Wednesday 20 July 2011

Social media & looking for a job


How relevant are your online activities to your potential employer?  How should you tailor your Facebook and LinkedIn usage to enhance your chances? 
Social media such as YouTube, LinkedIn and Wikipedia have all been expanding our ability to voice public opinions, learn faster and more efficiently, and make new contacts. 
Online extensions of your real life work now matter much more than you think when you’re searching for a new job.  
The question 'what level of influence do you hold over the people you have connected with online?' has become very relevant for employers who are seeking people who can not only come up with creative ideas but ensure that their execution holds a lasting impact. You must also take into consideration   how websites like Klout are measuring your activity. 
Professional recruitment service providers such as Muovo can help candidates with their social media usage so when the time comes for submitting your interest in a company or role, you would be positioned positively in the interviewer's perception. 
Twitter: If a candidate posts a lot of industry-relevant tweets, it indicates a passion for the space, which typically translates when they are interviewing. Twitter also allows people to foster a more personal connection and enter into a ‘conversation’ with them, which sometimes leads to hires down the line.
Facebook:  A lot of people are now employing the site's privacy settings effectively. Yet if this is your main way of getting traffic to an external blog that you keep and to share interesting links, make sure that your Wall is accessible to Everyone and search-engines are indexing your posts when you start job hunting. This helping potential employers assess your spheres of expertise.  The most important thing to keep in mind is to keep your Facebook presence as professional as possible. 
LinkedIn: Josh Yehaskel, a leading director for Digital Media company Three Pillars in New York, describes Linked in as "one of the most important tools when looking for a new role, and just in general.  I wouldn’t say it matters more than a person’s resume, but definitely as much in the sense that it’s a passive way to keep your professional background and accomplishments out there like a ‘line in the water.’ I encourage everyone to be as detailed and thorough with their LinkedIn profiles as possible.”
To conclude, the advantage online media offer over traditional telephone & CV approaches is that it is a much more personal method of connecting with real people working in companies that you admire. Understanding who the person on the other side of the interview table is (their interests and hobbies, for instance)  allows anyone to find a common bond, something that make all the difference and enhance the first impression you make. 
Have you used social media in the past to get a job or are you working on doing so? Share your success stories or stumbling blocks you're finding in the comments below!


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