Career Advice & Tips in Ghana 2020
Referees and References will always be needed to vouch for you whether you are searching for a job, furthering your education, growing your business and related career issues. In all these scenarios the recommendations that you receive from your referees can significantly influence your career success.
In this post, we are going to focus on how you can handle referees and references in your job search and as well, how to present references in your CV in the best possible way.
If you are a beginner, the usage of referees and references might appear confusing. Your reference was written by your referee and is thus a document. In the case of this article, your references is a section of your CV where you provide details about your referees who can vouch for you. A referee on the other hand is a person who can vouch for you professionally, academically or personally.
How to Manage Your References
References are usually requested in job descriptions where specific information could be needed. For instance, a job description could request for two referees whilst others could request for three. Whether a job description requests for a reference or not, it is important to still maintain a reference section in your CV. The following points should be taking into consideration when selecting referees:
Always make sure that the people you are using as your reference will be willing to vouch for you as soon as the need arises. Any undue delay on the part of your referee in vouching for you can spell doom for your search endeavors even if you perform well after an interview.
We at Sobiaonline always recommend that you have to discuss your search objectives with your referees. Keeping them in the dark will not help at all. If referees have adequate information about you it will help them to always give your prospective employers very powerful recommendations. One of the surest things that put’s employers and recruiters off is generic recommendation.
Depending on the degree of familiarity and rapport you have established with your referee, it is possible to always blind copy them when you are applying for jobs. This will help them to recommend you ton employers in the best possible way. We also advice people who serve as referees to always solicit the feedback of people they are recommending before submitting their recommendations.
How to Select Your Referees?
When selecting references, you would have to look out for people who should be able to vouch for your skills, abilities, and qualifications.
Selecting people who have good communication (written and oral) and writing skills is very desirable. These days, some companies prefers phone discussions with referees instead of written recommendations. The person recommending you should be able to defend your interest, qualifications and abilities in the best possible way whether in writing or via a phone conversation.
Secondly, it is important to select people you have worked with who preferably supervised your activities in the past.
There is no consensus regarding whether you can present your referees from your current place of work. Experts who advises against this opines that the last thing you want is for your boss to learn from one of their competitors that you have approached them regarding a new job. However, in the context of Ghana we deem it necessary that you should provide at least one referee from your current place of work. This should not necessarily be your “boss” but some one in a Senior position who can vouch for you. If you think that you do not want your current employer to be contacted you can state that in your application.
Before you use some one as a your referee, you need to make sure that you have discussed it with the person and then they have agreed to it. During the request, make sure you gauge the eagerness in their tone to make an informed decision. It is also important to verify that you have the correct contact information and discuss how they would want to be contacted. Generally, your referees should be willing to be contacted via skype, phone call or email. If after discussion with a potential referee you realized they are not interested in all these channels then, it would be advisable to get those who are comfortable with all these three channels.
How to Ask for References
You can ask for a reference via face to face discussion or email. It is advisable to start the process with a phone discussion and then meet the person later to discuss your search objectives with him/her. Always make sure you request for confidentiality if need be. Click here for a detail guide on how to ask for a reference
How to Present References in Your CV?
The reference section in your CV is usually the last item. It is acceptable to just write a section heading titled “References” and then comment ” available upon request” below.
In the context of Ghana, it is advisable to add at least two references to your application.
Do not number the references but rather present it in the format below:
Name of Referee
Name of Agency
Do you need to review your CV or professionally upgrade it? Click here to revise your CV with the help of Sobiaonline Careers.
Thank you for reading. Kindly share your ideas below
Job searching online has witnessed dramatic increase over the years. This trend has brought a number of benefits to job seekers and employers such as cost reduction, increased transparency and access to reliable and timely information on jobs and recruitment opportunities.
However, the problem of online job scams and Recruitment Fraud continues to prey on helpless and unsuspecting job seekers resulting in financial extortion and vital information request for identity theft.
In this post, Sobiaonline shares some useful suggestions to improve your knowledge on online job scams to help you navigate your job search with ease in Ghana and elsewhere.
WHAT IS A JOB SCAM?
A scam basically is a fraudulent or deceptive act or operation. Based on this definition and from experience at Sobiaonline, a job scam entails the fraudulent or deceptive use of job advertisements and other career offers (Both online and offline) to lure job seekers with the sole purpose of defrauding them financially or soliciting sensitive information such as personal details, credit card information and related stuff.
Based on our encounters and existing background information on this topic, we have classified job frauds into three main forms:
The first form of Job Scam occurs online through the internet. One way this form of scam occurs is poor regulation by job boards. Job boards put in their best efforts to prevent fraudulent job listings but some smart fraudsters can still manage to publish their listings unnoticed. Another form of online scams has been on the rise on social media where scammers take advantage of unsuspecting job seekers through which they extort money and other vital information. Thirdly, there has been an increase in email spam targeting job seekers. The other growing form of online job scam is work from home job scams which has been on the increase.
The second form of Job Scam is Offline job scams. The offline job scams takes the form of physical contact with fake employers. These scams are very well organised and have received little attention as compared to the online scams.
The third form of online scam occurs as Legitimate Job Scam: This days we have legitimate companies taking advantage of job seekers by extorting monies from them. This third criteria is not quite a scam as legitimate jobs are involved, but the recruitment process is shrouded in secrecy and fraud. To give you a scenario model:
lets say company A has a job vacancy for a secretary. They advertised the opening and received 1, 000 job applications. All thousand applicants are then invited to interview where they will be tasked to pay GHC 50 per applicant in the name of processing fees. Then, all 1, 000 applicants are called back again in the name of an aptitude test and are made to pay an additional GHC 50. The procedure goes on and on until just one candidate is picked. In a scenario like this the company can make several thousands of Ghana Cedis from the recruitment of just one staff. This is a legitimate job vacancy but the recruitment process is fraudulent (Disclaimer: This is just for illustration)
Why did we take time to discuss these types of job scams? By understanding the medium in which you can be potentially scammed and the motive behind job scams, you will be in the best position to fight it. Please read further the two main motives of job scammers below:
Access to Sensitive Information
Fake adverts are used to obtain sensitive information from people. These types of jobs request very personal information including bank details, insurance numbers personal information, bank statements, passport details, and driving licenses. Once a job is requesting such sensitive information at the initial application stage you need to take caution.
For Monitory Compensation
Fraudsters ask for advancement without a cogent explanation of what the money is going to be used for. We have for instance received numerous reports in Ghana where fraudsters are requesting for money for CV upgrade as a precondition for employment. You can use this link to find out how Sobiaonline can help spice up your CV to increase your interview calls. Other reports revealed medical examination, aptitude test fees, and processing fees as some of the reasons for payments often explained by corn artist.
With this in mind, the best way to avoid job scam is to avoid making financial commitment and sharing of very sensitive information with prospective recruiters.
HOW TO AVOID JOB SCAMS
- The companies used in most cases will be genuine companies but the job will be a scam! Always contact the company if you see something suspicious about the job
- Don’t accept a job offer without an application, interview, or discussion with the employer.
- You are promised high pay for not much work? Do not accept such offers
- You are told you have to pay for training? Do further digging and ask more questions
- Do not provide personal details on your social media profiles
- Do not pay money for background checks and processing fees
- Do not pay for a job. The employer should pay you for your expertise and not the other way round.
- The interviewer should call you if it is a remote interview and not the other way round
- Don’t share sensitive information or money until you are sure the company is genuine
- Avoid job descriptions that are vague, ambitious with limited specific information about the company.
- Trust your instinct. If you are having the feeling that the job is not genuine chances are that the job is not genuine.You will need to do more research.
- Leave what you are not doubtful of and follow what you are certain off.
- Make sure the email address identifies with the company.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE SCAMMED ALREADY
Contact the company and ask for your money back. You can alert relevant agencies if the company refuses to.
Make sure you provide reviews of the company on online websites as much as possible to warn other job seekers who might fall victims.
Report the matter to the police immediately, with copies of all correspondence, contact details of the fake organisation, and bank or credit card statements if you suspect that your identity may have been stolen for illegal activities.
Change your bank details if you shared your bank details with the fraudster
Report the company and the job details to the job board where this occurred to help them improve upon their listing.
We thank all job seekers who entrusted us with their information and advice on fraudulent job offers over the years. It has helped us to continuously improve our services. We hope to continue to learn and share with you
Click here to upgrade your CV with Sobiaonline Careers
How to Apply for a UN Job
We have decided to write this post in response to job seekers request for advice on how to apply for UN jobs the right way on daily basis. We have provided some suggestions for you to get started with. Meanwhile you can access all official UN related career information via this link
All legitimate job openings of the United Nations are published at the United Nations Job Application portal. The first advice regarding how to apply for a UN job the right way is the need to apply at the right source which is the link above.
The UN Application system is a comprehensive recruitment system which helps you to present a detailed CV comprising of your personal details, education, work experience and related information in the best possible way.
In applying for a job at the UN, you would have to demonstrate that you are the right fit for the job by providing very specific information on each of the areas mentioned above. It is also important to take note of the following:
Make Sure You Are the Right Fit for the Job
Please make sure you meet the requirements of the job before you even start your application. Meeting the requirements may not just be enough but you should like the job in question. This is the best way you would be motivated to present an outstanding application.
Make Your CV Simple and Easy to Read
After your fill in your information in the job portal, there is an option for you to attach your CV. Always spend some time offline and customize your CV to meet the requirements of the job before starting the application. This achieves the purpose of helping you to address the application questions in the system in the best possible way. Secondly, presenting a well written CV will make it easier for both humans and bots to read. To make your CV is easy o read you can observe the following:
- Avoid tables graphs and images as much as possible
- Make use of short and simple sentences
- Highlight your key accomplishments as much as possible
- Divide your CV into clear subsections. For example Personal Details, Education, Work Experience and Skills
Complement Your CV with a Customized Cover Letter
You will need a cover letter which will serve as your introduction. The good thing about cover letters is that you can bend it to your liking relative to your CV.
You would have to demonstrate how you are the right fit for the job in a very innovative, smart and convincing manner such that it will entice and provoke every reader to take a further look at your CV. Your letter should not be more than one page. It should be concise and kept within the limits of four paragraphs
Always remember that your cover letter is an important tool to help you highlight things you cannot capture in your CV. For instance, if the job opening highlight preference for Ghanaian candidates, then, highlighting your extensive working experience in Ghana would not be a bad idea.
Make Good Use of Your Work Experience
Every UN agency would want to know what you have accomplished in the past to have an idea of what you can do for them. Without adding an atom of false information, include all your past experiences that are important to help you succeed based on the nature of the job. You can reserve the other experiences that are not necessary for other future applications where it will be needed.
Update Your Profile to Reflect Every Job Application
Just like your CV and letter, your profile information should be updated before every job application. This will ensure that your personal information and the documents you present will be in harmony.
Demonstrate Your Team Building Competencies
The UN system values team building capabilities. Do not shy away from presenting all accomplishments you have attained as a team. This will go a long way to demonstrate how you are a good mixer and good team player.
Pay Attention to Your Contact Details
The direct objective of every job application is a call to interview. If you provide the wrong or unreliable contact details it will defeat this purpose. You would be notified of your successful application once you are through with the application via email. Always make sure that you provide the right email address. By reliable email address we mean an email address in which you can easily be reached without much difficulty. Ensure that your email address you are given out is opened frequently. This days you can use your mobile phone to be receiving instant email alerts.
It is also advisable to provide references who have dealings with you in the past. Your references should be able to justify your work experience and education. We also advice that:
Keep your referees posted on all your job applications by serving them copies of your job applications. This will help them to take you more serious and equip them with ample information to provide your prospective employer a compelling recommendation that can enhance your prospects.
We reason with Barbara that “your application is your passport to a career with the United Nations” and that is why you need to give your next UN job application the attention it deserves.
How to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile
Do yo know that one of our biggest referral sources is LinkedIn? What we simply do is keep our profile up to date and as well engaging with the right people and communities on LinkedIn.
Whether you are a job seeker, business owner, marketer or what ever profession you are into, you will find linkedIn a very useful platform to improve your brand. For job seekers, LinkedIn is the most important job search platform you will need to get your next job after your conventional CV or resume.
Your LinkedIn profile might be the last savior to your call to interview if it is in Good shape. With corporate life and employment increasingly going online, learning how to improve your linkedIn profile is very crucial now. This is the motivation for writing this post. Our objective is to share some useful tricks with you to help you improve upon your linkedIn profile your self to get the online attention you truly deserve.
Please consider the following points:
How to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile: Get a good Headshot
If you do not have a face on your name yet we would advice you to add a professional headshot to your linkedin profile header section. First impression is important on linkedIn and it would not be a bad idea to leverage the services of a professional photographer or graphic designer. The advantage of leveraging the services of a graphic designer or LinkedIn expert is that they can customize your profile picture to meet your profile background. Please take note that people without a linkedIn profile are often pushed aside. If you do not have one now then it is time to reconsider!
How to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile; Get a Good LinkedIn profile Objective?
Every rational action is backed by intentions. The case of a linkedin profile is not different. Before you open a linkedIn profile you should have a clear objective. This could be to increase sales, increase traffic to your blog, improve your brand recognition, or to get a new job. By identifying a clear linkedIn objective, you will be able to design the profile in a manner that will attract the right leads to you.
How to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile: Get a Good LinkedIn Title?
Your LikedIn profile title should be able to clearly communicate your profile objective mentioned earlier. Your linkedIn title together with your profile picture is very important as they are the most marketed sections of your LinkedIn profile. The best way to craft a good LinkedIn profile title is to identify the specific value you are proposing to your target audience or which should also manifest what you expect from your leads in the format:
What is your job, what do you bring to the table, and what shows
Without communicating a clear objective/value, you stand the risk of getting numerous leads or engagements who will not be of benefit to your linkedin presence.
Tip: Check out the profile of Issahaku Adam on LinkedIn. You would see a practical demonstration of a LinkedIn title and that of a proposed value for targeted leads. You will notice how he has crafted the profile to generate leads for Sobiaonline.
How to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile: Get a Summary Section
The introductory section gives you a rare opportunity to highlight your stellar accomplishment in the best possible manner. If you have been taking not of interviews you have been attending you would notice that there is always the ” tell me something about your self component” Your linkedIn profile introduction should be able to serve that purpose without your presence. Aside highlighting your accomplishments, here are key ingredients you can not miss in your linkedin profile introduction:
A summary of your professional life in just one sentence
Your core accomplishments over the year. This can be just one that stands out
Indicate how the reader can benefit from you in a very clear and concise manner
Indicate how you can be contacted with the specific details
How to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile: Pay Attention to Your Work Experience
In Ghana, most linkedIn profiles just list the job titles and that is it. To make your profile stand out there is the need for you to demonstrate exactly what you did at the various places you have worked before. Here, the presentation should be different from what is in your CV in that the tone should be conversational and brief. If you have received awards related achievements be sure to add it.
- Add support media to back your claims. Images and videos can also go a long way to improve upon your linkedin design
- Add skills that reflect your professional profile.
- Add an additional profile language to broaden your visibility
- Customize your profile URL to reflect your profile
- Develop an action plan for linkedIn engagement and activities with key metrics
- Add all relevant details to your education section
To find out more about how Sobiaonline can help in your linkedIn profile development click here
How to spice up your job search in Ghana with Sobiaonline
In this article we wish to bring to your notice some of the cool features you can benefit from by using our job board and related services on https://sobiaonline.com. To benefit fully from our services, we advice you to open a free account here. Please find below a list of how you can change your job search game using our services.
Free Job Search Browsing and Job Application
If you are looking for a job aggregator or job board in Ghana with the latest jobs across all sectors and industries in Ghana, Sobiaonline is your best bet. Job search and applications is completely free. You can click here to access thousands of jobs across Ghana including expat job openings
Save Jobs to Apply Later
We have provided you the opportunity to save all jobs of interest to you and apply later when you are ready. This helps you to identify the best possible openings, prioritise your applications and roll out applications in a more organised way. At the end of each job description you will see the book mark job option to save the job into your account.
We have provided a job alert feature for you which helps you to get real time notifications as soon as jobs are posted. All what you need to do to set up a job alert is open a free account with us, click on the alert tab in your dashboard and set up your alert. To serve you well, you can set up a custom alert based on the following criteria:
- Job location
- Job category
- Job type
- Job tags
- Frequency of notifications
- Many more … just open an account to see it for your self
The job alert feature is our recommended option for you if you want notifications. What sets our alerts apart from others is that you are in control and hence the frequency of notifications is dictated by you. Secondly you only receive notification on jobs that interest you. You can combine it with the push notification option below for excellent results.
The push notification option is one of the new features we have just added. When you visit any of our web pages you will see a pop up requesting you to accept receiving notifications. Once you subscribe to this notifications you will always be alerted when new jobs, scholarships, funding and career articles are posted. The advantage of the push notification is that it takes less than 30 seconds to set up and you will also receive notifications in our browser even when you are not in our website.
Our email news letter platform is the oldest notification system we have been using. We use our news letter to provide special information on funding, scholarships and special offers on our products and services.
Job Seeker Profile and CV Advertisement
We have provided a free platform for job seekers to create stunning career portfolios and advertise your CVs. Employers have started using this feature and we are hoping you will soon create a profile and advertise your skill sets on our platform for free.
At the moment, you can create multiple versions of your profile to suite different portfolios of interest to you. For instance, if your are an intermediate administrative professional interested in customer service, Administrative Assistant, or receptionist jobs you can create profiles for each. Please take advantage of this service whilst it is still free. You can start the process by registering a free account here
Sobiaonline is closer! We have provided two chat platforms which always enables us to connect to our clients in real time. On mobile devices we have a whatsapp chat platform and the chat button is visible on all our pages. For desktop and laptop users, we have provided a separate chat platform and you will see the button displayed on all pages as well. So next time you want to get in touch, it is as simple as just clicking a button and you are with us!
Should you want to send us an email you will see our email address on all our web pages.
Our principal activity is CV Design. You can find out more about how we can help in your search efforts with our paid employment search services by clicking here
Please take note that Sobiaonline is not a recruitment agency. We provide employment search services and you will see all our offers via this link We also generate some income when you visit our website or click on adverts displayed on our website. To find out more job search tips from our team click here
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