! No more exams, no more 10 page essays, no more 8am classes. Take a break, sleep in, go to the graduation parties. Just don’t get too used to this lifestyle because now is when the real work starts – it’s time to get a job!

The good news for college graduates is this is one of the best markets to enter as a recent graduate. A survey by CareerBuilder found that 80% of employers plan to hire recent graduates this year and nearly half of those plan to pay higher salaries than they had in previous years.

How do you know what companies are hiring for? According to the survey, the areas employers are hiring 2018 college graduates for are:

  • Information Technology: 31%
  • Customer Service: 26%
  • Business Development: 20%
  • Sales: 18%
  • Finance/accounting: 18%
  • Human resources: 15%
  • Production: 14%
  • Marketing/public relations: 10%
  • Clinical: 9%
  • Legal: 5%

The survey also asked employers hiring recent grads which majors were most in-demand . Here’s what they said:

  • Business: 35%
  • Engineering: 22%
  • Computer and information sciences: 18%
  • Engineering technologies: 13%
  • Communications technologies: 11%
  • Health professions and related clinical sciences: 11%
  • Math and Statistics: 9%
  • Science technologies: 7%
  • Mechanic and repair technologies: 6%
  • Public administration and social services: 6%

One of the best tips we can offer to recent graduates is to be open about your job opportunities. Often, we see candidates turn down good jobs because they’re holding out for their dream job. These same candidates come back to us in September asking for the job they previously turned down after not being able to land that dream job, but the positions are filled. That’s not to say you should take any job, but look for opportunities that you can use as building blocks, or resume builders, to get where you want to be. You’re at the beginning of a very long journey and the only negative impact you can have on your career at this point is to not start it.  

Cheers to the Class of 2018!

The Art of the Thank You Note

by Megan / 04/25/2018

In a competitive job market, candidates need to find ways to set themselves apart from the rest of the pack. Some people opt for flashy resumes, scented paper, or other gimmicks, but there’s a much simpler answer: write a thank you note for every person you interview with.

This may seem basic, but an article on Monster.com found that 80% of managers say that sending a thank you note is helpful in reviewing candidates, but only 24% of candidates actually send one. This means that if you’re a finalist for a job with 3 other candidates and all of your qualifications are the same, there’s a good chance that sending a thank you note will give you an edge over your competition!

Often, we hear our candidates saying they don’t know where to start or what to include in a note. That’s why we’ve come up with several tips to help you create and send the perfect note:

Take Notes in your interview: Taking notes isn’t just for show. Throughout the interview write down key words that the Interviewer is using when explaining the job and what they responded to in your responses. By referencing back to these moments in your follow up note, you’ll demonstrate your ability to understand their needs and connect with them even after the interview is over.

Seize the opportunity for an extra communication: Interviews are stressful. You’re trying to find a way to sum up years of experience into 30 minutes. Often, candidates leave an interview wishing they brought up an example of something they did. Use the thank you note to get that last word in. Be sure to reference the question the interviewer asked and then follow up with the experience you have in that area.

Be Consise: Your thank you note doesn’t need to be a novel, especially if you don’t have much additional value to add from what you’ve already said in the interview. Instead, focus on (1) thanking the interviewer for their time (2) reiterate your qualification for the job based on the notes you took and (3) confirm your interest in the position to the interviewer.

Be Timely in Follow up: I’ve had candidates send me an email a week after their interview. Not only had we already made an offer at that time, but it also showed me that she wouldn’t be able to handle the fast-pace we work at. Be sure to follow up within 24 hours at the most of your interview. Having a pre-canned email that you adjust to fill in specific details will help make sure you follow up at the right time.

Now that you know how to follow up on an interview, it’s time to actually get you the interviews! Reach out to the team at Bay State Search and let us help you get the job of your dreams!

6 Questions Tech Hiring Managers Should Ask to Find the Perfect Fit

by Megan / 04/10/2018

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of hires has historically exceeded the number of job openings. Since 2015, however, this trend has reversed with the number of open jobs exceeding the number of hires. In December, there were 5.5 million hires, compared to 5.8 million job openings. This relationship means that employers are struggling to fill the positions they have open.

In the competitive technology recruiting landscape, employers are constantly trying to lure candidates in with perks like beer fridges, game rooms, and compensation. Often, hiring managers are so focused on filling the position with a candidate who is a technical fit, that they overlook the soft skills that will make the person a good employee.

Last month, Forbes posted an article highlighting six traits members of their Technology Council look for when they are looking to add a key hire to their team. Knowing what to look for is great, but knowing what questions to ask is even better. That’s why we’ve added our take on what questions hiring managers should ask when evaluating these 6 key traits:

1. Thirst For Learning: “The shelf-life of tech is extremely perishable,” says David Espinosa of ITS Logistics. The technology landscape moves quickly so hiring managers should look for creative problem solvers who can demonstrate “the art of the possible.”

What to ask: Tell me about an innovative or game-changing idea you’ve had that improved your technology and how you moved from idea to implementation.

2. Communication and Leadership Skills: Technology leaders are often tasked with the responsibility of translating business needs to technical jargon, and vice versa. They also need to possess the ability to “roll up their sleeves and do whatever it take to get it done,” according to Maria Alegre of Chartboost.

What to ask: (1) Tell me about a time you had to meet a difficult timeline and what did you do to make sure you didn’t miss it? (2) How would you explain a complex technical problem to someone who’s never used your technology?

3. Passion for the product: Eric Fogg of MachineMetrics, Inc says “We’ve seen passionate individuals outperform very qualified people at almost every chance they get.” An employee who is interested in the product is more likely to be invested in making it better.

What to ask: (1) What do you think the best features of product “x” are? (2) What do you think sets it apart from other products on the market?

4. Collaboration and Personal Responsibility: New features, user experience improvements, and constant innovation is key to technology solutions. Often, multiple individuals are collectively responsibly for creating solutions that haven’t been done before. “This demands an environment that deliberately creates conflict and nurtures it through the trust between each team member,” says Dave Cassidy, TCG, Inc. Therefore, employers should look for someone that can fulfill their individual accountabilities while collaborating on a team.

What to ask: (1)Tell me about a time you disagreed with a stakeholder about the design of something and how you overcame your differing perspectives.

5. Honesty and Authenticity: The technology industry, more so than most others, has encouraged authenticity in the workplace. “If employees are honest and authentic in the work environment, it creates a culture, both internally and externally, that is smooth and highly productive,” says Gene Banman of DriveScale. Tech managers should embrace that an employee doesn’t need to fit into a standard work style, but rather focus on how they can create an environment that is successful, without regard to a particular work style. 

What to ask: (1) What type of environment do you thrive in? (2) What does your ideal work day look like?

6. Commitment to Continuous Innovation: “The key trait I look for is passion for continuously creating better technology and products than the ones that exist currently,” says Abhijit Thatte of Aricent, Inc. One of the greatest advantages to the technology industry is that the possibilities of what can be done are endless. There is constantly room for enhancements, additions, or completely evolve a product. Into something new Building a team that can foster this type of innovation, or someone else will.

What to ask: (1) Tell me about a time you proposed a new feature or enhancement that wasn’t previously on anyone’s radar and how you got buy-in to build it. (2) What do you think could be an improvement on our product?

Overall, hard skills, or technical aptitude, can find you an employee e who can do the job. However, asking questions about soft skills, namely around drive, passion, and motivation, will ensure you add a team member who will take your product to the next level and continue to drive your organization further.

If you’re struggling to find the perfect fit to bring your team to the next level, we can help! Our team partners with clients to understand their organization and delivers qualified, pre-screened candidates that will help drive your organization to the next level. Contact us today!

Jobs, Jobs, Jobs! February Jobs Report A “Dream” for Wall Street

by Megan / 03/11/2018

 “Jobs, Jobs, Jobs!” President Trump’s tweet in response to the February jobs report says it all.

The February jobs report released on Friday showed the economy added 313,000 jobs during the month and was called “a dream” for Wall Street by the New York Times. In addition, 806,000 people joined the labor market in February, the largest one-month gain since 2003. This signifies the large amount of job openings have encouraged people who previously gave up looking for work to rejoin the job market.

While the increase in jobs is encouraging workers to rejoin the labor market, employers are now struggling to fill positions. Employers are reporting that they have to focus more on the employee experience during the interview process, and how they can entice a candidate to join their organization.

Highlights from the report include:

  • The unemployment rate in February remained unchanged for the 5th consecutive month in a row at 4.1%
  • Job growth was led by the construction, retail trade, professional and business services, manufacturing, financial activities, and mining industries
  • The professional and business services industry added 50,000 jobs in February
  • Temporary help services added 27,000 jobs during the month

Overall, the job market remains strong with no signs of a slow down. For job seekers, while there are an abundance of jobs, the increase in previously discouraged workers joining the work force means that employers have a larger candidate pool than they have in the past. For employers, competition is tight and it’s essential to have a tight recruiting process to avoid losing a good candidate to another company. Whether you’re an employer or a candidate, the market is ripe with opportunities!

The Top 15 Jobs in America in 2018

by Megan / 01/28/2018

What do a Finance Manager, Electrical Engineer, and a Data Scientist have in common? If you guessed that they all have high job satisfaction, you’d be right! These 3 careers were all in the Top 15 of the “Best Jobs in America in 2018” list published by Glassdoor this week.

The report ranked the 50 best careers in the US based on three factors: base salary, job satisfaction ratings, and number of job openings. Unsurprisingly, the technology industry dominated the list, representing 20 of the top 50 positions. The finance and healthcare industries were also well represented.

Glassdoor Chief Economist Dr. Andrew Chamberlain says "A key trend we see for these best jobs is that many of these roles are also ones that can be found in almost every industry — from data scientists to HR managers to executive assistants.” He continued, “this is encouraging for people with these skills, as there is a wide range of career opportunities to consider."

Here is a list of the Top 15 Jobs in America in 2018:

  1. Data Scientist
  2. Dev Ops manager
  3. Marketing Manager
  4. Occupational Therapist
  5. HR Manager
  6. Electrical Engineer
  7. Strategy Manager
  8. Mobile Developer
  9. Product Manager
  10. Manufacturing Engineer
  11. Compliance Manager
  12. Finance Manager
  13. Risk Manager
  14. Business Development Manager
  15. Front End Engineer

If this list has you thinking of making a career change, let Bay State Search help you in your search! Working with a recruiter not only helps get your resume in front of the Hiring Manager, but our team can also help you tailor your resume to the career you want! Take a look at our open jobs, or contact a recruiter today!

Four Hiring Trends For 2018 And How To Apply Them To Your Hiring Strategy

by Megan / 01/14/2018

With unemployment rates at historic lows, companies are facing an increasingly competitive recruiting and hiring market.  Organizations are focused on innovating their hiring practices to move away from the tedious screening and interview process, and instead opting for a more, human, approach.

Last week, LinkedIn published a report on ways companies are becoming more strategic, and human, with their hiring practices. The report, based on a survey of 9,000 recruiters, highlighted four trends they anticipate for hiring and recruiting in 2018, including: (1)diversity, (2) new interviewing tools, (3) artificial intelligence, and (4) data.

Diversity: Gender, Race, and Age top the list of where companies focus their diversity efforts. According to the report, companies are attracting more diverse candidates by recruiting at historically diverse schools, featuring diverse employees on company materials and interviews, and talking up their employee resource groups. However, the report also cautions organizations to take a look at their internal culture, before trying to recruit for it.

Reinventing the interview: Companies are now turning to more interactive interviews compared to the traditional question/response interview style. What traditional interviews lack in being able to assess soft skills, understanding candidate weaknesses, interview bias, and time commitments can be addressed through new tools like video interviews, online assessments, and on the job auditions. Being able to test a candidate’s skills with real scenarios or meet with them in a more comfortable setting like over lunch allows the hiring manager to get a more complete picture than they would with pre-rehearsed answers to typical interview questions.

Data: For a profession that is built on people interactions, HR organizations are relying more heavily on data to help understand their hiring needs. Data is being used to inform decisions around common problems like improving employee retention, evaluating skills gaps, and building better offers, among others. A good data strategy consists of understanding your current baseline, reviewing market benchmarks, and setting clear goals of what you’re hoping to learn from the information.

Artificial Intelligence: From self-driving cars, to automating the lights in your home, artificial intelligence is everywhere, so it’s no surprise that it’s also impacting the hiring process. Companies are implementing artificial intelligence systems to help source, screen, nurture, schedule, and engage candidates. Relying on technology for these areas not only saves time, but also removes the potential for human bias when reviewing candidates. 

Implementing these tools and processes will help employers attract top talent, but they can also be time consuming. Partnering with a staffing firm can help take some of the more time consuming work out of the processes highlighted above by providing access to a large pool of qualified candidates, screening applicants, and assessing soft skills. If you’re interested in learning how a staffing firm can help you reach your 2018 hiring goals, reach out to our team today!

Resume Building: Top Attributes for 2018 Grads

by Megan / 12/03/2017

As the fall semester winds down, 2018 graduates are one step closer to officially becoming a part of the workforce. While there are still several months of papers, mid-terms, and tests ahead, 2018 graduates have the added pressure of needing to be prepared for post-graduation life.

One of the most difficult aspects of entering the workforce is writing your first resume. Without much, if any, job-specific experience, recent grads often struggle with what to highlight from the projects and internships they’ve worked on.

So how do you determine what skills to highlight on your first resume? A recent survey published by the National Association of Colleges and Employers polled asked employers which attributes they valued most. Here’s the list of top 10:

Top 10 Attributes:

  1. Problem-solving skills
  2. Ability to work in a team
  3. Communication skills (written)
  4. Leadership
  5. Strong work ethic
  6. Analytical/quantitative skills
  7. Communication skills (verbal)
  8. Initiative
  9. Detail-oriented
  10. Flexibility/Adaptability

Don’t forget to only use the attributes that are not only true to your experience, but applicable to the job you’re interested in. Look for keywords in job postings and select a few of the attributes in the list above to call out specifically in your resume.

Are you a 2018 graduate looking to get a jump-start on the job search? Contact our recruiters and learn about the companies and positions we partner with to hire recent graduates.

Why Employers Should Reconsider Requiring Degrees for Middle-Skill Jobs

by Megan / 11/12/2017

Three out of five employers have trouble filling middle-skills jobs, according to a recent report by Harvard Business School, Accenture, and Grads of Life.  This is because middle-skills jobs, or jobs that require more than a high-school diploma, but less than a four-year college degree, are suffering from “degree inflation”.

Degree inflation, the practice of requiring a four-year degree for a position that previously did not require one, threatens 6 million jobs in the US, according to the study. As an example, approximately 67% of job postings for a Supervisor of Production Workers request a college degree, while only 16% of people in those positions actually have one, resulting in a degree gap of 51%. Other occupations with a high degree gap are executive assistants, office/administrative supervisors, sales reps, and accounting/bookkeeping/auditing clerks, among others.

Why should an employer reconsider requiring a college degree for some positions?

  • Two thirds of employers reported that requiring a college degree makes the job harder to fill.
  • Half of employers reported that they pay college graduates more than non-degree workers.
  • Voluntary turnover for college graduates is almost twice as high as for non-degree employees.
  •  Approximately 49% of college graduates are inclined to leave an organization for a competitor, significantly higher than the 12% that non-degree workers are estimated at

What can employers do to address the degree inflation problem? The report offers several recommendations on how employers can address the degree inflation problem. Primarily, they recommend reviewing what jobs are prone to degree inflation and then analyzing the skillsets required to create training programs to build those skills. The report also encourages employers to create hiring strategies that focus on competencies, rather than credentials alone.

Degree inflation has negative impacts on not only the employers, but also the job market as a whole since it leaves millions of Americans without jobs, despite having the right skillsets. However, a well developed recruiting and training strategy can help offset this trend and attract quality talent faster and more efficiently. Recruiting agencies, like Bay State Search, can also help employers close the degree gap by partnering with organizations to pre-screen candidates for the skills required for the job, rather than on their credentials alone.

The Top 10 Industries for 2018 Graduates

by Megan / 10/29/2017

Good news for 2018 grads this week: a new report indicates that employers intend to hire 13 percent more bachelor’s degree graduates in 2018 than they did in 2017. This year also marks the 8th consecutive year of job growth for graduates, the longest stretch in the 47 years of the report, Recruiting Trends, published by Michigan State University.

Here are the Top 10 Industries hiring based on year-over-year growth for bachelor’s degrees in 2018:

1. Information Services – 60% increase

2. Administrative Services – 49% increase

3. Wholesale Trade – 46% increase

4. Transportation – 32% increase

5. Healthcare and Social Assistance – 32% increase

6. Professional, Business & Scientific Services – 30% increase

7. Construction – 29% increase

8. Nonprofits – 23% increase

9. Agriculture – 21% increase

10. Retail Trade – 19% increase

The report also highlighted some of the biggest challenges employers are facing in recruiting candidates.  Among the 11 reasons evaluated, the top five that were categorized as serious include:

1. Candidates lack right soft skills

2. Competition from other employers

3. Candidates lack work experience

4. Candidates lack needed technical skills

5. Candidates lack interest in types of jobs offered

Whether you’re a recent grad looking to start a career in one of these industries, or an employer facing the same recruiting challenges as the employers surveyed, Bay State Search can help. Contact us today!

Using Your Network is Key to Job Searching in a Good Economy

by Megan / 10/15/2017

Did you know that as many as 80 percent of new jobs are never listed, but rather filled internally or via referrals? This is often called the “hidden job market” and it thrives in a good economy. With the unemployment rate consistently below 5 percent, the percentage the market considers full employment, it’s safe to say the hidden job market is active.

Unfortunately, the hidden job market makes it harder for job seekers to use the “spray-and-pray” method of blasting out resumes hoping something sticks. Instead, they need to spend more time tailoring and targeting their resumes to each organization.

How do you break in to the hidden job market? The key is to use your network. Look for positions or organizations you’re interested in, and then follow these steps:

Utilize LinkedIn: LinkedIn not only shows you who you know at an organization, but who you know that knows someone at an organization. Use LinkedIn to reach out and ask for an introduction.

Reach out to past colleagues: Former colleagues are one of the best resources for your job search – they often understand how your current role would translate into a position at their organization and would be able to recommend you for a position you wouldn’t otherwise apply for. They can also be your champion and cheerleader when it comes to promoting your capabilities to the recruiting team.

Always-Be-Closing-Networking: Gordon Gekko’s mantra Always-Be-Closing can apply to the professional networking world as well. At some point, you’ve most likely found yourself at a social gathering with someone you didn’t know talking about your professions and found that they work at an organization you’re interested in. Be respectful, but don’t hesitate to ask about open positions and, if you hit it off, a referral – chances are there’s an incentive in it for them as well to bring in good talent.

Partner with a Recruiter: Staffing firms work hand-in-hand with the HR teams. This means they often hear about positions before they are posted and have your resume in front of the hiring manager early on in the process. Staffing firms also give you the advantage of having relationships with multiple organizations – increasing your chances of being seen by more companies with the same amount of effort.

Most importantly, don’t get discouraged! The job market may be more competitive than it has been in years, but utilizing all of the resources above, you’ll have your next dream job in no time!


Five Reasons Bay State Search Was Named #37th Fastest Growing Company

by Megan / 09/24/2017

Last month, Bay State Search was named the 37th fastest growing privately-held company in the US by Inc. Magazine. We were also ranked the number one fastest growing company in the Human Resources industry. This honor is the culmination of hard work, dedication, and a commitment to deliver best-in-class staffing solutions to our values clients.


While many organizations on the list have developed an innovative product or algorithm that taps into an untouched market or need, the human resources industry is unique in that it doesn’t have a tangible product sell to businesses or consumers. We don’t have a online community that appeals to the growing eSports market like #1 ranked Skillz does. We don’t have an untouched niche by making ice cream that is both tasty and healthy like #5 Halo Top Creamery. This makes it harder to pinpoint exactly what makes organizations in the HR industry successful in general.  We tried our best, however, to surmise the five characteristics that led to Bay State Search’s success in being named the 37th fastest growing company in the US:


#1: We know the market. Founders Ryan A. Murphy and Joseph Lochiatto bring over 40 years of experience in the recruiting industry to Bay State Search.  In addition, our team is comprised of experienced staffing professionals who frequently attend sessions with industry executives to stay on the pulse of what’s happening in the market. 

#2 We live our ‘Make It Happen’ motto. Make It Happen: it’s the guiding principle behind everything we do at Bay State Search and means that our team is prepared to do whatever it takes to ensure our clients and candidates are satisfied. Whether they’re helping candidates prepare for an interview at 9pm on a Sunday night, or helping with onboarding on-site at a client, they never stop.

#3: We put our clients first. We know that clients have dozens of choices of who to partner with when it comes to fulfilling staffing needs. That’s why we take the time to get to know each client’s business and culture and understand exactly what they’re looking for before just sending over any candidate that fits the job description. This client-centric approach has led to long-lasting relationships with organizations across the US.

#4: Our network is extensive.  Our candidate pool has been built and nurtured over time. We’ve built longstanding relationships with candidates that range from entry-level to executives. In addition, our network is a healthy mixture of professionals who can start various positions immediately and those with very specific skillsets. Our extensive network allows us to fulfill the needs of almost any organization. 

#5: Our team is unmatched.  You will never meet a harder working group of individuals than the team at Bay State Search. They work day and night not only for their candidates and clients, but also to learn more about the industries they support in an effort to become better staffing professionals.  

Bay State Search Ranked #37 on the 2017 Inc 500

by Megan / 08/20/2017

Bay State Search is proud to announce that Inc. Magazine has recognized us as the 37th fastest-growing private company in the US on their 2017 Inc 500 list.

Bay State Search is also recognized as the fastest growing company in the Human Resources industry with a growth rate of 6,884.5% between 2013-2016. Ten other Human Resources organizations made the Inc. 500.

For 36 years, Inc. Magazine has been publishing an annual list of the most driven, creative, and fastest growing American based private companies. The rankings are calculated based on each company’s percentage revenue growth over a 3-year period. See the full list of the 2017 Inc. 5000 companies here.

In addition, the list also ranks Bay State Search as the 3rd fastest-growing company in Massachusetts. Seventeen organizations in the top 500 were headquartered in Massachusetts and a total of 147 in the full list of 5000.

“We are honored to be included on the Inc. 500 list and alongside some of the most innovative and disruptive companies in the country,” says Ryan A. Murphy. “I want to sincerely thank our team, our clients, and our candidates for making Bay State Search the fastest-growing staffing firm in the country.”

Strong July Jobs Report Indicates The Economy Is Still Growing

by Megan / 08/06/2017

July delivered another strong month of job growth, adding 209,000 jobs, according to the latest jobs report released on Friday. The unemployment rate also dropped from 4.4 percent to 4.3 percent.

This year, monthly job growth has averaged 184,000 jobs. Jan Hatzius, chief economist at Goldman Sachs, cautions that the current job growth rate isn’t sustainable when coupled with the low unemployment rate.  "I'm not saying it's going to stop in the next few months but we're not going to be able to sustain that kind of job growth in the long term. I think the trend is probably below (100,000),” said Hatzius.  According to The New York Times, the economy needs to create 75,000 to 100,000 jobs per month just to keep up with growth in the working-age population.

While job growth and the unemployment rate continue to show the strength of the market, wage growth continues to enforce that there is still room for improvement. Wage growth in July remained unchanged at 2.5 percent in July. An article on CNNMoney says that the Federal Reserve would like to see wage growth rise to 3.5 percent.

Other highlights from the report:

  • July’s job growth was led by the food services and drinking places industry which added 53,000 jobs
  • Professional and business services added 49,000 jobs
  • Temporary help services added 14,700 jobs


As the earth, moon, and sun align later this month to create a rare solar eclipse visible from coast to coast, perhaps Augustt will also bring the wage growth we've been waiting for.

Four Career Lessons You Can Learn from Game of Thrones

by Megan / 07/18/2017

It’s been a long thirteen months, but last night the drought ended; Game of Thrones finally premiered. With an average 23 million viewers per episode and over 200 awards won, the odds are you, or someone you know, watched.

While our worlds may be vastly different, there are still lessons we can learn from the characters of Westeros and apply to our professional lives, including:

1. Prepare for the White Walkers: In every profession, there is bound to be a time when you are overwhelmed with an influx of tasks and deadlines hitting you all at once.  View each task as a White Walker – they’re on the horizon and without a plan, you’ll be outnumbered. However, anticipating their arrival means you can gather the resources you’ll need ahead of time. Take the time to write down and prioritize each task you have on the horizon and create a plan of attack for each. When they finally arrive, it’ll just be a matter of using your Valyrian steel (plan) to take out each task, one-by-one.

2. Pursue the opportunity: When Tyrion Lannister was accused of murder, Bronn stepped up to fight Ser Vardis. Bronn made a calculated decision to fight someone he was confident he could beat, in return for the opportunity to work for a wealthy lord. His decision proved right as he eventually became the commander of the City Watch, and was knighted later. Whether you volunteer to take the lead on a high-visibility project, or pursue an opportunity at a new organization, taking the risk can catapult your career (and life) forward.

3. Surround yourself with the right people: Remember when Daenerys was the timid wife of a war lord? Determined to be more, she began to add people to her inner circle who could bring value and insight. She’s now on her way to become the ruler of the Seven Kingdoms with her team by her side. Professionally, the earlier you can recognize that it’s ok to not know everything, the sooner you can surround yourself with strategic advisors to help you reach your goals. Also, it wouldn’t hurt to find a few dragons, if possible.

4. Be adaptable: After the unfortunate demise of her father, Arya Stark’s path to revenge and reuniting with her family consists of: having to pretend to be a boy, learning to fight, temporary blindness, and having to serve the man who murdered her father. During each trial, she learns to adapt and overcome her challenges to progress toward her goal.  In the professional world, you will face obstacles and be forced to overcome unexpected roadblocks. Embrace the change of course, but always keep your eye on the end goal.

If there’s anything this show teaches us, it’s that we all face the same challenges, dragons or no dragons. 

Job Growth Soars in June As Attention Shifts to Wages

by Megan / 07/09/2017

The June Jobs Report was released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday, with news of better than expected job growth.  In June, 222,000 job were added, significantly higher than the 179,000 expected. The unemployment rate ticked up slightly from 4.3 percent to 4.4 percent due to more people entering the labor force looking for jobs.

With job growth steady and the unemployment rate remaining low, many economists have been shifting their focus to wage growth.  Wages were up 2.5 percent in June, compared to June 2016, and below the expected 3.5 percent. Overall, wage growth hasn’t changed much over the last year and a half.  Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst at Bankrate.com says, "This suggests that we've not yet checked off the 'full employment' box, meaning more progress can be extracted from the job market. More than 5 million Americans still work part time who'd like to have full-time work."

Highlights from the report:

  • April’s total employment was revised up from 174,000 to 207,000 and May’s from 138,00 to 152,000
  • Job growth in June was led by the healthcare industry, adding 37,000 jobs
  • Professional and business services added 35,000 jobs in June
  • 13,400 jobs were added in temporary help services


Despite the disappointing wage growth, overall June was a solid month for the job market. Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial is optimistic, saying, “While the hourly wage component is below consensus estimates, the stronger headline payroll number coupled with upward revisions, suggest that wages should gain in the near to medium term. The gain in hours in the work week, albeit small, suggests that economic activity is picking up under the surface.”

Four Things You Should do When Starting a New Job

by Megan / 07/05/2017

The most recent blog post highlighted four things a hiring manager should do on their new employee’s first day.  Today, we’re going to flip it, and talk about four things a new employee should do to start their career off on the right foot.

You may be thinking that your boss or HR department will be responsible for telling you what you should do to ramp up, and they will to some extent, but new employee onboarding is an area that is often overlooked in organizations.  In fact, an article from 2015 on Harvard Business Review states that 22 percent of companies have no formal onboarding program.  While your boss will help when they can, they still have their normal responsibilities that they need to be accountable for.  This means that you’ll have to be proactive about setting yourself up for success.  Here are four tips our team has come up with to set yourself up for success at a new job:

Meet as many people as possible: Whether you set up formal one-on-one’s to learn about your peers’ roles, or just make frequent trips to the water cooler, make it a point to meet as many people as you can during your first few weeks.  You’ll not only get different points of view on the company, but you’ll also feel more confident seeing familiar faces in hallway.  PRO TIP: Venture out of your own team to meet people in other departments – you’ll never know when you may need their help on something!

Ask questions: Even if you’ have experience with all of the responsibilities in your job description, you haven’t done them at your new company and there will be a lot to learn. If you are unclear about how to do a task, or the terminology used, don’t be afraid to ask. It’s a lot harder to justify asking how to do something 3 months into a job, than it is in the first 3 days.  PRO TIP: If you’re unsure of how to do a task, ask if there is a past example you can use as a reference, or ask to run the steps by someone before you start.

Complete the administrative tasks early: Typically, the first few days at a new company tend to go slowly.  You don’t have many meetings yet, or any tasks to work on, so you tend to spend a lot of time looking at the company’s intranet, or combing through documents that have been sent to you.  While you should definitely do these things, also make it a point to take care of the administrative tasks like setting up your email signature, voicemail, elect benefits, etc.  This way, you won’t be scrambling to get it done on Day 30 when you’re deep into your actual job duties.  PRO TIP: Create a task list of everything and check them off as you complete them – this will help you keep track of everything, as well as give you the sense of accomplishment that you aren’t getting with your job responsibilities, yet.

Learn the company-specific intricacies: Write down the acronyms you hear, industry terms, and the systems you will use.  Then, learn them all, in depth.  Getting up to speed on company-specific terms and technologies means that you’ll spend less time struggling to follow along in a meeting or having to stumble through a process. PRO TIP: Ask for demos of the systems you’ll use and be sure to record it so you can refer back to it when things start to make more sense.  Similarly, make it a point to use the company-specific acronyms so you can feel more comfortable and confident.

Most of all: don’t stress yourself out. Starting a new job is tough – you have to develop a new routine, new skills, and new relationships. It’s easy to put pressure on yourself to be self-sufficient as soon as possible and start delivering results, but your manager and colleagues know that it takes time. The Harvard Business Review article referenced earlier says that it typically take a new employee eight months to reach full productivity. You’ll amaze yourself at how much you learn week over week during your first few months at a new job – just remember to take it one step at a time!

Four things an employer should tell their new hire on their first day

by Megan / 06/19/2017

It’s Monday morning and your new employee is waiting in the lobby. You’ve eagerly been waiting for this day, the day when you’ll finally get the help you’ve been waiting for.  During the interview process you went into detail on the job’s responsibilities so once you show them to their desk you’ll be able to continue about your day while they get right to work, right?

Of course not! Even if your employee has experience in every aspect of the role’s responsibilities, they don’t have any experience at your company.  While most employers have standard onboarding and training topics for a manager to cover, how can you make sure you’re setting up your newest team member for success? An article published on Inc.com recently highlighted four things great bosses say to their employees on their first day to get them off to a great start.

Thoroughly describe how the business creates value. Start by talking about the products, the clients, and what differentiates your company from competitors.  Then talk about how their role fits into the company’s landscape and the value they’ll bring to the business.

Map out the employee’s internal and external customers.  As a new employee, it’s important for them to learn early on who will benefit from their work, either directly or indirectly.  Introductions to internal customers can help an employee better understand how their job will add value and what is expected of their tasks.

Set immediate goals -- and explain that you will start giving feedback right away. The first few weeks of every job will consist of paperwork, introductions, and training.  The article suggests that in addition to standard onboarding, give your new hire a task to complete on their first day.  This will establish that results are important as well as give them a sense of personal achievement.  In addition, peppering in small tasks each day will help them break down larger processes and ultimately retain the information more effectively. Starting with small tasks will also give you the opportunity to provide feedback quickly and establish an open dialogue.

Reinforce the reasons you hired them. During the interview process, there was something (or a few somethings) that set your new employee above the rest and ultimately drove your decision to hire them. Being candid about what you liked about them in the interview process will not only make them feel valued at a time when they aren’t producing results yet, but will also motivate them to use those skills.

Any manager can run through an onboarding checklist and tick the boxes when a new employee starts, but a great manager will spend the time making their new team member feel valued and prepared from day one.

Unemployment Rate at 16-Year Low, But Weak Job Growth Dominates the May Jobs Report Conversation

by Megan / 06/04/2017

In May, the economy added a disappointing 138,000 jobs, significantly lower than the 185,000 expected, according to the latest jobs report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday.  In addition, job growth in April was revised down from 211,000 to 174,000 and March’s 79,000 jobs were marked down to 50,000.  This brings average job growth over the last three months to 121,000.

Jed Kolko, chief economist at Indeed, said, “It’s inevitable that we would start to see a slowdown in the payroll numbers. Month-after-month job gains in the 200,000 range are not sustainable longer term. The working-age population is growing too slowly to support that.” Economists estimate that roughly 100,000 jobs need to be added each month to account for those entering the work force.

While much of the conversation this month was focused on job growth, May still had some positive news: the unemployment rate fell to 4.3 percent, the lowest in 16 years.

Other highlights from the report include:

  • The labor force participation rate declined by 0.2 percent point
  • Job growth was led by Health Care and Mining who added 24,000 and 7,000 jobs, respectively
  • Professional and Business Services added 38,000 jobs in May
  • Temporary help services added 12,900 jobs in May


While the May jobs report doesn’t change the expectation that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates when they meet later this month, economists are now questioning whether or not there will be a rate hike in September as well.  Previously, the Fed expected two more increases this year, after the one in March.

The Strength of the Job Market is Proven with Job Growth Rebounding in April

by Megan / 05/07/2017

A healthy April jobs report was released on Friday, confirming that the labor market is still growing at an impressive rate.  In April, 211,000 jobs were added, versus the 185,000 expected. In addition, the unemployment rate ticked down to 4.4 percent. In addition, according to an article on CNBC, an alternative reading on the unemployment rate that includes those not actively looking for jobs as well as those working part-time for economic reasons dropped to 8.6 percent from 8.9 percent in March, the best reading since November 2007.

The report was welcome news after a disappointing March report where less than 100,000 jobs were added.  Jason Furman, the chief economic adviser during the Obama administration, commented on the growth by saying, “The momentum in the job market is really impressive.  He continued, “I’m frankly surprised that this late into an expansion the economy is still adding jobs well above the steady-state pace.”

Highlights from report:

  • March’s low job growth was revised down from 98,000 to 79,000
  • February’s job growth was increased from 219,000 to 232,000
  • April’s job growth was led by leisure and hospitality, health care and social assistance, financial activities, and mining
  • Professional and business services added 39,000 jobs in April, bringing the total for the last 12 months to 612,000


While labor Secretary Alexander Acosta initially reacted to the report on Twitter by saying “Great news!” He later elaborated in a statement that further work was still needed “on bridging the skills gap and on expanding opportunity for all Americans,” and that the Labor Department is "committed to policies that lead to continued job growth, workforce development and increased opportunities."

Applying the Traits of a Marathon Runner to Your Career

by Megan / 04/16/2017

It’s the eve of the 121st Boston Marathon.  Tomorrow morning, 30,000 runners will gather at the starting line in Hopkinton, MA to run 26.2 miles to Boylston Street in downtown Boston.  An additional 500,000 people will line the path to cheer on these athletes who have trained both mentally and physically for this race.

I am not a marathon runner. I can sometimes run 2 miles if the wind is in my favor, so the thought of adding 24.2 more is a world that I will never know.  However, I have a few friends who year after year push themselves for months to run the Boston, New York, or Marine Corps Marathons.  Every one of them have a level of determination, dedication, and self-discipline that is beyond admirable.  These runners also happen to be some of the best colleagues, due in some part, to applying the same principles from their training to their professional career. Below, I’ve highlighted four of these principles and how they can also be applied to your career.

Make a Plan: Most people don’t wake up one morning and run 26.2 miles on a whim.  Instead, they thoughtfully create a schedule about when and how long to run to ultimately get them to the big race.  Similarly, it’s easy to react to a situation at the office without taking the time to think it through.  Instead, try to take a step back, create an action plan, and then see it through. 

Discipline: At some point during training, a runner is going to be faced with the choice of either missing out on something or doing it and jeopardizing their training.  A long run on a Saturday morning may mean a missed night out on Friday with friends.  In the same sense, staying until 5 on a Friday, long after your colleagues have left, to get a project done will not only demonstrate your commitment to the organization, but also save you from letting someone down and jeopardizing their trust in you.

Stick with it: I’ve always heard runners talk about a “runners high;” when they push past the pain and fatigue to a point where endorphins kick in to take them to the finish line.  In the workplace, we all have a time where we’re burnt out.  Whether it’s in relation to a busy week/month/quarter, or just a project that seems to never end, at some point you’ll want to quit.  If you stick with it, and remind yourself that there is a finish line, you will come out a better employee.

Being a team player: While running may technically be a solo sport, runners are far from alone during a marathon.  Recently, a video circulated of three runners who helped a woman struggling to cross the finish line at the Philadelphia Half Marathon. Stories like this happen all the time during races.  Likewise, even if you’re an individual contributor and not working on a team in your company, supporting, encouraging, and figuratively carrying your colleague who may be struggling creates a better workplace for everyone.

By incorporating some of these principles into your professional life, you’ll become a more productive and happier employee. Over the next few weeks, see where you can slowly start to improve in these areas, but don’t rush it. As the saying goes, ‘it’s a marathon, not a sprint.”

And to all of our colleagues, friends, and neighbors running tomorrow, GOOD LUCK!

How to Answer Abstract Interview Questions

by Megan / 02/12/2017

“You’re shrunken down to the size of a nickel and dropped into the bottom of a blender. What do you do?” You may recall B.J. Novak asking this question to Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson during their video interview in the movie The Internship.  If not, you can watch the clip here (fast forward to the :47 mark).

While this question sounds like it was added for comedic satire, it’s not too far off from odd questions that have been asked in real interviews. Here are a few examples of actual interview questions from 2016 and the companies that asked them, according to Glassdoor:

  • Would you rather fight 1 horse-sized duck, or 100 duck-sized horses? -Whole Foods Market
  • If you were a brand, what would be your motto? -Boston Consulting Group
  • How many basketballs would fit in this room? Delta Air Lines
  • What would you do if you found a penguin in the freezer? Trader Joe’s
  • When a hot dog expands, in which direction does it split and why? SpaceX


Feedback from our candidates indicates that these types of questions are becoming more frequently asked in interviews.  They may be ridiculous, or even funny (and it’s ok to laugh if they are!), but interviewers are often asking these types of questions to get to a deeper answer than a well-rehearsed “Tell me about your strengths/weaknesses” response usually elicits.  So, how do you respond if you are faced with these difficult to answer questions? Here are a few tips:

Think about the context: In the Whole Foods Market question above, the interviewer may be looking for how you handle problems – do you tackle a situation by breaking it down into 100 smaller obstacles/tasks to overcome, or do you look at all of the components as one comprehensive problem to address?  Neither approach is wrong, but it gives the interviewer an idea of your problem-solving mentality.

Walk through your reasoning: Abstract questions usually don’t have right or wrong answers.  Rather, it’s the rationale to how you got there that’s important.  For the question asked by Delta, you can answer with only the exact number of basketballs you think can fit in the room and either be really far off, or be close, but the interviewer may not even know or really care about the factual answer and instead wanted to see how you got to it.  For example, instead of just answering “one thousand,” you can add that you got to the number by visualizing the rough size of a basketball, how many it would take to stack them to the ceiling or fill the floor, and then multiplied those numbers to get a rough estimate.  This demonstrates your problem solving style and shows the interviewer that you can think on your feet.

Show your personality Many of these questions can be used to get to know you better, without directly saying “tell me about yourself.”  With the Boston Consulting Group question above, asking a candidate to come up with a motto for themselves requires creativity and honesty in a few short words. You’ll want it to relate to why you’d be a good asset to their organization, but you can also incorporate some of your personality by playing off of one of your favorite brands’ mottos, or make it relate to something you like to do. For example, if you like football, you can say something like “The 12th man of the corporate world.” Then, you elaborate by saying you’re energetic, enthusiastic, and dependable, as well as a team player who is doing your part to take the company to the end zone.

The biggest takeaway to remember is not to overthink it.  Interviews are tough in general and interviewers know they put you on the spot with abstract questions, so don’t be afraid to ask for a minute to think about it, or ask more clarifying questions that will help you answer.  Most of all, be confident, respond thoroughly, and be yourself!

March Jobs Report: Job Growth Slows, Unemployment Rate Falls to Post-Recession Low

by Megan / 04/09/2017

Is the glass half-empty or half-full? This question seems to have steered how economists and news outlets reported the results from the March jobs report, released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday.

According to the report, only 98,000 jobs were added in March, nearly half of the 180,000 expected.  The report also revised January and February job growth down by 38,000.  However, from the glass half-full perspective, the unemployment rate fell from 4.7 to 4.5 percent, the lowest it’s been in a decade, and those in part-time positions looking for full-time declined to 8.9 percent from 9.5 percent in February.

Unarguably, economists were surprised and disappointed with March’s job growth, but looking at the year so far, the market is averaging 178,000 jobs per month. According to Forbes, at this rate, the country will be fully recovered from the recession by August.

Highlights from the report include:

  • Professional Services led job growth for the month of March, adding 56,000 jobs
  • Retail trade lost 30,000 jobs over the month
  • Temporary help services added 10,500 jobs in March, nearly double the 5,700 added in March 2016

Many economists are quick to point out that the disappointing job growth can also be attributed to a major snowstorm hitting the Midwest and Northeast during the week data was collected.  In addition, an unseasonably warm January and February led to the construction industry adding jobs in the winter months that would normally happen in the spring.  As a result, economists are expecting April to even out these unexpected gains and misses.

Why Employers Should Evaluate Emotional Intelligence in Candidates

by Megan / 04/02/2017

If you are a fan of The Bachelor, you’re probably tired of hearing the term “emotional intelligence,” after last season’s battle between Taylor and Corrine. If you aren’t a fan, or just aren’t familiar with the term, emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others.

Emotional intelligence is a trait that employers should evaluate candidates for when hiring, according to an article this week on Entrepreneur.  Building a team of emotionally intelligent employees can increase the performance of the company in five ways:

1. Better Communication: Research suggests that up to 96% of all communication is non-verbal.  Instead, tone and body language, both driven by emotion, drive how we interact with one another.  Being able to interpret non-verbal cues will allow an employee to better understand a colleague or customer’s underlying message, as well as communicate their own responses more appropriately.

2. Even Temperament: Every job has stressful moments.  An emotionally intelligent employee will be able to recognize a stressful situation, process it, and come out with a productive solution, rather than losing their temper and potentially damaging their reputation or relationships.

3.  Co-worker Rapport: Employees who are emotionally intelligent are able to connect and communicate with their colleagues easily.  This allows them to be seen as leaders and unite teams.

4. Client Needs: Clients aren’t often upfront about their dissatisfaction with your company and instead require someone who can “read between the lines.”  An employee who can translate what a client says into what they really mean are the only chance the company has to save the relationship.

5. Proactivity and Foresight: An emotionally intelligent employee is more in tune with others’ strengths and weaknesses, as well as their own.  This allows them to be able to better recognize and mitigate potentially stressful situations like too much of a workload or new stressors.

How can employers identify emotionally intelligent candidates during interviews?  The article offers three ways, including:

  • Ask about the past: Ask them how they’ve worked with coworkers in the past and what their relationships were like. 
  • Gauge their reactions: Ask thought-provoking questions and pay attention to how they react. Are they reacting based on your tone and body-language?
  • Offer hypotheticals: Ask questions about how they’d handle situations like a client or coworker being upset.  Look for responses that elicit a desire to learn more about the situation in a calm manner.


The article cautions that these responses will be subject to interpretation.  To address this, consider having multiple interviewers to get a few perspectives. 

March Madness Final Bracket: Office Productivity Vs. Morale

by Megan / 03/20/2017

Ok, ok, so maybe office productivity and morale aren’t “technically” two of the 68 teams currently competing in the NCAA’s March Madness tournament, but they might as well be for the professional workforce and HR departments nationwide.

For two weeks a year, corporate offices are overrun with an increase of water-cooler conversations, Wi-Fi congestion from streaming, and corporate contests for prizes like parking spaces and gift cards.  The increase in mingling and positive office banter are generally regarded as positive for culture, but also come at a price of decreased productivity.  

It is estimated that businesses will lose up to $2.1 billion in productivity during March Madness, due to an estimated 81.5 million employees expected to have spent at least an hour at work preparing their brackets last week, in addition to watching daytime games at the office.   These figures alone would make a company think twice about promoting a corporate March Madness contest, so why do so many embrace it?

Employee Morale.  According to an article on Bloomberg, approximately three-quarters of employees said they enjoyed going to work more during March Madness. Further, over half surveyed said they met up with colleagues after work to watch the games, and 39 percent said they became closer as a result of the contest. While the time clock may reflect a loss in observed productivity, happy workers lead to a more efficient employees, who tend to get more done.

Overall, it appears that morale is the ultimate winner of the bracket between productivity and morale.  Moving forward, during the March Madness season, companies should focus less on how to block the inevitable, and more on how to incorporate it into the company culture, which ultimately leads to better employees.  

For those of you still in the running for this year’s contest, here are a few facts for you to think about. According to an article on USA TODAY, the odds are 1 in 9.2 quintillion (9,000,000,000,000,000,000).  If that number isn’t large enough for you to realize just how rare it is, consider this: in 2014, Warren Buffett offered $1 billion to anyone who could fill out a perfect bracket.  Nobody won. 

Good luck this year, everyone!

February Jobs Report Beats Expectations, Fueling Confidence in Fed. Rate Hike

by Megan / 03/13/2017

Economists are unanimously reacting positively to the release of the February jobs report on Friday, in which 235,000 jobs were added, much higher than the 190,000 anticipated.   

In addition, wages grew by 2.8 percent year on year, the unemployment rate trended slightly down to 4.7 percent, and the labor force participation rate rose to 63 percent.

The overwhelmingly positive report also brings more confidence to the expected outcome of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting this week around raising the federal interest rate. “Raising rates next week is as close to a certainty as you ever get in this business,” said Scott Clemons, chief investment strategist at Brown Brothers Harriman.

Highlights from the report include:

  • An unseasonably warm month meant the Construction industry hired more workers than anticipated and lead job growth for the month, adding 58,000 jobs in February
  • Professional and Business Services added 37,000 jobs
  • Temporary help services added 3,100 jobs
  • January job growth was revised from 227,000 to 238,000

While most economists celebrated February’s report, some were just as quick to add that this better-than-expected streak isn’t going to continue forever.  Currently, as the Midwesterners dig themselves out from Winter Storm Stella, the Northeast is preparing for her.  This means that we likely won’t be able to rely on same growth trajectory from the construction industry for March, and thus will need another source to make up for the decline to stay on the same pace.  

Most Promising Finance Careers of 2017

by Megan / 02/20/2017

If the Finance industry could be summed up in an analogy, it’d be the tortoise in the story of the tortoise and the hare.  Why?  Unlike the hare, which can be represented by “bubble” industries that are quick at the beginning and then fizzle out, the Finance industry is steady, reliable, and constantly moving forward.

While the foundations of the finance industry may be the same, the 2017 financial professional profile is very different from what it was 30 years ago.  Technological advancements are driving the industry to evolve and create new roles that didn’t exist previously. That’s why LinkedIn took a look at over 140,000 job openings posted on their website to come up with a list of the Most Promising Finance Careers of 2017, based on: salary, job openings, year-over-year growth in openings, advancement opportunities, and regional availability. 

They top ten most promising finance careers of 2017, along with the top skills associated with each profile, are:

1. FINANCIAL ANALYST Top skills include: Financial Analysis, Financial Reporting, Accounting, Microsoft Excel, and Financial Modeling.

2. UNDERWRITING MANAGER Top skills include: Underwriting, General Insurance, Commercial Insurance, Property & Casual Insurance, Liability

3. QUANTITATIVE ANALYST Top skills include: Quantitative Finance, Derivatives, Visual Basic for Applications, Quantitative Analytics, Matlab

4. SCRUM MASTER Top skills include: Scrum, Agile Methodologies, Agile Project Management, Software Development, Requirements

5. DATA ANALYST Top skills include: SQL, SAS, Statistics, Databases, Microsoft Excel, Data Mining

6. PRODUCT MANAGER Top skills include: Product Management, Product Marketing, Product Development, Competitive Analysis, Product Launch

7. CREDIT ANALYST Top skills include: Financial Analysis, Credit Risk, Credit, Banking, Loans

8. SOFTWARE ENGINEER Top skills include: Java, C++, SQL, HTML, Linux

9. RISK ANALYST Top skills include: Risk Management, Financial Risk, Financial Analysis, Credit Risk, Banking

10. BUSINESS ANALYST Top skills include: Requirements Analysis, Requirements Gathering, Business Requirements, Software Development Life Cycle, Business Process Improvement


Are you a finance professional looking to make a career change in 2017? If so, take a look at our current job openings, or send your resume to our team of staffing professionals. 

January Jobs Report: 2017 Starts With Surprisingly High Job Growth

by Megan / 02/05/2017

The January jobs report was released on Friday, bringing news of unexpectedly high job growth.  In January, 227,000 jobs were added, significantly higher than the 180,000 jobs expected.

The report also brought news that more Americans are re-entering the workforce.  This led to an increase in the unemployment rate from 4.7% to 4.8%.  While an increase in the unemployment rate is typically viewed negatively, in the circumstance that it’s due to more people entering the workforce, it means people are feeling more encouraged about the job market and being able to find work.  

The report wasn’t all positive, however.  Wage growth was expected to grow by 2.7%, but actually rose by 2.5% year-over-year. “The increase in participation and drop in wages suggest we’re not at full employment,” said James Athey, senior investment manager at Aberdeen Asset Management.

Highlights from the report include:

  • The labor-force participation rate ticked up to 62.9% from 62.7%
  • Financial Activities added 32,000 jobs in January
  • Professional and Business Services jobs increased by 39,000 in January
  • Temporary help services added nearly 15,000 jobs in January


Overall, the January jobs report showed that the economy is strong, but still has room for improvement.  Over the next few months, as the job market teeters on the cusp of full employment, economists and the Fed will be monitoring the reports closely as they prepare to meet about another interest-rate hike in March.

Do Your Job: Applying the Patriots’ Mantra to Your Career

by Megan / 01/22/2017

I’ve been thinking about the Patriots’ “Do Your Job” mantra and how it applies to the workplace for the last 4 hours, but I couldn’t bring myself to start this until the Patriots officially won the AFC Championship, just in case.  To quote Michael Scott, “I’m not superstitious, but I’m a little stitious.”

If you’re a Patriots fan, you’re familiar with Bill Belichick’s favorite phrase, “Do Your Job.” It’s become so popular that the New England Patriots even trademarked it.  The idea is that if everyone on the team follows the game plan and role set out for them (and don’t try to do someone else’s), the team will be successful. There’s no question that this way of thinking works for them.

The phrase doesn’t apply just to the football field, however, but can also be carried over into non- sports careers as well.  Here are a few ways to be the Tom Brady of your office:

Be Prepared: Start every day by taking 15 minutes to plan what you need to get done for the day or week. Create a list so you can hold yourself accountable.  This is also a good time to make sure you have everything you need to complete your tasks, or figure out a plan for getting there.

Do Your Best: You owe it to your colleagues to bring your best self to everything you do.  Missing deadlines or submitting half-completed tasks means that your colleagues will either be delayed with their work or have to make up for what you didn’t complete themselves.

Trust Your Colleagues: This one can be difficult, especially if you are a type-A person.  However, trusting your colleagues to do their roles means that they’ll be more inclined to trust you.  You’ll also have more time for perfecting your work, since you won’t be wasting time looking over their shoulder.

Let It Go: If something doesn’t go your way, or a mistake happens, take a minute to reflect on how you’d do things differently and then move on.  Things happen, but as long as you can learn from them and not make the same mistake again, you will become a better employee.

As the Patriots prepare for the Super Bowl, they will undoubtedly be reminded to do their jobs.  At the same time, take a look at your role within your organization and see where you have room to “Do Your Job” better. 

Tech Careers Account for One Third of Top 100 Jobs for 2017

by Megan / 01/15/2017

Earlier this month, CNNMoney and PayScale.com released a report on the 100 Best Jobs In America.  Good news for the technology field: nearly one third of the top 100 jobs were IT-related.

Last week’s post reviewing the December jobs report further solidified that the job market is strong and has no intention of slowing down, which means professionals are more inclined to consider factors beyond pay when job searching. With that in mind, experts from both organizations looked at careers that offered good advancement opportunities and high satisfaction.  They reviewed 450 job titles to rank careers based on pay, overall job satisfaction, projected growth, and availability of jobs, among other factors.

The Top 10 Jobs for 2017 are:

  • 1 - Mobile Applications Developer
  • 2 - Risk Management Director
  • 3 - Landman
  • 4 - Product Analyst
  • 5 - Information Assurance Analyst
  • 6 - Quality Assurance Coordinator (RN)
  • 7 - Clinical Applications Specialist
  • 8 - Hospital Administrator
  • 9 - Database Analyst
  • 10 - Finance & Administration Director

You can see the full list, complete with median salaries and projected growth rates, on CNNMoney.

Are you a professional looking to make a career change in 2017?  Our team can help! Browse open jobs or contact our team today!

December Jobs Report: Year Ends with 75 Consecutive Months of Job Growth

by Megan / 01/08/2017

The December jobs report was released on Friday, the last one under the Obama administration. Job growth was slightly disappointing at 156,000 jobs added, but did reach a new milestone of 75 consecutive months of job growth, according to CNNMoney.

"By just about any measure, 2016 was a banner year for the job market," says Ian Siegel, co-founder of ZipRecruiter, a job recruitment site. Over two million jobs were added in 2016 and wages grew 2.9% in December, compared to December 2015.

Highlights from the report include:

  • The number of discouraged workers, or workers who are not looking for work because they believe there are no jobs, was 426,000 in December, down by 237,000 from a year earlier
  • Job growth was led by health care and social assistance
  • Employment in Professional Services increased by 15,000 jobs in December, bringing the 2016 total to 522,000 jobs added


Much of the news surrounding this report applauded the outgoing administration’s progress in pulling the economy and job market out of the Great Recession, but some economists are still skeptical that the economy hasn’t fully recovered.  According to the Washington Post, some economists “caution that workers with less education and fewer skills continue to lag behind.” This means that while the incoming administration will inherit a strong economy, there is room for improvement.

2017 New Year’s Resolution: Stop Making These Common Workplace Mistakes

by Megan / 01/02/2017

Happy New Year! The holiday season is over and 2017 is officially here.  As you prepare to get back to work, now is also the perfect time to reflect on your professional goals and career. 

Many people spend the first week of the New Year setting (and hopefully not breaking) personal resolutions, but how often do professionals also set career resolutions?  According to a survey by CareerBuilder, approximately 1 in 5 people will look for a new job in 2017.  While this is often a resolution itself, what about the smaller changes you can make to improve your career and professional life?

A recent article on CNBC highlighted nine common mistakes professionals make in the workplace that could be hurting their career, based on advice from CEOs, self-made millionaires, and career strategists. The mistakes, and reasons behind why you should avoid them, include:

  • Staying put because you're afraid of change: A fear of change often leads to a “safe,” unsatisfying career path
  • Focusing too much on finding your "passion": Getting hung up on finding something you’re passionate about can cause unnecessary stress. Instead, focus on smaller projects, or positions with variety until you find something you like.
  • Writing bad emails: Be concise.  The lengthier the email, the easier the message can get lost and lose impact.  
  • Only asking for more money: Asking for only one negotiation factor doesn’t leave a lot to work with for either party, so consider asking for other factors that would make your professional life better like flexible hours, or more time off.
  • Letting other people define you: Don’t let someone else’s advice deter you from the goals you’ve set for yourself. 
  • Dwelling on mistakes: Mistakes happen. Learn from them and use them to shape your future, rather than focusing on what could have been.
  • Not compartmentalizing your issues: Leaving your personal issues at the door will make you more productive and professional. 
  • Lying on your resume: You never know when even a small lie can come back to you and hurt your career. 
  • Thinking you've already missed your chance to succeed: You don’t have to start a company in college to be successful.  Hard work and experience can mean just as much as one market disrupting idea.  

As you get back into your usual routine this week, keep the above list in mind and see where you have room to improve in 2017.  Small changes can sometimes make the biggest difference!

Here’s to a great 2017!

5 Job Trends to Watch for in 2017, According to Glassdoor

by Megan / 12/18/2016

On Thursday, career resource website, Glassdoor, released a new report, “Looking Ahead: 5 Jobs Trends to Watch in 2017.” In the report, Dr. Andrew Chamberlain, Chief Economist at Glassdoor, highlights five trends that will make the biggest impact on the job market in 2017.  They are:

TREND #1: THE TRANSFORMATION OF HR INTO “PEOPLE SCIENCE. ”As more companies drive toward being data-centric in their product development/engineering, marketing, and sales teams, one department that’s been often overlooked in this area is human resources.  The report suggests that more HR departments are beginning to find value in “data scientists” and expect companies to make these roles a more prominent part of their 2017 strategy.

TREND #2: AUTOMATION WILL CHANGE EVERY JOB. The term “automation” has dominated news headlines this year.  From grocery stores like Amazon Go, to successful pilots of self-driving cars, and even into the white-collar world with programs that streamline analytics, automated technology has inundated our lives. As a result, workers will need to transform themselves and their careers to work alongside the technology (i.e., running the machines or being able to translate the data into actions).  “Just as professionals in law and medicine are required to satisfy ongoing professional development goals, we will see more organizations setting aside time for re-skilling to stay on top of the latest workplace technology,” says Dr. Andrew Chamberlain, Chief Economist, and author of the report.

TREND #3: SHIFTING AWAY FROM FLASHY BENEFITS PACKAGES. Over the last few years, many recruiting strategies have been focused on historically non-traditional perks like dogs in the office, beer fridges, game rooms, and free snacks or meals.  As more data is becoming available on the impact these perks have on employee satisfaction and retention, the results show these perks have little positive impact.  Therefore, in 2017, Glassdoor expects more companies to shift their focus to highlighting the traditional benefits of a great insurance plan, 401(k) matches, and generous time-off plans.

TREND #4: TAKING ACTION AGAINST THE GENDER PAY GAP. The gender pay gap has gained increasingly more coverage over the last few years.  More companies are disclosing this information in an effort to be transparent and, at the same time, data tools are making it easier for companies to identify and correct pay gaps before they’re even identifiable on reports. According to the report, the importance of identifying a gender pay gap within the organization isn’t important solely for legal purposes, but also because the topic has become more integral to attracting employees. A survey by Glassdoor indicated that 67 percent of employees would not apply for a job where there was a defined gender pay gap between men and women.

TREND #5: REALIZING THE LIMITS OF THE “GIG” ECONOMY. Gig jobs, or short-term jobs that can be fulfilled quickly with low risk on either party, have made a large impact in our communities over the last few years. Companies like Uber and Airbnb seem to be everywhere.  Are these types of companies the future of our job market?  The short answer is “no.”  In the cases of these short-term business contracts, the service they provide inarguably adds value. However, the labor market still primarily relies on skilled jobs that require deep company, vertical, or job-specific knowledge. The soft-skills and expertise needed for these roles make it hard to divide into short-term gig roles.  Thus, gig roles will remain an important part of our economy, but not the future of it.

As companies begin to shift from 2017 strategy planning to creating actionable plans to execute on their goals, expect to see some, if not all, of these trends to be present to some extent. 

November Jobs Report: Unemployment at 9-year Low

by Megan / 12/04/2016

The November jobs report was released Friday, the first report post-election.  According to the report, 178,000 jobs were added and the unemployment rate dropped to 4.6 percent, the lowest it’s been since August 2007.

The positive growth is good news for the new administration, which will inherit an economy that has added private sector jobs for 80 straight months. In addition, “wage growth, though slower, is still running ahead of inflation, and consumers are expressing the highest levels of confidence in nearly a decade,” according to an article in the New York Times.

Highlights from the report include:

  • Thus far in 2016, employment growth has averaged 180,000 per month, compared with an average monthly increase of 229,000 in 2015.
  • Employment in professional and business services rose by 63,000 in November and has risen by 571,000 over the year.
  • Temporary help services added 14,300 jobs.
  • Employment continued to trend up in administrative and support services (+36,000), computer systems design and related services (+5,000), and management and technical consulting services (+4,000).


The New York Times article does caution that for all the improvements, there are still millions of Americans that feel the recovery has passed them by.  The number of discouraged workers, who are defined as “persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them,” remains unchanged from a year prior at 591,000.  While the incoming administration will have a stronger baseline economy than the outgoing, there is still room to improve, particularly around wage growth and reengaging discouraged workers.  

Top Careers for Veterans

by Megan / 11/13/2016

As Veterans Day Weekend comes to a close, the Bay State Search team wants to send a heartfelt thank you to our service men and women.  To quote Ronald Reagan, “Some people live an entire lifetime and wonder if they have ever made a difference in the world, but the Marines don’t have that problem.” Today we salute, not only the Marines, but all branches of the military and those who have dedicated their lives to serving and protecting us.

As a staffing firm, our team often works with veterans that are entering the civilian workforce for the first time.  Our recruiters are experienced in helping veterans optimize their resumes based on skills they’ve gained throughout their service as well as find careers that are a good match for their skillsets.

So, what are the best careers for the skills veterans develop during their service? An article on Forbes this week highlighted the most common positions for veterans. A common theme among the positions: problem-solving skills.  Attention to detail and trouble-shooting skills are essential to these careers, and strengths for those who have served.

According to the poll, he top careers for veterans are in the areas of:

  • Information Technology
  • Accounting/Finance
  • Customer Service
  • Human Resources
  • Sales/ Business Development
  • Manufacturing
  • Distribution & Logistics
  • Marketing
  • Research & Development
  • Public Relations
  • Clinical
  • Legal


If you are a veteran looking for a civilian career, or just career/resume advice, our team at Bay State Search would be honored to serve you.

America: Home of the free, because of the brave. Thank you to our military heroes today, and every day.

October Jobs Report: Post-Recession Highs A Testament To Strengthening Market

by Megan / 11/06/2016

The October jobs report was released on Friday, showing another strong month for the job market.  While new job creation numbers came in lower than predicted at 161,000 (expected: 175,000), the biggest news lies in the post-recession milestones reached last month.

In a blog post on Indeed, Chief Economist Jed Kolko points to three post recession highs from the October jobs report, including: hourly earnings rising by 2.8 percent year-over-year, the employment/population ratio for prime working age at a post-recession high of 78.2 percent, and the broadest unemployment measure (U-6) down to the lowest level since April 2008 at 9.5%.

Other highlights from the report:

  • The unemployment rate moved back down to 4.9%, after rising to 5.0% in September
  •  The number of discouraged workers decreased by 178,000 from the year prior to 487,000
  • Employment growth was led by health care, professional and business services, and financial activities
  • Professional services added 43,000 jobs in October, and has risen by 542,000 over the year


The growth in wages and steady increase in new jobs are leading to a shortage of qualified candidates for employers, according to a New York Times article.  In response, Ian Siegel, chief executive of ZipRecruiter, says, “It’s a great time to be a job seeker.”

Are you an employer having trouble finding qualified candidates in this market? If so, contact our team to learn more about why companies are partnering with Bay State Search for their employments needs.

Successful Morning Rituals: Eight Tips To Starting Your Day Off Right

by Megan / 10/16/2016

Some people are naturally early risers.  We all have (or are) that one colleague who gets to work and has already accomplished more than we will all morning.  The rest of us will hit the snooze button at least three times and then race to get out the door just in time to make the train, bus, or 9am meeting. 

What habits can be learned from the early risers to make us more successful? An article last week on Entrepreneur presented an infographic with eight tips to get your day started right.  With the start of a new work week, now is the perfect time to see how you can incorporate these tips into your schedule this week.

#1 Positivity: Early risers are known for their positivity, determination, problem solving abilities and an optimistic mentality.  Waking up an hour earlier gives you a “25th hour” that you would otherwise spend sleeping,

#2 Eat Breakfast: Eating breakfast gives your body a jumpstart to your day and provides energy to sustain you through the morning.

#3 Planning: Review your to-do list and visualize what tasks you need to accomplish during the day.  Being prepared means you’ll be able to better handle any curveballs thrown your way.

#4 Exercise: A morning workout boosts brain endorphins.  When you work out in the morning you are improving your creativity, productivity, and energy for the day.

#5 Sleep: Getting an adequate amount of sleep allows your body to recharge and keeps your mind alert.  Sleep deprived employees have a harder time thinking through problems, delivering quality work, or even socializing.

#6 Unclutter: Have a place for everything. Whether it’s files, a plant, or your stapler, having a streamlined environment will take the stress out of not being able to find something.

#7 Motivation: Waking up earlier will give you a head start on your competition, no matter what or who you’re competing against. Have a deadline today? Setting your alarm for 20 minutes earlier means you get to work 20 minutes earlier and have that much more time to work on it.

#8 Quiet: The earlier you wake up, the quieter the world is.  Use this time to concentrate and get a jump on tasks that require no distractions.

If you’re used to being a night owl, or are constantly running a race against the clock, trying to do all of these might not be realistic.  Choose a few to try this week and don’t be too hard on yourself if it takes a few mornings to get motivated - changes don’t happen overnight.  Small victories are still victories.

September Jobs Report: “Solid” Growth Makes for a Well-Balanced Market

by Megan / 10/09/2016

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the September jobs report on Friday, to a reaction by economists that brought out little reaction, positive or negative. Douglas Holtz-Eakin, president of the American Action Forum, a nonprofit, and a former director of the Congressional Budget Office said, "It turns out that Goldilocks is real: The labor market is not too hot and not too cold.”   An article from the WSJ summed up other economists reactions, most of which agreed that growth was steady, but not anything eye-opening. 

According to the report, 156,000 jobs were added in September, in line with August’s modified number of 167,000.  In addition, the unemployment rate moved slightly from 4.9 percent, to 5.0 percent, indicating more Americans that had previously dropped out of the labor market are looking for work again. 

Highlights from the report include:

  • Professional and business services employment rose by 67,000 in September and has risen by 582,000 over the year
  • Management and technical consulting services added 16,000 jobs in September
  • Administrative and support services added 35,000 jobs last month
  • Health care added 33,000 jobs in September, and 445,000 over the last year
  • For comparison, 149,000 jobs were added in September 2015


On a positive note, including September’s total, the United States has added 15 million jobs since employment hit its low in February 2010.  The growth in the job market has “been the bright spot for the overall economic recovery," says Curt Long, chief economist at the National Association of Federal Credit Unions.

How to Emphasize Your Soft Skills for Employers

by Megan / 09/25/2016

Over the last week, several articles in the news have touched on the growing importance of  “soft skills” in a candidate’s job search.  More specifically, how employers are placing more weight on non-technical skills (“soft skills”) like communication, ability to meet deadlines, organization, etc.

Both articles referred to a study by Burning Glass Technologies last year called, “The Human Factor: The Hard Time Employers Have Finding Soft Skills”. Whether you’re a candidate searching for a job, or a hiring manager looking to fill an open position, it’s worth a read if you have the time (after you finish reading this blog, of course).

Often, the candidates we see at Bay State Search have either held a variety of positions with a wide range of “hard skills”, or are recent grads without much work experience.  In both scenarios, the opportunity to play on your soft skills becomes much more important.  How do you do this?  Here are a few tips:

Study job descriptions Most job descriptions have not only a set of required skills, but also “desired skills.” Much of the time, the desired skills section will focus on soft skills.  According to the report, about one in three skills on a job posting are a soft, or baseline, skill.  Even if you don’t match all of the technical requirements for a job ad, if your soft skills are largely a fit, an employer might be more willing to hire you as technical skills can be taught easier. 

Be ready with examples to “sell” your baseline skills Throughout your job search, you’ll start to see the same baseline skills that employers are looking for.  Take some time to think of specific examples of how you exemplify those, whether it’s from experience in past jobs, internships, or school projects.

Practice incorporating your soft skills into your interview responses Frequently, one of the first questions a hiring manager will ask is “Tell me about yourself.”  This is the time to sell your whole skillset and not just your technical expertise.  Rehearse how to add in a few of your soft skills that are required for the position and work those into your answer.  For example, if “organization” is a skill they’re looking for, talk about a project that you led, whether it be in school or a previous work experience, and how you took charge of organizing the assets, meetings, timelines, etc.

Identify skills you can improve on and create an action plan Whether you have skills that may need some brushing up on, or you aren’t strong in a particular area, it’s never a bad time to work on making yourself better.  Could your presentation skills use some work?  Take a class on PowerPoint.  Do you get nervous speaking in front of a group?  Look into joining the Toastmasters club.  A lot of times, you can find free resources online or check out local continuing education classes. 

If you’re a job seeker, staffing agencies can be a great resource in helping you identify and sell your soft skills.  Don’t hesitate to ask them for advice on how to emphasize your skills or even with help in how to identify your strongest skills.  The first step is applying for a job, so check out our job postings here.

Employers, often our clients’ biggest concern in hiring, is making sure a person has the soft skills that are important for a position and company.  These skills are harder to identify, especially if you need to fill the position fast.  Working with a staffing agency means you not only have access to a wide pool of candidates with varying skillsets, but also staffing experts who can provide more input and details on a person’s qualifications.  If you’re looking to hire, contact our staffing team to learn about how we can help you find the right candidate. 

August Jobs Report: Growth Respectable, But Not Spectacular

by Megan / 09/09/2016

“Job growth in August was respectable though not spectacular,” said Harry Holzer, former chief economist at the Labor Department and a professor at Georgetown University, in response to the August jobs report, released last week.

In August, 151,000 jobs were added, much less than the prior two months, but not enough to have analysts concerned about the economy.  The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.9 percent.  CNN Money says that according to some Fed officials, only 100,000 jobs need to be added each month to keep the unemployment rate at its low point. 

Job Growth Highlights:

  • Professional and technical Services employment gained 20,000 jobs in August, in like with the average monthly gain of 24,000 over the last 12 months
  • Financial activities gained 15,000 jobs, with growth in securities, commodity contracts and investment.
  • The health care industry added 14,000 jobs in August

As usual, much of the conversation about this month’s report revolved around what it meant for a possible Federal rate hike.  Most economists don’t believe that there will be a rate increase when the Federal Reserve meets later this month, but are becoming more confident that the positive growth trajectory will lead to a December rate hike. 

Hiring Managers: 5 Tips for Finding the Right Fit

by Megan / 08/31/2016

A study in US News last year reported that one in five employees were hoping to change jobs in 2016.   With the last few jobs reports indicating strong employment growth, it’s no surprise hiring managers are being bombarded with resumes for open positions. Those who previously gave up on the job market are feeling hopeful and reentering, and those who are employed are testing the waters, looking for better opportunities.

How do you make sure you are finding the right fit for your open position?  We have a few tips:

Write a Good Job Description: A job description is often the first exposure a person has to your company, even before they know what the organization does, so it’s important for it to be thorough and accurate.   Make sure to touch on the company itself, the culture, the benefits, and an in-depth description of the day-to-day responsibilities of the job.  Being too vague will lead to an employee who is unqualified, or uninterested in the responsibilities they didn’t know were requirements.

Be Open: Attracting top talent doesn’t mean you need to paint a perfect picture of your organization and sweep the not-so-glamorous parts under the rug.  Every position has challenges or drawbacks at some point or another, and if your candidate has already raised a concern that exists in your company, be honest and upfront, or it will backfire later on.

Introduce the Team: Whether it’s through interviewing, or just a meet and greet, make sure your candidate gets a few minutes to meet the team they will be working with.  Ultimately, your candidate and your team will spend A LOT of time together so making sure they fit in will be imperative to a cohesive environment. In addition, by meeting with multiple people, you’ll get more perspectives on how they will fit in and answers to questions you may not have thought to ask yourself.

Listen and Learn: It’s easy for someone to say they know how to perform a requirement for the position you’re hiring for, but how can you be sure?  Asking candidates to provide answers based on past experience, or walk through a situation step by step will help you better understand how qualified they are for the position.

Work with a Staffing Agency: Staffing agencies can help with all of the above and identify the most qualified candidates for you, quickly and efficiently.  Staffing firms have a pool of candidates that they can qualify quickly and efficiently, meaning less down time for you and your business.

If you are an employer looking for qualified candidates, contact us today!

Accounting & Finance Ranked Top Majors for 2016 Graduates

by Megan / 08/15/2016

A recent article on U.S. News explored the best college majors for full-time work. Much of the article focused on how college students are choosing majors based on how much debt they’ll be in post-grad, and how long it will take them to pay it off. However, the article also looked at the top college majors based on the demand in the job market.

The list of top ten majors was largely filled with business degrees, primarily in accounting/finance and information systems.  When looking at positions that Bay State Search has received over the last few months, this information is not surprising.  In fact, the majority of positions being filled by our team have been in those fields. 

According to the article, the Top 10 Bachelor Degrees in demand based on the percentage of companies that plan to hire in that field are:

#1: Accounting

#2: Computer Science

#3: Finance

#4: Business Administration/Management

#5: Mechanical Engineering

#6: Information Sciences & Systems

#7: Management Information Systems

#8: Electrical Engineering

#9: Logistics/Supply Chain

#10: Economics

#10: Marketing

Those who have majored in these areas can feel confident in the job market available. Edwin Koc, a research director at the National Association of Colleges and Employers, says "You'll probably have a higher salary and a job more quickly with one of these majors."

Are you a recent graduate in one of these fields looking for a position?  If so, browse our open positions, or contact our recruiters today!

July Jobs Report: Another Great Month Eases Worries of Hiring Slowdown

by Megan / 08/08/2016

The July jobs report was released Friday, easing worries of an economic slowdown.  For the second straight month, job growth exceeded expectations with 255,000 added, well over the 180,000 expected.

Curt Long, chief economist at the National Association of Federal Credit Unions, reacted by saying, “This was another strong report that checked most, if not all of the significant boxes.” He continued, “The labor market should remain strong as long as consumers maintain their robust spending pace."

The unemployment rate showed little change at 4.9%, along with the number of unemployed persons at 7.8 million. Neither of which have changed much since last August. 

Other highlights from the report include:

  • Professional and Business Services led job growth, adding 70,000 jobs in July; the industry has added 550,000 jobs over the past year.
  • The health care and financial activities industries also experienced steady growth adding 43,000 and 18,000 jobs, respectively. 
  • Temporary help services added 17,000 jobs in July

Over the last few months, economists have been focused on what the jobs report means for a federal rate hike, which was first expected in July, and then September after disappointing months in the spring.  Now, economists do not believe there will be a hike before the end of the year.

Overall, after several months of dismal job reports, the last two have been a welcome relief for those who were concerned about an economic slowdown.  As long as job growth continues, consumers will continue to spend more money, and we can expect the  economy to continue to grow. 


Midyear Staffing Forecast: Top Industries and Positions for Jobs

by Megan / 07/29/2016

Earlier this month, Careerbuilder released their Midyear 2016 U.S. Job Forecast report, based on survey data from over 2,000 employers and over 3,000 employees nationwide. 

The report indicates hiring is on par with what it was in 2015; Fifty percent of companies intend to hire full-time, permanent employees in the second half of 2016, versus 49 percent in 2015.  Thirty-two percent of companies intend to hire temporary or contract workers in the second half of 2016, versus 34 percent in 2015.

So, who’s hiring?  CareerBuilder says the Information Technology industry will lead permanent staffing job growth with 68 percent of companies intending to hire.  Other top industries include Health Care at 65 percent, Financial Services at 56 percent, and Manufacturing at 51 percent.

The expected growth in these industries isn’t surprising, considering the monthly reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that consistently have job growth led by the Technology and Healthcare industries. CareerBuilder, however, was able to give us a bit more insight into the specific roles companies are expecting to hire for in the second half of the year.  These include:

  • Cloud Technology
  • Mobile Technology
  • Social Marketing
  • User Experience
  • Application Development
  • Wellness
  • E-commerce
  • Financial Regulations
  • Big Data
  • Cyber Security

Next week, the July jobs report will be released. While it will be too early to determine how accurate this CareerBuilder forecast is, we will hopefully be able to confirm that job growth is steady again, after concerns of slow economic growth earlier this year.

Bay State Search Named 15th Largest Temporary Placement Firm in Mass.

by Megan / 07/15/2016

The Boston Business Journal recently released their annual list of The Largest Temporary Placement Firms in Mass

This year, Bay State Search ranked as the 15th largest Temporary Placement firm in Massachusetts.  The BBJ ranks organizations based on the average number of temporary workers supplied on a daily basis as of June 1, 2016. 

The list examines the number of temporary workers that are supplied, as well as the percentages of business that are temporary contractors and perm.  Bay State Search’s stats are:

  • Average temporary staff supplied daily in Massachusetts in 2016: 175
  • Percentage of Massachusetts business that is temporary: 90%
  • Percentage of Massachusetts business that is perm: 10%

A big thank you to our dedicated clients and contractors for helping us achieve this success!

June Jobs Report: Job Growth Surges, Smashes Expectations

by Megan / 07/08/2016

After several months of disappointing job reports and a tough few weeks for the stock markets post-Brexit, the June jobs report brings positive news to those worried about an American economic downturn. 

The job market rebounded in June, with the market adding 287,000 jobs, well over the 180,000 predicted and the largest gain in 8 months.  In addition, the unemployment rate increased from 4.7% to 4.9% indicating more people entering the workforce and looking for jobs.  Job growth was led by increases in the leisure and hospitality, health care and social assistance, and financial activities industries.

Highlights from the report:

  • Employment in professional and business services added 38,000 jobs in June
  • Temporary services rebounded in June, adding 15,200 jobs, up from the loss of 19,000 in May
  • Finanical Activities added 16,000 jobs in June and 163,000 this year
  • Average hourly earnings increased by 2 cents in June and have risen by 2.6 percent this year
  • May job growth was revised from 36,000 down to 11,000

For the last few months, economists have been scrutinizing the jobs report and what it means for a potential federal rate hike next month.  While the June job growth isn’t expected to result in a July hike, economists surveyed by CNN money still expect one rate hike in 2016. It's possible that could come in September, but more likely in December.

Chief Economist at the National Association of Federal Credit Unions said, “While numerous land mines remain on the economic front, policy makers can at least be reassured that the labor market remains a bright spot.”

Ask a Recruiter: Interviewing for Your First Job

by Megan / 06/17/2016

For the last 17 years, new graduates have had one goal in mind: Graduate.  Now, as they leave their college or university for the last time, they have a new goal: Get a job.  Many schools have job placement services to help soon-to-be graduates with creating resumes, applying for jobs, and even mock interviews, but nothing compares to actually being out there and applying to real positions with real hiring managers.  

The most nerve-wracking part of job searching is always the interview itself and this goes for anyone searching for a job, not just someone entering the professional workforce for the first time.  We’ve asked our recruiters the top 3 questions they hear from recent grads and have answered them here:

How should a recent graduate prepare for interview questions?

The key here is in the question: prepare, prepare, prepare.  A quick search online for “common interview questions” will bring up thousands of pages.  Reading through common questions and practicing answers cannot be overdone.  To save you some trouble we’ve compiled a few great resources here: Monster, CollegeGrad, Forbes, and Glassdoor.

How do I convince a hiring manager I’m qualified for a job that I have no experience in?

While you may not have experience in that EXACT type of position, you’re a lot more qualified than you think.  Have you ever written a term paper? You have experience with deadlines.  Did you have any group projects? You have experience working on a team.  Have you ever had a disagreement with a classmate or friend that you addressed? You have experience overcoming a challenge with a colleague.  Every situation you face in an environment you’ve experienced at one point in your life, draw from those experiences. 

A lot of entry-level jobs have 1-3 years experience in the description, how do I set myself apart from those with more experience?

First, don’t focus on that; a hiring manager has already seen your resume and deemed that your skills on paper are a match for what they’re looing for.  However, this is a great opportunity for you to build up your non-experience skills.  Focus on selling non-tangible attributes like your ability to learn quickly, work on a team/independently, or interact with others. 

The most important thing to remember is to relax.  When you’re relaxed you can think clearer, be more personable, and ultimately show that you are cool under pressure. 

If you are a recent graduate looking for a position in accounting and finance, information technology, banking, or administration and support services, contact our team today.  Working with a staffing agency helps get candidates in front of employers that they may not otherwise and can often help with the interview process from resume editing to preparing thank you letters post-interview.  Browse our open positions here

May Jobs Report: “Shocking”

by Megan / 06/03/2016

The May jobs report was released this morning to the most disheartened reaction in a long time.  Dan North, chief economist at Euler Hermes North America said, "There's one word for it, which is just shocking,"

The market was expecting to add 158,000 jobs in May, but only added a dismal 36,000.  In addition, the unemployment rate fell to 4.7% due to discouraged workers dropping out of the labor market. 

Much of the conversation over the last few months has revolved around the possibility of a Federal interest rate hike.  On June 15th, the Federal Reserve is meeting and after several months of positive economic results, they were expected to raise the interest rate. However, after two months of dismal job gains, most agree that the justification cannot be made for a hike in June. CNBC reports that September is now the most likely date to raise the interest rate.

While the majority of the report was disappointing, a few bright spots remained.  In May, 46,000 jobs were added in the Health care industry.  In addition, wage growth increased by 2.5% in May.

Over the next few weeks, much of the market will be watching and waiting for what comes out of the Federal Reserve’s meeting. 

Massachusetts Ranked #4 for Number of Tech Jobs Added in 2015

by Megan / 05/22/2016

The Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council released their 3rd annual State of Technology Economy last week, which examines the growth and potential of the tech industry in the state.  Massachusetts ranks fourth in number of tech sector jobs added in 2015, behind California, New York, and Texas.

The report states that the high tech sector is responsible (directly or indirectly) for 35 percent of jobs in the state, 46 percent of the state’s total payroll, and 31 percent of the gross state product.  The technology growth rate between 2010-2015 was 12.3 percent. 

It's no surprise the tech industry is such a large part of the Massachusetts economy, with companies like Wayfair, Hubspot, and TripAdvisor (among many, many others) headquartered here.  These companies have experienced explosive growth over the last few years and some are building new offices to support their growth, further adding to the state's economy. However, the challenge in continuing the positive trajectory of the tech industry doesn't lie in creating more jobs, but rather, filling them. In 2015, there were over 123,000 job postings.

The future of the technology industry in Massachusetts lies in our ability to foster innovation and attract talent from within and outside the state's borders.  Tom Hopcroft, President & CEO, MassTLC remains hopeful that we can support the growth of the industry in Massachusetts, stating "We build upon a great foundation – we created the first high school in America, the first college in America, and the first public library – but need to do as our forefathers did and build the foundations and institutions that will propel our children and grandchildren to new heights."

If you are a technology professional looking for a new career, contact us to learn about new job opportunities. 

April Jobs Report: Job Growth Slows Amid Weak Economic Growth

by Megan / 05/06/2016

The April Jobs Report was released today, bringing news of lower than expected job growth.  Economists expected 200,000 jobs to be added in April, but the month closed at 160,000 new jobs.  Unemployment remained unchanged at 5 percent.

Michael Gapen, chief United States economist at Barclays said, “It’s a soft report but it doesn’t portend a turn in the labor market.” He continued, “I’d be more concerned if there were weakness across the board, but there wasn’t.”  Still, the report has people cautious that the global economic slowdown is starting to impact the labor market. 

The report is also turning attention to the Federal Reserve and potential interest rate increases.  They are set to meet in June, allowing for one more jobs report to be published before they decide whether or not to hike rates. 

On a positive note, wages have continued to rise in April.  In April, average hourly wages rose by 8 cents, driving the yearly increase to 2.5 percent.

Highlights from the report include:

  • Job gains occurred in professional and business services, health care, and financial activities, while job losses continued in mining.
  • Professional and business services added 65,000 jobs in April
  • The labor force participation rate decreased to 62.8%, from 63%

While job growth was disappointing, it’s far from a desperate situation.  According to economists, 80,000 jobs need to be added to keep up with population growth.

We will have to wait to see the results of May’s job report to learn if April was a fluke, or if the job market is indeed slowing down and the implications of a slower job market.  Until then…

Boston Ranks in Top 10 Best Cities to Launch a Career

by Megan / 04/27/2016

We’re only a few days away from May, despite what the cold weather (and even snow in Maine!) would lead us to think this week.  This means that in just a few short weeks, a new round of graduates from Greater Boston’s 100+ colleges and universities will be entering the job market.  A new report from Bankrate.com, has good news for these soon-to-be grads: Boston ranks in the Top 10 best cities for people to launch a career.

The report ranked cities based on jobs, quality of life, career advancement, and social factors to determine the Top 100 American cities for launching a career. New York City ranked number one overall, followed by Los Angeles in second, and San Francisco in third.  Boston took 6th place overall.

Based on the individual rankings, Boston ranks 3rd overall in prospects for high pay and 6th for career advancement.  Boston scored well in all categories, with the exception of the 20- to 24-year-olds unemployment rate, indicating it might be difficult for a recent graduate to find an entry-level position.

There is hope, however!  While it may be difficult to find a job initially, Bankrate banking analyst, Claes Bell, CFA, said, “Although young grads will be faced with major competition for available jobs in these top cities, the opportunities for career growth and quality of life among peers far exceed what is offered in less competitive job markets.”

An article on boston.com about the study adds an additional layer of hope for tech grads, saying, “If you work in technology, however, finding a job shouldn’t be too hard for you since the demand for skilled tech workers has never been so dire.”

For recent grads or soon-to-be recent grads that are looking for jobs, using a staffing firm is a great resource to get you in front of hiring managers and setting you apart from the other applicants.  Contact our team today and learn how we can help!


Millennials and Job Hopping: The New Norm?

by Megan / 04/21/2016

Lately, it seems there is more conversation around millennials and their increasing impact on the job market.  Much of the conversation gravitates toward the same common theme: millennials job-hop more frequently than their parents.

Last week, LinkedIn posted their findings from a study on millennials and job-hopping.  More specifically they looked at how often millennials are changing jobs, which industries it occurs most and least in, and if men or women job-hop more.  

Here are highlights from the study:

Job-Hopping Has Nearly Doubled Over the last 20 years, the number of companies people worked for in the five years after they graduated has nearly doubled.  While the increase can’t be definitively attributed to any one trigger, the study hypothesizes it can be attributed to  “the Great Recession, and Millennials being more interested than previous generations in trying out different jobs before settling on a career.”

Job-Hopping Is More Common In Some Industries Than Others The Media & Entertainment, Professional Services, and Government/Education/Non-Profits Industries had the highest amount of workers job-hopping.  Oil & Energy, Manufacturing/Industrial, and Aero/Auto/Transport had the least.

Women Job-Hop More Than Men The study points out that job-hopping occurs in both genders, but is slightly more common with women, especially with the most recent college grads. 

Next month, a new round of millennials will be entering the job market.  A job market that is much more positive than it was a few years ago.  Will this lead to new grads finding positions that have long-term potential? Or will the current job-hopping trend continue to rise? We will see...


March Jobs Report: “Close to a Goldilocks Scenario”

by Megan / 04/08/2016

The March 2016 jobs report was released last week, showing another strong month for the labor market. Hiring and wages increased in March, but not enough to trigger the Federal Reserve to raise rates and temper growth. Scott Clemons, chief investment strategist at Brown Brothers Harriman told The New York Times, “This is close to a Goldilocks scenario.”

Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 215,000 in March, and unemployment changed slightly from 4.9% to 5.0%.  The increase in unemployment is likely attributed to workers reentering the job market after getting discouraged..  In fact, the number of discouraged workers last month dropped by 153,000 over March 2015. Other highlights from the report include:

  • Employment gains occurred in retail trade, construction, and health care, while job losses occurred in manufacturing and mining
  • Professional Services added 33,000 jobs in March
  • Temporary help employment increased for the first time in 2016 by 4,000 jobs
  • Average hourly earnings for nonfarm payroll employees increased by 7 cents in March.

Much of the conversation this month was around the labor force participation rate, which stands at 63% in March.  The Fed chairwoman, Janet L. Yellen, said the increase in participation was “heartening." We'll have to see next month if and how the Federal Reserve responds to these results. 

Five Questions Employers Should Ask Candidates

by Megan / 04/05/2016

...And what to look for in an answer.

It’s no secret the interview process is arduous for interviewees, but often employers are feeling just as much pressure to make sure they find the right hire.  While staffing firms are valuable resources in helping you weed out those who aren’t qualified or the right fit, ultimately employers still need meet with the top candidates to find the perfect addition to your team.  How do you know what to ask to learn the most in a short amount of time?

We’ve identified five questions employers should ask to determine if your candidate is the right fit and what to look for in an answer, no matter the industry.  

1. Why are you interested in this opportunity? This question should be an easy one for a candidate to answer, but important nonetheless.  A response should make you comfortable that they know what the position entails and provides examples of the skills they possess that overlap with the job description. 

2. What do you know about our company? In the day and age of the Internet, it’s hard to justify not being able to take five minutes to look at your company’s website or even picking up a pamphlet in the lobby.  As an interviewer, don’t expect a candidate to know the company’s mission statement word for word, but they should be able to give you a few sentences on the product or facts learned from the “About Us” page.  This question is a great way to identify if the candidate is serious about the position and how well they prepare for situations.  

3. How would your colleagues describe you? This is a great way to ask, “what are your strengths” without actually asking, “What are your strengths?” Nobody is going to respond with how difficult they are to work with, so look for answers that will reveal how they work with others and make sure their personality fits in with your company’s culture. 

4. Tell me about a project that didn’t go smoothly. This is a loaded question and one of the more difficult questions for an interviewee, so they may need a minute or two to think about it.  However, from their response you’ll be able to better understand how they see a task through from start to finish and their ability to overcome issues in the workplace.    

5. Do you have any questions for me? The answer should always be “yes.”   You have just spent 30 minutes with a candidate and most likely only scratched the surface of the position.  A thousand questions should be running through their mind.   In addition to being able to gauge their interest in the position, it’s a great way to find out if they’ll ask for help when the time comes.

Stick with these questions and you'll have a good idea of a candidate's personality, but don't forget to cover the technical requirements of the position as well!

Massachusetts Unemployment Rate at a 15-Year Low

by Megan / 03/27/2016

Last week, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development released their February results with positive news. The unemployment rate in Massachusetts dropped form 4.7% in January to 4.5% in February 2016, the lowest it’s been since November 2001. The national unemployment rate was estimated at 4.9%, making Massachusetts 0.4% under the national average.

The report states that Massachusetts added 13,300 jobs in February.  In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics revised their January numbers, which indicated that the state lost 2,500 jobs, to reflect that the state actually gained 1,200.  February job gains occurred in the Education and Health Services; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Financial Activities; Leisure and Hospitality; Other Services; Construction; Trade, Transportation, and Utilities; and Government sectors.

Other highlights from the report include:

  • Professional, Scientific and Business Services gained 4,000 (+0.7%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Professional, Scientific and Business Services added 14,500 (+2.8%) jobs.
  • Financial Activities added 2,300 (+1.0%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Financial Activities gained 3,800 (+1.7%) jobs.
  • In February, 3,410,900 Massachusetts residents were employed and 159,000 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,569,900.


Read the full press release here

February 2016 Jobs Report: Hiring Eases Recession Fears

by Megan / 03/04/2016

Today, the February 2016 jobs report was released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  Stronger than expected job growth, but lower wage growth, garnered mixed reactions from the media.  However, many economists did agree that the positive job growth is good news after several months of discussions around another recession looming. 

“We’ve got a real strong job market going,” Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist at Northern Trust told the New York Times. “It does suggest that fears about a U.S. recession have been greatly overdone.”

In addition, Andrew Chamberlain, chief economist at Glassdoor told CNBC “Commentators have been very pessimistic in the past few months, with a lot of talk about a looming recession. Today's jobs report continues the theme that there is no evidence in the data that the U.S. economy is heading into a slowdown." He continues, "We seem to be on a slow, steady growth path, to the surprise of many economists."

Highlights from the report:

  • 242,000 new jobs added
  • The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.9%
  • 23,000 new jobs were in the Professional and Business Services Industry, up from 15,000 in January
  • Wages fell by .1% over January

Chief United States economist at Standard & Poor’s, Beth Ann Bovino was optimistic about the report saying, “We’re back in the saddle again.”  In addition, she commented that although the decline in wages was a setback, “We expect wages to climb higher.”

Now the question remains: Will this month's positive job growth continue and wages rebound next month?  We'll have to wait and see!

Leap Day: One Company’s Quest to Make Feb. 29 a National Holiday

by Megan / 02/29/2016

Happy Leap Day! 

Every four years, February 29th is celebrated with marriage proposals, extravagant birthday parties, and giveaways.  Beyond sales and freebies, however, the extra 24 hours is just another Monday for most businesses and professionals.  That is, unless you’re an employee at online retailer Zappos.com.

This year, all 1,600 Zappos.com employees will take the day off, as a paid holiday.   Employees are encouraged to use the day to do good – either for themselves, their family, or their community.  And they’re hoping that one day, you’ll have the day off, too.

The team at Zappos.com is so passionate about using the extra 24 hours away from the office that they’ve created a petition to make Feb. 29th a national holiday.  According to their website, if every American donated just one hour of their time on Leap Day, 200 million hours would be spent helping our communities and non-profits.

You can read more about their position here.

11 Careers of the Future…That Don’t Exist Yet

by Megan / 02/26/2016

Last week, our friends at Monster posted a blog outlining 11 jobs that don’t exist yet, but could in the next few decades due to technological advances.  Below we’ve summarized the positions, as well as careers you should explore today to be prepared for the future.  You can read the full blog here

Chief Productivity Officer

  • What they do: Drive efficiencies at individual, departmental and organizational levels.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Project Manager


Excess Capacity Broker

  • What they do: Analyze and identify assets that can be monetized by renting out to other organizations (e.g.: office space).
  • 2016 Career Experience: Logistics or Supply Chain Management


Drone Manager

  • What they do: Set and enforce standards for acquiring and maintaining an organization’s fleet of drones.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Fleet Manager


Private Industry Air Traffic Control

  • What they do: Manage air traffic control systems for the drone fleets.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Air Traffic Controller, dispatcher, GIS Specialist


Medical Mentor

  • What they do: Work with patients post-appointment to ensure they are following through on recommendations from the doctor.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Health Coach or Patient Advocate


Self-Driving Car Mechanic

  • What they do: In addition to the traditional skills needed for a mechanic today, in the future, mechanics will also need to be tech savvy.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Mechanic with an interest in technology, or a Software Developer with an interest in being a mechanic


Autonomous Transportation Specialist

  • What they do: Monitor and integrate new transit vehicles such as self-driving cars, drones, and hoverboards into current systems.
  • 2016 Career Experience: City Planner or Traffic Specialist


Personal Medical Interpreter

  • What they do: Inform patients about individualize medical treatment plans.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Genetic Counselor


Human-Technology Integration Specialist

  • What they do: Teach others how to leverage and use technologies to improve the quality of life.
  • 2016 Career Experience: IT Representative or Life Coach


Wholeness Mentor

  • What they do:  Help others to match their personal purposes with a hobby that provides them fulfillment of physical needs.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Life Coach or Health Coach


End-of-Life Coach

  • What they do: Help individuals make decisions on how they want to spend their final days/months.
  • 2016 Career Experience: Hospice Employee or Home Health Nurse


We may not be in the post-apocalyptic robot world yet, but as technology advances, professionals will need to refine their skills as some careers become obsolete.

Ask a Recruiter: First Impressions

by Megan / 02/18/2016

Imagine that you are searching for a job and you’ve made it past the pre-screening process and an employer wants to interview you in person.  Great! Now, you just have to ace the interview.  In this debut installment of “Ask a Recruiter,” one of our Bay State Search Recruiters, Michael, will answer a few questions on how candidates can be sure to make a good impression, before they even say a word.

Starting with before a candidate even leaves their home, what is the proper attire and grooming for an interview?  Suit, tie, and freshly groomed.  That’s not to say they have to be clean-shaven, but it does mean to make sure your facial hair is freshly trimmed and a comb has been run through your hair.  A blue or black suit is typical for men and a suit or dress/blouse and skirt with a suit coat for women, but the most important part is to make sure your appearance is a reflection of your commitment to being your best for the company.  No hiring manager wants a sloppy employee, so clean up and let your appearance do the (initial) talking!

What does a candidate need to bring to the interview?  The number one thing a candidate should bring is multiple copies of their resume.  Although an interviewer most likely will come with their own copy, sometimes they don’t and you want to be ready! A pad of paper and a pen is always recommended as well. 

Okay, so the candidate is now prepared and arrives at the business - are there any guidelines for the waiting period in the lobby? Most importantly, stay off your phone! Make sure your phone is off – not on vibrate.  Many organizations have brochures about their business, which is a great resource to brush up on your knowledge of the organization.  Otherwise, observe those around you and get a feel for the company – remember that you want to make sure that they’re a fit for you, as much as you’re a fit for them. 

The hiring manager/interviewer arrives, what is the initial contact like? First, stand up to shake their hand and repeat for each interviewer you encounter during your visit.  Smile, make eye contact, be friendly, and most of all, be yourself.  The employer is already familiar with your skills based on your resume, now is your time to show them how well you’d fit in with the team. 

Any other advice? Building on the last question, it’s important to keep in mind that the interviewer has already chosen you, out of sometimes hundreds of others, as a possible fit for this position.  Now is the time to show them what makes you stand out from the rest – whether it’s your outgoing personality, your ability to quickly pick up on things, or your keen attention to detail, make sure your best traits stand out.
A big thanks again to Michael for taking the time to talk about first impressions.  If you’re currently looking for a new career, take a look at our job postings or send your resume to one of our recruiters.  Don’t forget to follow our blog for more interview tips and updates/analysis of the job market.

January 2016 Jobs Report a “Mixed Bag”

by Megan / 01/06/2016

The January 2016 jobs report released on Friday is being referred to as a “mixed bag” according to Phil Orlando, chief economist at Federated Investors.  While the unemployment rate has fallen to an 8 year low at 4.9%, fewer jobs were created than anticipated. 

In January, 151,000 jobs were added with job growth led by retail trade, food services and drinking places, health care, and manufacturing.  Other highlights from the report include:

  • Professional and business services employment changed little in January with an additional 9,000 jobs
  • Temporary help employment declined by 25,000 in January
  • The average workweek rose by 0.1 hour to 34.6 hours
  • The average hourly earnings increased by 12 cents to $25.39, a 2.5% rise over last year
  • Average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees rose by 6 cents to $21.33.

While the unemployment rate and rise in wages is positive, the continued decline of the stock markets is a concern, along with the decline in spending on construction projects and the recession in the manufacturing sector. 

It’s important to note that the slower than expected growth isn’t necessarily negative.  U.S. Secretary of Labor Tom Perez told CNN Money “The closer you get to the summit of the mountain when you're in a recovery, the shorter the steps will be.  Job growth may not be what it was a year ago, but it's solid job growth and it's accompanied by solid wage growth."

What do 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies have in common?

by Megan / 01/30/2016

This was an easy one considering the nature of this website, but the answer is that they all partner with staffing firms in some form, according to Inc.com.  

So, why do so many organizations work with staffing firms rather than relying on in-house staff?  To put it simply, you can’t beat the expertise. 

The Recruiters: Many recruiters have either worked in the industry they’re sourcing for, or spent a lot of time learning the ins and outs of a particular trade.  They are able to identify who would be a good fit for a role by talking the language of the industry and weeding out the rest before they even make it to the hiring manager’s desk. 

The Candidates: Staffing agencies spend a lot of time building relationships with not just companies, but also their candidates.  By staying in touch with candidates who aren’t “actively looking,” if the right opportunity comes along, they might be the perfect fit for a position they wouldn’t have otherwise known about or applied for.  

In addition, staffing agencies often have a “pool” of candidates that they work from.  If an organization needs someone on a moment’s notice, they turn to their staffing agency and trust that they will have a qualified professional in the position quickly. 

Employment Knowledge: It’s no secret there is a lot involved when hiring a new employee.  An article last summer in Entrepreneur Magazine stated that in 1980, there were 125 employment laws, up from just 2 in 1900.  In 2015, there were 2,200 laws and clauses.  Staffing agencies can often take some, if not most, of the burden off the organization by knowing these laws and vetting potential candidates for possible red flags around hiring.  In addition, they can act as an intermediary between the organization and potential employee by handling paperwork, reference checks, drug tests, and in a lot of cases payroll.  This allows employers to focus more on retaining and developing their employees. 

There are about a thousand more reasons that can go under each one of these sections on why companies rely on staffing companies for their HR needs, but we have to leave some topics to talk about in the future!  Keep an eye out for future posts on this topic and more useful tips for employers.  

Employment & Wages Profile: Accountants and Auditors

by Megan / 01/22/2016

I know I'm not the only one who likes statistics.   I like to know the population behind the cities I’m visiting, the cost of a house I just drove by, or how many people can fit into the TD Garden (19,580 maximum, 17,565 for hockey, and 18,624 for basketball).  For this reason, you’ll find a lot of posts here will be data-driven, including this one! 

After spending the better part of the morning paying bills, I started thinking about the Accounting Industry and how accountants and auditors are needed in every company in every job market.  Sure, some companies may outsource, or CEOs and business owners may double as an accountant, but no matter what, someone has to be managing the money that’s coming in and out.

With that said, I took a look at a profile of the Accountants and Auditors Occupation from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  You can read more about what defines professionals in this division, but I wanted to note here that it does not include “Tax Examiners and Collectors, and Revenue Agents.”

Now, let’s get into some of the most interesting numbers, starting on the National Level:

  • National Employment Estimate: 1,187,310
  • National Mean Hourly Wage: $35.42
  • National Mean Annual Wage: $73,670

The industry with the highest level and concentration of the Accounting and Auditor Occupation is “Accounting, Tax Preparation, Bookkeeping, and Payroll Services” representing 36.58% of the industry’s workforce.

Focusing on the Accounting and Auditor Occupation in Massachusetts, the Boston-Cambridge-Quincy Market is the 8th highest metropolitan area nationwide for employment, with 25,110 professionals as of May 2014 (the most current report).  The mean hourly wage in this market is $39.60 and the mean annual wage is $82,360. 

If you are in the market for a new role as an Accountant or Auditor, Bay State Search is looking for candidates for positions including:

Or, check out all of our current Accounting job postings.

December 2015 Jobs Report: Robust Job Growth Caps off the Year

by Megan / 01/13/2016

Whether you are a job seeker, or an employer looking to hire, it’s good to know what is happening in the job market.  That being said, on Friday, the December 2015 Jobs Report was released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to a mostly positive response from the public and media.  The year ended on a high note with an additional 292,000 jobs added in the last month of 2015.  Total job creation for 2015 amounted to 2.65 million jobs, making it the second best year since 1999, according to CNN money. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5%.

Growth in employment rose in the areas of professional and business services, construction, health care, and food services and drinking places.  Growth continued to decline in mining. 

Focusing on professional and business services a bit more, this industry alone added 73,000 jobs in December and 605,000 for all of 2015.  Temporary help services accounted for 34,000 of the additional jobs in December.  To see the full report, visit the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that despite the strong end to 2015, the first week of January has not been as positive.  On Friday, the stock market closed 6.19% down, making it the worst start to a year since 2011.  Next month, we’ll see how much of an impact this had on January’s job market. 

“Hello from the other side”

by Megan / 01/13/2016

In the words of Adele, “Hello.” 

As 2016 gets underway, the team here at Bay State Search closed out 2015 by launching our new website!  We couldn’t be more excited to provide a better experience for job seekers and employers alike.  I encourage you to take a few minutes and look around at what’s new, including:

  • Job Search Experience: It is now easier than ever to search for positions and submit your resume in a matter of minutes, or send your resume directly to our recruiters for consideration on future opportunities.  
  • Easily Submit Timesheets: A fully integrated timesheet application means you can easily submit your hours and follow the approval process.
  • Navigation: Learn more about who we are, the industries we serve, and read client reviews from a more accessible navigation menu.
  • New Blog: Follow our new blog to stay up to date on the latest employment trends, get interview and industry tips from our recruiters, be the first to know about featured jobs, and get the latest Bay State Search news.  


Reflecting on 2015, it was an exciting year at Bay State Search. Our team has nearly doubled, our candidate pool is larger and more qualified than we could have anticipated, and the relationships with our clients are stronger than ever.  Thank you to everyone who played a part in making 2015 a great year for us.  We look forward to making 2016 even better!


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