Just trying to leave the house with a clean shirt

Too busy to blog?

My name is Naomi and I am a lapsed blogaholic. It’s been 3 months since my last post…

So I started up a new blog just a few months back and started writing info that a lot of people apparently found pretty helpful, mostly relating to job hunting in Israel. Before I knew it I was in the lucky position of choosing between two great jobs at two very different companies, one in Tel Aviv, one in Jerusalem.I chose the one in Tel Aviv. It was the view from the 27th floor all the way to the Mediterranean Sea that clinched it, oh, and the 10bis card.

And that’s when it all started going wrong. With two weeks’ notice to make the transition from work-from home freelancing mummy to full time office staff, I barely had time to fill the freezer, let alone fill a blog post. Once I started, the blogging opportunities seemed to get further and further away. I’m writing blog posts, newsletters and web content for between 8-10 hours a day (on a less busy day!), not to mention updating social media channels for 3 different websites, and communicating with various team members about community related features or promotions.   There just hasn’t been time to wash up my breakfast stuff, let alone get 20 minutes of quality blog writing time.

In the last two months I’ve tried to organize all the house jobs that were taking up valuable “I have other things to be doing right now” time. I bought more plastic plates and tinfoil dishes, we eat much simpler dinners (which the kids seem to prefer anyway) and finally hired a cleaner for a few hours a week (he used to be in marketing, go figure.)

So now, no more excuses, and I’m back to blogging, for the next few days at least.

I’ve had over 800 page views since I started this blog just over a week ago, and I’ve received some really positive feedback. My post about writing a CV for the Israeli market seemed to generate a lot of comments, and I’m glad I’ve been able to help people in their job hunt. Lots of people thanked me for the great tips, but wanted to know how to find places to send their CVs to once they were tidied up, spell checked and formatted correctly.

In response to all those requests, here is another post to help you find your perfect job in Israel:

Five great resources for job hunting in Israel:

1) LinkedIn

LinkedIn is such a great job hunting resource that I will even go as far as listing is as the number 1 resource for job hunters in Israel. It allows you to post an online CV, along with references for future employers to check out, and the groups are a fantastic source of job opportunities. A lot of recruitment companies, especially in the High-tech world, use LinkedIn as one of their primary methods of head hunting. For Israeli job hunters groups such as Search and Find a job in Israel, the Israemploy Group, Nefesh B’nefesh and Gvahim have many job opportunities for English speakers and other Olim. Your LinkedIn profile should reflect your CV- easy to read, professional, with references from past colleagues and co-workers, and connections to individuals and groups who can further your job hunt.

2) Recruitment companies

Although there are many recruitment companies in Israel, very few offer jobs for native English speakers and speakers of other languages without native Hebrew. One that does is Marksman, one of the oldest and most established recruitment companies for the Anglo market. Many other Israeli recruitment agencies post their job listings on relevant LinkedIn boards, another reason why you have to be in it to win it.

3) Israemploy
I also really recommend joining the Israemploy network. Although you (the job hunter) have to pay, the fee is minimal, and they simply have a huge range of job postings. I’ve had several fantastic job leads via this site, including a couple which have turned into jobs. The wonderful team at Israemploy also offer professional job counselling Highly recommended.

4) Local community groups

The most famous of these is Janglo, a free resource for Anglos living in the Jerusalem and Tel Aviv areas. Community lists in Modiin, Bet Shemesh and Ra’anana are also a good place to look for job opportunities if you live in or near these communities.

5) Word of mouth

Many jobs are filled before they are even advertised, so how can you get a look in? Use your Facebook and LinkedIn pages to let friends and contacts know you are looking for employment. Call round companies in your field and ask if they have any positions you can send your CV in to. Build relationships with managers and headhunters in your chosen speciality.  Whilst you are job hunting keep yourself busy. Offer your services as an “intern” at a relevant company, or volunteer at an organization who could use your services and recommend you. Take names and numbers from everyone you meet, and follow up on the CVs you sent out. You never know which contact could lead you to your dream job.

Any other tips or job hunting resources for Israelis and Olim? Please feel free to comment below!

Thanks to high speed internet, laptop computers and now smart phones we don’t need to physically be in our offices to stay on top of our work. These technological advancements not only unshackle us from our desk, but also blur the typical lines of employer-employee relationships.

Many companies are realising the economic potential of not only releasing employees from their desks but also from the company framework, and this less structured approach can really benefit working mums, especially those with dependant families. Hiring freelancers allows a company to save money on travel expenses and benefits, and can work especially well when a company needs to fill a position short-term, with as little hassle as possible. It also works well when a company needs a skill set or expertise for an intensive project, and it is not worth training current employees in that field.

So it makes sense for Israeli companies to hire freelancers, but what is in it for you? The answer is flexibility. Freelancing offers you the option to work from home, with a flexibility of hours that most bosses are not willing to provide in-house. This means freelancing can be a great option for working mothers. You also get to be your own boss, choosing your own assignments and managing your own schedule. If you have a transferable skill set or profession, from programming to interior design, translating to bookkeeping it might be worth your while to go freelance.

Obviously freelancing requires effort on your part, both to find and manage your workload and also to deal with all the administrative side of the business. Some people also miss the social environment in the office, or worry about the lack of fixed pay cheques.

For some it might be a great short-term solution, in between in-house positions. For others, who thrives on self management and enjoy the flexibility, it could be the perfect working arrangement.

Are you a freelancer? An tips on keeping productive whilst working from home? All comments welcome!

I’m dedicating this post to all the HR departments and CEOs of Israeli companies, both big and small. Working mums make great employees! Here’s Why:

1) Working mums are loyal

Working mums know about sticking with a good thing. They are less likely to be job hunting on the job, and generally aim to stay within a company for the long-term. This long-term mentality will save you on future hiring headaches, and will mean you’ll have at least one consistent team member when all the 25-year-old singles are bailing.

2) Working mums are great multi taskers

You remember how your mum used to cook dinner whilst checking your homework and talking to grandma on the phone? Imagine implementing those multitasking skills into your own company. Hiring a working mum guarantees you a worker who won’t blink if things get a little stressful in the office.

3) Working mums offer stability

Working mums won’t turn up with a hangover after a wild night out, and they won’t take off a sick day just because they have a cold. These women know how to produce a full day’s work on zero sleep, and their company loyalty and search for long-term employment means that they can be relied on in a world of high staff turnover and quick fixes. Yes, they might occasionally have to bring a kid in to do colouring next to their desk or work from home, but you know they will get their work done because they have something to prove, which brings me to my next point…

4) Working mums will work extra hard, because they need to prove to you that their family doesn’t distract from doing their job.

Working mums have to work extra hard not to fall into working mummy stereotypes, and that makes her an asset to your company. When you hire a working mum you know she won’t be taking extended lunch breaks, and if she has to leave early she will often come in early and work until a minute before she has to leave the office. Working mums have to prove themselves over and over, and this can only be good for the company.

And finally, sad but true

5) Working mums will accept lower salaries and less cushy benefits

There is a perception in Israeli companies that taking a working mother is a bit of a liability, and therefore it can be hard for working mothers to get past the interview stage. Due to this shortage of jobs opportunities, working mums are often prepared to take lower salaries and less benefits if they can find a job that offers them flexible hours or even the opportunity to work some or all of the time from home. This means that with a little flexibility Israeli companies can receive an employee who will work harder and stay loyal to the company, but for a lower salary.

Is your company a great place for working mums? Please feel free to share all comments below!

(For the record, this working mum is currently looking for an in-house or freelance writing or junior marketing position. Contact me for more information if your company has an opening.)

I’m no stranger to CV writing. Having written and edited over 30 CVs for the Israeli market in the past year (with all clients so far getting jobs within 6 months, woo hoo!) I would say that I’ve got pretty good at writing resumes for Israeli jobs. Now I’m facing my biggest test yet, as I’m sending my own CV out to the Israeli job market. For those of you joining me on the job hunting journey here are my top five tips for writing an English CV in Israel.

1. Keep it short

Israeli CVs should be 1 page long. It doesn’t matter if you have 20 years worth of experience or speak 20 languages, if you can’t get your CV down to one page most Israeli companies just won’t take the time to read it.

2. Keep it simple, stupid

Work on the basis that the person reading your CV is not a native English speaker, and even if they are, they simply don’t have a lot of time on their hands. Get rid of any long words or complicated phrases, and try to keep your CV down to your experience, education, skills and languages. All those wonderful descriptive adjectives you want to use about yourself will look lovely on your cover letter, but will just take up precious space on your CV.

3. Check your format

Give your CV over to everyone you know to look over. Is the font clear and easy to read? Is your CV cluttered or can they easily find the relevant information? This can be the difference between your CV making the interview pile, so take the time to get it right.

4. Keep it relevant

Took a course or won an award that you plan on boasting about in your cover letter? Get it in your CV. Spend most of your day on Facebook and Twitter? Get that in your CV too. Conversely, any irrelevant material should be left out. If your age, marital status, location or hobbies are irrelevant to the job you are applying for then there is no reason to include them in your Israeli resume.

5. Check your spelling and grammar. Then check them again.

When your biggest selling point is your mastery of the English language nothing says “I suck” like a spelling mistake in the middle of your English CV. Yes, there’s a chance your Israeli potential boss might not spot it, but if he does you’ve lost out, to a more careful speller. This rule is especially important if you are applying for any type of job involving English writing.  You would not believe how many LinkedIn pages I’ve seen belonging to International Marketing professionals with spelling and grammar mistakes all over the place. Check your work people!

Sending your CV off and not getting call-backs? Be in touch and I’ll do my best to raise your chances. Got any other CV tips? Please feel free to share below.

After being inspired by several great blogs that my friends have been writing, and a good amount of nagging from Shmuli, I’ve decided that the time has come to finally start my own blog.

This blog will attempt to organize and categorize some of the random musings that take up space in my brain, possibly including topics covering life in Israel and in the sleepy suburban town of Modiin that I call home, job hunting, content writing and parenting two small children whilst attempting to look clean enough for work meetings. I hope to try to keep myself and anyone reading this generally entertained and informed, without making a total prat out of myself. Let’s see how it goes then!

One final thought: My WordPress spell check just picked up the words “WordPress” and “blog”. Classic.