Young and Inexperienced? Use Your Network!
Nowadays, both job search on the Internet and virtual recruitment are more and more frequent. Be it LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook, job seekers and recruiters alike use social networks to broadcast, as well as to obtain information. Even if you have very little to no experience in your field, it is possible to find work using the networking opportunities provided by the web. Here are a few tips on how to use social media to your advantage.
Social Networks, a Wealth of Information
Make sure you not only visit the website of the companies where you would like to work, but also their LinkedIn company page or group, their Facebook page and Twitter profile. In addition to keeping you up to date on recent news, they can also provide pertinent information concerning job openings.
Of course, if you can gather relevant information with the help of social media, recruiters can also conduct their own investigation about you. Google your name, and make sure a future employer notices you for the right reasons. For example, adjust your privacy settings so that only your friends have access to your private life on Facebook, and avoid any compromising pictures. However, your LinkedIn profile should remain public in order to be accessible from a search engine. In order to always make a good impression, be sure to write properly, avoiding spelling or syntax errors, and do not give public access to any information or photo that you would not want an employer to find.
How to Stand Out on LinkedIn
First, complete your LinkedIn profile using key words easily identifiable by prospective employers, and choose a professional looking picture. As you did on your resume, describe your professional experiences in the “Experience” section. For each job, you can add examples of your work, creating a virtual portfolio, or ask previous supervisors or colleagues to write a recommendation.
If you have little or no work experience, but have done some voluntary work or an internship, showcase your transferable skills with keys words that you can add to the “Skills & Expertise” section, or draw attention to the knowledge developed through your studies.
You have a website, a blog or you published an article? Include a link on your profile by adding the “Publications” section in order to show people who view your profile what you are able to do. You could also add a LinkedIn badge to your website, leading your readers to your professional profile.
Try to find former colleagues, professional contacts, professors, classmates, members of your family and friends, in order to expand your network. Even if one of them cannot lead you directly to a job, maybe one of their contacts could be of help.
Join groups that are in line with your academic background, areas of interest or professional experience, and participate in discussions; it will give you a chance to establish new contacts.
Keep your profile up to date, and try to interact by sharing articles that people in your line of work will appreciate, by using the status update box on your homepage or by starting a discussion in a group. Comment on articles that have caught your attention, to make yourself known and to develop new relationships with people in your field.
Find a Job with Twitter
On Twitter, as with other social networks, you must manage your online identity. With the appropriate photo and professional description, this microblog can help you perfect your image on the Internet by letting you establish contact with people in your industry. It is up to you to tweet relevant content, with adequate hashtags, that leads to a resource that people in your field will find helpful.
That is exactly how Robinson Meyer found a job at The Atlantic newspaper. He got noticed by his future employer because of his smart and effective interventions, as well as his ability to weave social fabric and make conversations richer.
Following experts in your field or businesses where you would like to work will help you keep up to date and be aware of new job opportunities. Take a look at who these important figures are following, because they might be interesting resources for you too.
You may discover new avenues by searching for key words that have to do with your industry or for hashtags like “#job”, “#careers” or “#recruiting”.
Facebook, more than a hangout for friends
The relatively new Facebook Graph Search could be very useful in your job search. For instance, this tool allows you to know who among your friends has contacts who work at companies you are interested in. To be easily visible by recruiters, be sure to fill out the “Work and Education” as well as “Places Lived” sections, by including your work experience, skills and “current city”.
Stay informed concerning new developments by liking company pages of businesses that interest you. Many companies also use their Facebook page to post job vacancies.
Use your status to tell your friends that you are looking for a job, by indicating what type of work; one of your friends surely knows someone who can help in your job search. Since news travels fast and Facebook is a very popular network, this type of status is often fruitful.
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