Job Search 101: Using Social Media to Your Advantage

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Nowadays, most people don’t print out their résumés since it’s already considered a thing of the past. Having a one-page résumé in a non-editable format is a great option. However, our social networks also need a lot of attention, as it is easier to find a job when you have an online profile. Even though we’re not going to use our social media to get a job, we should always be careful about what we post since, lately, companies are focusing on researching potential employees through their Facebook profiles and even their Instagram pages; you read that correctly, not everything revolves around LinkedIn.

Now, how could we use social networks in our favour when looking for a job? We all know professional social networks pretty well, but we don’t always know how to make the most out of them. According to an online poll conducted in 2013 by the talent development consulting firm Lee Hecht Harrison, which asked job seekers “How active are you on social networking sites?”, 48% of professionals said they were very active on a daily basis. On the other hand, CareerBuilder conducted a survey in 2012 that indicated that 37% of employers use social networks to screen potential job candidates, a percentage that has definitely gone up in the past few years. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative to know how to handle these virtual tools when our main objective is to be considered as a possible candidate.

How can you improve your presence in social media, especially in professional networks? The first thing to do is create a complete and detailed profile. Then, you must add all your previous work experience and briefly describe your responsibilities in each of the companies for which you have worked, just 2-3 lines will be more than enough, employers don’t want to waste their time reading all of your daily tasks. The most important thing is to add key achievements that speak for themselves. For example, if you’re an Accountant, your future employer will like to know how you contributed with annual projections and taxes.

Your profile picture doesn’t necessarily have to be extremely professional looking. It should actually demonstrate your level of originality and imagination, especially if you work in creative fields; therefore, as a graphic designer or community manager, you could let your imagination run wild.

Do the same for your digital résumé, so you can apply to other online offers through job search engines like neuvoo. Furthermore, it should only be one page, don’t exaggerate on the amount of information you decide to add to your résumé and don’t forget to mention your skills. Never send a résumé in an editable format such as Word; it is more convenient to pay a professional to design one, after all, your curriculum is your business card.

Start creating a list of contacts and follow the companies that you are interested in on your different social networks, this way, you will make yourself known. Moreover, get acquainted with Skype. Many large and small companies have started using this tool to interview potential candidates.

Good spelling is an essential part of every profile. If a candidate doesn’t even know how to write, the company will lose all interest in them, so be sure to double-check every time you update it.

In this new digital era, it is essential to leave our mark and make a difference by standing out among other candidates. Remember that having a digital identity is the new cover letter, so spend a day updating all your profiles as you would do with your résumé.