My Headlines


We have moved to Wordpress! Posted by Jason Links to this post The Recruiting Front Lines has evolved. At the beginning of the year, I changed jobs within my company, moving away from Outreach and Education, and into my new role as Director of Business Development. While I remain closely involved with our field activity, I am now more focused on strategic partnerships, social media, and the world of internet recruitment resources. As I have made this change, the focus of my blog content has also changed. Recently, I began to feel that many of the ideas I had for blog posts would not fit within the framework of The Recruiting Front Lines. This was a cause of some frustration, as I felt that I was either misrepresenting my content with the title of my blog, or that I was stifling my writing because I felt it didn't fit. To rectify this situation, I have created a new blog home, now on WordPress. I am still ironing out the wrinkles, but feel that it is far enough along that I can move all my past content, and begin posting all new content, at the new address. I would like to formally welcome everyone to come check out my new home at I can't wait to hear what you think! Best Regards, and Thank you for your time and attention over the past 18 months. Jason

Mar 12, 2009

RFL: Not just another day in the office.

A few weeks back, my company agreed to a proposal I put forth to offer free job hunting workshops on-site at companies that are forced to lay people off this year. We've been offering this content at state agencies and college career centers across New England for almost 5 years now.

With the economy affecting so many businesses, we thought it would be a good opportunity to do good, and offer assistance to those in need. Additionally, we've seen a real lack of quality, informed, and up-to-date information being provided by other programs. Of course, there's no doubt it provides our business with good PR and an opportunity to stay visible despite a sluggish job market.

Within the first couple days of sending out the offer to businesses, I received nearly two dozen requests for more information. To date, we now have 4 on-site workshops scheduled in the next couple weeks. Today, I presented the first at a local insurance company. This company had decided to close it's Maine site, to consolidate operations on the west coast. As a result, around 100 experienced insurance employees are now looking for new work... and there just aren't so many insurance jobs to be had. So what now?

I am very grateful for the opportunity to utilize my skills in an effort to help people find success during such a difficult transition. There seemed to be good enthusiasm, considering the circumstances, and a general attitude of moving forward. I spoke to three groups, totaling around 75 employees, and most were considering seeking out completely new opportunities in new areas. One of the keys to my presentation is to establish a good rapport with the group, and do my best to steer them toward being open to new opportunities. When faced with such a disruptive force as a layoff, it can be terribly difficult to remain positive and open to opportunities. But, of course, without a good frame of mind, it's difficult to move forward.

I go out of my way to reinforce that the first step to finding a great new job is self analysis. From my experience and perspective, I believe that success in the job hunt is related to the amount of time and effort put in to identifying exactly what you want and focusing your search on the best potential career matches, based on core values, mission, vision, and skills required. While some people advise that it's best to send out 50 resumes a week every week, I try to steer people toward narrowing down their search, and customizing their effort for each company they apply to. In fact, I advised that no one should ever send out the exact same version of their resume twice!

The idea that hr professionals and recruiters are focused more than ever on fit and culture can be news to job seekers. I spend a great deal of time during the workshop to beat folks over the head with this idea. As a hiring manager, I want to know that you want to be part of my company, and that you'll be a good fit. Fit leads to retention, reducing turnover costs, and increasing productivity and profitability over the long term. With that understanding, it's vital that you seek out opportunities that you believe will be a good fit between the core values, mission, and vision of you and the company you're seeking employment with.

Overall, I believe it was a very good day, and hope that some piece of information I shared today will help these good people as they head out on their next exciting adventure.

Mar 10, 2009

RFL: Job Seekers Scammed NBC30

Job Seekers Scammed


Updated 10:30 PM EDT, Mon, Mar 9, 2009

Related Topics:Jason Blais

As the supply of jobs dries up, those on the demand side are facing increased competition for what's left.

Online jobs database have seen a rise in sham jobs.

Many people looking for work head online, but there's a growing trend that some of the listings aren't legitimate.

"I actually got a call this morning from a friend. She had applied for a job and had followed up with a phone call and was told that she had to put up $100 up front to be considered for the job. Clearly that's not a legitimate job opportunity," said Jason Blais, director of business development for

Blais says that many online jobs databases have seen a rise in sham jobs.

"They realize that people are desperate to find work and so they are putting out their bait to try to attract them," Blais said.

You should never be asked to give out personal information while you're in the application process, according to Blais.

"People are also reporting being asked for Social Security Numbers and other private information that jobs seekers should never give out before they are offered a job."

He also recommends jobs seekers do their homework. Just because a company has a website, doesn't mean it's real.

'It's critical to make sure you are researching the company," Blais said. "On our job board we make sure that every company has a company profile, that there's contact information."

Blais recommends looking for an in-state address and telephone number and contacting the Department of Labor for more information, before you apply.

"It sounds simple, but if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is," Blais said

Find this article at:

Mar 9, 2009

RFL: The Skinny on EFCA- Unbiased Facts and Biased Opinions

I sat through a 90 minute presentation by a labor attorney speaking to HR folks about the issues associated with the Employee Free Choice Act, EFCA. While there was a significant undertone of fear-mongering and scare tactics employed to generate calls to his firm, the speaker did offer a good general overview of the facts associated with EFCA, as well as a nice history unions and the National Labor Relations Board.

I've done my best to provide some unbiased facts along with some biased opinions on the issue. Please feel free to agree, disagree, or not care.

Here's how the current secret ballot election process works:
  • Union organizers obtain authorization cards signed by at least 30% of Bargaining Unit. These cards grant permission for unions to represent the employee in a collective bargaining agreement or to hold seek a representation election.
  • Union filed petition with National Labor Relation Board (NLRB)
  • NLRB sends written notice to employer, who is then responsible to post notice in workplace, and provide employee roster to NLRB to verify 30%
  • Normally within 45 days of petition for election, NLRB schedules Representation Election.
  • Employer required to post election notice in workplace, election is then typically held in neutral site on employer premises, and is supervised by NLRB rep.
  • Ballots counted in presence of observers.
  • Outcome of election is basd on the majority of ballots cast. If there are 50 eligible voters, but only 20 vote, 11 votes constitute a majority which would then represent all 50 employees.
  • In the current system, employeers have an opportunity to educate employees within reasonable guidelines- no promises, threats, solicitation of grievances, change in work conditions, interrogation, etc. Employees also have an opportunity to discuss among themselves.
  • Currently Unions lose a majority of elections. Unions also fear that employer commit unfair labor practices to influence employees.
So that's today. Why do we need an EFCA, and what are the issues? That's up to interpretation and perspective. Anti-EFCA pundits would say that the objectives are to avoid educational campaigns by employers and avoid giving voice to dissenting employees. In reality, the election process is really eliminated, and employers would be required to enter collective bargaining with a bargaining unit based solely on signed authorization cards by a majority. NLRB then resolves all bargaining unit issues. Here's some bullets on the concerns by employers:
  • NLRB counts authorization cards, if there's majority support, the Union is certified and obligation to bargain begins.
  • There is no requirement to notify employers of the distribution or collection of authorization cards until they are signed, avoiding any opportunity for employers to open dialogue with employees.
  • There is no requirement for a general notice to employees regardign the organizing activity, meaning union organizers can pick and choose who they give cards to. The fear is that influencers against organizing would be kept in the dark.
  • Removal of the secret ballot creates the opportunity for coercion and intimidation in the solicitation of authorization cards.
  • Bargaining MUST commence within 10 days of written request from Union. The anti-EFCA argument is that no company can get a bargaining position together within 10 days, particularly if they don't know it's coming.
  • If there's no agreement within 90 days from beginning of negotiation, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service is assigned, and then the sides have just 30 days to reach agreement. After that, an arbitration panel shall render a settlement decision which is binding for 2 years. Ultimately, this could incentivize the union to make outlandish requests in the negotiation and refuse settlement, believing that an arbiter will meet both sides halfway.
Okay, so that's not so brief. I'm willing to admit that I am pro-union, and feel that there must be institutions in place to protect employees rights, particularly as capitalism spirals out of control and the wage gap between executives and employees widens. BUT THIS ISN'T THE BEST LEGISLATION WE CAN COME UP WITH.

Have thoughts? Please share!

Mar 8, 2009

NH's 2009 Human Capital Summit Update

I absolutely cannot believe that it's been 10 months since the Granite State HR Conference hosted it's 2008 event! Even more scary to me, is that our 2009 event is now just 2 months away!!! Actually, since joining the board for the conference back in May of last year, I've been pleasantly surprised by just how smooth this process has gone. This year, we're expecting a record turnout as participants due to three important factors:
  1. The 2009 program has been filled with business critical sessions that will help companies survive and thrive in the current economy.
  2. Attendees will have access to receive five HRCI credits, including 2 sessions certified for Strategic credits!
  3. Keynoter Bert Jacobs, CEO of Life Is Good, Inc., is a dynamic speaker who's talks combine humor, passion, and personality with strategic business messages to offer a powerful and unique experience for the audience.
Check out the list of certified sessions at the Grante State HR Conference Blog! Just a click away at Go NOW!

In addition, as we move closer to the event, speakers from the 2009 Human Capital Summit will be contributing to the blog space! To stay up to date and informed, sign up for email updates when you get there!

Jason Blais on FoxNews

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