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Searching for a Job? 4 Things You Might Be Doing Wrong

By Autumn McReynolds, Employment Branding Sourcing Manager

Did you know we receive nearly 20,000 applications every month for our management opportunities at Sodexo USA? As the competition in the job market remains high, there are many small improvements that job seekers can make to help themselves stand out. And while social networking activities are not the only component of an effective job search, they certainly cannot be ignored either.

Here are a few common situations I’ve noticed recently that can impact your ability to land a new job, as well as adjustments you can make right now:

Sodexo Senior Recruiter Karen Graham Shares Her Job Title on Twitter
Situation 1: You actively use social networks to follow and connect with potential employers but don’t indicate your industry or that you’re looking for a job.

Whether you know it or not, recruiters often find candidates by conducting searches on Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and more. While you may be extremely qualified, lack of search-friendly terms on your profiles will make it difficult for you to be found.

Solution: Include your current or most recent job title in your social networking bios. If you’re openly searching, don’t be afraid to include something like, “available for hire” or “actively seeking new career opportunities” as well. Tweet This


Situation 2: You have social networking profiles set up but are concerned about privacy, so you keep your information on lockdown.

It’s true that privacy can be a concern in the digital age, but educating yourself and staying up to date on changes to your account settings will make it easier to protect your personal information while still making valuable connections online.

Solution: Research privacy policies and settings for each platform to determine how you can actively network without sacrificing your safety. For example, you can select a different audience for each post on Facebook, which allows you to share certain information with your close family and friends and other posts with the public so recruiters can learn more about you and contact you with relevant opportunities. Tweet This

Facebook Offers Many Privacy Options
Facebook offers a variety of settings to help users manage their privacy.


Situation 3: You’ve searched and applied for positions but aren't taking advantage of company-provided resources.

This may sound obvious but all jobs and companies are not created equally. Every employer will have a different hiring process with varying expectations, so it’s critical to understand what you’re applying for and how you can stand out.

Solution: If you’re currently seeking a job at Sodexo USA, utilize the Network With Us page to access discipline-specific careers sites, tips for being successful on the careers blog and a link to join our Talent Community, where you can set up job alerts and share your most up-to-date resume. Tweet This


Situation 4: Your job search has taken longer than you expected, and your frustration overshadows your accomplishments in conversations with professional connections and recruiters.

Whether you’re currently unemployed or looking to make a career move, the process of searching, applying and interviewing for jobs can be challenging, but don’t let it get you down because your attitude and the way you present yourself can make or break your ability to get hired.

Solution: Take advantage of any opportunity you can to learn from your mistakes and improve yourself for the future. Being rejected from a job isn't personal. There can only be one best qualified candidate for every opening, so stay positive when asking for advice and assistance because it won’t go unnoticed. Tweet This

As you continue to seek new career opportunities, I hope you will be able to apply some of these tips today. If you have any questions along the way, don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section below or send a tweet to @SodexoCareers.

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Are you ready to reclaim your work/life balance as a Sodexo Chef?

By Chloé Rada, Senior Marketing Manager - Talent Acquisition 

It’s the second day of the #ACFCONV Trade Show, and the excitement around the educational programs, networking and competitions has not let up.  The talent at the convention amazes our recruitment team and perhaps they’ve already engaged you in a conversation about culinary careers at Sodexo.

As a Sodexo chef, do you know that you can benefit from our ongoing partnership with the American Culinary Federation?  Aside from the continual learning and the personal and professional growth support you will receive, you’ll shape the well-being of our guests, environment and future generations through our corporate social responsibility plan, A Better Tomorrow!

Take a look at our Chef Jobs video to explore the Sodexo difference! 

As a talented Chef, Food Production Manager, Chef Manager or Executive Chef, you can reclaim your work/life balance (ie. some weekends off!)…a Quality of Life that is a rare find in the hospitality industry! Watch this video to learn what it takes to join our team and how your inspiration can come to life at every meal.

Sodexo is ready to help you achieve your goals, are you?

If you are attending the National Convention, don’t forget to stop by our booth to meet top Sodexo Chefs and our recruitment team, Suzanne Thompson, Trisha Gary and Colleen McKie, and register to win a pristine bottle of 30 Year "Delizia" Balsamic Vinegar!

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An Ongoing partnership between Sodexo and the American Culinary Federation (@ACFchefs)

By Guest Blogger, Colleen McKie, CIR/CDR  Sr Recruiter  Sodexo Talent Acquisition Group

The 12th post in our Recruiter Series that features the specific environments we hire for and what it takes to succeed.

As a Recruiter with Sodexo for 10 years, I’ve had the opportunity to hire many talented Food Service Professionals and have been bitten by the “foodie” bug.  While I am not a culinarian, I LOVE watching all the Chef shows on TV.  I am proud that Sodexo chefs are some of the top culinarians in the country, achieving success outside of work too!  Not only do many enjoy competing in national and international culinary competitions, they also enjoy mentoring through programs like Sodexo Future Chefs.

As Sodexo prepares for the American Culinary Federation National Conference (ACF) in Kansas City, MO later this week, we connected with one of our top culinarians to discuss how Sodexo and ACF has impacted his professional career – including competing AND mentoring.

Phuong “Ed” Cao competes in the Iron Chef 
competition at the Sodexo Chefs Conference in Atlanta.
Sodexo Executive Chef, Ed Cao CEC, was recently featured in the ACF newsletter talking about his culinary career.  We met up with Chef Cao to talk about his experience as an Executive Chef and how Sodexo has played a role in his culinary path throughout the last 17 years.

Phuong “Ed” Cao was born and raised in Saigon, Vietnam - the 10th out of 11th kid. His family came to the US as refugees.  To help the family, he started working at the age of 15 at local hotels and restaurants while attending high school.  He and his mother started a successful catering business when he was just 18.

Q: Who first inspired you?

A: My mother was the first person who inspired me to cook. I remember wondering how she took so few ingredients and created delicious dishes, as if by magic. I learned an important lesson from her: when cooking, always start with fresh ingredients and cook from the heart.  Even now, I am happiest when I cook side by side with her!

Q: How has Sodexo assisted you in your professional development and in your desire to mentor and compete?

A: Sodexo inspired me to further my certifications and to build a greater culinary foundation. I found exceptional leadership in my management team, who supported my willingness to excel to become a Certified Executive Chef, Certified Culinary Administrator and Culinary Nutrition Food Certified.  Despite the social nature of what we do, chefs can become isolated by the daily demands of the operation.  Certification and ACF membership created networking opportunities that opened doors to new career pathways and showed me how to believe in myself during fierce competitions.  The most fulfilling aspect is that I found a love of teaching and mentoring as result of the certification process!

Q: What can you share for someone seeking a culinary career path with Sodexo?

A: Because Sodexo gives their employees opportunities to learn and grow your career, it’s a place you can call home for your entire career. The partnership with the ACF was built to help you prepare for your certification and advance your culinary skills and expertise. The ACF actively participates and provides guidance to Sodexo during Expertise in Action, a Spirit of Mentoring program, where chefs mentor other employees who are interested in obtaining their certifications.     
Additionally, the Sodexo Culinary Board partners with Talent Acquisition for a three-part webinar series aimed at career advancement. Employees who participate in the webinar series earn continuing education credits that are recognized by the ACF towards recertification.
Want to learn more?  Sodexo will be at this years’ National ACF Conference in Kansas City, MO.  Stop by our Trade Show booth #321 starting this Sunday to talk with top Sodexo Chefs and our recruitment team, Suzanne Thompson, Trisha Gary and myself.  Please join our Talent Community and tell us a little about yourself today!

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Why Building Strong Connections is Critical – Even if You’re Not Looking for a Job

By Guest Blogger Kris Strohmyer, Senior Recruiter

Did you know Sodexo has an alumni community? Also known as Reconnexions, this online network is a meeting place and resource for former salaried Sodexo employees. By joining, previous employees have the opportunity to reconnect with friends and coworkers, gain access to member-only events, keep current with career and special project opportunities and much more.  

If you’re unfamiliar with Reconnexions or the process of hiring former employees in general, you may be wondering why we developed this program. While it may not be obvious to some, recruiting former employees back to Sodexo has a lot of value for both the company and the candidate.

First and foremost, the ramping up process is much quicker because the candidates have already been with Sodexo, know the systems and understand the culture and environment. This is very attractive to hiring managers who want to keep their businesses running smoothly, but it is also a much easier and seamless transition for the employee who is just getting back into the swing of things. Additionally, many of these individuals have already been through our management training programs and are familiar with everything we have and everything we stand for, so it’s less of a risk for them than leaving a current position for a brand new company.

This is also where the “grass is always greener” perspective comes into play. When people leave for new roles in new companies and it doesn't work out, they can truly appreciate what Sodexo has to offer. They now know that they've tried out the other side of things and can see the value in what we bring to the table.

However, Reconnexions isn't just for former employees who aren't satisfied at another company. We also use the alumni program to rehire former salaried employees into a variety of roles, including full-time, part-time and temporary. For example, maybe you've retired but want to reenter the workforce on a part-time basis or you’re looking to jump fully back into your career. Either way, we’ll welcome you back into a position that’s suited for your needs.  

An important lesson for employees and job seekers

Whether you’re an active or passive candidate, there is a statistically good chance that you’re considering new opportunities as you read this. No matter what job you are in currently, the Reconnexions program is a good reminder to build meaningful relationships and always put your best foot forward because it doesn't go unnoticed.

When you’re an employee, it’s important to work hard and stand out because it can pay off. The job market today is all about networking and creating great connections without burning bridges. If someone knows your work and knows you do a great job, it’s an easy decision.  

Meet “Boomerang” Rachael Bush

When employees leave a job or a company, it’s not necessarily because there was something wrong. Whether for personal or family matters or simply a new career opportunity, it’s not uncommon to exit on good terms knowing there may be an option to return at some point down the road, like Rachael Bush, retail manager for Sodexo at Marquette University.

In Rachael’s case, it’s not that she was unsatisfied with her job or the company. While she left for her own personal reasons, once she had more experience and tools in her tool belt, she was ready to come back, show off what she had learned and move forward with her career at Sodexo.

Read Rachael’s story on our blog early this year here to find out what drew her back in after a few years away!


Are you a former Sodexo employee interested in returning to the company? Join Reconnexions today!

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As a Sodexo General Manager, you can build strong collaborative relationship with our clients

By Guest Blogger, Gina Smethurst, Recruitment Manager for Facilities Management

The 11th post in our Recruiter Series that features the specific environments we hire for and what it takes to succeed

Last month Sodexo paid tribute to World FM Day, where we celebrated the successes and contributions Facilities Management Professionals bring to the built environment around the World. If you missed the key takeways, you can view them here.

Venus McCoy
General Manager for Sodexo
Shell Oil - Houston, TX
I was excited to learn how Facilities Solutions continues to evolve with the environment around us, as well as the professionals in the space. According to the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), the overall percentage of women in facilities management is approximately 24 percent, but this number is steadily on the rise!

This year in our World FM Day digital magazine, we highlighted female FM professionals at Sodexo who lead the way in their field. As Recruitment Manager for FM, I have the pleasure of watching our managers, like Venus McCoy, succeed at Sodexo, so I’d like to share her perspective on this growing industry.

GS:  What do you get out of your current role that you couldn't get from any other work?

VM:  I get satisfaction from a job well done. Having two great mentors helped me gain knowledge from different resources and afforded me the ability to think differently and bring my whole self to work. Many dimensions of diversity are alive and well in this organization such as gender and minority, to name a few. This personally allows me to contribute to my full potential. Sodexo provides many development and training resources that facilities, engineering and energy management professionals can tap into, including professional certifications and lean six sigma concepts.

GS: How have you grown to succeed at Sodexo?

VM: Being a General Manager at Shell Oil has challenged a different side of me. I have a very supportive leadership team that encourages me and thus brings out my creative side and strengthens my areas of development. This has allowed me to build a very strong collaborative relationship with the client and can ultimately represent Sodexo proudly.  

GS: How do you go “above & beyond” for a client?

VM: One of my responsibilities is conducting tours of our site for “VIPs” from overseas.  One area that we did not manage was the labs, which was not up to par by Sodexo standards. I knew the tours would lead to the labs and approached the client stating that my team could get them deep cleaned and could refinish the floors to enhance their beauty. My client agreed and the tour was a success. In turn, I received lots of compliments, as they expected something simple, but in reality, they were wowed because we took the time to go above and beyond a simple cleaning.

GS: What advice would you give to someone who’s considering a career in FM?

VM:  In my current role, there is so much room for creativity, and I truly enjoy it, considering my background in hospitality and degree in arts. This kind of work gives me enthusiasm and continually re-inspires me. Every career field has its challenges, but so does everything in life! If you take the chance and go for it, you’ll quickly see that being a General Manager for Sodexo a very satisfying career.


Venus is currently a General Manager for Shell Oil managing two sites that include programs such as landscaping, Environmental Services, audio visual and mailroom services. She initially started her career with Sodexo as an Operations Manager and quickly moved into a General Manager position forming a collaborative relationship with her client.  Connect with Venus on LinkedIn!

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Behind-the-Scenes: An Inside Look at Sodexo Operations

By Autumn McReynolds, Employment Branding Sourcing Manager

Last week, I shared insight with you regarding the training and process our Talent Acquisition team goes through in order to recruit the best qualified candidates for our management opportunities.

From initial site visits and ongoing development to in-person meetings and recurring calls with unit leaders, the members of our team are committed to understanding the business they recruit for, including unique challenges and opportunities that may be present for their job environments and geographic locations.

Having participated in a recent training that involved interactive discussions, a tour of Sodexo USA’s headquarters and a site visit with the team, I wanted to pass along some of the highlights to give you a better understanding of what goes on behind the scenes at both HQ and one of our large Senior Living accounts.

HQ Tour
  • Ever wondered how Sodexo creates its menus? During our first stop of the day, Chef Rajiv Jaggi showed us around the Test Kitchen at HQ and explained the process for developing recipes that can be followed by Sodexo Chefs at all units, as well as working with our RDs to determine accurate nutrition information for our menu items.
Sodexo Chef Jobs

  • Next, Bill Yaglou, SVP of the Right Start program, shared how his team works to ensure the success of new site openings through virtual and on-site support, which not only improves the Quality of Life of our managers and their teams, but also increases client satisfaction.
  • Throughout the remainder of the morning, we spoke with leaders in talent development, diversity initiatives and brand communications about the many ongoing efforts and resources developed to support the growth of our employees, create an inclusive work environment and showcase Sodexo as the leader in Quality of Life services.

Site Visit
  • Upon arriving at client site Asbury Methodist Village, Sodexo Dining GM Evaristo Gustines took us on a tour of the many kitchens and dining areas to show us what it takes to prepare and serve 1,900 meals per day to the residents on top of planning special events like a monthly dinner where selected residents get to dine in the kitchen while watching and talking with the chefs.
  • As we continued through the community, Harold Jones, Sodexo Environmental Services GM, talked to us about cleaning and caring for the facility and the residents’ belongings. The size and quantity of equipment in the laundry area was a good indication of what a huge job our Environmental Services teams really have. 
Sodexo Environmental Services / Housekeeping Manager Jobs

  • Finally, Mike Jones, Sodexo Construction/Project Manager, explained the different aspects managed from the Facilities side, including residential renovations, grounds, upkeep and more. As the 12th largest Continuing Care Retirement Community in the country with several independent living options, assisted living suites and skilled nursing residences, the Facilities Management team plays a critical role in the daily operation of the village.

Overall, this was a great experience, and I highly recommend taking the time to connect with your colleagues who work in other job disciplines and environments to learn about what goes on behind the scenes, just as our recruiters do.

If you’re not a Sodexo employee yet, I encourage you to spend some time on our Careers site to learn more about the opportunity areas and job environments mentioned above, as well as many others available across the country. If you’re ready to join the team, you can get started by applying online!

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Discover Environmental Services and Housekeeping Management Careers with Sodexo’s NEW Career Site

By Kristen Jacobs, Employment Branding Sourcing Manager

I recently shared the launch of our new Facilities Management career site, which was designed to help job seekers explore opportunities specifically in the areas of FM, Energy Management and Clinical Technology Management. I am excited to follow up with the launch of Sodexo’s latest job-specific career website

The new site focuses on careers in Environmental Services (ES), including management positions in Housekeeping and Custodial. Job seekers can also explore a variety of roles in eXPress Services, focusing on providing our clients a centralized channel of support to improve patient satisfaction in healthcare settings. In addition to getting the scoop on ES jobs at Sodexo, you’ll find news and events, like the Women in Environmental Services Forum recently hosted by women in senior leadership ES roles here at Sodexo.

Before you explore the new site for yourself, let me share a few of my favorite features:

1.   On the Go
With a responsive design that makes the site user-friendly on any device, candidates have access to valuable tools for exploring career opportunities, preparing for interviews and networking with recruiters from anywhere they choose.
2.   Career Growth
Learn about positions available in the ES track with the Career Growth tool. From entry-level management to senior leadership roles, job seekers can find the right fit for them at any stage in their career, while also exploring the vast advancement opportunities available with a career in Environmental Services.
3.   Recruiter Connection
This exciting new feature allows candidates to identify and connect with a recruiter in their discipline or geography. Start a conversation to find out about opportunities in your area or learn more about the skills needed for careers in ES.
4.   Team Tweets
Speaking of conversation, ours is happening right on the Team Tweets page. Follow our recruiters for industry news, career-related content and exciting job opportunities.
5.   Sodexo Stories
This is a great way to get a day-in-the-life perspective from managers in ES or eXPress Services. Check back often for new profiles and fresh perspectives!
We’d love to hear your thoughts on the new site. Share them in the comments below, or on Facebook or Twitter. And watch for updates to our additional career sites, yet this summer! 

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