• Social Media and Your Job Search

    January 30, 2013 by
    Joshua John

    Joshua John, Social Media & Outreach Coordinator at 2U

    Job hunting isn’t what it used to be. Just pulling out the weekly Classifieds section and going through job listings item by item isn’t going to cut it. Ditto with career services, which tend to be helpful with finding specialized employment, but even then job-seekers can do a lot of that work themselves in this age of free electronic information. The Internet really has provided job seekers with a tremendous amount of autonomy and opportunity when it comes to finding employment. But having access to information isn’t the same as knowing how to use it. With that in mind, here are a handful of tips job seekers can use to help find work through their social media networks:

    Set up a LinkedIn profile.

    LinkedIn is the social networking site for job-seekers, therefore it only makes sense to set up and maintain a profile on the site. LinkedIn not only offers job-seekers a space to list their employment histories, education and relevant skills, it connects them with employers and allows them to supplement their resumes with recommendations. LinkedIn enables job-seekers to establish and build a professional network that they might not otherwise possess.

    Follow companies on Twitter.

    Twitter continues to be a popular method for companies to put themselves forward to the public and that includes job-seekers. Companies often announce job searches through their Twitter feeds, but that’s not Twitter’s real boon. Connecting with people who work at companies that job-seekers also want to work at is Twitter’s true benefit. Following a manager’s feed, replying to their Tweets and building a rapport through online communication has the potential to help job-seekers get access to individuals they might not otherwise be able to talk to. Twitter is also a great way to build a personal brand around a profession, for example, a social worker could participate in Social Work Twitter Chats. The principle is similar to LinkedIn, except following someone on Twitter is less formal. Following the right person has the potential to pay dividends for particularly ambitious, savvy job-seekers.

    Update your Facebook status.

    Job-seekers with a wide network of friends and acquaintances should also consider posting about their career searches on Facebook. Updating one’s status has the potential to draw out people who might have relevant information, advice, expertise or even a potential job to offer. It’s similar in principle to following someone on Twitter, only turned around, so that the job-seeker is the one drawing others to him or her.

    Blog about your field.

    When in doubt, start a blog. Job-seekers should consider writing publicly about their field of interest as intelligent, accessible, on-point writing can draw potential employers or at least serve as a nice line on a resume. Job-seekers who have a high degree of experience or insight in their field can benefit from this, especially if their posts become viral. Unlike the minimalist mediums of discreet social networking sites, blogs allow individuals a platform on which to think out loud with more space and depth.

    Help others with their search.

    It’s basic karma: If you’re a job-seeker and are in a position to help someone else get a job, do it! This isn’t associated with a particular platform or social networking site, but more of a general rule of functioning in a community of workers. If you are in a position to recommend a friend or former employee on LinkedIn, you should. Who knows, if they get a job somewhere, they might help you find work down the line. Retweet friends’ and former employees’ tweets or recommend their blog to a relevant audience. Do what you can to help others since doing so carries the potential to greatly increase your own online profile.

    Author Bio: Joshua John currently works in community relations for the University of Southern California’s Virtual Master of Social Work program, which provides social workers the opportunity to earn an online social work degree and apply for a social work license. He also loves gadgets, movies, and all things Batman. Follow him on twitter @joshuavjohn.

    Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.

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