Cathy Vandewater

Cathy is an associate producer for Vault.com. A writer, editor, and former serial intern, she earned her BFA in Writing from Pratt Institute.


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All Posts by Cathy Vandewater

Hiring Manager Explains Why Your Cover Letter Failed

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 27, 2012

It's really frustrating applying to jobs on the internet. You spend a lot of time poring over your cover letter, reworking your resume, Googling the right person to address your application to (and making sure you've got their name right), and then waiting days, weeks, and even months for a response that often never comes. That's why we have really mixed feelings about the 3,000-word "advice" email that one company sent its 900+ rejected job applicants. Openly acknowledging that they've... Read More >

Facebook Fights Back

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 23, 2012

Think it stinks to be asked for you Facebook log ins at a job interview? Good news: so does Facebook. In a note published on the social media website early this morning, Erin Egan, the Chief Privacy Officer, Policy makes it clear that he doesn't really appreciate employers undermining all the work Facebook has done to give users privacy control. He also sternly warned employers against accidental viewing of "protected group" information which could lead to legal trouble. Of course, Egan... Read More >

Spoiler Alert: Facebook May Tip Employers Off to Your Bad Personality

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 22, 2012

Maybe this is the real reason employers have been asking job candidates for Facebook passwords: they want to make sure you're not a pain in the butt to work with. Pyschology researcher Soraya Mehdizadeh conducted a study of 100 college students, using their log in frequency and duration and activities like photo sharing and status updates to predict how narcissistic the Facebookers were offline. Using the Narcissism Personality Inventory and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, the study then... Read More >

Gender Wage Gap Persists--Except for Butlers

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 16, 2012

Here's some depressing news: Bloomberg recently compiled 2010 census data to discover that the only women who out-earned men last year (per dollar) were shining shoes, house sitting, and parking cars. Oh, and ceremoniously handing rich people letters on entrée platters: female butlers made $1.02 for every $1 men earned. But as for everybody else, here's a quick breakdown: Lawyers Female lawyers earned pretty well over all, making a median salary of almost $98k in 2010-but compare that to... Read More >

Senior Workers Getting a Larger Slice of the Employment Pie

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 13, 2012

Much talk has been generated by all the positive employment news--recently capped off with the BLS's report that major employment gains were made in professional and business services, healthcare, and leisure and hospitality, and marketing in February. Altogether, theUSsaw a total of 227,000 jobs added throughout the month, despite a steady unemployment rate of 8.3.   Yet a look at the long-term gains and losses in jobs paints a grimmer picture of the new economy. A sea change... Read More >

5 Steps to Spring Cleaning Your Job Search

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 09, 2012

Ah, Spring. A time of new beginnings and vigorous cleaning. We can smell the sunshine and Pinesol already! But as you flip your mattress and give your walls a sponge bath, don't forget a key area to re-evaluate: your job search. If reported job gains from the BLS can be believed, things are improving. It's been a hard winter, but the light is visible at the end of the tunnel, and it's all natural, Tulip-nurturing sunbeams. So leave your past efforts behind: this Spring is all about renewed... Read More >

Should You Take a Social Media Course?

by Cathy Vandewater  |  March 01, 2012

An article in the New York Times today about jobseekers taking formal courses and workshops on social media raises an interesting question: just how valuable are social media skills? Is Facebook know-how worth investing a few credit hours at your local college and the cost of tuition? Do the benefits of a Twitter account outweigh the annoyance of begging your tech-savvy niece to set up one up for you? Of course, that depends. You've increasingly heard that social media's a job skill, and... Read More >

Deleting Facebook Party Photos Won't Improve Your Rep

by Cathy Vandewater  |  February 23, 2012

When Facebook first blew up, so did fear of professional repercussions. While the Id side happily tagged ourselves in flattering cocktail party photos and "liked" our favorite albums, the Superego fretted about the beer picture in our hand, or the explicit lyrics in that Lil Wayne song. Comments from friends were also a liability, what with their curse words, references to less-than-wholesome activities, and links to raunchy content or videos. But, quite comfortingly, a new study has... Read More >

Would You Put a Resume on Pinterest?

by Cathy Vandewater  |  February 17, 2012

We've talked before about using social media tools to find a job. But usually, that means the Big Three: Facebook, Twitter, and Myspace. Just kidding! Of course, the (arguably) best site for job search social media is LinkedIn. And it's undoubtedly the best place for explicating posting your resume and qualifications, since you're not likely to have any photos of you drinking nearby, and you have more than 180 characters to describe your job duties. But what about Pinterest, a newly,... Read More >

5 Steps to Taking Back Your Time at Work

by Cathy Vandewater  |  February 16, 2012

Ever feel like you spend all your time in the conference room? Well, if you're high up on the executive food chain, you might. A new study of CEOs shows that 18 of their average 55-hour work weeks are spent at roundtables-and a mere 6 spent at their actual desks, working alone. The rest of the work week breakdown is as follows: 2 hours on phone calls, 2 on conference calls, 2 on public events, 5 on business meals, and 20 on "miscellaneous," which includes travel back and forth between... Read More >