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Phil Stott

Phil Stott is a Vault Editor. Since joining Vault in 2007, he has covered a variety of industries including consulting, consumer products and technology. He is also well-versed in general career issues, having worked in a variety of fields including freelance journalism, consumer banking, English language teaching, soccer coaching and more. Originally from Scotland, he holds an undergraduate degree in English Literature and Modern History and a Masters in Research in Civil Engineering. 


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All Posts by Phil Stott

Jobs and the SOTU: Does the President's Agenda Have a Chance?

by Phil Stott  |  January 29, 2014

President Obama's State of the Union speech last night focused to a large degree on jobs and, specifically, on two key planks related to labor: the need to create more jobs, and raising wages for those at the bottom of the compensation ladder. Here are the main takeaways from the speech on those issues:   Setting the scene  No State of the Union speech would be complete without a progress check. Here is the President's take on how we've been faring of late:  "The lowest unemployment rate... Read More >

How Recruiters Find Top Talent on LinkedIn

by Phil Stott  |  January 23, 2014

Ever wondered how to make your profile stand out on LinkedIn, or whether people who use the site actually find jobs with it? I definitely have, so when I got the opportunity to talk to someone who knows the ins and outs of using the site from a hiring perspective, I jumped at it. The result: the following Q&A with Erin Osterhaus, an HR analyst at Software Advice, an online resource for reviews and comparisons of HR software. Prior to our Q&A, she sat down with one of LinkedIn's... Read More >

Which Industries Lost Most Jobs in 2013?

by Phil Stott  |  January 16, 2014

As a follow-up to my recent post on the industries that gained most jobs in 2013, I looked at the other end of the BLS data: the industries that shed employees over the year. As with the previous post, I looked at the data two different ways: the industries that lost the highest total number of jobs, and those that suffered the biggest percentage decrease. Also in line with the previous piece, each approach gives us a slightly different take on the data: those industries that shed huge... Read More >

Which Industries Created Most Jobs in 2013?

by Phil Stott  |  January 14, 2014

While it may have disappointed on a monthly basis, data in the most recent BLS labor report indicates that private industry in the U.S. created some 1.7 million jobs in 2013. I looked at the data from a couple of different angles, to try to figure out where job seekers had the best chance of landing a freshly-created position in 2013 (hint: not the government--state and federal agencies cut around 390,000 positions over the same period). Part of my rationale: while past performance is no... Read More >

Will the Job Market Recover in 2014?

by Phil Stott  |  January 09, 2014

Is this year set to be the one the job market comes roaring back?  I could have opened a blog with that sentence every year for the past five, were it not for one thing: the sluggish nature of the recovery, which has seen job growth limping along at a snail's pace, rather than ratcheting back to top speed.  But, for what feels like the first time since the bottom dropped out of the stock market in 2008, there seems to be some genuine optimism in the air-at least in certain quarters of the... Read More >

Long-Term Unemployment: Is There a Solution?

by Phil Stott  |  December 19, 2013

While the unemployment rate has declined from 7.9 percent at the start of the year to 7 percent in November-and may well drop below 7 percent when December's data is released next month-one group of unemployed workers remains in crisis: the long-term unemployed.  In looking at some of the BLS' data to get a sense of the employment market over the past year (more on that to follow in later posts), I came across the figures for unemployment by length of time out of work, and they make for... Read More >

Why the 'Skills Gap' is Employers' Own Fault

by Phil Stott  |  December 11, 2013

A recent report from the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) highlights one of the biggest problems that companies have today: the ability to find employees who are ready to tackle the challenges they're likely to meet on the job. In pointing this out, however, the report also makes an unconscious point: that the problem is almost completely companies' own fault.   Before we get into why that is, let's start with a couple of introductory takeaways from the report-the most recent... Read More >

4 Tips for Finding a Job This Holiday Season

by Phil Stott  |  December 05, 2013

With shopping, vacations and the general desire to reduce stress during the holidays, December is a tempting time to take a break from the job search. After all, nobody's hiring during the holidays-right? Wrong. At year end, lots of companies are finalizing their budgeting for the following calendar year, spending what's left this year for fear of losing it, and making hiring decisions accordingly. And, with some of your competition taking it easy, there may be no better time to snag the... Read More >

Can Graduating in a Recession Be a Good Thing?

by Phil Stott  |  December 04, 2013

Give a bunch of academics long enough, and they'll come up with a study that can suggest just about anything-including an upside to this terrible job market. According to an article in The Week, researchers at Emory University's Goizueta Business School have found that there may be a correlation between job satisfaction over the course of a career and the economic climate that you graduated into. Put simply: if you graduate into a tough market, you're more likely to feel happy in your... Read More >

26 Interview Questions the Top 10 Consulting Firms Ask

by Phil Stott  |  November 21, 2013

The key to any good interview is preparation-and there's no better preparation than knowing the kinds of questions that you're likely to face. With that in mind, I took a look through the thousands of responses from our 2013 consulting survey and selected some of the most representative questions that successful candidates had to navigate. For this post, I limited my research to questions from firms that made the top 10 in the Vault Consulting 50 this year-in a follow-up, I'll focus on... Read More >

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