• Greg Norton

One Reason Technical Candidates are not Surfacing


(Posted 3/13/18) to HR Exchange Network HREN group

Reposted 5/8/18 to Healthcare Executives Group with title, “One Reason Healthcare Technical Candidates are not Surfacing).

Reposted to SHRM 7/10/18



During a recent pro bono activity, our outplacement company assisted in placing a Chemical Engineering graduate from a major Midwestern land grant university. We had initially resisted working with him because we thought other pro bono cases that had come to our attention needed help more. After all, this guy had a technical degree from a prestigious university.


But his chemical case kept getting raised, so we finally took a look at the grad’s situation. He was working in a related field as a Technician, but his pay couldn’t keep up with his student loans. His generic resume met minimal standards. And after speaking with him, he seemed to be bright and reasonably social. When I asked him how many interviews for Chemical Engineer he had attended, the answer was zero.


When I asked him how he was conducting his career campaign, the real problem immediately surfaced. His campaign consisted of responding to ads posted at various job boards. When I asked him if he were researching companies and sending in his paperwork to hiring authorities, he responded with “I didn’t know you could do that.” He wasn’t signing up for “talent community” offers either. When I told him I couldn’t find his career profile on social media, he pointed to his strictly social profile on Facebook.


We spent some time putting together a better, more modern resume, and followed up with a social media profile that featured a robust Chemical Engineering career brand. I showed him some free on-line data bases with company and industry information. I offered to do more, but he declined further assistance and quickly got himself an entry level position in Chemical Engineering.


Curiously, I’ve encountered a lot of mid-career technical folks from Data Scientists to Brownfields Engineers who lacked that basic career campaigning information. This looks like a joint, national education problem for university career centers, corporations, state level employment organizations, and non-profits. Greg Norton, Outplacement Consultant at Career Advancement Services. Always interested in linking with others. Greg Norton, Outplacement Consultant at Career Advancement Services. Always eager to link to others.


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