The Job Search; Presenting Yourself Online

Here at Graduate Advantage, we repeatedly see job seekers making the same common mistakes on their journey to employment. All these oversights can be easily avoided when you know how.

In 2011, 91% of companies used social media sites for recruitment purposes*. Your online identity speaks volumes to future employers, so it’s imperative that your web presence reflects the best of your character and capabilities. Most employers use social networking sites to research potential candidates, and 69% have rejected applicants because of information found online*.

Making a good ‘virtual-impression’ is vital, but seeking work on the web is only beneficial when you stand out from the crowd as a candidate who is innovative and creative. Due to the large volume of job seekers, your chances of landing a good position will be greatly enhanced if you match your skills to specific employers’ needs, and connect with key players. Seeking a position online allows you the opportunity to research sectors, specific roles and the skills required for each. It might seem like a daunting task, but you can put yourself ahead by being the first to hear about job opportunities, recruitment fairs and training.

There are a few pitfalls to seeking employment online. It’s easy to give the wrong impression of yourself, a problem that can be easily solved by using tight Facebook security settings and fleshing out your profile on LinkedIn. Make sure that the digital profile you show to the world is reflective of your good character and specific skill set.

You might wonder how it is that employers can glean so much from your online presence, but it is easy to forget to upgrade Facebook security settings, allowing future employers to see what kinds of things you post, who you associate with, and how you present yourself.

LinkedIn offers some useful advice for graduate job seekers. Join the LinkedIn groups belonging to recruitment agencies in your sector. Participate in the discussions; they’re filled with practical questions and advice. This is a great space to connect with key recruiters and build relationships.

Twitter suggests its users create a professional account, and put their job pitch into their Twitter bio and include a link to an online CV. Tweet about your job search, and follow recruiters and industry newspapers. If you’re interested in one or more specific companies, Tweet, Retweet, mention and tag them.

Don’t forget, graduates are great for business! Employers want to find you; you just have to make it easy for them.

*Social media monitoring service Reppler has found that 91% of employers use social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to screen job applicants – with 69% rejecting a candidate based on something they saw.

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