Forum thanks our Veterans & Active Military Personnel

The Forum Group is honored to support the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. Over the last year the Forum Group, a veteran owned firm, has raised money through our monthly ‘Jeans Day’ initiative. On Sunday September 24th the Forum Group toured the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum and presented the Fallen Heroes Fund with a check of $4,000.

We would like to thank the entire Forum team and alumni that took part in this meaningful fundraising program. The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund serves United States military personnel wounded or injured in service to our nation and their families. Forum is proud to align with such a wonderful organization and their deeply meaningful cause.

Forum Staff members, families and loved ones were reminded of what true sacrifice, teamwork and commitment are all about throughout our Intrepid visit. We thank the heroic men and women that sacrifice so much for our safety and well-being.

3 Questions to Ask Yourself if You’re Questioning Your Career Path

You’re not completely sold that you’re on the right career path, but the idea of making a change is daunting. There are so many unknowns, and we all know the grass isn’t always greener on the other side. Plus, if you do decide to change course, you may have to take a step back to develop necessary skills.

The time and energy required to transition into the right career path may be valid concerns, but they shouldn’t stop you from pursuing a path you love. Several years ago, I went from working in finance to being on a human resources team—unconventional to say the least. The decision wasn’t easy. I knew that I would be unsatisfied if I stayed in finance, but I wasn’t 100% sure HR would be the right fit. After hours of conversations with friends, family, and people in my network and months of introspection, I finally worked up enough courage to make the leap. I haven’t looked back.

Before you make a switch of your own, ask yourself the following three questions.

Are You Developing a Competitive Advantage?

In The Start-up of You, authors Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha teach that we’re all entrepreneurs of our own careers. They argue that to become competitive in today’s global market, it’s critical to understand your assets (what you’re good at), your aspirations (what you want to do), and the market realities (what people will pay you for).

As you look at your work history, think of these three areas as puzzle pieces. Having only one or two isn’t enough. You need all three to develop a true competitive advantage.

You’ve likely heard the axiom, “Find a job you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” This may be true for some, but blindly following passion can lead to an unsustainable career. I’ve found Hoffman and Casnocha’s framework more practical. Know your assets and aspirations in light of the market realities—then pursue a path that maximizes all three.

How Often Do You Think About Work Outside of Work?

The importance of this question is best illustrated through a story. Henry Eyring, a former business professor at Stanford University, tells how he ended up choosing his path. His father, who was a renowned scientist and professor, hoped his son would follow in his footsteps. In Eyring’s words: “My father was [teaching physics] at a blackboard we kept in the basement…Suddenly he stopped. ‘Hal,’ he said, ‘we were working the same kind of problem a week ago. You don’t seem to understand it any better now than you did then. Haven’t you been working on it?’”

Eyring admitted he had not. His father then said: “When you walk down the street, when you’re in the shower, when you don’t have to be thinking about anything else, isn’t this what you think about?”

“When I told him no,” Eyring concludes, “my father paused…then said, ‘Hal, I think you’d better get out of physics. You ought to find something that you love so much that when you don’t have to think about anything, that’s what you think about.’”

I found this true in my life. When I was in finance, I rarely thought about work outside the office. Rather, I thought about people-related challenges my team faced and how I could improve the company culture. To be successful you don’t need to obsess about your job 24/7, but if you’re only thinking about your job during the hours of 9 to 5, it may be a sign you’re on the wrong path.

What Does Your Career Path Look Like 10 Years Down the Road?

Think of those in your company or industry who are more senior than you. Do you eventually want to be doing the type of work they’re doing?

This long-term view on your career is critical because many jobs change as you advance in your field. For example, junior investment bankers spend most of their time building financial models and client presentations, while senior bankers focus largely on sourcing deals and maintaining relationships. Even if you don’t love your current job, it may be a necessary step to develop skills that’ll help you get where you ultimately want to be.

If you don’t know what your current path looks like, schedule an informational interview with someone more experienced. These informal meetings are a great way to find out what you can expect in the future. Consider asking people what they like most about their job, the types of projects they work on, and what advice they’d give to someone in your shoes. I had a lot of informational interviews when I was in finance, and they’re what ultimately influenced me to take my career in another direction.

Determining whether to change industries is no small task, but asking yourself the three questions I’ve shared will help you make an informed decision. Are you developing a competitive advantage by maximizing your assets, your aspirations, and the market realities? How often do you think about work outside of the office? What does your career path look like in the future?

Your answers to these questions will help you understand whether you should double your efforts in your current job or start figuring out your next move.

Mobile Developers – A Career on the Rise

Americans are increasingly using their mobile phones for so much more than calling and texting. Cell phone and tablet use has expanded to include everything from searching the internet, paying bills, playing and purchasing music, reading books, managing calendars, playing games and more. Statista.com reports that in 2014, 36 percent of smartphone and 45 percent of tablet users had purchased at least one app for their mobile device. According to industry figures, the number of mobile app buyers in the United States is projected to reach 85 million by 2019.

Because of this surge in the use of mobile devices and applications, companies are looking to hire specialists who can develop and program for mobile devices. Mobile Developers creates applications and solutions for mobile devices including smartphones, tablets and other handheld devices.  The demand for this type of job has continued to increase as businesses adjust to mobile strategies in their marketing and advertising efforts. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects about a 27 percent increase in employment growth for web developers (which includes mobile developers) by 2024. This growth is predicted as result of the rising popularity of mobile devices and ecommerce.

Job requirements for mobile development careers include a bachelor’s degree in computer science, computer engineering or a related field, as well as experience in software development and mobile application development, such as iOS or Android application development.  Some employers may also require candidates to have advanced certifications in areas such as advanced web development and in mobile application development. Employers are looking for strong candidates, who in addition to relevant education, also have substantial work experience in mobile development, as they may be developing applications that can potentially reach millions of users per day.

As people rely more and more on their mobile devices, the industry’s employment growth will remain strong. “The biggest shift in the industry is mobile technologies,” says Andrew Ruditser, a Lead Technology Coordinator at Maxburst Inc., a web development company on Long Island. “We have to make sure our sites don’t just look good on desktops, but also on androids and iPhones.”

If you are looking for a career as a mobile developer, consider contacting a professional and established recruiting firm such as The Forum Group. For over four decades The Forum Group has successfully placed thousands of individuals in meaningful and rewarding positions. Contact The Forum Group, an experienced staffing and recruiting company, to help you secure a career in mobile development.

The Future is Promising for Occupational Therapists

Occupational therapy is a growing industry for careers today and it is expected to expand even further in years to come.  Historically, occupational therapists worked with injured, ill, or disabled patients to help these patients develop, recover, and improve the skills needed for daily living and working.  However, as people live longer and remain more active later in life, occupational therapists are now needed more often to help senior citizens maintain their independence as well as regain movement and perform normal activities after an injury or stroke.  In addition, there is a growing need for occupational therapists to work with children who are afflicted with an autism spectrum disorder and help them to perform a variety of daily tasks as well as to improve their social skills.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) employment of occupational therapists is projected to grow 27 percent by 2024, which is a much faster rate than the average for all occupations. With an often flexible work schedule, competitive pay and diverse work environments including hospitals, rehabilitation centers, schools, medical offices and in-home services, US News and World Report ranked occupational therapist as #17 on its list of 2016 Best Health Care Jobs.

Occupational therapists work with patients to build or restore their abilities to perform the daily tasks of life.  The role of an occupational therapist can vary greatly and the job may look very different depending on the age of the patient and the specific issues that they may be experiencing.  An occupational therapist can treat patients with mental, physical, emotional or developmental disabilities or injuries. “We help people to perform the everyday “occupations” of life, regardless of age, ability or disability,” says Samia Rafeedie, a Doctor and Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy at the University of Southern California.

Occupational therapists require at least a master’s degree in occupational therapy as well supervised fieldwork and clinical experience. In addition, all states require occupational therapists to be licensed and pass a national examination.

Occupational therapy will continue to be an important part of treatment for people with various illnesses, injuries and disabilities and it can be a very satisfying and rewarding career. Samia Rafeedie adds, “Occupational therapists enter patients’ lives at some of their most challenging moments – a catastrophic change or illness – and they get to fashion a positive future and provide hope. And that is priceless.”

For over four decades The Forum Group has successfully placed thousands of individuals in meaningful and rewarding positions. Contact The Forum Group, an experienced staffing and recruiting company, to help you secure a rewarding career in occupational therapy.

Interested in a Career in the Growing Tech Field?

If you are looking for a career in the information technology (IT) field, but don’t know where to start, let a specialized recruiting company’s expert staffing specialists get you started on the right path.

Staffing specialists help with medical staffing, legal staffing and support, accounting and finance recruitment, IT staffing, and more. In fact, more than 3 million employees work for America’s staffing companies during an average week, and during the course of one year, they hire over 14 million temporary and contract employees. As many as 76% work full time.

What kind of job are you looking for?

Types of Information Technology Jobs

Network Engineer: A network engineer designs computer networks, focusing on high-level design. They select and configure data communications components. This position generally requires a candidate to have a bachelor’s degree in network administration, information technology, or computer science. In addition to a degree, one may also choose to earn an IT certificate in networking like the Microsoft Network Engineer certificate and/or the Cisco Certified Network Associate certification.

Service Delivery Manager: A service delivery manager oversees the delivery of service technology to clients and customers, establishing policies for high service performance. The manager also supervises employees and receives customer feedback. This position requires technical knowledge, patience, and communication skills.

Quality Assurance Analyst: The quality assurance analyst is responsible for creating and executing a test plan to ensure that all software or technology meets a certain standard. Products are tested in terms of performance, reliability, functionality, and stability, as well as compatibility with other systems. To qualify for this position, a candidate must earn a BS or BA degree.

PHP Developer: A PHP developer creates programs, applications, and websites using the PHP scripting language. Duties include software testing, website administration, and user training. PHP developers are generally required to have a bachelor’s degree in information science, software engineering, computer science, or another related field.

There are a number of different information technology opportunities out there, and that number grows every day as tech continues to change and evolve. By working with a specialized recruiting and staffing company, you can find your perfect job in the tech industry.

Internal Controls Increase the Demand for Internal Auditors

Tighter Regulations Boost Auditing Careers

Advanced technology and tighter regulations continue to change the face of business. As a result, the need for greater controls and stringent internal audits has risen significantly in the business industry.

The growing overall economy and an increasingly complex tax and regulatory environment have led to a strong demand for internal auditors.  As the economy grows, auditors are needed to examine financial records, evaluate internal or external controls, identify potential control weaknesses and assess risk.  According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, accounting and auditing jobs are projected to increase by 11% between 2014 and 2024.

Stricter laws and regulations, particularly in the financial sector, have increased the demand for auditing and accounting services, as organizations seek to comply with new standards. In addition, tighter lending standards are expected to increase the importance of audits, as this is an important way for organizations to demonstrate their creditworthiness.

Auditors are often responsible for monitoring internal controls and ensuring that they are designed to achieve operational objectives.  In addition, internal auditors oversee the effectiveness and efficiency of operations; ensure accurate and reliable financial reports; and ensure compliance with industry-related laws and regulations.

Internal auditors may be employed as part of an organization’s compliance department; however auditors often work to support various areas of a business including finance, legal, risk management, fraud and operations.  They are often relied upon to identify weaknesses and recommend process enhancements for business units.  “As an internal bank auditor, I learned the importance of determining which internal controls should be in place to safeguard assets, and how to monitor those controls and make recommendations,” says Susan Maddox, Controller and Director of Accounting at The Country Music Hall of Fame.

If you are considering a career as an auditor, education and accounting experience are required. Most auditor positions require at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. Employers often prefer to hire applicants who have a master’s degree, either in accounting, finance, or business administration. Candidates who have earned a CPA certification are also often preferred.

For over four decades The Forum Group has successfully placed thousands of individuals in meaningful and rewarding positions. Contact The Forum Group, an experienced staffing and recruiting company, to help you secure the career you have been pursuing.

HOW TO UPGRADE YOUR RESUME DESIGN FOR 2017

Your resume is important, because every piece of paper or profile that is associated with you helps to make you more marketable. If you can master a good resume and how to sell yourself on paper, you can sell yourself in your side hustle, for speaking engagements and other opportunities. Job seeker or entrepreneur, your resume is not to be ignored. By now you should know that whatever you learned about creating a resume design is probably outdated, especially if you’re in a creative industry. It is the one piece of paper that we obsess over the most and the hardest one to get right it seems. Microsoft Word templates are just not going to give you the wow-factor that you need to stand out in a pile, and the contents on it is probably a lazy collection of copy-and-paste from past job descriptions. Your resume is your introduction and speaks for you. What does your resume say about you? While a resume is just one part of the job search process, it is what can get you in the door.

A RESUME ALONE WON’T GET YOU A JOB, BUT A BAD ONE CAN ELIMINATE YOUR CHANCES. 

Recruiters spend a measly few seconds reviewing your resume. A quick scan by them or a digital application management system is your only chance to be considered for an interview. How annoying is that? You spend hours working on a resume and cover letter that most people don’t fully read. If you want to improve your chances, keep reading to learn 3 quick things you can do to upgrade your resume before 2017.

I know I’ve thrown shade at Microsoft Word resumes many times, but most make my eyes glaze over and want to go play in traffic. I know that you can do better while still remaining professional, because my students do it all the time. Take a look at this example below.

My 10 Best Pieces Of Career Advice For Millennials

Giving advice to millennials is extremely important to me because I am one of them and even though the economy was better back in 2006, it took me eight months to find a marketing job. I succeeded because I started six months before graduation, collected eight internships, seven leadership positions on campus and graduated with honors. I failed because I didn’t know how to build and leverage relationships. Either way, I learned a lot about what it takes to build a successful career over the years. Good career choices are extremely important early in your career because you can set yourself up for success later on. Even though you might end up in a completely different career, the skills you acquire and the people you meet, are what will open the doors for you. The following are ten things that all millennials should do to get ahead in their careers:

Think of your career as a series of experiences. The most optimistic and intelligent way to look at your career isn’t how long you stay with one employer or that you focus on what you majored in at college. You need to collect experiences throughout your careers, whether that be with five employers or ten, with one business function or five or in one country or three. The idea is that you need to be a lifelong learner if you want to make an impact, succeed and feel accomplished. The experiences you have expand your world view, give you new perspectives and make you a more interesting person.

Don’t settle for a job you’re not passionate about. A lot of people are pushing college graduates to just get a job to pay the bills and that isn’t the greatest advice because research shows that you won’t last long there if you do. Furthermore, no smart company is going to have someone who is only there to make money because there’s always someone else who wants it more. When you’re passionate about your job, you’re excited, you work longer hours and end up accomplishing much more. Life is too short to settle for a career that you hate!

Focus on making a big impact immediately. The quicker you make an impact in a company the more attention and support you will get. Millennials understand this well because they won’t want to wait five years to get on a project where they can make this type of impact. Starting on day one, you have to learn as much as possible and start mastering your job so you can latch on to the bigger projects faster and prove yourself. By doing this, you will explode your career and become more valuable in your company, which will increase your pay, title and you’ll get to work on better projects.

Take risks early and often in your career. One of the important lessons this economy has taught us is that not taking risks is risky. There is so much out of our control and if we just keep doing what we did yesterday, we can’t get ahead. By taking a risk, you are putting yourself in a position to learn, whether you succeed or fail. You’re also showing to your management that you’re willing to put your reputation on the line to make things happen. As we become an ever more entrepreneurial society, those that take risks, both inside and outside of the corporate walls, will become more successful.

10 Experts Share the Best Career Advice They Ever Received

Top-notch job advice can help you make smart decisions, advance your career and keep your spirits high when work gets tough.

We tapped seasoned career experts, including college career counselors, authors and CEOs, for the  best career advice they’ve ever received. Their edited responses are below.

Debra Lybyer, director of career and advising services, Lewis-Clark State College in Idaho

Treat everyone you meet as a potential employer, every task you complete as part of your interview and keep every door open. You’ll never know what is out there for you if you don’t allow every possible opportunity to come your way.

Jude Miller Burke, author of “The Millionaire Mystique: How Working Women Become Wealthy – And How You Can, Too!”

The best career advice I received was to be persistent and resilient and to not let detours or failures derail my career. Successful men and women frequently have failures and detours in their careers, but do not let those bumps dissuade them. In fact, for successful people, failures are seen as a part of success and detours are seen as opportunities to push your career further ahead.

Rob VanDorin, associate director of career services and employer relations, Central Michigan University

Do your research. You should know the ins and outs of every company that you apply to before you even submit an application or resume. If you don’t know them, then you don’t know how to make yourself fit.

Bob LaBombard, CEO of GradStaff

Don’t let your college major, previous jobs or money define your career choices. Focus on the skills you possess, the business ideas you are most passionate about and your ability to make positive things happen. This advice is based on input from a variety of people over the years that repeated a lot of the same themes, but I would attribute the most significant influence to my dad, who was a very strong believer in a liberal arts education and the importance of adding value or doing your very best at everything you do.

Keri Burns, director of career services, University of West Georgia

The best career advice I ever received was to ‘always leave a position or department better than you found it.’ Whenever I take on a new role, my goal is to make a positive impact and leave a legacy, either through process improvements, innovative programming, organizational structure or any area that might need attention. I always want my involvement in any position I have held to have made a difference.

Walter L. Tarver, III, director of the career center, Stockton University in New Jersey

The best piece of career advice I ever received was to take advantage of every single opportunity that an employer presents to you. Though you may be hired into one position with a specific set of responsibilities, do not be afraid to move outside of those areas of responsibility. Volunteer for special projects, volunteer to be on committees and always look for ways to expand your skill set. This will serve you well as you look to move forward and advance in your career.

Jan Jones, author of “The CEO’s Secret Weapon: How Great Leaders and Their Assistants Maximize Productivity and Effectiveness”

My dad told me, “Don’t worry about what people say about you. When you’re on top, they’re talking about you, when you’re down, they’re talking about you, so just go ahead and live your life.” His advice gave me confidence to be myself and fortified me throughout my career. I keep my own counsel and honor my values without feeling intimidated by anyone, regardless of their position.

Beth Ricca, director of the Cahill Career Development Center, Ramapo College of New Jersey

The best career advice I ever received was from my very first boss 30 years ago. She told me, “Show, don’t tell.” At your job, on your resume or even in your personal life, don’t waste time telling others what you can offer. Instead, do your job very well to show your skills. On your resume, don’t list that you have excellent communication skills. Instead, include specific examples that demonstrate your excellent communication. Let your work speak for itself.

Caren Merrick, founder and CEO of Pocket Mentor

Invest in your communication skills. My first manager after college offered to send me to a communications seminar. I leapt at the opportunity and gained so much out of it that I was soon on the fast track. Periodically throughout my career, I have continued to invest in improving my communication skills – including workshops, online courses and books. Poor communication breeds problems, and good communication often solves them.

Leah Goldson, coordinator of alumni career services, University of Central Florida

The best career advice I received was to find a mentor. I’ve had a few in my life, and they’ve been instrumental in my career growth and have assisted me with gaining employment and providing valuable advice to keep me motivated in tough times.