Dan brings to his role at Vlocity more than 15 years’ experience designing, developing, testing, and marketing applications for government customers. Previously, Dan ran the government marketing team for Google’s Enterprise division (now known as Google for Work), bringing Google’s cloud-based email and collaboration tools to federal, state & local government agencies across the United States. Dan also worked at Oracle and Siebel Systems, leading teams that developed CRM applications for the public sector. At Siebel, he designed the first two releases of Siebel Public Sector. Dan began his career in the federal government, working as a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Treasury and the U.S. Agency for International Development.
ACCES Employment is Canada’s acknowledged leader in assisting job seekers from diverse backgrounds – including recent immigrants – transcend barriers to find gainful employment.
Recently, ACCES selected Vlocity and its strategic partner Salesforce to initiate a wide-ranging digital upgrade and provide a modern client portal to enhance the customer experience, streamline applicant intake, and transform the pre-arrival process for candidates.
Last week, recent immigrant and successfully employed data visualization specialist Sonali Gupta sat down with Vlocity to discuss her move to Canada and the invaluable assistance she received from ACCES.
Q: Hi Sonali! Thanks for talking to us today. Let’s start back in India: What were your career goals and why did you want to emigrate to Canada?
I was living with my parents in the city of Chandigarh and working as a senior data analyst—it was a good job but I wanted more opportunities. I began looking for a place that was safe for women and with plenty of opportunities for advancement. Canada was the best match. Thus, I began the process of obtaining a work visa, submitting required documents and applying for permanent residence.
Q: How did ACCES come into the picture?
It was a friend who first mentioned the name. During the visa application process I was introduced–or should I say inundated— with the names of various government-sponsored employment services—it was kind of overwhelming. So I was glad when my friend pointed me toward ACCES. I quickly got in touch with them and could sense right away that they would be a good fit.
Q: How so?
Well, there was just a bond right away. I contacted them, described my situation and they were immediately enthusiastic about assisting me.
Q: OK, so at this point you’re still in India preparing for your transition. How did you begin interacting with ACCES and using their pre-arrival services?
It began with some basic assessment of position desired and skill set via their online portal. I was also assigned an employee consultant—Ricardo— and we began exchanging emails in an effort to prepare me for the Canadian job market on the level that I was accustomed. The online modules proved to be an indispensable part of preparing me for the Canadian job market--but I want to emphasize how great it was to have an actual person helping out as well.
Q: Can you speak a bit more directly about the online capabilities you found most helpful?
Sure. Everything was very elegant, thoughtfully arranged and easy to find. ACCES had a learning management system that greatly benefited me. It provided a series of learning modules with multiple slides and questions and corresponding answers at the back. One module I found helpful explained how to create an effective elevator speech. Candidates are asked to create sample content and email it to their employment consultant for review. The ability to access things like this online was a huge bonus!
Q: What was your overall impression of the online portal when you logged on for the first time?
I found the user interface to be engaging and attractive—and this simplified the task of locating the various offerings I needed like online tutorials, job fair info, resume review, etc.
Q: Were there other online capabilities that you found helpful?
Yes—live webinars. These were a great way to learn more about topics that affect a job applicant. I recall attending a valuable webinar on how to prepare for job interviews. Once again, great information from relevant experts in the field.
Q: As you transitioned to Canada and your search for meaningful work continued, how did you continue to use ACCES services? Did you visit their Toronto-based resource centers?
I did visit their offices—mostly for job fairs. I was excited about the opportunity to get in front of hiring managers and learn about what each company was looking for in a new hire. At this point I really began emphasizing the process of applying for jobs, fine-tuning my Linkedin profile, resume, networking cards and preparing for job interviews.
Q: Is this where the mock interview came in?
Correct—the day before my big interview ACCES set up a mock interview session so we could go over likely questions. I didn’t have time to make it to their offices so we conducted it online. Long story short: I felt less nervous, more prepared and I got the job!
Q: As a satisfied customer of ACCES Employment, how would you sum up your experience? Would you recommend their services? Any advice for others?
I’m very satisfied with my ACCES experience. As far as I’m concerned I completely owe my present employment as a data visualization specialist at a small software company to them, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend their services. As far as advice, let me say this: It’s not enough to get your visa and move to Canada and then start looking for a job. You have to prepare in advance and you have to take it seriously.
I see people here who think it’s going to be easy--but they haven’t done any pre-arrival work so it’s actually more difficult. For these people, it takes so much longer to land a job—and sometimes they have to accept a position that’s not commensurate with their education, skill set or career goals. You can’t compromise on your job when you move to a new country--that’s why you need to focus early, work hard and take advantage of the helpful experts at ACCES Employment before you arrive.
Q: Any final thoughts Sonali?
ACCES consultants really know how to motivate you—and that’s important. You have to remember when you leave everything back in your home country and travel halfway across the world in the pursuit of your dream job, it’s easy to become intimidated by the immensity of it all and lose focus. Consultants like Ricardo remind you why you’re here and motivate you both emotionally and professionally. They set you up for success—the rest is up to you.