Provisional Blog

Are You Making These Career Mistakes?

May 14th, 2019

Want to get ahead in your career? You know you need to show up on time, perform well, and avoid being the office gossip. These are a given. But did you know there are some less obvious things you could be doing that could actually be hurting your career? Here’s a look at a few common career mistakes, so you can avoid them:

Not asking your boss for feedback.

Most employees simply wait until their annual review to get feedback from their bosses. However, if you take a more proactive approach, and ask for it throughout the year, you’ll find out what you’re doing right and areas that need improvement sooner. While asking for feedback might be difficult, it can have a big impact in a positive way on your future career growth.

Staying in your comfort zone.

When you’ve been in your job for a long time, and know it inside and out, it’s easy to coast. However, when you do, you won’t be learning and growing. Even if you plan to stay in your current position for the foreseeable future, it’s still important to acquire different skills, learn new information and stay on top of industry news.

Being afraid to take a risk.

You might be afraid to fail, however, what’s worse is when you don’t take a risk and your career remains stagnant as a result. Don’t let fear of change or of making a mistake hold you back. Even if those things do happen, you’ll learn from them.

Avoiding networking.

You might think that just because you’re not looking for a new job that you don’t need to network. But networking can play an important part in career growth too. You can turn to your contacts when you need advice, support, resources and help. Likewise, you can position yourself as an industry expert when you’re able to offer guidance to others, as well. It’s therefore important to invest time and effort into regular networking.

Looking for a new job to advance your career in?

Connect with the experts at Provisional. As one of Spokane’s top employment agencies, we can assist you with all aspects of your job search from preparing for interviews to landing your next great opportunity. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

6 Mistakes Hiring Managers Make During Candidate Interviews

May 7th, 2019

Having trouble hiring the right people for your job openings? It could be due to missteps during the interview process. These can cause top-pick candidates to turn down offers…or worse, lead to expensive hiring mistakes. To ensure this doesn’t happen to you, here’s a look at a few common errors to avoid:

#1: Making snap judgements.

When a candidate walks into your office, you immediately start to form an opinion of him or her. But wait until the interview is over before you solidify your judgement. Instead, stay open-minded throughout it to ensure you can best assess each individual’s overall value, abilities and experience.

#2: Not being realistic with candidates.

The job you’re offering is a great opportunity. Yet, it likely has some challenges too. It’s important to be upfront with candidates about these so they gain an accurate and realistic perspective on the position and your company. That way, they’ll be able to make an informed choice about whether the role is right for them.

#3: Not knowing what you’re looking for.

If you don’t have a clearly defined job description, it’s tough to know the key skills, traits and accomplishments you’re interviewing for. That’s why investing the time upfront to think through the role and write a well-developed description is so important. It will guide the interview questions you ask, making the time you spend with each candidate more productive.

#4: Giving vague answers.

During your interview, each candidate likely has a litany of questions to ask you. If you give them vague answers, it’s going to scare them away. Candidates expect clear information, not ambiguity. So if you aren’t sure about a particular detail, tell them you’ll find out and get back to them.

#5: Lack of preparation.

Making the most of interviews requires plenty of prep time. This goes beyond just coming up with a list of questions to also formulating a structure for the conversation. In addition, make sure you have a copy of each candidate’s resume with you during the interview that you can reference if needed.

#6: Failure to listen.

When a candidate is responding, don’t start thinking ahead about your next question. Instead, truly listen to what they’re saying, ask follow up questions so you can dig deeper, and assess their body language as they’re talking.

Hiring the right person for a role isn’t simple. It requires a lot of time and energy, not to mention preparation. However, when you take the right approach, and avoid the mistakes above, you’ll be well on your way to more hiring success.

If you’d like professional help with the job, connect with Provisional. As one of the top choices in local staffing firms in the Coeur d’Alene, Idaho area, we’re experts in recruiting, interviewing and assessing, all so companies like yours can gain access to the proven people they need. Contact us today to learn more.

How to Turn Temporary Employment into a Full-Time Job

April 23rd, 2019

You’ve been on plenty of temporary assignments in the past. But this particular role or employer is an especially good fit for you. You want to stay on longer, but how do you initiate a conversation and either get your assignment extended, or turn it into a full-time job?

Follow these 4 easy tips from Provisional – one of Spokane’s top temporary employment agencies – for help:

1. Focus on the basics.

Before you even ask about the possibility of extending temporary employment into a more permanent work opportunity, it’s critical you’re meeting a few basic requirements first. For instance, make sure you’re:

  • Showing up on time and are well-prepared for the day ahead;
  • 100% reliable in the work you’re doing;
  • Displaying a positive attitude and enthusiasm; and
  • Going the extra mile to be a valuable contributor to the team.

If you’re not already following these steps, you won’t be considered for a full-time opportunity.

2. Build relationships.

If you are looking to turn temporary employment into full-time work, existing employees can help you achieve that goal. When you develop positive relationships with them, they can serve as a referral source and also offer go to bat for you when you ask for that more permanent role.

Beyond that, even if you’re not able to get a full-time job now, they can be a great source of insight on what to do to get hired in the future and about any potential opportunities that open up down the line.

3. Be direct.

If you’ve been hard at work for a company and know you’re a good fit for their needs, be direct about the situation. If you’re working through one of Spokane’s temporary employment agencies, then bring up the possibility of a full-time job with your recruiter. If you’re not, then talk directly to your manager at the company.

Whomever you have the conversation with, simply be upfront about the situation and that you’d like to turn the job into a more regular position. Ask whether that’s a possibility and what you’d need to do to achieve that goal.

4. Be patient, not pushy.

You’ve planted the seed and expressed your interest. If there aren’t an opportunities immediately available, it’s important to be patient. You might get restless, however don’t let it show. You don’t want to come across as too pushy or aggressive, which can sabotage your efforts to get hired.

There’s never any guarantee that you can turn temporary employment into full-time work or extend an assignment. However, by following the tips above and becoming an invaluable contributor, you can certainly improve your odds.

Looking for work on a temporary or temp-to-hire basis?

Call Provisional. As one of Spokane’s top temporary employment agencies, we can connect with your rewarding and flexible assignments with leading employers in the area. Contact us today or search our temp jobs in Spokane now.

5 Red Flags an Employee is About to Call it Quits

April 16th, 2019

As a manager, employee turnover is a part of life. However, when it comes to your best people, you want to keep them on board as long as possible. That’s why, if you’re noticing certain signs being exhibited by a key player, it’s important to take action. What are they? Provisional, one of the leading staffing services firms in Spokane, Washington, gives some insight into five common ones:

#1: A drop in production.

When a normally hard-working employee now is barely getting the job done, something’s wrong. Whether they’ve lost interest or aren’t feeling appreciated is up to you to find out. But when there’s resentment or apathy, it often takes a toll on productivity numbers.

#2: Becoming more reserved.

When an employee is looking to make a move, it can often impact their relationships at work. They might become more reserved, turned down opportunities to socialize, or don’t volunteer or want to commit to new assignments, especially if they’re long-term. Whatever the case, it’s often because they’ve mentally checked out as they’re searching for a new role.

#3: A hit in attendance numbers.

When an employee who’s never late or only takes a few sick days each year starts calling in regularly and missing work, it could be a sign they’re feeling increasingly unhappy at work. Likewise, they could be trying to use up sick and vacation days before they actually jump ship.

#4: A change in appearance.

Whether your once well-groomed employee is showing up dressed sloppily, or they’re suddenly donning new suits, either can spell trouble for you. One signals a lack of care and engagement, the other possible interviews. Either way, when there’s a noticeable change in what they’re wearing on any given day, it can be a sign they’re looking to leave.

#5: A shift in mood.

Your once-amiable employee is suddenly moody and difficult to work with. They grumble and complain about everything and seem unwilling to come up with workable solutions. Instead, they criticize the ideas of others, without offering their own thoughts. This is often a red flag that they’re unhappy, disengaged and looking for an excuse to quit.

If you’re noticing these and other signs, then an important first step to take is to have a conversation with your employee. Schedule some private time with them so you can talk about the situation and listen to their concerns and issues. They might have one foot out the door already; or there could be steps you could take to save the situation. However, you won’t know without asking.

Need help filling a newly opened position?

If it’s already too late and you’ve had an employee recently leave, get help finding the right-fit replacement by calling Provisional. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Spokane, Washington, we know where to look to source the best candidates for a wide variety of positions and fields. Just give us a call today to learn more about how we can help you.

4 Simple Tips for Finding the Right Seasonal Job

April 9th, 2019

Looking for seasonal work when the weather heats up? Don’t wait much longer. Now’s the time that employers in and around Spokane are seeking out qualified candidates for temporary jobs. So how can you go about finding one that’s best-suited for you? Here are 4 simple tips to help you:

Tip #1: Start now.

You might think that summer is still a way’s off and that you have plenty of time. However, there’s a lot that goes into the hiring process, which is why most employers are gearing up to hire for their summer season now. They want to ensure they have the time necessary to source qualified candidates, screen them, and train them properly. So if you’re interested in temporary jobs in Spokane, then get started with your search now.

Tip #2: Narrow your search.

If you’re applying to all different jobs, in many different industries, the process can be overwhelming. Instead, narrow your search and focus on a few key roles and fields that truly interest you. Not only will you be able to spend more time on researching possibilities and tailoring your application materials to each position, but once you do get a job, it will be one that’s a better fit for you.

Tip #3: Ask around.

Referrals are a great source of job possibilities. So ask your network of friends, family and other contacts whether their employers are hiring, or if they’ve heard of any potential seasonal openings. You’ll find a good source of temporary job leads faster. In addition, if there is an opening, you can ask your contact for a recommendation, which will improve your odds of landing a position.

Tip #4: Be flexible.

When summer arrives, you might want to keep plenty of time in your schedule for picnics and pool parties. However, if you want to snag the best temporary job in Spokane, you need to be flexible for employers. They’ll likely have fluctuations in terms of work demands and scheduling and therefore need you to adapt quickly. Not only that, but being able to tell a potential employer that you’re flexible and can come in as needed will make you more marketable during your search.

Finding seasonal work is just like any other search. Employers want to hire qualified people, so it’s important to approach the process in the same way you would if you were looking for full-time work. If you’d like help with it, turn to the team at Provisional. We can connect you with top temporary jobs in Spokane with leading employers in a variety of fields. Find out more today by contacting us.

6 Hiring Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

April 2nd, 2019

Mistakes happen at every company. But when it comes to hiring, they can be especially expensive. Not only are you back to square one, searching out candidates, but in the meantime, morale, productivity and profits can all take a hit. What can you do to lower the risk and ensure you get the people you need?

There are no guarantees; however, as one of Coeur d’Alene’s top staffing firms, Provisional knows there are certain steps you can take to help you conquer hiring mistakes and set your company up for more success in the future. Here’s a look at 6 of them:

Not having a plan in place.

What’s your ideal candidate look like? How many interviews will the hiring process entail? What kinds of questions will you ask? When do you need to make a hiring decision by? For your hiring process to be as successful as possible, it should be carefully designed ahead of time. This includes setting goals, mapping out steps, and providing ample time for sourcing, interviewing and background checks.

Not having clarity about the role.

If you can’t clearly define the role, the responsibilities and the challenges that come with it, then you’re not ready to hire. The last thing you want to do is extend an offer to a talented individual, only to have them quit because the job wasn’t what they expected. That will cost you plenty of time and money. Instead, invest that time upfront on defining the role and ensuring you know exactly what you’re looking for.

Skipping reference checking.

An interview that went well doesn’t mean you should skip out on other parts of the hiring process like reference checking. This is a valuable tool that enables you to identify any inconsistencies or red flags, as well as find out more specific details about a candidate, such as how well they perform under pressure.

Not testing candidates.

Whether it’s an online assessment or a small project assignment you give to your top-pick candidates, testing is a critical part of the hiring process. You’ll get a chance to ensure they have the skills you need, can deliver a quality product, and are able to meet deadlines.

Waiting for the perfect candidate.

You might have an ideal candidate in mind, but if you’re many weeks into your job search and still not finding them, you need to adjust your expectations. Don’t look for the perfect candidate; instead identify those who have a solid track record of experience and success and who meet most of your requirements.

Hiring the same kinds of people.

To be successful, your team should have a diverse mix of people with varying skills and abilities. However, if you keep hiring the same kinds of people, it’s going to impact innovation at your company. So during the process, look for those who can bring a new perspective and fresh ideas to the table.

Get professional help with hiring.

Contact Provisional, one of Coeur d’Alene’s top staffing firms. Whether you need to add to your team for the long-term or you require short-term, temporary assistance, we can give you access to the people you need, where and when you need them. Simply contact our team today to learn more.

Want to Find a Job You’ll Love? Here’s How

March 26th, 2019

For most people, they spend more time at work than with their families. It’s a sad reality. However, as a result, you want to ensure you’re going to a place each day that you really love…one that provides a rewarding experience and the balance you’re looking for. If you’re not currently in that kind of position, but are looking for it, here are some tips to help you get there:

Take a step back.

When it comes to figuring out your next step in your career, take some time to reflect. You don’t want to jump into a job search without total clarity. So think about your current position, what you like and don’t like about it, and where you want to head next. It could be on a similar path or into a whole new direction.

Be realistic.

You might be interested in pursuing the next step up in your career. But are you ready to do so? It’s important that you have the right background and experience that qualify you for the kind of job you’re looking for. If you don’t, then you’re simply setting yourself up for disappointment. Rather, take the time to acquire the skills, whether it’s through an online class, an accreditation course, or other continuing education opportunities.

Put different job search tools to use.

Don’t simply search online, on the major job boards, for your next opportunity. Instead, use a diverse mix of techniques to get the most from your approach. For instance, make sure you’re networking, both in person and online, whether it’s through a business organization or your alumni association. Also, look to industry-related and company career websites for job postings.

Connect the dots for hiring managers.

The more relevant your cover letter and resume, the more likely you’ll get called for an interview. That’s why investing the time and effort to make the case for why you’re the right fit is so important. In addition, hiring managers only spend a few seconds scanning each resume. So when you make it easy for them to see that you’re a match, then you’re going to make a better impression.

Focus on companies where you want to work.

Perhaps there are a few companies in the area that area that you’re passionate about and want to work at. Even if they don’t currently have the kinds of openings that are a fit for you, set up Google Alerts so you can stay on the lookout. Additionally, you can even send in a cold email inquiring about upcoming opportunities.

Finding a job you love isn’t always easy. However, once you do, it will be well worth the time and effort you invested in the process. If you’d like professional help in your search, contact the team at Provisional. As one of Spokane’s top employment agencies, we can connect you with rewarding opportunities with the area’s leading companies. Contact us today or search our jobs in Spokane now.

Are You Letting These 4 Common Resume Mistakes Sabotage Your Job Search?

March 19th, 2019

As one of the top employment agencies in Spokane, WA, Provisional knows that hiring managers across the area receive dozens of resumes each day. They scan them quickly and are trained to be on the lookout for red flags. So whether yours is filled with them – or you only have one or two – they can take you out of the running for the job quickly, sabotaging your hard work.

To ensure that doesn’t happen to you, here’s a look at a few common mistakes and how to avoid them:

#1: Poor writing and spelling errors.

Ultimately, your resume needs to be professional. So if grammar is sloppy and your writing is full of typos, hiring managers won’t give the document a second glance. If this isn’t your strong suit, then make sure you ask a friend or family member to proofread your resume carefully for you.

#2: Exaggerated language.

Dynamic problem solver. Visionary leader. Strategic thinker. It all might be true. But when you call yourself these names, you’ll quickly turn off hiring managers. Instead, lose the clichés and focus instead on supporting your claims with specific examples. For instance, rather than saying you’re a “problem solver,” talk about a problem you solved and its successful outcome.

#3: A disorganized format.

Your resume needs to be well organized so hiring managers can quickly get a sense whether you’re a good fit. If, however, it doesn’t follow a clear structure and make the case for why you’re qualified for a particular role, then the hiring manager will move onto the next candidate. Rather, make it easy for them to connect the dots by following a traditional reverse chronological format and promoting those strengths and abilities most pertinent to the job.

#4: Unexplained gaps.

Career gaps are common. However, if you don’t explain yours, then a hiring manager will assume the worst. They’ll think you’re hiding something or are a hiring mistake waiting to happen. If you have any in your background, make sure you use your cover letter to explain them. Do so in a way where you’re focusing on the positive and what you learned from the experience.

Recruiters and hiring managers can spot mistakes and warning signs quickly on resumes. Make sure yours doesn’t include the ones above and set yourself up for more success in your search.

Do you want more professional help and advice on finding your next job?

Contact Provisional. As one of the top employment agencies in Spokane, WA, we can help you with every aspect of your search, including giving you feedback on creating a more persuasive resume, one that gets better results on the employment market. Contact us today if you’re ready to learn more.

5 Retention Mistakes Managers Make

March 12th, 2019

Your employees are with you for the long haul. Or so you think. But then one quits and another. This is a natural part of doing business…unless, of course, turnover numbers are getting too high. If that’s the case, then it’s a red flag of something bigger going on. For instance, some contributing factors that could be leading to more churn include:

Mistake #1: Poor hiring practices.

When you hire in a hurry or don’t assess cultural fit, then it’s going to impact the quality of the people you bring on board. Even if they have the right skill set, their attitudes, habits or personal traits might not be a good match for your team.

Mistake #2: Stagnant salary and compensation.

While money certainly isn’t everything to all employees, it’s still important. And if salaries have stayed low and no additional perks or benefits are offered, your people are going to start looking elsewhere for better opportunities. It’s therefore important to stay on top of what’s competitive for your industry and for the different levels of employees you have. You should also be focusing on offering other perks and benefits in areas like insurance and flexible scheduling.

Mistake #3: A toxic work culture.

When employees come to work each day, they want it to be in a healthy environment. However, if there’s constant change or regular gossip, then it can be tough to stay connected and want to remain on staff. Instead, people need to come first in your culture and that means working to ensure it’s forward-thinking and positive.

Mistake #4: No room for advancement.

When an employee is first hired, they’re full of energy and enthusiasm. However, after a while on the job, their feelings might fade. Offering training and advancement opportunities is one way to offset this. When workers are encouraged to gain new skills and knowledge, they’ll not only stay engaged and more loyal, but also feel like you value their careers.

Mistake #5: There’s no feedback.

Employees want to know where they stand, even if they need to improve. If, instead, they’re unclear about goals and expectations, or only hear the negative, they’ll grow disconnected over time. It’s therefore important to commit to regular feedback, including both constructive criticism and praise.

Between tight deadlines and big projects, it can be tough to work employee retention into your schedule. But if you’re noticing a sudden jump in turnover, then you can’t afford to ignore the issue.

Need help hiring and retaining great people for your team?

Call the experts at Provisional. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Spokane, Washington, we know where to look to source the best candidates for a wide variety of positions and fields, and can offer you the insight you need on how to retain them. Just give us a call today to learn more about how we can help you.

Attention Candidates: Ask These Questions During Every Interview

March 5th, 2019

As you’re preparing for a job interview, you’re likely focused on the questions you’ll be asked, from “what are your strengths?” to “why should we hire you?” But are you also thinking about the kinds of questions you want to ask? After all, an interview should be approached like a two-way conversation, one in which both you and the employer are trying to assess fit. You can’t do that if you don’t ask good questions to gain the insight you need about the position.

So beyond finding out about day-to-day responsibilities, what else should you be asking? Provisional, one of the leading employment firm serving Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, has the details you need. Here are a few possibilities to add to your list for every interview:

What’s important about this position? What kind of impact does it have on the company overall?

This will give you a sense of where the role fits in and the kinds of contributions you’ll be expected to make. It will also offer you some insight into the company itself and the hierarchy of it.

What’s the most challenging part of this job?

It’s vital to have a clear understanding of what the job entails and how success will be measured in it. Part of this includes the challenges the position comes with. While a hiring manager might focus on the more positive side, asking this question will give you a more accurate account of what you can expect if hired.

Who will I be working with? What’s the team like?

Gaining a sense of the dynamics of the team you’d be a part of can play a critical role in your decision-making process about the position. For instance, if you work better on a smaller, more casual team and the department is large and formal, it might not be the best fit for you. This is a detail that you’ll want to find out ahead of time.

What do you like most about working for this company?

Asking a hiring manager this question will offer you plenty of insight. Not only will they get specific about perks, company-wide values or benefits, but you can also assess their body language. If it’s clear they’re not enthusiastic about what they’re saying, it’s a red flag for you.

Does the company offer opportunities for professional development?

A company that invests in its employees’ growth is a good sign that they care about their team and see the value in development. When you’re ready to take the next step in your career – whether it’s within that same company or with a different one – these kinds of opportunities can make you more marketable.

While there are literally dozens of other questions you can ask, these are some to get you started. Keep in mind, too, these will not only help you get the information you need to evaluate whether a role is the right fit for you, but it shows the hiring manager that you’re informed, interested, and engaged.

Looking for expert help with your job search?

Call Provisional. As a leading employment firm serving Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, our recruiters have placed over 18,000 professionals with growing Northwest companies since 1994. Contact us today and experience the difference for yourself.