Is networking over for job seekers? A few years ago, I read an article called “Has Networking Become a Waste of Time for Job Seekers” on www.fastcompany.com discussing the new way of networking. Each year new college graduates enter the job market. What should they do to get their first professional job? Social media or face to face networking?
Here are some online resources
Interviewing on campus, internships, or online job boards? The article suggests social media can help students be seen and heard in their target industry and by their target employer. Things have changed! Job search used to mean creating a dynamite resume, sharpen your interview skills and answer a classified advertisement for a job. Now personal marketing has taken over and you need to establish a strong personal brand. They suggest social media to follow the CEO of your desired organization and learn who he/she follows and follow them. Part of your personal branding is establishing a profile online.
Professional networking sites like Linkedin, Facebook, BranchOut Facebook App, iPhone Apps, CareerBuilder Facebook App and Hire My Friend Facebook App are just a few examples of using social media for job search. Building a positive online presence is crucial. In this difficult job market, you need to stand out! Employers are looking for the best candidates who are knowledgeable in social media. You can use social media to make connections and find job openings as well.
Linkedin is the most well-known example of an online professional networking site. You can post your profile which can act as your online resume. You make connections and get references from your connections that potential employers can view. You can change your status to let your connections know you are available. If you should keep your information updated, this is the new communication technology for job search.
Online networking and generating interest
Some of the applications on Facebook, Twitter and other social media provide information of job openings. Some of these Apps like TweetMyJobs send out automatic updates of new openings sent to your cell phone. If you become a fan on Facebook of specific company or follow a hiring manager on Twitter, you may find out about job openings. Here is a gratuitous plug for krantcents! You can use social media to follow professional recruiters or other people who may know of job openings.
Networking has gone high technology! Not all networking is through social media, but is a good addition to other strategies. Job search is supposed to be a full time job. You should every possible way to connect with people. People will judge you on your online profile, your connections, friends and your presence online. Make sure you filter your presence by setting the privacy settings to display your best image.
Employers will generally do a background check on possible employees. Your online presence will be available by just doing a Google search on your name. Lack of a presence online could be a negative too. Start with a profile on Linkedin, a Facebook page, and join Twitter. Making comments, or posting pictures or commenting in forums can add to your image, but be careful!
Social media creates a community for industries and professionals to help manage their careers. It helps connect people, friends and others keep up with each other socially and it is an excellent way to network. You don’t want to give the face to face networking though. Join industry groups and interest groups to add to your network. You never know where your next career opportunity will come from. Are you using social media to job search?
Networking is still relevant and works, particularly in a tough job market. Just because unemployment is much lower, do not expect a great job market. You are competing with a lot of other people for too few jobs! You need to use every angle to get an interview which means social media, Linkedin and other online resources, but do not forget the old fashioned networking. It still works very well. Is networking over for job seekers?
Photo by: Flickr