Published on August 19th, 2014 | by James Smythe0
Thinking outside the box: How social media can help you find your dream job
Social media needn’t just be an outlet for people who like to keep their friends updated on what they are having for dinner (Spag bol for tea tonight #yum).
It is also an effective tool for job seekers searching for their ideal job and prospective employers looking for the perfect candidate.
Sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and even Instagram can help you connect with your future employer and find your dream job, alongside leading job websites such as Jobstoday.
LinkedIn is the place for professionals looking to showcase their skills and experience in the hopes of bagging an even better job.
Don’t be afraid to connect with complete strangers on this site, it’s a lot less creepy than friend requesting someone you don’t know on Facebook, and you can steadily grow your contact list of people working in the industry you are hoping to develop a career in.
As well as connecting with like-minded professionals and prospective employers, LinkedIn also has a Jobs section, where you can search for roles and tailor your search preferences so only relevant positions come up in future.
Previous employers and colleagues can also write you references and endorse your skills, which feature on your profile for all to see.
Twitter is the site where anything is possible. It’s the place where people go to discuss politics, news, arrange meet ups and events or just micro blog about what they are up to in that exact moment (Spag bol was delicious lol #foodporn). It’s also a great way of connecting with companies you want to work for and checking what they are up to and if they are hiring.
Bigger companies usually have a Twitter account just for job seekers, but be prepared to directly tweet smaller companies you want to work for, to check if they have any openings.
Make sure your tweets are interesting, if you want to keep your work and personal lives separate you can create a professional account and a private one, then if you do want to share that hilarious video of a singing dog no prospective employer will judge you.
The hashtag is also a fantastic tool when it comes to job searching. For example, try searching #job and # your town‘s name to bring up any employers in your area currently tweeting about their open positions.
When it comes to social media Facebook is one of the first sites that come to mind and you don’t have to limit yourself to liking your friends’ updates and pictures from the weekend.
‘Like’ a few companies pages to keep up to date with what they are up to. Businesses are switched on to the power of social media now and will also post job positions online as they come up, so their followers find out first.
Keep your profile as up to date as possible in terms of employment and skills and always be careful what you post publicly and privately.
Many of us use Pinterest to plan weddings that might never exist (and are out of our price range), pin pictures of cars we won’t ever have the opportunity to drive or create boards full of recipes we like the look of (which you will never get round to making).
Pinterest can also be used to create an online CV or professional portfolio for employers to access and take a look through. This is the site for inspiration central and a great place to find new ways to lay out your CV, whether it be a word document or a flashy infographic.
The social image-sharing platform is most commonly used as a mobile app, but there is a web version available, where you can just view pictures and search for users.
Slapping a filter on a selfie or on a picture of what you had for dinner (Spag bol looks amazing #tasty) might be the most common way to use Instagram, but you should take advantage of your ability to directly connect with companies and see what they are up to behind the scenes. Having an insight into how a company works and their ethos can really help when it comes to working on a job application in the future.
Another great way is to post an image related to a company, then use hashtags and tagging to get their attention. Many companies repost users’ images that they like, which could not only increase your followers but also give you an advantage and something to talk about, should you try for a job with them. Leading fashion website ASOS is a good example of a brand that shares what happens behind the scenes and interacts directly with followers.
It’s never been more beneficial to be social, so now is the time to get out there and go wild tweeting, pinning and updating those statuses, all in the name of employment.