By Rich Figel
More signs the economy is on an upswing: there will be over 170 employers at the WorkForce job fair on Weds., May 16, 9 am to 3 pm at the Neal Blaisdell Center -- and they're not just looking for entry level people, according to Beth Busch, the event organizer and president of Success Advertising Hawaii. She says the number of exhibitors has increased 10 percent over last year, and many are now in the market for management personnel. To pre-register, click here.
National statistics show that 2.1 million people QUIT jobs in March -- which is a positive sign, because most were able to find better career opportunities or higher pay. If you're not entirely satisfied with your present job, this is a good time to check out other options. But you should have a plan and come prepared, because the people manning the job fair booths might very well have a say in hiring you or setting up an interview.
Do your homework. Don't just walk in and expect the jobs to come to you. Know who you want to work for and why. At the end of this post, I'm including the WorkForce employers roster so you can see who will be there. The featured employer is T.J. Maxx, which is hiring staff for three Oahu stores -- and from what I'm hearing, other retailers are ramping up too.
Coincidentally, my show just filmed a segment about a local clothing retailer that has expanded to Guam and Japan, and I asked their Ala Moana store manager how she landed her job. She had moved here from Florida about a year ago and had no job leads or referrals. Yet she impressed the general manager during her interview by doing something a lot of job candidates don't think about: she asked the GM about himself -- how he came to Hawaii and wound up in his position. She turned the tables on the interviewer, while demonstrating that she had a genuine interest in people... and retail is all about relating to customers in a friendly way. Too many job candidates just sit there during interviews and answer questions, without creating any rapport with the interviewer.
Here's the WorkForce employers list:
• ABC Stores • Accountemps/OfficeTeam • Aerotek • Alliance Personnel • Aloha Pacific Federal Credit Union • Aloha Petroleum • Altres Medical • Altres Office/Professional • Altres Staffing • Altres Technical • American Savings Bank • Arc in Hawaii • Argosy University • Attention Plus Care • Audio Visual Company • Avis Budget Group • Bank of Hawaii • Beard Papa • Behavioral Counseling & Research Center • Big City Diner • Bishop & Company • Bubba Gump Shrimp • C & S Wholesale Grocers • CareResource Hawaii • Catholic Charities • Central Pacific Bank • City & County of Honolulu • Clear Channel Radio • Clinical Laboratories of Hawaii • Coco Cove • Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf • Combined Insurance • Community Empowerment Services • Copier's Hawaii • Covance • Crazy Shirts • Desert Watch • Diagnostic Laboratory Services • Discover Hawaii Tours • Employer Support of the Guard & Reserves • Enterprise Holdings • Express Employment Professionals • Farmers Insurance Hawaii • Fernandez Events • Food Pantry • Foodland • Frito-Lay
• Goodwill Industries of Hawaii • Guardsmark • Hawaii Army National Guard • Hawaii Behavioral Health • Hawaii Department of Education • Hawaii Job Engine • Hawaii Medical Institute • Hawaii Pacific Health • Hawaii Pacific University • Heald College • HI Steaks • HMSHost • Island Movers • Island Temporary Nursing • Jack in the Box Hawaii • Jeans Warehouse • John Hancock Financial Network • Kaiser Permanente • Kohala Bay Collections • Kumabe HR • Lamont's • Malama Market • Mandara Spa • Manpower • Marine Corps Community Services • Mary Kay Cosmetics • Maui Divers Jewelry • McDonald's of Hawaii • MDX Hawaii • Med-Assist School of Hawaii • Midas Hawaii • Mobi PCS • Municipal Services Bureau • Mutual of Omaha • Navy NAF - HR Fleet & Family Readiness • New York Life Insurance Company • Oasis Lifestyle • Olsten Staffing Services • Organo Gold • Outrigger Enterprises Group • Paradise Beverages • Pepsi Beverages Company • Petco • Pharmacare Hawaii • Pizza Hut • Power Up! • Prudential Insurance Company of America • Remedy Intelligent Staffing
• Remington College • Sack 'N Save • Scentsy Independent Consultant • Sears • Securitas Security Services USA • Servco Pacific • Seven Eleven • Silpada Designs • SNR Systems • Staffing Solutions of Hawaii • Star of Honolulu/Royal Star Hawaii • Sullivan Family of Companies • Syntek Global Xtreme Fuel Treatment • Taco Bell • Tanioka's Seafood & Catering • TeamPraxis • Teksystems • Terminix • Travel Transportation Plaza • U.S. Army Recruiting Company • Universal Technical Institute • University of Phoenix • Valtech • Visalus • Wealth Strategy Partners • Whalers General Store
Shipmates to Workmates
• AMSEC • Commander Navy Installations Command • Commander Navy Region Hawaii • Fleet Logistics Center Pearl Harbor • HII-Ingalls • Military and Family Support Center • Military Sealift Command • Naval Air Systems Command • Naval Facilities Engineering Command Pacific and Hawaii • Naval Sea Systems Command • Naval Supply Systems Command • Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard • Space and Naval Warfare
• A-1 A-Lectrician • A-1 Construction • Alaka'i Mechanical Corporation • Architectural Glass & Metal (AGA) • Carpet, Linoleum & Softile, Local 1926 • District Council 50 • Glaziers Architectural Metal & Glass Workers, Local 1889 • Honolulu Community College,Apprenticeship Program • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 1186 AFL-CIO • International Union of Painters & Allied Trades, Local 1791 • Island Flooring Company • Lanakila Pacific • Plumbers & Fitters, Local 675 • Sheetmetal Workers, Local 293 • Workers United Union of Roofers and Waterproofers, Local 221