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Job Tips

5 Steps to Make your Workplace Greener

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When it comes to living a green lifestyle, many find it can be difficult to maintain good habits at work. Here are some tips to help ensure that the business you work for is doing everything it can to reduce its carbon footprint.

 Research the Recycling
Talk to the maintenance and operations people at your office. Find out where all of those bottles and cans are going. If they’re not going to a recycling plant, then make it your priority to take them there yourself. Some employees have even made extra money this way, simply by taking bottles and cans to get recycled.

Coordinate Carpools and Public Transportation
Find out if your workplace provides incentives for employees who take public transit. Many offer some kind of subsidy to assist those who aren’t clogging the parking lot with their cars. If public transportation isn’t feasible for you, then figure out a way to carpool with co-workers who live near you.

Create a Clothing Drive
You may be surprised to discover that many of your co-workers throw out gently used clothing that could easily be given to a homeless shelter or donated to another great cause. In fact, it’s even estimated that a stunning 5 percent of all the items in landfills are textiles. Why not make your annual trip to Goodwill even more impressive? By setting up boxes for a clothing drive, you’ll help your co-workers to recycle their clothing. Since you’re doing all the legwork, there’s no reason for them not to bring their used clothes to work.

Use a Coffee Mug Instead of a Paper Cup
It can be difficult to get off the paper cup train, but making an effort to use the same reusable cup every day can inspire others, too. Over the course of a year, you’ll have saved hundreds of paper products by simply using your own mug.

Reuse Paper
Before tossing paper into the recycling bin, consider whether the other side can be reused for scrap paper. Also, when you’re printing out long manuals and other training materials, ensure that you’re using both sides of the paper when you’re setting up the document format on your computer.

Sustainability at work doesn’t have to be a drag. Being green in the workplace can be fun and easy, and it can provide excellent new ways to bond with your co-workers.

Workplace Etiquette Essentials: Understanding Confidentiality

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At its heart, workplace confidentiality is about respecting an employer’s wishes to control its data. Those who adhere to this basic form of workplace etiquette demonstrate their trustworthiness and future employment eligibility. They also leave themselves less exposed to the legal liability actions that commonly follow information breaches.

Of course, effective corporate privacy involves more than just knowing how to keep a secret. Here are some of the common pitfalls workers and employers ought to avoid.

Don’t Forget to Institute a Policy
Employers can’t take secrecy for granted or simply assume their employees will know how to maintain it. According to Business Management Daily, policies ought to describe the nature of sensitive data that might need to be safeguarded as well as provide company-approved methods for keeping it under wraps.

The Canadian nonprofit HR Council goes even further to say that policies should also detail the kinds of consequences employees may face for violating the rules. Most sources agree that employers need to cover critical privacy concepts during introductory orientation sessions. New hires should also sign documents acknowledging that they understand and consent to the privacy terms.

Be as Cautious as Possible 

Data breaches aren’t always due to intentional violations of workplace etiquette. In many cases, technology simply gets ahead of companies and their staff. Alternatively, employees may innocently discuss matters with other staff without realizing that those individuals aren’t cleared to receive the information in question.

While employers play a major role in instituting policies that prevent such mishaps, workers also need to remain vigilant. In most cases, it’s advisable to refrain from discussing anything related to work unless you have explicit permission. For instance, even though your friends may be dying to hear about your new job, it’s best to simply let them know you’re not permitted to talk about it.

Suppose your well-meaning uncle happens to gossip to someone that you’re working on such-and-such product and word gets back to your employer. Although the rumor may not have included any mission-critical details about the project, your boss could still lose faith in your ability to be trusted with vital work. By spilling the beans, you may have limited your career options.

Supplement Rule Following with Smart Judgment 
Finally, remember that employment policies and agreements might not cover everything. For instance, your new boss may take it on faith that you won’t discuss your salary with other workers or share passwords to corporate resources with colleagues who forget theirs.

Always think about the potential consequences of your actions, and act accordingly. Confidentiality can be tricky, but those who adhere to it properly have an easier time maintaining gainful employment and forging healthy professional relationships.

Top Five Phone Interview Tips

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A phone interview is often a convenient way to get a general feeling of the other person without being face to face. There isn’t the contact that is sometimes desired by both parties, but it works for those who aren’t in the same city or for those who are going through an initial conversation so that the interviewer can get a better idea of the demeanor of the person.

Scheduling

Make sure that you are available to take the call at the time of the interview. If you have children, then consider finding someone who can watch them so that there are no interruptions during the interview. If you know there is a time when you will not be available, you need to let the interviewer know so that a time is arranged that is suitable.

Documents

Keep any paperwork related to the position in front of you so that you don’t have to put the interviewer on hold. This could be certificates, personal information or references. When it comes to references, make sure you have all addresses and phone numbers as this is information that will likely be needed. There should also be a description of what the call is about so that you know what to discuss.

Detailed Answers

Try not to give the generic yes and no answers. These don’t give the interviewer any insight as to who you are. They could also end the interview just as soon as it started. However, you don’t want to elaborate so much on answers that you are on the phone for hours. A few sentences to explain yourself is often enough to give the interviewer an idea as to your background.

Positive Attitude

If you have a positive attitude and are smiling while talking, the other person on the phone can detect it. You want to make a good impression, even if no one can see you. When you smile, you will sound upbeat and friendly instead of sounding like you’re taking part in a normal conversation.

Ask Before Hanging Up

The person conducting the interview will let you know when it’s over, but you should ask questions about what to expect for the next step. Thank the interviewer for taking the time to speak with you, and ask about contact information for anyone who might need more information.

How to Build a LinkedIn that Makes a Good First Impression

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Having a profile on LinkedIn can be the perfect tool for people looking to network within their profession, or even search for new jobs. Anyone who looks at your LinkedIn profile will likely be judging you based on the content and its appearance. Making a good first impression on your profile is important and could make the difference when you’re job hunting or trying to make a new business contact.

Here are some tips to improve your LinkedIn profile and make a good first impression.

Add a Strong Profile Picture: Often your profile picture will be the first thing that a person notices on your profile. Do not settle for the gray avatar that comes standard with the profile. Instead, use the most professional looking photo of yourself you have. If you do not have a professional photo, then contact a photographer to get a head shot. Remember to smile.

Standout with your Headline: After your profile picture, your headline will be the next thing that is noticed by those visiting your profile. You may want to create a headline that will directly relate to the audience you want to target. If you want to have your profile be searchable, then you will want to include certain important keywords in your headline. Remember, the headline is important but keep it simple. Ten words or less will be sufficient.

Add Achievements to the Summary Field: It is important that potential employers or business contacts know what makes you stand out from the rest: your professional achievements. While deciding what some of your biggest achievements are, keep in mind the audience you want to target. Tailor which achievements get listed based on that audience. Feel free to add any media files that will showcase your achievements or talents. That can include any videos where you are a presenter, a screenshot of positive testimonials about your work, or any other media files that are relevant.

Be Thorough: Be sure to fill out as much as you can. Keep the information geared towards the audience you are targeting. Be sure to add keywords to your profile that target either the type of job you are seeking or the type of people you would like to network with. These keywords will help make your profile standout to that audience.

You will want to fill-in the sections regarding any volunteer work you have done, your skill set, and education to show what type of person you are. When filing out your work history, keep your information limited to those jobs that are relevant to what your goals are for your career.

What is Light Industrial Work and What Skills are Required?

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When a job seeker sees the term “light industrial,” he may imagine huge industries, complicated machines, hardhats and a lot of physical labor. Although these jobs are in the industrial sector, meaning they have to do with manufacturing, packaging and production, they do not require using heavy machinery or great physical strength or extensive skill sets.

Light industrial jobs are usually entry-level employment. They are an alternative to office work, retail or similar jobs for people who prefer a more active position.

Some of the jobs include:

  • Warehouse functions
  • Production line work
  • Order fulfillment, packaging and shipping
  • Maintenance
  • Assembly line positions

For people with more experience and specific types of training, other options include driving a forklift or other light machinery, welding, food item production and printing and binding work. In some states, welding and forklift driving require certification and licenses.

If you wish to get a light industrial job either on a temporary basis or full-time, you need certain skills that aren’t necessarily taught in a school classroom or training program.

Having a strong work ethic and the ability to self motivate are musts. You will not have a supervisor hanging over you to make sure you do everything on time every day. After a training period, you will be solely responsible for getting the job done properly and on time.

In many light industrial settings, your rate of speed and ability to get a task done on time directly affects other workers and their ability to complete their responsibilities. This is especially true for warehouse work and production line positions. If you do not fill orders quickly enough, the shipping department will not be able to send them out. If you create a backup of work because you are too slow, production numbers will fall.

Although most of these positions do not require excessive physical prowess, you may be required to lift a certain number of pounds safely in order to do the job. At the least, these types of positions usually involve staying on your feet or walking around for a large part of the day.

The ability to do simple mathematics, to read, to write and understand English and enough skills to operate necessary computer programs and machinery are required. You may need to pass a small test or probationary period before being solely responsible for a light industrial position.

Working Outdoors This Winter? Be Prepared

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If you are going to be working outdoors in extreme cold, you need to dress appropriately. Whether you are going to be exposed to the elements for a brief period of time or you will be spending hours fighting with cold, you need to take the same precautions. It only takes minutes to be affected by hypothermia and frostbite.

Pay Attention to the Forecast

Be aware of what is going on when it comes to weather. Pay close attention to the forecast and be concerned about more than just the temperature. Damp conditions and the wind could affect you as well. If you are going to be in direct contact with cold surfaces throughout your shift, you are going to feel the cold more than you would otherwise. Once you know exactly what you’re dealing with, you can plan accordingly.

Dress in Layers

Your mother knew best when she sent you outside bundled up from head to toe. You need to wear the proper material. If cotton gets wet, you will no longer have insulation. Other fabrics will continue to provide insulation even if they get damp, such as synthetic material, wool, and silk.

Wear layers. You can always remove any excess if the conditions permit. You’ll be out of luck if you don’t have enough. Your first layer should be material that will remove moisture through wicking. Long underwear that is made from synthetic material is a good option. Your next layer should provide insulation, such as another synthetic fabric or wool. Your final layer should protect you from the wind and from getting wet. Make sure your clothing isn’t too tight. Otherwise, you’ll feel overheated and want to peel off the clothing that is keeping you safe.

Don’t Forget the Extras

Your cold weather gear won’t be complete without a hat that won’t let heat escape from your head, insulated footwear, and quality gloves that are intended for the extreme cold. You need to cover as much of your skin as possible to stay warm and avoid the damaging effects of low temperatures. Consider a balaclava mask as well. It slips over your head and covers your entire face, with the exception of your eyes. Balaclavas are usually made of a synthetic material to ward off moisture and are popular with snowmobile riders and skiers.

Keep a Supply of Extra Clothing on Hand

When you head off to work, keep a duffel bag with extra clothing in your vehicle. Include a complete change of clothing, down to your socks and underwear, as well as your outer gear. You’ll be covered no matter what Mother Nature throws at you each day.

Winter Workplace Hazards and How to Avoid Them

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As the winter months approach, don’t overlook winter workplace hazards that could put you at risk.

Hazardous road conditions are one of the biggest dangers that any worker will face. Black ice, snow, slush, and more can make the roads slick. Not only are these problems that you could face every time you have to drive, conditions can change in an instant.

Whether you are on the road throughout the day as part of your job or you are commuting back and forth to work, you need to take care when driving. Pay attention to the weather forecast and give yourself extra time if you know that the conditions are poor. Watch your speed and be cautious, anticipating icy spots that you may not be able to see. Be aware of other drivers around you.

You’ll also want to make sure that your vehicle, whether it’s your personal vehicle or the company vehicle, is winterized. Check your antifreeze, your windshield wiper fluid, your tires, and your brakes. Stock your vehicle with emergency supplies such as road flares, a blanket, a set of jumper cables, a shovel, and a handy flashlight. You’ll be prepared if you break down or have an accident.

Avoid Nasty Falls

Ice and snow make for slippery surfaces, increasing the risk of a harmful fall. Protect yourself to the best of your ability. You can begin with wearing the proper shoes or boots for the conditions, making sure you have a good tread. You also need to watch where you are going and take your time. If possible, walk around any icy patches. If you can’t avoid them, walk slowly. Rushing won’t do you any good if you have to be rushed to the emergency room.

Beware of Dangerous Temperatures

Bitter cold is one of the most serious dangers you will have to face when you are working in the winter. If you know that you are going to have to face the elements, you need to dress appropriately to protect yourself from hypothermia or frostbite. Wear several layers of clothing, choosing fabric that won’t hold moisture as it insulates your body. Keep the heat in and the dampness out. Always cover your head, wear your gloves, and invest in a good pair of boots. Keep extra clothing, boots, hats, and gloves in your vehicle. If anything gets wet, you need to change in order to keep yourself dry and warm. If you wear the right clothing, you’ll keep yourself safe when the temperature drops.

Forge Offers Insurance for Temporary Workers

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As an hourly or part-time worker with Forge Industrial Staffing, you are eligible for health insurance provided by The American Worker, which serves 250,000 employers and employees across the United States.

You may already have a job interview and interview questions on your mind, so insurance should not be something to worry about. In a variable workforce, your needs will change, and that is where The American Worker comes in.

What Does The American Worker Offer You?

The American Worker specializes in hourly employees in an evolving workplace and gives clients a customized plan that works the best in their situations.

Customized fixed-indemnity medical plans are offered to either stand alone or be combined with self-funded plans. This not only prevents catastrophic loss, but also is cost-effective compared to the major medical plans out there. The American Worker has been assisting hourly and part-time employees with getting the most out of their benefits options since 1983.

Depending on what option an employer has chosen, employees may or may not have to use doctors within the Preferred Provider Organization network, or PPO. MEC plans do require employees to use a doctor who is in the network, meaning that they are on the list of doctors who will take your insurance. With fixed-indemnity, an employee can use any doctor, though those on the “Preferred Provider” list are recommended.

Communication

With a three-part marketing campaign, The American Worker educates employees about the enrollment process. This ensures clear communication and answers any questions an employee may have. The company also sends pre-enrollment postcards and enrollment guides to employees’ homes to let them know that a new benefit offering is starting and to assist them in the enrollment.

Simple Enrollment

With an attentive call center and online support, The American Worker makes things simple. You can enroll through their customer service representatives over the phone or enroll online. The customer service representatives are helpful and have at least two years’ experience with The American Worker, enabling them to answer all of your questions easily. Most of the options available through The American Worker do not require employees to answer health questions, which makes things easier.

Billing and Premium Made Easy

Their payroll cycle eliminates problems such as issuing refunds or partials, and each situation is customized to best fit a client’s needs. Employees can pay online and view their eligibility easily. Overall, an automated payroll deduction processing and smart billing make everything simple and give clients the plan they need.

If you need assistance finding a job, contact Forge Industrial Staffing. Visit https://www.forgestaff.com or call or visit one of our 11 locations in Indiana and Michigan.

Update My Resume? But I’m Happy Here

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Being happy in your job is great, but just as you shouldn’t let yourself go after marriage, it doesn’t do to let yourself go after finding the job that is “the one,” for similar reasons. Nobody wants to become the office equivalent of a sloppy, complacent couch potato.

Instead, keep the spice in your career by spending your career development time updating the skills that will be most valuable to you and your employer, while avoiding spending time and money in areas which might sound good at the time, but don’t fit your ultimate career goals. Making a regular quarterly assessment will let you figure out the skills you most need to gain, make sure you’re staying on track, provide accountability to yourself, help you plan for future career moves, and will let you know if you’re getting off track while any issues are still easily correctable.

In addition, doing a quarterly resume assessment allows time to appreciate yourself and your accomplishments, look at what is (and what isn’t) working for you, and helps you learn about your strengths. After all, it’s hard to play to them if you don’t know what they are. Put together, you’ll have a better sense of yourself and a deeper appreciation of your worth. This translates into a confidence boost, which is a benefit that accompanies you everywhere you go.

Of course, the primary purpose of a resume is to show yourself at your best to prospective employers, and doing a regular resume check can be invaluable in this area as well. Even though you’re currently happy where you are, you might be interested in a promotion if one opened up. You might get an unexpected call from a recruiter who wants to offer you your dream job. An opportunity that requires expert credibility, such as a speaking engagement, media interview or an especially juicy freelance offer, could fall into your lap. Or, as has happened to many people in the past decade, you might find yourself unexpectedly unemployed.

Sure, you could dash home in each of these scenarios and throw together a resume that might pass muster. But that kind of resume wouldn’t show you at your absolute best – especially if you are rushed, under a tight deadline or stressed while you are working on it.

Instead, if you have been updating your resume regularly, you will have a resume already prepared to send out without a delay that risks the job going to someone else. It will have your accomplishments recorded while they were still fresh in your mind. It will have the latest keywords, and the most current, stylish presentation to grab the reader’s attention. Writing errors will not be an issue, because you have spent time proofreading it when you are not stressed, rushed, or tired.

Unlike the other poor slobs, who had to quickly throw together a half-way acceptable resume, yours will be a work of perfection, honed to a razor-sharp edge. You will be prepared and confident, trained in the most useful skills and fully realizing your own value. You will have the competitive edge because you updated your resume regularly.

If you need assistance finding a job, contact Forge Industrial Staffing. Visit https://www.forgestaff.com or call or visit one of our 11 locations in Indiana and Michigan.

4 Misconceptions about Temporary Employment

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Whether you have gone through a staffing agency to find employment or not, you may harbor some misconceptions about it.

You may think, for example, that a stint at a staffing agency makes you look less employable later on in your career. This and other misconceptions lead a lot of people to not pursue temporary work, because they do not know about all of the benefits. Let’s take a look at some misconceptions people have about working for s staffing agency.

Misconception #1 – Working for a staffing agency makes you look less employable.

Working for a staffing agency does not make you less employable later on. It is true that you may not have as much to put on a resume if the jobs you accept from a staffing agency are short-term. But if they last for 3 months or more, you can still list them. And no matter how short the job was, you can still list the skills you used.

Misconception #2 – Temporary jobs mean less pay and menial labor.

Jobs through a staffing agency do not mean less pay, and all kinds of jobs can be available through a staffing agency. You can have your choice of temporary jobs, and tell the staffing agency your minimum rate of pay so that they make sure that you get what you are asking for.

Misconception #3 – Temporary jobs do not have flexible schedules.

A lot of people do not think that temporary jobs will have flexible schedules because either you are there to fill in for someone else or because the employers have a lot of temporary staffers to choose from. However, many temporary jobs do have flexible schedules. It is just like with permanent jobs; some have flexible schedules while others do not. Temporary work is no different.

Misconception #4 – Temporary work never leads to a permanent job.

The misconception that temporary jobs do not lead to permanent jobs is enough to turn a lot of people off from seeking temporary employment. However, a lot of people do get permanent jobs as a result of their temporary employment. If you are seeking a permanent job, you can tell the staffing agency upon applying. That way, the majority of the jobs they will send your way will be ones with a possibility of turning into permanent employment.

If you need assistance finding a job, contact Forge Industrial Staffing. Visit https://www.forgestaff.com or call or visit one of our 11 locations in Indiana and Michigan.

Employers can learn more at https://www.forgestaff.com/page/239/Clients.