Social media can be a valuable tool in your work search. It can help you find prospects and showcase your skills in innovative ways.
Employers use social networking tools to find job candidates. That’s why it makes sense to have a good online media presence and know how to use social media.
Learn how you can use social media effectively to look for work and market yourself to employers.
Understand how social media can help your job search
Whether you’re looking for work or exploring ways to expand your network, you can use social media to:
- network online with people you know
- gain access to people you might never meet otherwise
- show potential employers your technology skills
- promote your skills and support your resumé with links to your volunteer, sports, artistic or community activities
Knowing how to manage your social media identity lets you project a positive image. It also helps reduce the impact of any inappropriate information about you that may appear online.
Select the right online media tools
The internet has hundreds of online media tools for your job search. Some of the most common are:
- social media websites
- online professional networks
- forums and online communities
Your choice depends on what you want to accomplish and your comfort and skill level in using a certain tool. These tips may make it easier:
Social media websites are generally used for connecting with friends. However, you can also let your contacts know you’re looking for work. Many companies and groups join these websites and post job openings on their pages. Follow these suggestions to boost the work search value of your social networking pages:
- Link from your profile to other websites that show your career, volunteer or community activities. This can provide a more complete picture of your skills.
- Make sure your personal profile looks professional. You can also create a separate work profile and limit access to your personal profile.
- Consider joining related online groups to keep up with their posted information.
Online professional networks help their members stay in contact with their peers, highlight their skills and experience and expand their contacts. Look for networking websites that match your career goals and provide:
- a job search function
- access to other users so that you can make direct contact with employers also using the site
- options to pinpoint and streamline your networking. For example, can you match your network contacts to contacts in companies posting jobs?
- discussion groups that can help you to build your online identity around your skills and experience
Use social media effectively
Follow these suggestions to use of social media in your work search:
- Identify your work search and career goals and the image you'd like to project. Choose social media tools that can help you achieve your goals.
- If you use the same social networking site for your personal life as for your work search, make sure it supports your work search. Think about creating separate profiles. One can be a profile on a social networking site for family and friends. The other can be on your professional network.
- Create a short, simple profile. People will be more likely to read a short profile and it’s easier to update. You can add more information and links as you need to.
- Inform your online network when you’re looking for work or work-related connections to grow your network.
- Online networking can be time-consuming. It's a good idea to limit yourself to a specific amount of time each day or week.
- Use the search function on social media sites to find the groups or employers you need.
- If you are preparing for a job interview, search through social media sites. Learn about the organization and the people who will interview you. Think of questions to ask in the interview based on their social media profiles. For example, ask about an article or blog they've written or a talk they’ve given.
Use the tools that put the spotlight on you
Social media can help you network, find jobs, and increase your online presence. These are all great ways to support your search for work. Use social media to showcase your skills and the image you want to project. It’s an up-to-the-minute format employers will notice.