Career Evaluations

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A friend is reentering the workforce after spending the last few years home with her son. She’s more than qualified in a two very different fields and to help her decide which one to focus her job search on, she’s working as a temp.

This is a great opportunity for her to evaluate what she likes and doesn’t in addition to what’s changed in the last five years.

After working in her temporary position for two of the four weeks, she’s fairly certain that she would enjoy a different field and inquired how to talk to the temp agency about placing her somewhere else when this position wraps up.

I encouraged her to have a conversation with the agency and be candid. Instead of emphasizing what she hated, instead reiterate the parts that she did enjoy, especially the aspects that indicate she would be happier in a different field.

For example, if she didn’t like the customer service parts of the job but enjoyed the data entry, schedule coordinating, taking meeting notes and filing, she should emphasize the latter in the conversation and on her written summary.

Data Entry is Important

Data Entry is not a lot of fun and takes a level of focus that can produce eye strain, but you wouldn’t have the tangible results without it. Having easily accessible data can help you plan for tomorrow, next week, next month and next year.

A good database should be searchable and up to date, which usually means someone will have to input the data on a regular basis.

Some people groan when they find out data entry is part of their job description not mentioned in the interview or pre-hire paper work. I say don’t groan!

Truthfully, I don’t mind data entry. It’s easy to create a game and a goal since it is usually a long list. I have a number in my head I want to get to before the end of the hour or day. If I go over then I give myself bonus points.

It is also easy and tempting to rush through entering the information. I try really hard not to do this, no matter what. I know that having accurate data is more important than just having data.

How do you feel about data entry? Do you see it as an intern’s job?