Career Consulting Services

Personal and Career Counselling- Locals Helping Locals

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Counselling, Consulting and Development, Employment Counselling, Job Search, Personal Counselling, Professional Counselling, Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments
Blu Ripples - Personal and Career Counselling Services; helping locals through COVID-19 pandemic

Personal and Career Counselling Services

In response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic and the impact it has had on individuals, families and businesses Blu Ripples Counselling Services has developed and implemented 3 offers to help you or a loved one address personal wellbeing, career and employment support.

Simply choose one of the following four offers and contact Blu Ripples to discuss your individual situation and make an appointment (either Telephone or Skype) to speak with me from the comfort and safety of your home.

Blu Ripples Personal and Career Counselling Services - COVID-19 (Coronavirus) promotion; valid to 28th April 2020
Blu Ripples Resume Writing Services - New Client Offer - COVID-19 (Coronavirus) promotion; valid to 28th April 2020
Blu Ripples Resume Writing Services for Existing Clients; COVID-19 Promotion

For more information please contact me on 1300 300 557 or (02) 4982 9781 or shoot me an e-mail via info@bluripples.com.au

Just as we are helping you during this difficult time, we also appreciate your support and business – thank you for selecting Blu Ripples to help you through life’s ripples.

P.S.  Please note these offers do not include Defence Career Counselling (PEAP Program) participants, Psychometric Profiling Services, Career Reports or Plans; Terms and Conditions apply; Only one offer maybe used per individual (Offer 1, 2 or 3) or family (in the Offer 2. Option 2) Offers valid from 28th March 2020 to 28th April 2020 and maybe extended at the completion of this period if Blu Ripples deems there is significant interest or demand –  however this is at the sole discretion of Blu Ripples.


BLU RIPPLES CAREER COUNSELLING & CONSULTING SERVICES – WE ARE OPEN AND OPERATING DURING THE PANDEMIC

    Posted in Academic Planning, Aptitude Testing, Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Counselling, Consulting and Development, Career Development, Career Development Report, Career Interest Testing, Career Planning, Defence Career Counselling - PEAP Program, Employment Counselling, Job Search, Key Transferable Skills, Labour Market Analysis, MBTI Testing, Outplacement Services, Outplacement Services, Personality Profiling (Testing), Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services, Vocational Assessments    |    No Comments
Blu Ripples Career Counselling and Consulting Services - We are Open during the Carona Virus Pandemic

Blu Ripples Career Counselling & Consulting Services (including Resume Writing Services) is open and running as normal through the Corona Virus pandemic and offering you or your loved one Career Services through the comfort and safety of your home via telephone or Skype consultation.

So if you are considering your career options or maybe you have been made redundant and are seeking help to:-

Write or update your Resume or employment documentation
Explore your career options and pathways
Undertake some career or academic planning
Research the job market now and into the future; or
Provide outplacement services to your employees

Give me a call today and have a chat, there is no judgement here – just listening and support – I have been through redundancy myself and have helped thousands of individuals over the years through career transition be it voluntary or forced (through redundancy or employment separation).

All I can say, is reach out and make the most of this time, analyse where you are now where you want to be in the future, develop a plan, take action steps so that you are ready to capture opportunities as they prepare themselves.

Remember the labour market maybe tighter now with so many individuals out of work but it does not mean that there are no opportunities out there you just need to be resourceful and possibly look at different options until the pandemic is over.

Finally, I believe it to be beneficial to mention that as a nationally registered Counsellor (with the Australian Counselling Association), I am also in a position to provide Personal Counselling Services to clients who maybe struggling with fears, worries or general anxiety as a result of the changes that are occurring as a result of the pandemic – so if you are struggling and want to talk – I am here

For those in the Defence Force – I am able to provided Career Counselling and Employment Assistance Services to Defence Spouses and Partners through the PEAP Program so make use of this program through your self-isolation or lock-down time and be ready to jump when opportunities present themselves.

You can contact me on 1300 300 557 or via e-mail at info@bluripples.com.au

Stay safe everyone and if you do get the virus please self-isolate.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW. Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type.

Described as an down to earth, knowledgable, empathetic and empowering professional, Katherine has helped spouses and partners of Defence personnel with a range of Career Counselling and Employment Assistance services; prior to assisting the Defence in this way Katherine has previously assisted departing Defence personnel and contractors prepare employment documentation since 2003.

Underpinning Katherine’s academia and private practice experience (2003-present) is 12 years experience predominantly in Human Resources and Administration (91 – 03).


WHERE AM I GOING WRONG? RESUME WRITING SKILLS 101

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Consulting and Development, Career Education, Career Hints and Tips, Employment Counselling, Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments
Resume Writing Skills 101 - Blu Ripples
Is your current Resume failing to generate positive job search outcomes?

RESUME WRITING SKILLS 101 – Providing you with Resume insights, hints and tips to help you out of your Job-Search rut

In March 2018, I wrote a popular blog article entitled “Resume Writing Services – The Low Down” in which I shared 5 Hints and Tips for sourcing a professional Resume Writer.

Over the last few days, I was contacted by an acquaintance in one of my social media groups seeking some career guidance as they felt they had hit a brick wall with regards to their job search.

Been the professional helper that I am, I encouraged this individual to send me through a copy of their Resume to see where they were going wrong.

In addition to the above social media acquaintance, I also provided some Resume Critiquing Services to a new client whom stated they were not receiving any responses to their existing employment document and sought my feedback as to the possible cause.

The key aspect where these two individuals went wrong in is in my professional opinion was both the layout and content of the document; which truth be told is not that uncommon.

From my perspective, “the layout and content of a Resume – CV is like the perfect little black dress or suit; that is, the Resume should be designed to highlight your best assets in terms of your professional experiences, strengths, achievements and functionalities”.

Now just like the perfect little black dress or suit, your Resume-CV can be accessorized to suit the occasion; that is not every single piece of employment and academia needs to be included on the document; rather you should carefully strategize which pieces of information you include on your Resume or CV with the sole purpose of providing enough information to capture the readers interest but not so much that you overwhelm them and cause them to loose interest and dump your application because it lost its appeal.

Providing the right balance of information in a smart professional document is an art form in itself.

As outlined in my blog post entitled “Writing a Clear and Concise CV- Resume (Part 2), posted in September 2010; there are 5 Key aspects to writing a compelling CV-Resume; been: –

  • Keep it to an optimal 3- 5 pages (never more than 5)
  • Do not include discriminatory information e.g. dates of birth, marital status and interests
  • Keep it clean clear, concise and consistent (ones 4 C’s approach)
  • Highlight your assets in terms of qualifications, skills, achievements, projects, affiliations etc.
  • Always clarify your statements to quantify your achievements

In today’s world when there is so many so-called professional Resume Writers, Job Coaches, Career Counsellors, Consultants and Development Specialist spruiking their wares it is hard to sort the chaff from the wheat in terms of quality Resume guidance.

My philosophy has always been to keep it simple (layout) and professional so that it flows easily and to follow my 4C’s approach; you see as an individual with a background and qualifications in Human Resources coupled with nearly 2 decades in writing Resumes for individuals (from first casual positions through to global management) I know and understand that management, Human Resources and Recruitment Consultants base decisions on facts – cold hard black and white facts, utilizing a skills matrix system.  That is, there is a high degree of detachment when making recruitment and selection decisions based solely on how you meet and/or exceed their criterion. 

Therefore it is imperative to understand that if you fail to present yourself in a professional manner with the likes of clip art, photos, multi coloured fonts and borders etc – employers, HR and recruiters are going to start focusing on what you are trying to hide or where you do not meet their standards in terms of criterion rather than what you can do and have achieved; in short this will put you on the back foot and do you a disservice.

So forget the tacky clip art, pictures, fonts, borders and information that will discriminate and focus on telling the professional narrative (story) of you; that is: –

  • What are your 3 to 4 key areas of expertise
  • What are your key transferable skills in relation to the position
  • What makes you stand out from the rest of the candidates; and
  • Why should they hire you

Focus on this and you will be in with a chance; provide them with a tacky and ill-written Resume – expect to be discarded or at the very best be put at the bottom of the pile and only looked at when other quality candidates have be reviewed and eliminated – don’t be someone’s’ last resort – make yourself shine and encourage the reader to call you because you can demonstrate how you meet their criteria.

In closing, I hope that the above Resume Writing Hints and Tips and have provided you with some meaningful Resume guidance and direction; if you have any questions or seek some feedback in relation to your existing Resume please contact me via e-mail or telephone – listed on the contact page.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW. Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.


Key Transferable Skills Report – A New Career Counselling Service

    Posted in Aptitude Testing, Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Hints and Tips, Career Planning, Employment Counselling, Job Search, Key Transferable Skills    |    No Comments

Key Transferable Skills Report - Blu Ripples

INTRODUCING OUR KEY TRANSFERABLE SKILLS REPORT

As part of the Resume Writing Process, I frequently ask clients to identify their Key Transferable Skills and their perceived areas of expertise.

Regardless of the clients’ career life stage, I frequently find that they stumble at this point.

The principal reason for this pertains to objectivity; and whilst we may undertake a role for a particular period of time there is little time for reflections or as clients so frequently state “Katherine, I just get on and do the job; I don’t think of my role in these terms”.

And there in lies a major issue when it comes to the job search and interview process.  That is, regardless of your title and the number of years you have been in the work force it is imperative to know who you are, what you bring to the table and your development requirements in order to effectively pursue and achieve your career goals.

Whilst, I have previously created Key Transferable Skills Reports for Spouses of Defence Force personnel; and I have helped thousands of individuals identify their transferable skills through my Career Consulting – Resume Writing Services (since 2003); one has identified a niche area and is excited to launch our Key Transferable Skills Report which is accessible to all individuals of legal working age and above whom have held at least one position.

To find out more – click on Key Transferable Skills Report

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW.  Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.


Career Events and Expos: – Blu Ripples Career and Resume Reviews – Free 15 Minute Session

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Career and Resume Review - Nov 2019

Book your Free 15 Minute Career or Resume Review Session today!

When was the last time you had a Career or Resume Reviewed?

Was it a few years ago now or maybe never?

Well it is time to take advantage of Blu Ripples Free 15 Minute Career or Resume Health Check Services on Saturday, 1st November 2019 at our office in Medowie, Port Stephens.

What is a Career or Resume Review?

Blu Ripples Career and Resume Review Services, also frequently called a Career or Resume Health Check Services, is a free 15-minute career session, for all job-seekers of working age, to access expert career guidance and advice to help you identify your strengths and development requirements with respect to your career pathway or job search strategies (i.e. Resume).

How can a Career and/or Resume Review Help Me?

As outlined above, the Career and Resume Review Check is designed to assess and identify your strengths and to provide you with verbal feedback to assist you in attaining your career or job search goals.

In the past, as a nationally registered Career Development Specialist, I have provided Career and Resume Health Check Services to attendees at Re-Invent Your Career Expo in Sydney, as part of the CDAA contingent.

Frequently at the Expo’s attendees will seek guidance or feedback back on one or more issues for example: –

  • Why is my Resume – CV not working?
  • Why is the Job Search process taking so long?
  • What are my career options based on my current education, roles or skills?
  • What training do I need to do in order to achieve my career objectives?
  • I did not finish Year 12, can I still go to university?
  • I have started but not finished a couple of courses – why is this so hard for me?
  • Do you think I am been overpaid or underpaid in my current position?
  • I have been with my current employer for a long time and know I want a change but am not sure what to do
  • I don’t know where to start- I have no clue what I want to do

What do I need to bring to the Career or Resume Review Session

  • Yourself if you are an adult
  • An parent or legal guardian if you are under 18 years of age
  • An open mind, a willingness to talk and listen
  • A copy of Resume in paper format – for a Resume Check
  • A question or two that you wish to ask
  • Any other relevant and meaningful information that you may need; and
  • Some writing paper if you wish to take notes whilst I speak

So take advantage of this

OBLIGATION FREE 15 MINUTE CAREER OR RESUME REVIEW SESSION

Simply call me on 1300 300 557 or (02) 4982 9781 to schedule your session for Saturday, 1st November 2019 between 10am and 2pm.

 

Remember:- Career and Resume Review Sessions are 1 on 1, unless you are under 18 years of age (require a parent to be present); and are on a first come first served basis so do not delay in scheduling your appointment; I look forward to meeting you on 1st November 2019.

 


CAREER PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR REGIONAL AND RURAL COMMUNITY MEMBERS

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA), Career Hints and Tips, Career Planning, Employment Counselling, Job Search, Key Transferable Skills, Labour Market Analysis, Psychometric Profiling (Testing), Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments

Career Planning and Development Regional and Rural Community Members

Do you live in a regional or rural area in Australia and feel stuck in your career? That there is limited or no employment opportunities? Discover how to identify and capture employment opportunities in your area.

CAREER PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Career Guidance and Advice, for Regional and Rural Community Members

As a Career Development Specialist and Counsellor whom lives and works in Port Stephens, a regional area on the NSW North Coast, one has facilitated numerous regional and rural clients since 2012 to identify and explore career options and pathways and as such understands the challenges and opportunities that come from living in areas outside of major CBD locations.

Whilst it is true that the volume of opportunities is not the same as a major CBD location such as Sydney; it does not mean that opportunities do not exist.  It simply means that regional and rural community members need to dig a little deeper, explore labour market statistics in more detail, identify and respond to opportunities and possibly make a few more compromises in relation to their desired outcome(s) for example embracing portfolio careers (having several part time or casual positions) rather than traditional full time 9 to 5 positions.

Career Planning and Development – Where to Start?

Like their major city counterparts regional and rural community members need to: –

  • Establish baselines
  • Expand and challenge their mindset
  • Think outside the square
  • Determine their career interests, employment needs and wants
  • Determine the needs, current and future employment opportunities of the local and/or surrounding communities
  • Ask themselves a variety of career and employment related questions such as: –
  • Are my career and/or academic objectives realistic?
  • Will my actual or intended academic pathway provide a return on investment?
  • Do I really want to work in this position – industry? Why?
  • Am I willing to relocate (intrastate, interstate or overseas) to achieve my career goal?
  • What are my alternative career options and pathways?
  • What are the top employment industries and employers in my area?
  • Am I willing to work for myself or would I prefer to be employed by someone?
  • Do I have the skills, knowledge, qualifications and experiences to start my own business or work as an independent contractor?
  • What are the niche employment markets in my area and how can I capitalise on these? That is ask yourself – what products, services, industries are over or under represented in your area and how can you market yourself to capture appropriate opportunities
  • Is it best to market myself as a generalist or a specialist my chosen field?

Where are the employment – job opportunities?

Just like each individual, each regional and rural area across Australia has its strengths, areas of growth and opportunities for community members.

In the 7+ years one has lived in Port Stephens NSW with ones’ husband; over this timeframe we have noticed a lot of change and growth in our suburb and surrounding area; in fact, we have seen the area progress with: –

  • New Shopping Centre Complexes
  • New residential and commercial building lot releases; subsequent construction of establishments
  • Expansion of the nearby RAAF base
  • Procurement of land for aged care and educational facilities
  • Commencement of construction of a local sporting complex
  • A Customs facility been built and utilised at Newcastle Airport and over the Christmas period (18/19) saw the trial of direct flights to New Zealand from Newcastle NSW – the facilities are there now – so what does this mean for the longer term? Is this a possible new international airport base in NSW ( even if it only services Pacific and Asia)– if so just imagine the jobs this will create for the area not only in Tourism and Transport but in other supporting and/or complementary industries

All of this within a 10 or so minute drive of our home; thus, when reading the above information – what does this tell you about this particular region?

From ones’ perspective, when analysing these changes in terms of employment industries the obvious industry that is booming in the area at the moment is Construction; which just so happens to be a top 3 industry across Australia and within Port Stephens (based on latest labour market statistic information).

Occupations that fall within the construction industry include Electrician, Painter, Tiler, Project Manager, Construction – Site Manager, Labourer, Excavator Operator, Fencer, Surveyor, Plumber, Building Estimator, Building Inspector, Pest Inspector, Carpenter and Joiner.

However, just like any other industry there is a myriad of occupations and industries that complement and/or support the Construction industry both during the planning and construction phase and post construction (in terms of providing products and services to residents and the border community) for example: –

  • Administration, Secretarial and Bookkeeping Services
  • Architects and Landscape Architects
  • Engineers and Draftspersons
  • Medical and Allied Health Professionals e.g. Doctors, Psychologists, Counsellors, Social Workers, Mental Health Professionals, Rehabilitation Therapists
  • Retails Managers and Shop Assistants
  • Personal Services e.g. Handyman and Cleaners
  • Tourism e.g. Accommodation for workers whom live out-side the region
  • Business Services – Human Resource Managers, Accountants, Marketing Professional, Information Technology professionals, safety specialists
  • Education – Teachers, Childcare Workers, Librarians, Career Guidance Advisors, Teachers’ Aides, Lollypop (Traffic Control) professionals.

Sometimes we become so stuck in our particular mindset of I want to be this, I want to earn so much per week, I don’t want to work in that location and/or even that we are above a particular position or industry that we fail to see the opportunities right in front of us.

As one highlighted through the above summary, opportunities do exist in regional and rural areas; it may be that we just need to take a step back and clearly look at our marketplace (what is happening in our region) in greater detail – to do a little more digging (research) and analysis to find out what the opportunities are in order to ascertain where you fit – be it marketing yourself and your unique skill base as an employee or independent worker to capture the market or better yet the niche in the market.

Digging a Little Deeper

As previously discussed, opportunities do exist in rural and regional areas however a little more digging maybe required to find out where you fit in the grand scheme of things.

One way to start, digging a little deeper, is to research your regions labour – employment market statistics; there is a wealth of free and paid information on the internet.

In fact, in researching data for this article, one found (online) a letter dated 10th March 2017 from Port Stephens Council to Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee – Parliament House Canberra; supporting the relocation of government bodies to regional areas.

In the aforementioned correspondence the author (Mr. Wayne Wallis) stated that “the Hunter Region has been experiencing economic restructuring with a shift away from traditional goods-producing sectors like mining and manufacturing to high value added knowledge based service sectors”.

Ones’ interpretation of this commentary is that councils in the Hunter region are strategizing and actioning change management plans to shift the employment market, of their respective areas, to a high quality knowledge base sectors such as Information Technology, Accounting, Counselling, Business Management, Medical and Allied Health, Education and Training and moving away from sectors such as Manufacturing, Mining, Electricity and Gas.

Thus, whilst the current labour market in this region maybe goods-producing at present; those considering their career options and pathways would be wise to take this commentary on board and plan for the future rather making decisions based on todays’ (current) needs.

Remember it takes time to study and gain experience and when you have completed any training it is important that the jobs are available in your region, a region close by or that you can develop online services to target the wider community in order to support yourself in your preferred residential location – community.

In closing, as one has clearly articulated throughout this article; each regional and rural area in Australia is different.  However, if you are prepared to do some research and analysis, observe the current services and industries in your area, identify the shortfalls and develop a service or product to meet these needs as an independent worker; or conversely if you can tailor your training and employment documentation (Resume-CV) to the needs of employers through the clear representation of your key transferable skills, knowledge and experiences you will be in front of the competition.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW.  Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.


Career Counselling – Employment Contracts – All That Glitters Is Not Gold!

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Education, Career Hints and Tips, Career Planning, Employment Counselling, Job Search    |    No Comments

Employment Contracts and Service Agreement – Should you proceed or reject the offer… read more below

EMPLOYMENT AND SERVICE AGREEMENT OPPORTUNITIES – To Proceed or Reject an Offer

In your career and your life it is a wise person that remembers – “All That Glitters Is Not Gold”.

Sometimes we get so lost in the glitter that we forget about the practicalities and fail to dig a little deeper and read between the lines of an employment contract or service agreement (if you are self-employed and contracting your services out to another organisation).

Thus, it is important to ask yourself and ponder a few basic questions (for example but not limited to): – Read More


Career Counselling – Understanding Labour Markets in the Job Search Process

    Posted in Career Consulting Services, Career Counselling, Career Development, Career Development Report, Career Education, Career Planning, Employment Counselling, Job Search, Labour Market Analysis, Resume Writing Services    |    No Comments

Blu Ripples can help you understand and apply Labour Market Statistics in Your Job Search Process

Helping you understand and apply Labour Market Statistics in Your Job Search Process

 

Labour Market Statistical Analysis, once the domain of Human Resource departments and recruitment organisations for the purpose of identifying, exploring and capturing talent, to structure remuneration (pay) and benefit frameworks to obtain and retain talent; to identify current and emerging labour market trends to navigate an organisation forward in an ever-changing workforce. Labour Market knowledge and the application of same was and still is an imperative functionality of the recruitment, selection and talent management process.

Thus, it is imperative that individuals particularly job seekers understand the fundamentals of labour markets in order to effectively identify and capture opportunities and negotiate the terms and conditions of their employment.

Whilst many may be aware of the current national unemployment rate, 5.4% (June 2018), and that currently more jobs are been created thus consistently decreasing the unemployment rate over a period of time. That is usually where the average individuals’ knowledge stops with respect to labour market knowledge.

However, did you know that it is possible for the average individual to source and review a wealth of labour market statistics at the click of a mouse for example it is easy for you to:- Read More