Using Social Media During Your Job Search
Social media is a great way to interact with friends and family and share your interests. But it is also a great help when it comes to your job search-if you use it correctly.
LinkedIn is what first comes to find when you think about using social media to look for jobs. It is a great source for jobs, articles or networking and you can create a professional profile for employers and recruiters to look at. However, don’t discount Facebook, Twitter, or even Instagram when looking for a job. Often companies will post their jobs on their feed or you could follow job board accounts (like Youthjobs Canada!) to see what jobs they are posting about. You can also learn job search or resume tips and get a sense of how to best proceed with a digital job search.
Another great thing social media platforms can do is help you to find groups of like-minded people. Whether its in the field you are interested in working in or a group of similar people also looking for jobs in your region. Talking with other people to learn about where you want to work or even commiserate about the difficulties of job hunting can be a huge help to you in your search. Use these groups to network, first online and if you’re comfortable, eventually in person. If you can chat with someone online who works at a company you’re interested in, you can probably chat with them in person which can be a huge foot in the door. Don’t forget to also contribute in meaningful ways. If you can give tips to someone else or offer advice, it will not only help them and make you feel good, but it will show others that you are a willing part of the community and will encourage them to help you when you are the one with questions.
Since all social media platforms are available to use during your job search that means they are all also available to employers in their employee search! Always check your privacy settings and think before you post. You can continue to have a personal page but think about removing those embarrassing photos from 5 years ago. If you turn your privacy on, try to keep yourself still searchable. Not being able to find you on a popular social media platform can look like you have something to hide.
Never use social media to complain about your current job. It could lead to an awkward situation at work and it shows future employers that you have a negative attitude and are not very professional. Remember, it’s very easy to find out where you work (especially if you have an updated Linkedin account!) so saying vague things about “your job” or “your boss” will not make this better. Blowing off steam and talking through issues can be helpful in a lot of ways but don’t do it for the entire world to see.
Social media is not the only place to leave a digital footprint. Google yourself periodically and see what comes up. Think about what the results would say to an employer and be prepared to talk about them in an interview.
It is up to you how much you want to cross pollinate across platforms when you’re job searching. You don’t have to tweet about how you need a job, but you may want to. Don’t over post as you could become annoying and un-noticeable. Reach out to people privately to avoid awkward public situations. Think about what you are posting and if it would reflect poorly upon you later on – a good reminder for all social media posts regardless of your job status. Good Luck!