People and Organizations in North Toronto
The Little Book of Youth Employment was a project by The Midtown Toronto Youth Council; members include A. Mnatsakanyan, J. Zhang, K. Yeung and M. Rosen, with support from J.Fernandes, CIS Coordinator with P.O.I.N.T. Inc. Content reviewed and edited by Point staff including, M.Mostafa, Special Projects Coordinator.
POINT (People and Organizations in North Toronto), June 2017. All Rights reserved. For permission to reprint any part of the Youth Employment Booklet, contact POINT at 416- 487-2390 in regards to copyright restrictions. This booklet may not be electronically reproduced. Every effort has been made to provide accurate information in this Booklet. Any errors and/or omissions can be brought to the attention of POINT, and will be addressed in any future reprinting. POINT does not accept any responsibility or liability for any loss, damage or injury as a result of relying on information contained in the Youth Employment Booklet.
PLEASE NOTE As time passes, the information in this booklet will become out of date. If you find that the information is no longer current and/or if you require any further assistance please call POINT at 416-487-2390
Imagery on front cover was adapted from Harbo Arts. Retrieved May 2017, from http:// harboarts.com/artwork/toronto-skyline-silhouette-vector-graphic_1360701113043/.
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Table of Contents 1
POINTâ€™s Mandate and the Purpose of the Booklet
People and Organizations in North Toronto
People and Organizations in North Toronto
Top 8 Ways to Job Search
Contacting Potential Employers i)
Addressing the Receiver
Resumes and Cover Letters i)
The Cover Letter
The Interview i)
After the Interview
Preparing for the Workforce
“The Young and the Jobless." Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. N.p., 22 Nov. 2013. Web. 08 May 2017. P.O.I.N.T Inc. (People and Organizations in North Toronto) is a long established grass roots organization in North Toronto. Our mission is to provide or facilitate the delivery of services to address unmet community needs of those who live, work and study in North Toronto, through information, Education and Community Engagement. POINT aims to improve availability and increase awareness of social services in the community. POINT has been instrumental in initiating programs and organizations such as the Block Parent Program, SPRINT Senior Care, The Anne Johnston Health Station and North Toronto Memorial Community Centre. POINT also acts as a catalyst by putting people and solutions together. Our current areas of focus are: youth, newcomers, seniors, low-income individuals and encouraging civic participation in the community. The MTYC Employment Booklet is another POINT initiative. This guide has been created to provide information to the youth of Toronto. Alternative resources are available at the end of the guide for additional support.
"8 Things to Consider When Looking for a New Job." Mental Floss. N.p., Dec. 2015. Web. 10 May 2017. 3 –4
Schwartz, Mark. "How To Send a Formal Email For a Job." Monster. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2017. 5
“Keeping an eye on recruiter behaviour." The Ladders. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 May 2017. 6
Gmoser, Justin. "A résumé expert reveals what a perfect résumé looks like." Business Insider. N.p., 07 Apr. 2016. Web. 08 May 2017. 7-11
Shavin, Naomi. "Tips For The Perfect Resume And Cover Letter." Tips For The Perfect Resume And Cover Letter. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 May 2017. <https://www.forbes.com/sites/ naomishavin/2014/07/16/tips-for-the-perfect-resume-and-cover-letter/ #30f399bd30f3>. 12-17
"Preparing for Interviews." Princeton University. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 May 2017. 18
Smith, Jacquelyn. "19 Things You Should Do On Your First Day Of Work." Business Insdier. N.p., 27 Feb. 2014. Web. 09 May 2017. 19
P.O.I.N.T. Inc. 200 Eglinton Avenue West, 1st Floor Toronto, ON M4R 1A7 Phone: (416) 487-2390 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.pointinc.org
Gillett, Rachel. "17 things you should never say on your first day of work." Independant Newspaper UK. N.p., 03 Dec. 2015. Web. 09 May 2017. <http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/17-thingsyou-should-never-say-on-your-first-day-of-work-a6758896.html>.
https://ymcagta.org/employment-and-immigrant-services/employment -services YMCA offers programs that help individuals to gain skill sets, attend workshops for creating their portfolio and resume. They also offer individuals the opportunity to work at YMCA and gain working experience. Volunteering and Experience Volunteer Toronto http://www.volunteertoronto.ca/
The idea to write a booklet on Youth Employment was conceived in the Fall of 2016, when the Midtown Toronto Youth Council (MTYC) began to meet and discuss issues affecting youth in North Toronto. Youth employment was proposed as a project topic and ultimately chosen. This booklet was a collaborative effort, initiated by the Midtown Toronto Youth Council, supported and funded by P.O.I.N.T. Inc. (People and Organizations in North Toronto). Youth employment is a critical issue in Toronto which certainly affects North Toronto just as much as any other area of the city. In fact, according to the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, in a published study from 2013, Toronto's youth unemployment rate was 18.1 per cent -- the worst of any region in Ontario. Toronto has the widest gap between youth and adult employment in the province, with a difference of 21.8 per cent in 2013-- the highest it's ever been.1 This booklet serves as a guide for youth seeking employment in the North Toronto area, however much of the advice contained within is transferable to other areas of life. The guide is comprised of five principal sections, an appendix and a resources section as an addendum.
We hope that you, as a young person in the North Toronto area will find this guide to be of use. We wish you the best of luck in your future job searching and eventual careers 21
JOB SEEKING There are many things to consider when hunting for a job. Here are a few questions you may want to keep in mind.
Settlement.org http://settlement.org/ontario/employment/find-a-job/ Settlement.org is an organization specialized for immigrants in Canada. It provides tips for applying for a job, an online industry-specific job listings and the current labour market information.
Are you passionate about this job?
Does it challenge opportunities? 2
Will this job help you to get where you want to be in the future?
Do you know much about the company’s history and stability?
What about the co-workers and/or your boss?
What are the hours?
The Skilled Immigrant Information Center http://pwp.vpl.ca/siic/job-search-resources/finding-companiesthat-hire-immigrants/ This is a center that assist newcomers in Canada with different kinds of employment related information and they are provided both online and in-person (info center located in Vancouver). Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council http://triec.ca The council provides an all rounded free service to aid Immigrants with their job search. Their initiatives include the mentoring partnership, professional immigrants networking, connecting with experienced and successful immigrants individuals and opportunity to learn with the TRIEC campus. For the General Public: City of Toronto-Employment & Social Services
Weigh the pros and cons before you make your decision.
http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly? vgnextoid=0ebe83cf89870410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD This is a free service provided by the City of Toronto to all Canadian residents. It helps individuals with finding a job and the training they need to find a job. It connects workers, with the employers and all Ontario work programs. Accessible Community Counselling and Employment Services http://accesemployment.ca
TOP 8 WAYS TO JOB SEARCH
For Students: Government of Ontario
Job Clubs traditionally operate as a support group.
The group meets in the morning and spends the afternoon seeking employment Individually; visiting organizations and interviewing.
The idea is to treat ‘job hunting’ as a job in itself .
Works best for small businesses.
Knock on the door of the business- not the employer’s home!
More opportunities come with more connections.
Using an employment agency
Percentage depends on the company. Agencies will take a percentage of your salary to cover their headhunting services
Answering ads in the paper
Low salary jobs have a higher success rate using this method than high salary jobs
Government employment office
The Ministry of Employment and Social Services offers free computer access and Career support to aid you in your job search.
Mailing your resume to employer
Mailing your resume/delivering your resume in person may be a good way to have the employer keep your resume on file in case there is a future posting
Looking for postings online
Many employers are using the internet as a tool to reach to a larger audience so the listing may be available on several websites to ensure a variety of eligible candidates apply.
https://www.ontario.ca/page/job-programs-youth This is a list of programs provided on the Government of Ontario website and by various organizations to assist young people to find a job and gain work experience, or learn from the professionals. Youth Employment Services https://www.yes.on.ca/ This is an organization that provides youth with employment opportunities and connect employer with youth. It holds workshops and programs to better educate youth with interview, writing resume or receive training for a successful work experience. JVS Toronto https://www.jvstoronto.org/find-a-job/youth-employment-services/ This organization offers programs for high school and post-secondary students, young entrepreneurs, and at-risk youth looking to enter for the workforce. St Stephens House http://www.sschto.ca/ This organization offers an online job board, five employment programs to help youth jump start their careers: Youth Job Connection, Youth Job Connection Summer Program, Youth Job Link, Retail Career Pathway Peak Basics Program, and netWORKS. YMCA of Greater Toronto https://ymcagta.org/ This organization offers staff who will assist you to identify your employment goals, access to government and no-fee programs, interactive information sessions, volunteer opportunities and networking.
Visiting the potential employer
Once you have found the job you want, make sure you thoroughly research the company/organization before you take the next step and apply/interview. This will demonstrate that you are prepared and have the ability to represent the organization well. 4
CONTACTING POTENTIAL EMPLOYERS To request an application or inquire about a job, you will need to contact the employer directly. The employer or the organization’s contacts are always included on the job posting. One of the most convenient ways to reach them is through e-mail. E-mail is your first contact with a potential employer - it is a first impression which is why it is crucial to treat it with no less importance than your interview or resume.
Common Interview Questions Questions asked by applicants
What are the strengths of the organization or department?
What are the career opportunities for someone entering this position?
What kind of orientation and training is available to new employees?
How large is the company/college? How large is this particular department/major?
To whom would I be reporting and what kind of communication channels are there?
What are the long-range plans for this organization?
How long was my predecessor in this position? Why did he/she leave?
How will I be evaluated? How often?
Is there an opportunity to transfer from one division to another?
What are the prospects for promotion in the future? What are some of the qualities or accomplishments you would consider important for promotion?
What is the management philosophy of this organization? What is the general philosophy?
In what areas of the organization do you expect growth?
Is continuing education encouraged? Is tuition reimbursement offered?
Can you tell me about the history of this position, and changes anticipated?
What are your expectations of the person in this position?
Is overtime the norm in this office?
What kind of support staff is available? What is the ratio of support staff to professionals, and how is work distributed?
Generally, what percentage of time will be devoted to each of my responsibilities?
E-mail Etiquette: Making a First Impression One of the most important things to consider is whether your username is appropriate. An appropriate name refers to something that is professional and clean, for instance, includes your name, initials or some variation. It is recommended that you don’t use an e-mail created years ago named firstname.lastname@example.org.” It should be neutral and show your name.
For example, email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t leave the subject space empty or the employer can move the message to trash or spam. Keep the subject title simple and straightforward. For instance, “Application for Sales Associate” or “Job Inquiry –Your name.” Addressing the receiver of the message
Preface your note with either “To whom it may concern” or address the hiring person by name.
Ensure the hiring name is correct by searching the name on the company website or simple say “Dear Hiring Team.” 18
Common Interview Questions
Clearly identify yourself and the reason for your e-mail in the first or second sentence.
Questions asked by employers
Tell me about yourself.
What are your short-range and long-range career goals, and how are you preparing to achieve them?
Why did you choose this career?
What do you consider to be your greatest strengths? Weaknesses?
How would you describe yourself? How would a friend or professor describe you?
How has your college experience prepared you for your career?
Why should I hire you?
How do you determine or evaluate success?
In what ways do you think you can make a contribution to our company?
Describe the relationship that should exist between a supervisor and those reporting to him/her.
Describe your most rewarding high school/college experience.
If you were hiring for this position, what qualities would you look for?
What led you to choose your field or major?
What have you learned from participation in extracurricular activities?
How do you work under pressure?
Describe the ideal job/college.
Why did you decide to seek a position with this organization and what do you know about us?
What major problems have you encountered and how did you deal with it?
What criteria are you using to evaluate the company/college for which You hope to work/attend?
“Hope this message finds you well. I am reaching out to you to apply for the position of Style Advisor which was posted on your website”.
Next, in the body of your text, briefly state why you are interested and/or what makes you qualified for the position. “My organization, loyalty to your brand, experience in customer service and possession of a Customer Adviser Certificate match your specifications exactly”.4
As you write the introduction and expressed your interest, attach a copy of your resume and a customized cover letter, thanking the employer for being considered, and sign with your full name.
“Please take a moment to review my application documents. It would be a pleasure to hear from you soon and discuss this exciting opportunity. Sincerely, Jenny Dunn”.
Recruiters spend an average of six seconds r reviewing your application documents before they develop an opinion about your candidacy.5
This fact illustrates the importance of having a resume that is concise and able to stand out from the other applicants.
RESUMES AND COVER LETTERS
A resume is a point-form summary of your achievements and qualifications for the job.6
Figure 2: Cover Letter Sample 2
A Cover letter is a written description explaining how your skills and experiences make you a good fit for the position. In most cases, you need to provide recruiters with both. This section will guide you through the process of writing a professional resume and cover letter and boost the quality of your submission.
Follow the Steps outlined on pages 6-10
Resume Writing A resume for a student or a recent college graduate with limited experience shouldn’t exceed one page. Try to include as many qualifications, experiences, and achievements as you can that are relevant to the job you are applying for. For example, if you are considering a job in retail, list any organization skills, customer service experience, or training that you have obtained. The Title and Contact Information Your full name (first, middle name or initial and last name) should be on top of the page, followed by your professional e-mail, one phone number, and a home address below.7 Career Summary As someone with limited experience, a summary statement is recommended to introduce yourself. A summary statement can include 2-3 points about your experience and how it relates to the position. Here is an example of a short and informative summary statement or objective for a Camp Counselor position: ‘Detail-oriented high school junior with three years of leadership involvement. Highly motivated, bilingual student with experience ranging from working with kids to a vice-president of a club. Ability to manage large groups while involving in an activity and ensuring safety of individuals’ 7
Appendix A: Figure 1: Cover letter sample 1 DON’T
Common mistake 1: did not make it personal
Common Mistake 2: does not show his passion for math
Common Mistake 3: is not formatted correctly
Education and Honors/Achievements In this section, write the name of your school followed by any academic honors, awards, and scholarships below (e.g. summa cum laude, National Biology Competition Finalist, 3rd place hockey at OFSAA). You may also include your GPA and any relevant certificate programs.8 Relevant Skills In this section, list the skills that you think will make you a great candidate for the position. Include the languages you speak, your proficiency with various computer programs and social media, public speaking, time-management, organizational skills and so on. The skills you list have to relate to the job you are applying for. 9 Previous Experience Whether it was a volunteer position or a paid job - it is still an experience that you should include in your application. Note, the more relevant it is to the position, the better.
Make sure to include the start and end date of the experience. It is recommended that you elaborate on the contribution you made to the organization you worked with. If possible, list your achievements in point form below the position title.
Quantify your accomplishments whenever possible; for instance, how did you contribute to the organization’s mission, how many students did you teach basic algebra, how did you improve customer satisfaction, increase productivity, and so forth?
The Cover Letter
A cover letter is an opportunity for you to show recruiters what kind of a person you are and separate yourself from others.
Through your reading of this guide, we sincerely hope that you learned something about how to find a job, apply for one, and conduct yourself in the workplace.
Unfortunately, the majority of candidates see cover letters as a summary of their resume, forgetting to show their interest and passion for the industry they are applying to.7 From this you can derive the first rule of writing a cover letter - don’t repeat your Resume.
Youth are the future, and it will be a bright future for North Toronto most certainly; if our youth are well-equipped to find, acquire, and keep jobs.
Writing the Cover Letter
Keep in mind that People and Organizations in North Toronto (POINT) is available as a resource, and one may find articles, links, ideas, jobs, community postings, and more on the website, www.pointinc.org.
Do your research
Stop by and visit us in person at our office at 200 Eglinton Ave W.
See Appendix A for an example of a cover letter.
A cover letter should not be dry and monotone but personal and still formal. The reader should feel like it is written specifically for them.
Carefully read the job description organization you want to work for.
How do you connect with the company? What makes you want to work with them? Why should they consider your candidacy? 8
All the best, The Midtown Toronto Youth Council Team
Keep it short
Cover letter is not an essay.
Write in short paragraphs and be straightforward.
The introduction and conclusion should be quick, but strong. The letter should not exceed one page.9
A cover letter should begin with both yours and the employer’s contact information as well as with the date of the letter.
It should end with your name and your signature.
The font should match the font you used on your resume. 14
PREPARING FOR THE WORKFORCE Things You Should Do:
Be punctual, or even show up early. this demonstrates your eagerness and interest in your position.18 Be prepared and ask questions when necessary. Be sure to listen and observe the other staff in the office to learn tips that can assist you in your new role. Dress in suitable attire for the position. Spend time with your colleagues. Have lunch with them! It is a sign that you are ready and willing to mingle with the new team. Be professional. You should walk into the job with confidence and energy. Put your cell phone on silent mode. This allows you to be 100% present and will prevent any disruptions during work. Most importantly, smile and relax!
Things You Should NOT Do:
Be a “know-it-all” person by flaunting your knowledge. The key is to be humble and show modesty on your first day. Put too much pressure on yourself to impress your colleagues. You should not try too hard to get people to like you by saying, “OMG I love that!” or “This is the best thing I have ever seen!” Rather, you should impress people naturally just by being yourself. Ask for early leaves; unless already discussed prior joining the company, this is a sign of lack of communication and respect to other colleagues. The company expects you to be present and eager to learn. Pry in coworkers gossip.19 Complain about small stuff, such as: “the coffee here taste weird”, “I am so tired”, “Lunch time is so short” and etc. It is important to display a high level of energy and your work ethics in the early days of your employment as your supervisors are watching you very closely.
All Cover letters should include the following information:
Your contact information (name, address, city, province, phone number, email)
Employer's contact information (name, title, company, address, city, province)
Formal salutation (Dear Mr. X or Ms. Y)10
Job title clearly stated
More information and specific details about request
Personal details, interests, and how it all connects to the job
Good research in the third paragraph
Handwritten signature (for a mailed letter) or typed name.
See appendix for a sample of a cover letter:11
Use the same font for the whole resume. Times New Roman size 11-12 is recommended
Cater your resume for each industry you are applying to
Try not to be general - quantify your accomplishments (e.g. increased sales by 5%)
Identify the dates in all sections (education, achievements, experience), include month and year.
For sample interview questions, please see Appendix C & D.
THE INTERVIEW Dress Code
Dress for the Job you want!
Plan your outfit the day before the interview.
Firm hand shake before and after interview
The dress code for an interview is typically business casual. For men, this includes golf shirts, button up shirt, a sweater, dress pants or khakis. On some occasions, a tie and blazer/ suit maybe appropriate, for instance in some formal office settings. For women, this includes a dress shirt/ blouse, sweater, t-shirt only if accompanied with blazer or cardigan, dress pants, a skirt or dress. Try to stay away from clothing that is too fitted, short or revealing as this may not present the image you are trying to portray nor is it suited to a professional environment.
Maintain eye contact
Good posture, no fidgeting
It is most likely that you are expected to be wearing semiformal attire, but there can be exceptions depending on the job/position you are applying for.
Interview Preparation Before Interview
Research the company12 Compare your skills to the job description
During the course of the interview, try your best to stay calm and take your time to answer questions accurately and honestly. It is important that you show the interviewer that you are prepared and remember to relate your responses back to your qualifications and personal experiences.17 Maintain eye contact when responding and have a set of appropriate questions that you can ask at the end of the interview. Questions include some of the duties of the role, about the organization or how long the hiring process will take. After Interview
Send an email, card or phone call to say thank you. Do it ASAP, best on the day of.
Remind them what you can offer to the organization.
Say that you’re looking forward to hearing from them soon.
No grammatical or spelling errors.
Find connections between your experiences and the job
Prepare Responses14 Practice and run a mock interview with someone
Plan what to bring15