With laptop and latte in hand, she informally interviews between 10 and 40 job-seekers for such positions as welders, mail clerks, warehouse workers, machine operators and purchasing agents for employer clients ranging from industrial, insurance, call center and engineering companies.
“I get the majority of my people from here, and from social media and word-of-mouth. They can just walk in – I’ll see anybody at any time,” says Ates. “They sign in at the front and the staff helps them register on our manpowerjobs.com website so I can talk to them. They give me their resume and I cross-reference it with our open positions and what they want, looking at previous positions, rate of pay, travel time, any number of factors. After matching them with an open position, I make an appointment for them to interview with a placement specialist at the Manpower office.”
“This gives us an opportunity to reach a lot of associates we wouldn’t reach because they’re not used to using a computer and having a personal touch,” notes Lisha Akers, manager, talent engagement & acquisition for Manpower and Ates’s supervisor. “People feel more comfortable with a face-to-face, and we do, too – we can spend more time one-on-one with candidates because sometimes at our office, it’s rushed. We’re able to look at them, talk to them, see their soft skills and let them know about other options than the position they applied for.”
Akers describes the number of placements her firm has made as a result of Ates’s visits to the NCWorks Career Center as “significant. She’s been great at forging that relationship because Manpower can’t do it by people just walking in our door. We need these partnerships.”
Ates also provides a weekly “Hot Jobs” list for NCWorks Career Center staff to share with job-seeking clients. “For me, it’s about finding that niche in every single relationship you have,” she says. “I send out ‘Hot Jobs’ on Monday, I come here on Wednesday – I just really love my job.”
Among those relationships, she’s developed positive ones with the staff at the Forest Point Boulevard career center. “Angela is approachable, flexible, pleasant,” says Joel Hirschman, supervisor. “She’s receptive to all kinds of people and establishes a very good rapport, very quickly, which is helpful to us.”
The admiration is mutual. “The staff here is very encouraging. Many people don’t even make a resume, and they assist them in making one. They allow them to use the computer to register in our database,” Ates notes. “Any time I email with a special project, they get on it and get the word out right away, sharing that information with all their resources.”
Ates plans to begin spending one day a week at the NCWorks Career Center at Executive Center Drive this fall; watch for an announcement at all three career centers.
Meanwhile, if you’re a job-seeker who’s interested in exploring open positions with Manpower, Ates and Akers offer these tips:
- “Most clients [employers] now require a resume, and most industrial or blue-collar employees don’t have one. Having a resume is most important. And if your resume is 10 years old, update it.
- “Really show initiative. We notice who helps themselves.
- “Maybe you want a career change; you’ve been in the warehouse but went to school for human resources. You’ll need to do your research and gear your resume for that new position.
- “Always come dressed for an interview. And be on time.
- “Be open about your job history and what you like or don’t like. Don’t just say, ‘I’ll do anything,’ because people won’t ‘do anything.’
- “Take our suggestions. If we say, ‘maybe getting a certification in this would help you get a better job with better benefits,’ listen to us. It will help you in the long run.
- “Be dedicated to the position when you’re chosen for it. A lot of our positions are temp-to-perm, so if you go in there and work your butt off for 30 days, they’ll hire you full-time and permanent.”