Looking for a Job? BBB advice on finding help for the hunt

June 22, 2008
With an uncertain economy and employment outlook, the Better Business Bureau offers guidance to jobseekers to help them understand the kinds of career counseling and job placement assistance available and ensure they enlist the aid of trustworthy organizations.
There are many places job hunters can go for help landing a job, but they need to make sure they’re using an organization they can trust – this is as easy as checking the business out at bbb.org.
Public Employment Service (aka Job Service) is a federally funded and state-operated program that is available in all 50 states. This service has nearly 1,700 offices across the country and provides free assistance to job hunters. For more information visit: www.jobbankinfo.org
Temporary Services place employees at companies needing temporary help. Jobseekers do not pay the temp service. This is one way unemployed workers can supplement their income while looking for a permanent job. And, temporary positions sometimes evolve into full-time jobs.
Employment Agencies search for employees to fill permanent full- or part-time jobs. Typically, businesses pay for the agency’s service but, in some cases, the job hunter might be on the hook for fees.
Executive or Career Counseling Services help job hunters evaluate their career paths and provide guidance on resume writing, interview techniques and presentation. Some counselors will identify businesses at which to apply. Counseling services typically charge several thousand dollars and do not always guarantee job placement.
The BBB offers the following advice for job hunters when enlisting the help of an agency or counselor to find a new job:
• Always check out a job placement or career counseling organization with the BBB first at www.bbb.org. The BBB also recommends visiting the National Board for Certified Counselors online at www.nbcc.org.
• Carefully review any contracts for counseling or placement services, making sure all oral promises are included, even if that means taking the contract home and having a trusted friend or relative also review the document.
• Be wary of paying upfront fees to a placement agency and be extremely cautious when giving out credit card or bank account information.