Two Minute Tuesday: Customized Portal Ribbon

Written by Andrew Rothman on . Posted in Topics, Two Minute Tuesday

Attention users of the PCRecruiter Portal for Microsoft Outlook®! This week’s Two Minute Tuesday video is for you. We’ll look at how to tweak the ‘ribbon’ to save you some tab switching while you’re working.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, join our LinkedIn Users Group, or YouTube to stay in the loop, and watch the lower portion of of your PCRecruiter login screen for all the latest blog posts and updates.

If you have any comments or suggestions for something we can explain in about two minutes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net

Video Transcript

We’re back with another Two Minute Tuesday, Main Sequence’s series of short videos with tips, tricks, and tutorials to help make you a more powerful PCRecruiter user.

If you’re one of the many who access your database via the PCRecruiter Portal for Microsoft Outlook™, this week’s Two Minute Tuesday is for you. We’re going to show you a customized menu tweak that will save you some clicks.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Portal, it’s our innovative add-on for Microsoft Outlook that allows you to interact with your PCRecruiter data from inside the Outlook application. For those of you who absolutely “live” in Outlook, the Portal can save a lot of switching between windows. Plus, it synchronizes calendars and contacts and gives you quick access to importing resumes from your inbox, and it can reduce the learning curve for new users by embedding PCR into a familiar environment.

When Portal is installed, it creates a new tab in Outlook that contains all of the major PCR menu items. However, this normally means switching back to the built-in “Home” tab for common Outlook email and schedule functions. You don’t have to let that slow you down! There’s actually a way to merge your key Outlook functions into the PCRecruiter Portal tab.

First, we’re going to right-click in the empty space on the PCRecruiter tab and select “Customize the Ribbon”. The “Ribbon” is Microsoft’s name for the toolbar strips in their products. On the left you’ll see the available commands and on the right are the main tabs in the Outlook ribbon.

We’ll start by creating a New Group under the PCRecruiter tab. We can call it “Outlook Features” or anything else you please. You’ll likely want to put this group at either the start or end of the section rather than in the middle. Now we’ll drag our commonly used items from the left column into the right. For example, we might want to pull over ‘New Email” or ‘Send/Receive All Folders.”

Outlook shows you a list of “Popular Commands” to start with, but you can change the dropdown to see “All Commands” instead to bring over things like Reply, Reply All, Forward, and so on. You’ll see some items multiple times – for example, there are two seemingly identical “Delete” options. If you hover your mouse over one of them, you’ll see what it does. In this case, one “Delete” is for calendar items, and one “Delete” is the email one from the Home tab. That’s the one we want. You can also move any of Outlook’s pre-grouped options – for example, from the “Main Tabs” selections, I can choose Calendar > New, which brings sub-items along with it.

When we click “OK”, we can now see the new options reflected here in the PCRecruiter tab. Now the PCR Portal saves time switching between the email and the browser, and our freshly customized ribbon saves switching between the tabs in Outlook!

For more Two Minute Tuesdays, subscribe to this YouTube channel and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter, or watch your PCR login screen. If you have any suggestions for future episodes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net.

Two Minute Tuesday: Configure the Basic Search

Written by Andrew Rothman on . Posted in Topics, Two Minute Tuesday

For this week’s Two Minute Tuesday tutorial, we’re looking at ways to speed up your basic field searches by configuring your Basic Search form and results layouts.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube to stay in the loop, and watch the lower portion of of your PCRecruiter login screen for all the latest blog posts and updates.

If you have any comments or suggestions for something we can explain in about two minutes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net

Video Transcript

Welcome to another Two Minute Tuesday, Main Sequence’s series of short videos with tips, tricks, and tutorials to help make you a more powerful PCRecruiter user.

We’re going to revisit the topic of screen customization this week, and check out how you can adjust your main search form and search results. Every user in the database can have their own personalized customizations, or the system admin can copy one user’s settings to others for consistency.

The simple name, company, and position search forms all include three fields that can be combined, plus a keyword search box. By default, all three dropdowns contain all of the possible fields for the record type you’re working with. You can quickly get to any field you want by typing the field name into the dropdown, but you can speed up your process by cutting out any fields you would never expect to search.

To do this, we go into the Customize screen in the action menu. In the ‘Searching’ section, we’ll see a column containing all of the available fields on the left, and a column for our selected fields on the right. Since we’ve never configured this screen before, the right side is empty. We can drag the fields from one column to another, or use the plus and minus icons, and drag them up and down into any order we want. After we click save, the three dropdowns will contain only those fields that we placed in the right column. Our pared-down set of fields applies to the dropdowns on the Advanced Search as well.

If you want to set a default group of search options, just select the fields you want, check the “Save as Default” box, and then click “Search” to save your choices. You can also use this method to pre-fill any of the three values. For example, if I usually want to search only my Available jobs, I can set “Status (Dropdown)” as a search field and set it to “Available/Open”. Now I’ve saved not only the field, but the search term as part of my default.

The same Customize popup allows you to control which columns you’ll see in your search results. Clicking the ‘Results Page’ sidebar item brings up this list, in which we can change the order of the fields, click on them to delete them from our results screens, or click the menu icon at the right to set a default width for the column.

At the right are the default options for a primary and secondary sort order for the results. Most of the time you’ll just sort by one field – such as descending order by Last Activity, or alphabetically ascending by Last Name, but you may want to have a secondary sort if you wanted to group results by state, and then by zip codes within each state.

We can also change the default number of rows per page, and hide any items in the ‘Action’ pulldown on our results that we don’t want to see. Keep in mind that adding more columns and more rows can cause your search results to load more slowly. But you can always come back into this screen and make adjustments at any time!

For more Two Minute Tuesdays, subscribe to this YouTube channel and watch our social networks or your PCR login screen. If you have any suggestions for future episodes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net.

Free Windows 10 Upgrades end July 29

Written by Andrew Rothman on . Posted in Industry, Topics

Windows 10 If you’re one of our many Windows-based PCRecruiter users, you should mark July 29, 2016 on your calendar as the end of your free Windows 10 upgrade period.

The free Windows 10 upgrade offer was a first for Microsoft, helping people upgrade faster than ever before, and July 29th is your last chance to get in on the deal. After July 29, upgrading your Windows 7 or 8 machine to 10 could cost $119 or more retail.

Most Windows 7 and 8 software is compatible with Windows 10, and PCRecruiter 9 is no different. If you’re still using PCRecruiter 8, you can also move to Windows 10, but you’ll want to continue working within Internet Explorer 11, rather than the newer Microsoft Edge browser, which is only compatible with PCRecruiter 9. We still recommend running PCRecruiter 9 in Google Chrome, regardless of your operating system.

To get your free Windows 10 upgrade, visit https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-10-upgrade

Two Minute Tuesday: Relational Database Structure

Written by Andrew Rothman on . Posted in Topics, Two Minute Tuesday

In this week’s Two Minute Tuesday video, we’re going to take a departure from how-to and take a broader look at how PCRecruiter’s internal database is laid out.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube to stay in the loop, and watch the lower portion of of your PCRecruiter login screen for all the latest blog posts and updates.

If you have any comments or suggestions for something we can explain in about two minutes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net

Video Transcript

Welcome to this week’s Two Minute Tuesday, Main Sequence’s series of short videos with tips, tricks, and tutorials to make you a more powerful PCRecruiter user.

We’ve been together in this video series for a few months now, and we think it’s time to discuss the relationship. Specifically, the relationship between the major record types in PCRecruiter. While most users will never need to or want to know how the SQL database under the hood of PCR is laid out, a mental picture of how records are related can be helpful – particularly if you’re building an advanced search query, custom report, or planning a development project using the PCRecruiter API.

PCRecruiter uses a relational database with multiple tables to contain different kinds of information. For example, there is a table for companies, a table for names, and a table for jobs. Each table has columns of data for the specific attributes of that record type, such as a city, title, middle name, and so on.

Every record in the main tables has a unique global identifier so that the system can track which records are related to each other and how. Setting things up this way allows the same piece of information to be used in relation to multiple records, or to be easily re-associated with a different record at any time.

PCRecruiter is somewhat unique among recruiting systems because it uses the Company record as the central record type, although a company record can really represent any group of related names or jobs, not just an actual physical company. While it may appear that the names and jobs are ‘part of the company,’ the Company record itself just contains the info about the company. The people and jobs associated with that company are in the Name and Position tables. So, when you view the names belonging to a company, PCR is actually querying the Name table of the database for any records that match the global identifier of the selected company.

The critical advantage here is that a name can be moved from one company to another simply by changing the company identifier, allowing a candidate to become a client, or a vendor to become an employee, without duplicating or recreating their contact record. All of that person’s activity logs and attachments (which, incidentally are kept in their own separate tables), stay linked to that name no matter what jobs or company the name is associated with. Over time, PCR’s company-centric database structure lets you build up a much clearer picture of where your contacts have been and how they relate to one another.

The connection between jobs and candidates is managed in the same way. When you view an applicant Pipeline, you’re looking at records from the Interviews table. Interview records (which in PCRecruiter terms represent any step in the recruiting process – not just phone and face-to-face interviews) include things like the date, time, and status of that step in the process, but they don’t include the information about the job or the candidate. Instead, they include the global identifiers indicating which job and which names those pipeline records are pertinent to. This setup lets you have multiple candidates tied to multiple jobs, regardless of what company the job or candidate are associated with.

In fact, most of the time your candidates will belong to the ‘default company’, which is a special company record that PCR uses to group all the names that don’t belong to any more specific company. A talent pool. When you place someone, PCR changes their company identifier to the one from the job they were just placed in, effectively making them a name under that company, but without losing or changing any of the history they came with.

Fortunately, as you interact with your database, whether that’s through PCR itself or a third-party tool using the API, the software builds all the structured queries necessary to navigate the database and return the info you want, whether or not you fully understand how it’s all connected. If you do need more specifics on the tables in a PCRecruiter database, contact our support team at support@mainsequence.net.

And for more Two Minute Tuesdays, subscribe to this YouTube channel and watch our social networks or your PCR login screen. If you have any suggestions for future episodes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net.

Two Minute Tuesday: Geographic Searches

Written by Andrew Rothman on . Posted in Topics, Two Minute Tuesday

It’s Tuesday, and we have a fresh Two Minute Tuesday tutorial to share! This week’s video shows you a few ways to find records by their location which you might not have tried before.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube to stay in the loop, and watch the lower portion of of your PCRecruiter login screen for all the latest blog posts and updates.

If you have any comments or suggestions for something we can explain in about two minutes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net

Video Transcript

Welcome to this week’s Two Minute Tuesday, Main Sequence’s series of short videos with tips, tricks, and tutorials to make you a more powerful PCRecruiter user.

This week, we’re going to look at techniques for searching your database by geographical area, and we’ll walk through a few simple searches, showing you some techniques you might not have tried.

Let’s start with phone number, since area codes can indicate where someone is located, although the portability of cell phone numbers means you’ll likely use this as a starting point and then re-filter your results. We can search the home phone, cell phone, work phone, and so on using the basic search form, but there’s also a comprehensive ‘All Phone’ option, which looks at every phone field in the record at once. To search by multiple area codes, we can use commas to separate them. For example, searching ‘All Phone’ for 416,647,437 finds everyone with a phone number near Toronto, Ontario.

We can use comma-separation with the City and State too. If we want to find people in Aurora or Naperville, we can select ‘City’ and enter ‘Aurora,Naperville.’ Now, there are a lot of cities called ‘Aurora’ and we only want results from Illinois, so we’ll add “IL” into the State search. PCR’s basic search treats these boxes as AND criteria, so it’s going to give us results with either Aurora or Naperville in the City field AND Illinois in the State field.

Similarly, using commas in the State field searches for multiple states. A search for OK,AR,LA,TX will find anyone in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, or Texas. But there’s actually an even simpler way to do searches across multiple states or regions like these.

If you do a Google Image Search for “zip code prefixes” you’ll find maps showing how the postal codes are arranged. The states we’re looking for all have a zip code starting with 7, so rather than searching the state field for four states, we can just search for 7 in the zip code field. If we want to search in a more specific area, we can use the first two or three numbers of the zip code. For example, searching 845,856,874,813 finds people near the four-corners of Arizona, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico, even though that area encompasses multiple cities and states.

You can also run a more accurate area search with the Zipcode Radius tool. (This feature works with postal codes from the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and Japan. Max radius 100 miles.) Let’s say we want to find anyone within 50 miles of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. We can do that from the Advanced Search screen. We’ll select Zipcode Radius from the first pulldown. Now, we click on the Radius icon to the right of the field. I don’t know the zip code off hand, so I’ll select City, and begin typing. We pick the desired city from the list, set the radius to 50, and click ‘Search’. PCRecruiter returns all of the zip codes within the chosen radius, and we can click ‘Accept’ to add them to the Advanced Search. In the search results, the City column will indicate roughly how far the listed City is from the radius’s center.

For more Two Minute Tuesdays, subscribe to this YouTube channel and watch our social networks or your PCR login screen. If you have any suggestions for future episodes, send an email to twominutetuesday@mainsequence.net.