Free Kaplan MS Office College Course

Kaplan University and Goodwill Industries are hosting another free MS Office Skills beginning on Monday, June 12th.  Classes are at no cost and are open to anyone in our community. Please feel free to pass this information to those in the Omaha/Council Bluffs area.

This course includes the following topics; Introduction to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and cloud-based file management systems. Students will also learn how to analyze appropriate software applications to address solutions within a profession.

Class Dates: Monday, June 12 through Monday, August 14, 2017 (10 weeks)

Meeting Day/Time: Every Monday 10am – 2pm

Location: 4805 N 72nd St, Omaha, NE 68134 (Goodwill)
Space is limited, so please contact us prior to the Wednesday, June 7th  deadline.

Please review below flyer for further information, or contact Sherri Kallon at 402.231.1977 or [email protected].

Thank you!

Megan R. Sharpe | READY Services Manager

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Find Your Future Career Fair – May 16, 2017

Don’t forget to join us for this awesome event on May 16th! Recruiters from all participating businesses will be on site for individuals to share their skills/experience with and to discuss potential employment opportunities! We will also have our computer lab open to job seekers so that they can apply on-site and discuss positions with said recruiters. We will have employers from all sectors of employment present!

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Eight Ways to Pitch Your Diverse Background as an Employment Asset

It has become more common to hear employers talk about valuing workplace diversity and inclusion. For Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers, this meant including a certain number of people of different genders or races in the workplace. Today’s Millennial generation, however, prefers “cognitive diversity,” or the blending of different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives within a team.

As employers seek to hire people with diverse racial, sexual, class or religious backgrounds, you can drive the conversation about the value that your own diversity brings to a company.

Use these shifts in values to your advantage when applying and interviewing for jobs. Here are eight benefits of a diverse workplace that you can cite when talking with employers:

  1. Adaptability—Having a workforce of diverse experiences and backgrounds will better prepare organizations to adapt to unforeseen challenges and opportunities.
  2. Range of Service—A diverse workforce can impact the range of services the organization can provide.
  3. Varying Perspectives—Employing professionals from a variety of industries and backgrounds can bring new and different perspectives to the table.
  4. Learning and Growth—Having a diverse staff will create opportunities for people to get to learn more about different backgrounds and professions.
  5. Communication—A staff that can conduct business and provide customer service in multiple languages means opportunities to grow and expand into new markets.
  6. Increased Productivity—An organization with a diverse workforce can often increase productivity by tapping into the wealth of knowledge on staff.
  7. Increased Innovation—Having a wide variety of opinions, skills, experiences and backgrounds on staff is a great way to encourage innovation in the workplace.
  8. Satisfy a Diverse Customer Base—An organization whose staff represents its diverse customer base is a great way to create connections between the staff and the customer.
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Tips for Narrowing Down Your Career Interests

When you first start working, you may try a number of fields and position types to see what works best for you; when it’s time to start a career track, though, it helps to be certain about your goals and what you want to do.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, it is estimated that the average baby boomer held 11.7 jobs between the ages of 18-48. Millennials are estimated to hold twice that many in a variety of different career fields throughout their natural working lives.

Settling on a path is hard with so much bouncing around. Here are some tips for narrowing down your career interests and seeking out the best opportunities for your long-term career aspirations:

  • Explore Career Tracks: Created by the Office of Career Services at NYU’s Graduate School of Public Service, the career tracks exercise is an excellent tool for identifying career-paths best suited to your individual interests. While the exercise will take some time to complete, it is guaranteed to help you to narrow down viable career opportunities, which is the first step that you should take.
  • Establish Goals: The first and most important step in narrowing down your career interests is to take a moment and identify your personal and professional goals, then determine what you are willing to sacrifice in order to achieve them. Take the time to write down what is most important to you and focus your energy on seeking out opportunities that will satisfy your needs on a holistic level.
  • Find the Right Work Environment: Investigate companies you may be interested in so that you can determine if they will be a good fit for your personality. Web resources like Indeed.com, Glassdoor.com and Salary.com are free to use and provide users with access to information like salaries, incentive programs, reviews of the management staff and just about anything else someone would need to decide if the environment would be good fit. You can also request an exploratory interview or job shadow.
  • Network: Actively seek out relationships with other professionals. Not only can discussing your goals be helpful in identifying viable career opportunities, but it is also helpful to be notified when job prospects become available. While resources like CareerBuilder.com, Monster.com or Job.com can be helpful in your efforts to search for jobs, having a relationship with an internal employee who is willing to refer you for an opening is invaluable. Strive to grow your professional network, find others who share similar career aspirations and brainstorm creative solutions to achieve your goals.

If you are interested in learning more about identifying viable career opportunities, request a virtual career mentor at GoodProspects®, or visit the career discussion forums.

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Six Ways to Look for Work … and How to Use Them

You may not know exactly where to start, but resources, each with their own advantages and disadvantages, are plentiful when it comes to looking for employment.

  • Employment opportunities are a standard feature of all newspapers and are easily accessible and navigated. If you are relocating to a new area, they probably make the most sense, as they will help orient you to the general business climate. Be aware that many newspapers, especially in large cities, have more extensive employment sections on their websites.
  • Many communities have workforce development organizations that assist with employment. Career One Stop centers, Job Corp USA and Goodwill all have the staff and expertise to narrow your search and guide you through the process. All are likely to offer a list of job search engines and calendars of local hiring events.
  • The Internet is also a common way to look for work. Many job search engines exist. Look for sites that use your experience and personality to tailor results and show positions you may be best suited for, such as Indeed.com and www.ApplyApp.ly.
  • Engaging with your social network is still touted as a primary way to find a job. Ask friends, family, former teachers, etc. for information about their employers and knowledge of their industry. If you have a family member or friend who currently works for a company of interest, ask who you would contact for more information. Also consider using online social networks.
  • Cold calling still has a place in the job search process. Identify a company of interest, contact the human resources department and ask if someone could show you around for 10 or 15 minutes so you can gain a better understanding of what they do and why they do it. This is called an “informational interview” and allows you to gather information so you can make a good decision about where you would like to work and are most likely to succeed. Employers often value your initiative and are more likely to offer you an interview when your application is submitted.
  • If you can use a staffing company to find temporary assignments that are targeted to your interests, you may have a great way to learn of job openings. Be aware that some staffing companies assist with permanent placements for a fee, or expect you to refrain from accepting a job with one of their clients for a period of time. It’s best to learn how they operate before using this approach.

Regardless of how you look for jobs, keep an eye out for scams that promise high wages for limited or no investment of time, money or effort—you may spend more money for the job than you could ever hope to make back. The Federal Trade Commission is an excellent resource for researching employment scams.

Looking for employment is a time-consuming activity, so you should make a plan based on your comfort level with technology, desire for assistance, amount of time you are able to devote to job search, and understanding of your work preferences. Decide which resources work best for you, set aside time each day to focus on job search, and be prepared for the unavoidable ups and downs!

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Tips for Writing a Cover Letter

Cover letters are an important part of the job application process. They give the employer a deeper look into what you have to offer and why you would be a good fit for their company. I’m going to share a few tips below on how to make your cover letter stand out.

  • Make it about the company. Every job you apply to should have a personalized cover letter that explains why you want that specific job. This shows the employer that you have taken the time to do your research on this position and this company. Look at the description for the job you’re applying to and match your skills to those they’re looking for.  You can then write about how you have shown those skills in the past.
  • Make it concise. A cover letter should ideally be about three paragraphs long: how you found out about the job, why you want the job, and what skills you have that would benefit the company. It should never be longer than one page.
  • Make it personal. The best way to address a cover letter is to find out who will do the hiring. You can call or email someone in an administrative role at the company to see if they have the contact information for the person who will do the hiring. If you can’t find that information, just write “Dear Hiring Manager” or “Dear Recruiter.” Do not say “To Whom it May Concern.”

Here are some additional sources on crafting good cover letters. When in doubt, contact a GoodProspects virtual career mentor to coach you through the job application process.

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Improve your job skills with READY

READY services provided by Goodwill offers free, one-on-one, job readiness services to anyone who is unemployed or underemployed.

Assistance with resumes, job applications, cover letters, letter of explanation or referrals to other programs in our community are just some of the employment assistance services READY provides. If your barriers to employment keep you from searching for work or if you aren’t confident in your interviewing skills, the READY program is for you.

Since July 2016, READY has helped 665 individuals in the Omaha and Council Bluffs area with employment assistance. Of those served, 200 individuals have found employment with an average wage of $12.26 per hour and 38 hours per week.

READY is continuously looking for participants and organizations to work with. Our services are offered at no cost to participants or partnering agency. We currently partner with seven agencies in the Metro Area. For those not able to come to our main office on 72nd & Ames, READY may be able to bring services to outbound partnering locations.

If you have any questions, or would like to set up an appointment, please contact Megan at 402-231-1901.

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Dress to impress!

Your resume is written and up to date, you have worked on your interviewing skills and you got an interview for the job congratulations! What are you going to wear?

Let Goodwill help you find that right outfit at an affordable price! Our stores have a vast selection of professional and business casual work wear.

Depending on the type of position and organization you are interviewing for will determine your interview wardrobe. Here are some examples of what to wear to impress.

  1. Business professional attire

For women:

You can’t go wrong with a blazer, this one is cute and professional. I love the pink with the cream and gold, it just looks trendy but also shows that you can dress for the position. Paired with tailored black slacks, a long necklace and black pumps.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total cost: $26.65

For men:

The days of wearing a suit and tie at the office are gone. Most professional men are leaning more towards the button up shirt and slacks. This light gray button up paired with a pair of dark gray pants has a professional look without look stuffy. Add a brown belt and shoes and your turning heads.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total cost: $31.06

  1. Business casual

For women:

This cute polka dot print dress pair with a red blazer and black heals shoes off your personality, the pattern shoes that you are fun and a little daring. I love the pops of color in the red belt and blazer, it’s a little bit more casual with the less structured blazer but still professional.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total cost: $20.96

For men:

Who doesn’t love plaid! This plaid button up pair with khaki’s gives you trendy business casual look. Paired with a brown belt and brown shoes the look is complete.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total cost: $36.06

Goodwill, helping you dress to impress without breaking the bank. Check out one of our 17 stores to see what you can find!

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