Is it Time for a Digital Detox?

I read this quote somewhere recently “the internet used to be an escape from real life – now real life is an escape from the internet.”

It’s quite a powerful quote and it inspired me to write this blog. It might seem strange for someone like myself, who specialises in digital marketing and content writing, to tell you to take a digital break, but I do believe it is important. Probably even more important, if you have a job where you are constantly on the computer.

We spend so much of our time looking at our phones. I’ve seen people walking dogs while scrolling through their phones, and you’d be hard pushed to find anyone sitting on a train who doesn’t have their head in their phones – and it can be quite damaging, as you’re missing out on the world around you. Of course, the internet is a hugely beneficial thing, social media is incredible and there is a wealth of information out there. The internet has allowed me to work flexibly, so I’m not dissing it, but taking a digital break is vital for physical and mental well-being. This is not about preaching, as it’s something I’ve had to force myself to do, but rather, I hope it gives you some useful advice.

These are some ways you can take a digital break.

Skip Mornings

If you are anything like me, the first thing you do when you wake up is to look at your phone, and it’s probably not the best way to wake up. Instead of reaching for your phone, take your time to get up and get ready for work, before you start engaging again with social media and emails. Scrolling mindlessly just holds you up and it’s not the healthiest start to the day.

Be Mindful

Mindfulnesses is such an important part of life, and something most of us don’t do. If you are constantly thinking about what you might be missing on Facebook, or whether you’ve had a reply to an email, you will never truly enjoy ‘real life’ moments. If possible, leave your phone at home when you’re enjoying activities with friends or family, switch your phone off or keep it on silent, so you are not tempted to look at it. There is nothing worse than being in someone’s company and they’re constantly looking at their phone. I’ve experienced it with friends and in meetings, and it makes you feel like you would be better off being at home. If people have taken the effort to spend time with you, make sure you give them your full attention.

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Short Breaks

Take breaks from your computer and phone, whether at home or in work. There is nothing that can’t wait for a few hours. Switch your phone off if you are too tempted to look at it. Taking a few hours off each day, will do you the world of good.

Get Outside

I am a strong believer in the importance of being in nature for your health and well-being. Get outside at least once a day, even if it’s a walk at lunch time or an evening stroll. We are not meant to be locked up for entire days without seeing any daylight!

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Turn it Off

What about an entire day off technology? Is there any real reason you can’t do this? We lived for many years without technology, or at least, the kind of handheld technology which is always by our sides. Spending a full day off will recharge you and make you feel more connected with your loved ones.

Read

Is it really more fulfilling to spend a commute scrolling through stories about Brexit and looking at people’s holiday drinks or to read a good book? I know what I prefer, but then I am a bit of a book geek! Why not try reading instead of scrolling on your commute, you might get a lot more from it.

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Don’t Mistake Digital Friendships for Real Ones

Your true friendships are those people who take the time to spend ‘real’ time with you, not those who you spend time talking to via text or Facebook Messenger. It can be easy to get the two confused. Spend more time with real friendships and less time on digital ones.

I hope you enjoyed reading this article. I’d love to hear your comments or any other tips you might have.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Deal with High Staff Turnover

I Quit

Some organisations manage to hold onto their staff for years, while others have a revolving door of employees. If yours is in the latter, have you ever stopped and wondered why this may be? A high turnover of staff is not just time consuming and expensive, it is also damaging for your reputation. Employee won’t just up and leave if they are happy, so if you want to retain staff, you need to be prepared to make some changes to your business.

Communication

If staff feel like communication is not open and upfront, they won’t feel valued and this could cause them to leave the company. For example, if there are going to be changes to the business, make sure you let all of your staff know, as they will sense something is not quite right. A lot of employees, understandably, become highly frustrated if their request are not dealt with in a timely manner. For instance, approving holiday requests and signing off expenses. This can cause staff to leave, so make sure you take their concerns seriously.

Culture

The culture of an organisation can prove to be an important aspect in whether or not you will be able to retain staff for a long period of time. If the culture is negative, there is a lot of office politics and generally a bad atmosphere, your staff are unlikely to want to stay. Most people just want to go to work, do their job and leave. They don’t want to get caught up in drama or feel miserable for the entire time they are there.

Salary Package

It is important to pay your staff a competitive salary and offer good benefits, otherwise they will probably get snapped up by a competitor. Many companies make the mistake of paying low rates, yet have an excessive turnover of staff. They don’t consider all the costs associated with training new members of staff and the time it takes to get them up to speed. It is much more cost effective and better practice to pay your staff competitively. If you look after your staff, they will have more loyalty to you.

Development

One of the main reasons employees leave organisations is for a better opportunity with greater options for development.  No matter how happy an employee is, if they can’t move on anywhere in the business, they will understandably be looking to leave at some point. It is important to incorporate performance reviews and training into your business, particularly if you want to retain your key talent. Businesses who take the time to develop their staff have much higher levels of retention than those who don’t.

Exit Interviews

If you are confused by high staff turnover, why not ask staff directly when they quit their job. Exit interviews are the best way to find out more about the reasons for staff leaving and it also shows that you value their opinions. In doing this, you have the information you need to make positive changes in the future.

Are you Maximising Your Social Media Efforts?

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We all know the importance of social media these days, after all, most people spend hours each day trawling through Twitter, Facebook and other platforms. Most businesses know that they should be doing more to promote themselves on social media, but don’t really know where to start or how long to dedicate to the process. There are various social media marketing steps you can take to ensure you don’t fall behind with your social media campaign.

Connect

The main purpose of social media is to connect with like-minded people and share ideas, opinions and laughs. Whether on a personal or business level, you need to have the right connections to make social media worthwhile. If you want to promote your business on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram, you need to make the right business connections. You should connect with your target market; those who may be interested in your products or services. For example, if you are a small business offering accountancy services, you will be looking at making contact with other small businesses who probably won’t have a finance department. Start the process by connecting with people in your local area and even suggest meeting for a coffee to discuss how you may be able to help. As you get used to it, you may want to expand your market and location. Be prepared to travel to visit those businesses in other areas, as this is the way you will get more business.

Interact

If you want to attract more ‘likes’, followers and generally more attention to your business, you need to interact and engage with other people. This doesn’t mean commenting on everything anyone in your network says, as this could easily get annoying (and also seems very disingenuous), but try to engage with posts that you like or that you feel offer something to you.

Content

You will never attract other people or businesses to your social media page if you don’t post any content. You should aim to post some content on a daily basis on all your social media platforms and to mix the content up. Take a look at interesting articles related to your industry (or that of your competitors), add some humour and self-marketing to let people know what you are offering. Good content can also attract more visitors to your website.

Keep it Regular

There is no doubt that an effective social media marketing campaign can be time consuming and needs attention on a daily basis but it is definitely worthwhile. It is very off putting to visit a business page and to see that their last content was posted back in 2013. It makes them look like they aren’t really a forward-thinking or professional business. The more effort you put into your social media campaign, the more you will get back from it.

At Recruit Write, we can provide a tailored package for your social media marketing, at affordable prices. Contact us today to find out more.

Why Employers Need to Pay Close Attention to the Onboarding Process

Onboarding new employees is not just about showing them round the office, but integrating them into the business and the process should start from day one – if not before. Incredibly, 33% of new hires start looking for a new job within six months and much of this is down to the onboarding process. If you have ever been in the situation where you have arrived for your first day at a new job and you have no desk, chair, or log in information, you are definitely not alone. Surveys have suggested that over 20% of employees have been in this position  and these seemingly minor details, could be costing your business.

The Onboarding Process

Starting a new job is daunting, even if you are the most confident person in the world. You are going into the unknown. In some cases, you may have left another job and you might be worried you are going from the fire pan into the fire. It is, therefore, the responsibility of your new employer to ensure your worries are eased and you are made to feel comfortable from the day you arrive. The onboarding process should start as soon as you are offered a new role and the more attention employers pay to this, the more likely their employees will stay.

How Can I Make Onboarding Better?

Any reasonable employer will understand that their employees are their bread and butter. Without good employees, you can have the best product or service in the world, but you won’t be hugely successful. Unfortunately, many employers don’t consider their employees enough and this includes the way they are treated when they first sign the contract. These are some important steps employers should take in the onboarding process.

  • Follow up before start date – it is a good idea to give your new employee a call before they start their new job. Make sure they know where to go, what to do and check if they have any questions.
  • The right equipment – whether your employee is a construction worker or an office worker, they need tools to their job and they should have them from day one. The last thing a new employee wants to do is start scrabbling around trying to find a toolbox or notepad. Everything should be ready to go for their arrival. Anything less, looks unprofessional and makes the employee feel undervalued.
  • Set expectations – make sure your new employee understands what is expected of them. If you don’t explain this, don’t start getting aggrieved if they don’t meet your expectations.
  • Give them a buddy – we all have a responsibility to be aware of the mental health of other people and this is no different in the workplace. As many as 80% of workers find it difficult to concentrate when suffering from mental ill health and the way employees are treated in the workplace can have a huge impact on this. Most people spend the majority of their life at work so it is vital that they have at least one person they can communicate with. The importance of a buddy system should never be underestimated. Employers should never (ever) leave someone feeling isolated in the workplace. Teaming a new start up with someone from day one can go a long way to helping reduce mental health issues in the workplace.
  • Answer questions – make sure your new start has a contact to speak to about any issues they may be having and ensure these are dealt with quickly.

The Importance of Onboarding

A strong onboarding process can ease anxiety and stress, it can make the new employee feel welcome from day one. It can also improve engagement and engaged employees are less likely to want to leave. Employees feel valued if they are treated with respect and a good onboarding process can help to achieve this. With candidate shortages ever on the increase, it is time for employers to look carefully at their onboarding processes and make changes were necessary.

If you need assistance with your onboarding process or any other HR functions, get in touch with us and we’ll provide you with a tailored plan to suit your needs.

How to become a copywriter – tips & advice

copywriter

Now that you’ve got a better idea of what it means to be a freelance copywriter, let’s take a look in some more detail at how to become a copywriter. This advice applies whether you’re just taking your first tentative steps in copywriting, or you’re looking to grow your freelance business.

How to become a copywriter – the basics

Once you’ve learned the skill of copywriting by learning from example and practising, it’s time to make some money! The first thing you’ll need is clients. Yes, you heard me – before you even have a website in place, you need to get yourself out there and start working with people. If you’re still growing your business, clients aren’t going to come to you. There’s time to work out how to attract clients to your site later, but for now, you’ll want to see the first fruits of your labours.

The easiest way to get those first clients coming in is to register with one of the many freelance job sites out there. We’ve found that peopleperhour and Upwork are two of the best. It’s easy to get yourself a profile and start bidding for work, but it’s worth realising that this is going to be hard work. In order to win bids, you’ll need to play the numbers game at first.

Until you have some positive feedback, it’ll be difficult fighting off the competition, but don’t lose heart. Get some examples of your work up there, and take your time to craft attractive proposals that are tailored to each job – don’t just copy and paste! Many clients buy in bulk regularly from these sites, and with so many candidates out there, they’re skilled at spotting generic proposals. Use yours to stand out from the crowd.

Behave professionally and they’ll keep coming back

To become a copywriter, you need to act professionally from the beginning. Complete your work on time and to your client’s requirements. Also, remember to be personable when you’re talking over the project with them! A large part of repeat business is gained by being easy to work with and making it seem like nothing is a hassle. Do this, and you’ll start getting positive feedback.

Positive feedback starts a chain reaction – once potential clients can see that you’ve completed work successfully, on time and to a high standard, they’re much more likely to hire you. Make sure you get feedback, recommendations and testimonials from clients that you can use to attract others in the future.

Now what?

Now that you’ve got your first clients under your belt and you’re getting some repeat business, there are two things you want to do – secure your foundations, and grow!

Part of securing the work you’ve done so far is managing your time. Once you have a few projects on the go, it’s easy to get in a muddle. Deadlines cross each other, you mix up clients with the wrong projects – we’ve all been there. The easiest way to solve this is time management.

One tip for keeping everything in order is to steal an idea from the blogging community. Since it’s likely you’ll be doing some blogging work as part of your copywriting, you may as well make it work for you!

If you’re using WordPress for a lot of your work, download the Editorial Calendar plugin. It’s free and scores a huge five stars. Once it’s installed, you can use it to plan out your own blogging, which will come in handy later. However, it’s also a great way of planning out your working month.

Create draft posts for each of your copywriting jobs, and you can just drag and drop them around the calendar. These can be tagged or categorised depending on the client, topic and such, and you can remind yourself regularly of what work needs to be done.

Another tool we love here at Recruit Write is Meister Task. There are so many todo and project management web apps out there, and we’ve tried them all. However, Meister Task is intuitive, looks fantastic, and even has a built-in time logging function so you can easily invoice. You can have separate projects, each customised to suit your needs and the whole package works like a great combination of Asana and Trello. Best of all, it’s free!

Now that we’ve covered the basics of how to be a copywriter, it’s time to grow your business. Next time we’ll cover how to improve your web presence and start attracting clients to you.

 

 

 

So, what does a freelance copywriter do all day?

 

You’ve probably had that conversation before. Someone asks you what you do for a living and you say, “I’m a freelance copywriter.” They scrunch their face, shrug and say, “So you just sit at home all day? Great, want to go for a coffee? I’ve got the day off!”

You sigh and stare off into the distance, thinking about how many deadlines you still need to meet…

Working as a freelance copywriter has lots of benefits, but it can be hard work too, especially without plenty of planning. We’re starting off a series of blog posts about becoming a freelance copywriter with an explanation of what copywriting is, and the basics of being good at copywriting.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll share some tips on planning and using an editorial calendar to track your work, how to adjust your tone of voice to suit your clients’ audience, and more!

What is a copywriter?

Copywriters, broadly, write promotional material. Whether it’s a brochure for holiday, a restaurant menu, an advertising billboard or a branded website, you can bet that the words used to explain and advertise the product or service have been written by a professional copywriter.

“Copy” is the name for the text written within all kinds of promotional literature. It’s an art form in itself, designed to make readers sit up and do something – the so-called “call to action”. Advertising is useless and promotion pointless unless it inspires the consumer to take action, whether that’s buying a product, signing up for a newsletter, downloading an e-book or becoming a member.

Why are copywriters important?

Copywriters are the heart of your promotional campaign if you’re a brand looking to engage with the public. Poor copy doesn’t just result in inaction, it can actively put someone off your brand – a killer reaction that you want to avoid at all costs.

How many times have you picked up a promotional leaflet and seen poor grammar or spelling and just slapped it down again in disgust or worse, laughed at it? You walk away remembering the brand for all the wrong reasons. For a while, anyway – it’s soon forgotten again amid the static of so many other brands looking for your attention.

Good copywriting, on the other hand, not only represents your brand well, but can invoke trust, engender good feeling, invite the reader to engage and, most of all, inspire them to take action.

How do you become a good copywriter?

Thankfully, you don’t need a qualification to become a copywriter (although some formal training in language can help, even if it’s just a short course or online training). What you really need is a fantastic grasp of language and an understanding of how words can inspire action.

You need to be able to get across an idea with the minimum of fuss, getting straight to the point. You also have to be able to modulate your tone of voice to suit your client. You don’t want a breezy, informal voice when you’re copywriting for a law firm. Equally, if your client is a fashion blogger who enjoys a light relationship with her readership, you don’t want to write in tedious, jargon-filled legalese.

Knowing the difference isn’t something you can necessarily be taught, although you can definitely pick up tips from others. Instead, the best way to learn to become a freelance copywriter is to read! Read blogs and other literature that reflects the client you’re working for – read their competitors’ literature,

and develop a sense of what’s working and what’s not.

Be prepared for hard work!

Working as a freelance copywriter is a fulfilling career, where you can be your own boss and adjust your workload to suit you exactly. However, if it’s to be a rewarding one, be prepared to put in a lot of time, effort and especially planning. We’ll touch more on planning in a blog post within the next couple of weeks, where we’ll share some tips on how to manage your time and plan your editorial calendar to make sure you deliver the best work you can!

 

The Pros and Cons of HR Software

Technology such as HR software has made huge advances in recent years, with the potential to add efficiency and productivity to the HR department. Recruitment software, or candidate management systems, in particular have improved, and mean that the whole recruitment process can be management online. The candidate journey can be tracked from start to finish.

However, as with all new technology, it’s worth considering the pros and cons before deciding to make the change to a new system or process. Here are the top benefits and drawbacks of CMS.

Pros and cons of CMS suites

Benefits

Faster pipelines

CMS can speed up the shortlisting process by almost 50%. As everything is streamlined and actioned from one central point, processes become easier, and with most CMS today you can move from advertising the job to booking the shortlisted candidates for interview. This can all be done online, with the ability to send emails, appointment dates and application forms online.

Better tracking of performance

CMS allows you to carry out A/B testing on recruitment ads as well as easy tracking of which ads perform better in different locations. With continued use, this means you can streamline your recruitment process even further. Customisable templates mean that you can upload new ads without copywriting each time.

Shortlisting improved

It can be easier to shortlist with HR software. Keyword matching, scoring and minimum requirements mean that the software can effectively weed out unqualified candidates before you ever see their CV, saving time that you can use to concentrate on creating a better shortlist and talking to candidates.

Reduces cost-per-hire

In today’s economy, businesses are watching every penny. Many of you will know from harsh experience that HR and recruitment often isn’t considered a profit-making part of the business (even though we all know this isn’t the case). If you’re feeling the squeeze in your department, CMS can reduce the overall cost-per-hire, saving money by increasing productivity and reducing manpower required for each hire.

Reduces HR workload

In many industries, recruitment is an everyday process. Turnover and lack of retention can mean that you never get to the end of that constant recruitment pipeline, and that eats into time you’d prefer to spend on other things. Reducing the time per hire means you can focus on employee engagement and training.

Drawbacks

Impersonal

CMS can be an impersonal mode of recruitment. Since most of the sorting work is done by the software and most appointment booking is done by email, it can be tempting to bring candidates to interview without ever speaking directly to them. This can affect the quality of your shortlist, and also the recruitment experience for the candidate.

Diversity

CMS can cause issues in terms of diversity of recruitment. As the software sorts by keyword or score, there is no personal touch that can ensure a balance of gender, race, ability, sexual orientation and the like. You might find that the original candidate pool was diverse, but the software has unwittingly sorted a shortlist that lacks proper diversity.

Human skills

Nothing beats experience when it comes to recruitment. Years of training and experience, coupled with an instinct for quality, mean that when you look over applications you can probably make good, snap decisions about your shortlist. If the software is doing this on your behalf, the impersonal nature might mean that you’re losing out on quality candidates for interview.

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Possibility for manipulation

Candidates are increasingly shrewd in a competitive marketplace. CMS systems can be “gamed” by candidates who have experience of them, or who have done their homework. Using predictable, high-ranking keywords can get them through the door and into that interview slot regardless of their actual suitability.

All of which means you could be missing out on some of the best candidates out there – they’ll never hear from you, because you’ll never see them.

Making the most of HR software

As with most things in the world of recruitment and HR, balance is key. If you decide to use HR software, we’d recommend doing so carefully. Streamline your processes by all means, and follow the candidate journey online – it will increase productivity, and the ability to track is key to shaping recruitment plans and forward planning, particularly for operational departments that rely on you for this.

However, we would advise a human element at every step of the process. Check random samples of unselected CVs, gauge the effectiveness of scoring, and compare the output of the software to your own decision-making to ensure that you know it is working as you need it to.

In the end, HR software is like all technology – when used as a tool to supplement existing processes it can be extremely beneficial in saving time and reducing cost, but don’t depend on it to do your work for you.

If you’d like more information on how we can help you to work with your CMS system to headhunt or shortlist candidates, contact us at Lyndsey@recruitwrite.com.

 

The era of Fakebook – fake news on social media

Some are calling this the post-fact era, and we’ve seen just how difficult it can be to tell fact from fiction recently. Events in the UK during the EU referendum campaign, and across the pond in the US presidential elections, have shown that while social media allows us to access more information than ever before, not all of that information is worthwhile.

Fake news on social media

In the not-so-distant past, our access to information was limited by the amounts of providers available, as well as the kinds of media we used. In the UK, terrestrial TV was limited to three channels for a long time, then a fourth and fifth were added in the 80s and 90s. Newspapers were prolific, but there was a different attitude to news back then. Competition meant that papers competed to get the facts – exclusives and ‘scoops’ were designed to draw in the readers, but they were based on accuracy and telling the truth. At least, before the tabloids emerged. Until that point, news was considered more accurate, but also more controlled – the public could only get their news from a relatively small number of sources, and so were dependent on the broadcasters and publishers showing us both sides of the story, which wasn’t always the case.

The growth of tabloids meant the public had access to more, cheaper papers and a culture grew where editors became accustomed to adjusting the truth to fit the headline, in the hopes of increasing readership. Concurrent with this was the explosion of satellite TV and 24-hour news services. Now broadcasters had more competition, and had to keep the viewers glued to the TV for longer periods.

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The growth of social media

In the 2000s, the arrival of the internet was trumpeted as a new wave of information, where users would have access to unbridled amounts of news from a variety of sources. We could find out things we never knew before, and would make up our own minds as to the truth. Reality could no longer be controlled by a small number of news moguls, and news would be back in the hands of the people.

Blogging became popular, first as a means of expression and next as a means of commentary. That lead to the growth of social media, with first Facebook and then Twitter emerging as the new pillars of media. While both platforms deny that they are in fact media outlets but instead a means of social engagement, it quickly became apparent that the majority of users were actually getting most of their news from shares on these sites. As of the third quarter of 2016, Facebook has 1.79 billion monthly active users, most of whom share news articles and headlines with their networks.

Clickbait and the art of gaining hits

The currency of the internet is ‘hits’ – the number of individual users visiting and viewing an article or blog. Bloggers and social media moguls were concurrently coming up with ways to game the system to increase views – Facebook and Twitter experimented with algorithms, with Facebook in particular perfecting a ‘news feed’ that curated content for users based on their previous shares, likes and engagement.

Meanwhile bloggers were learning the art of keywords and search engine optimization (SEO) that would increase their visibility on Google rankings. This lead to the rise of so-called clickbait articles – articles that might not be newsworthy in themselves, but which were written in a way that would garner interest and click-throughs.

Sites like The Onion and Buzzfeed took differing approaches. The Onion was a satirical website offering an intelligent but parodic look at the news, while Buzzfeed offered easily digestible chunks of content with headlines that exploited readers’ curiosity but which provided nothing substantial within.

Clickbait and politics

Recently, the number of clickbait sites and fake news on social media has grown to such a worrying extent that commentators have suggested they now play a role in politics. On both ideological sides of the debates in the UK and US, users were sharing fake stories about politicians, presidential candidates and others. It has reached a point where we no longer no what’s real and what’s fake, and many have realised that it’s time to do something about it.

Amid public pressure, Facebook has announced that it’s using its Facebook Ads platform to crack down on such sites, removing their access to paid advertising. Whether this will work or not remains to be seen, but it’s a direction that pleases some and worries others. While it’s obvious that the amount of fake news on social media is concerning, some are also worried that we could see a step towards a kind of censorship that, if mishandled, could lead to social media preferring one kind of opinion over another.

Perhaps the best approach is for content producers to take it upon themselves to do better?

Why copywriting is important

In an age of competing platforms and media, all vying for our attention, nothing beats well-written, informative and entertaining content. That’s why it’s so important for content providers to ensure that their content is top class.

If providers are unable to produce that content themselves, they should turn to the growing army of skilled copywriters out there who can produce it for them. Experienced copywriters will research articles and blog posts fully, altering their tone to suit the target audience and create lasting content that will bring visitors back without the need for tacky or false clickbait headlines and fluff content.

Do you want your site to be known for contributing to the ‘post-fact’ society, or do you want to provide solid content that delivers something of value to your visitors? That’s a question we’re all going to have to ask ourselves going forward.

If you’d like to discuss what we can do for you to make your website content sing and to keep those readers coming back, read more about our Copywriting services, or get in touch.

 

 

How to Spot a Bad Employee

Recruiting a new employee can be risky and there’s never any certainty that they will live up to expectations. The performance at interview and references are all you initially have to go on, so it is no wonder that many employees fail to impress! If you are concerned about the performance of a new recruit and are perhaps wondering how to fire an employee, these may be some telltale signs that you are making the right decision.

Always Late

If your new employee is constantly late for work, even if it’s just 5 or 10 minutes here and there; this is not a good sign. A good employee will make sure they turn up on time for work, although there may be the odd exception, whereas a bad employee will be late more often than on time.

Lack of Motivation

You should expect your employees to be ready for work and motivated while they are there and if not, they are not likely to perform well enough to help the business grow. Motivation is important in the workplace and a lack of motivation not only affects performance, but it can also cause other employees to become demotivated. If your employee shows a real lack of motivation, it may be worth considering whether they are right for your business.

Talk Too Much

No one expects workers to spend their entire day working, without lifting their head up to take a breath. However, there is a fine line between a bit of chat and an entire day spent talking about the new series of Big Brother or plans for the weekend. If an employee spends more time talking than doing work, this will not be good for business in the long run and will put others off their work too.

Don’t Help Colleagues

A good employee will support their colleagues. This may include picking up calls, helping with increased workloads or asking if they need a hand if they have spare time on their hands. An employee who is bad for business will only do their own work and won’t show any concern for their colleagues. This will quickly become noticeable to other members of staff and will cause resentment, which will affect the overall levels of morale in the workplace.

Spread Negativity

The right kind of employee will be positive, have a smile on their face and be motivated to achieve their goals. They will meet or exceed their expectations of their role, will be civil to others and won’t cause any disruption. An employee who spreads negativity is bad for the workplace and will probably adversely affect everyone they come in contact with. This is the last thing you want for a healthy, happy workplace!

If you spot these signs in a new employee, it may be time to use an HR consultancy to help provide advice on how to deal with a bad employee.

Types of Social Media Marketing and What to Post to Achieve Results

Types of Social Media Marketing and What to Post to Achieve Results

We all know that there are benefits for businesses who post regular content on their social media accounts, however, it can be difficult to work out what content to post. The purpose of posting on social media is to create a buzz about your products or services and as inbound marketing goes, it is becoming increasingly important. It is not a good idea to constantly post the same content (we have all seen it done!), as this offers nothing to the reader and most people will probably just ignore it. A more subtle approach is advisable, if you don’t want to instantly turn potential customers off. These are some different types of content to use on your social media accounts.

Business Updates

Social media is a great way to promote your business and there is nothing wrong with posting about your business, but make sure it offers something to the reader. For example, promotions you are running or a blog the reader can look at. There are millions of people using social media every day (Facebook alone has 1.65 monthly active users), so make sure your business updates will make the reader sit up and take notice.

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Emotional Content

We all relate to content which stirs up some kind of emotion; whether it’s laughter, tears, anger or shock, we like content we can somehow relate to. If we use ‘The Lad Bible’ on Facebook as an example; the page has a staggering 13+ million likes and the content is regular, and is usually funny and relatable to a certain age group. Another is Tony Robbins; he has over 2 million likes and posts motivational content, which empowers people. If your content fails to stir any emotional, it is very unlikely to be shared, which is the whole point in using social media marketing. Just don’t send your readers to sleep with your content; that is an emotion you might want to avoid!

Interactive

If your content gives the reader something to do; all the better. For example, a video to watch, a quiz to enjoy or a game to play. The more interactive your content is, the more popular it is likely to be, which means better results for your business! When people enjoy the content, they will tell others about it. How many times have you watched a funny YouTube video and sent it to a friend? This is how you can use interactive content to improve your business results.

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Relate to Customers

Take time to reflect on who your customers are and whether your content relates to them as after all, this is this group you want to attract or offer something to. If you are in the fashion industry, your target audience will probably be interest in content related to fashion, celebrities, entertainment; posting gardening tips or financial news probably isn’t hugely relevant. What would your customers like to read about? Your inbound marketing strategy should reflect this.

Images

Where possible, you should incorporate images into any content you post. A good image can make a piece of content stand out and thus, make it more likely to be read and shared.

Find out more about the copywriting and social media services offered at Recruit Write by visiting http://www.recruitwrite.com.

How to Become a Productivity Master Today

You can easily sit at your desk for 8 hours straight, but that doesn’t guarantee that you will be productive. Productivity is not really about how long you work for, but rather how much work you get done. You can get the same volume of work completed in 3 hours, as you can in 5, if you are focused and determined. Whether you run your own business or you work for an employer, your opportunities for success will be determined by how productive you are. It is not always easy but there are some simple measures you can take to become a productivity master today!

Remove Distractions

This is easier said than done, but it is one of the most important actions to take if you want to be as productive as possible. You may think checking Facebook or sending a quick text doesn’t take long, but it can easily take your concentration away from the task in hand and can cause a dip in productivity levels. It is a good idea to keep your phone off, or at least hidden from view and to refrain from checking it or your social media pages until after lunch or when you get home in the evening. A couple of seconds can easily spiral into half an hour and this can have consequences for how productive you will be. Most communication can wait, so don’t be tempted into getting into long, drawn out conversations. The less distractions you have, the more productive you will be. Don’t be afraid to refuse to attend meetings that you don’t believe will hold any value, as these can just take up a lot of unnecessary time.

Set Deadlines

At the start of the day, it is important to write a to-do list and also set yourself some deadlines for when you want to complete work. For instance, if you are writing a report and know you can complete it within two hours, make sure you put your head down for those two hours and don’t go over the deadline. You will feel better if you complete your list of tasks for the day and will learn to become more productive by setting your own deadlines.

Regular Breaks

It may seem that sitting down at your desk for 8 hours solid is the best way to be productive, but it is not physically or mentally possible to stay focused for this period of time. It is much more productive and better for your health, if you take regular breaks from your desk and particularly if you can get outside for some fresh air. If you aim to take breaks every couple of hours, even for just 15 minutes, you will find that you may get a new lease of life when you return to your desk. It is important to remember that we are not robots and we need regular exercise to stay motivated.

If you’re looking for the next step in your career, check out the banking and financial jobs we have available at Nationwide Jobs today.

Why Am I Not Getting the Interview?

If you are applying for jobs, getting an initial screening call but not actually being progressed to the interview stage, it is time to start considering the reasons why. If your CV has resulted in a call from the recruiter, a lack of interview is unlikely to be down to your experience. If you find that you are not progressing to interview, it may be down to other aspects. As a headhunter, I have dealt with many different candidates and have found that there are some aspects of the call which would put me off sending the CV over to my client. It is worthwhile remembering that personality is fundamental in recruitment and even if a candidate isn’t selected for a role, I would always consider them in the future if they have the right attitude.

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Lack of Enthusiasm

This is probably the number one reason why I wouldn’t want to send a candidate to a client, even if they have the perfect experience and skills for the role. If a candidate comes across as disinterested and unenthusiastic during the screening process, it doesn’t say much for how they will behave in the job or how likely they will be to stay. It is important to show enthusiasm for the role and the company during the process. If you don’t feel this way about it, it probably isn’t the right job for you.

Unresponsive

If you really want to get an interview for a job, make sure you respond to emails or telephone calls quickly. I would always consider candidates who respond to me, even if they are not interested in the role. If a candidate is unresponsive or they mess about during the process, I wouldn’t consider them for roles in the future, so it is always a good idea to respond to recruiters and to be honest.

Indecisive

It is important to know what you are looking for and to be clear about this before you start the application process. For example, if the recruiter tells you the salary and then you say the salary is an issue half way through the process, you won’t have much hope of getting any further. If there are aspects of the job you are concerned with, voice your opinions at the start of the process rather than half way through.

Candidates should always remember that their attitude could affect their future options too. It is important that candidates are happy with the job, but having a poor or indecisive attitude won’t get you far within your career.