Looking for a job is never an easy task. There are obviously the major job boards like Monster.com and HotJobs.com but it seems to me like these sites are a necessary evil more than anything else. Sure there are a lot of jobs that get posted to them and you can keep your resume there for employers, recruiters, and other agencies to find you. The truth is, at least for me, is that other than getting a few decent leads from them, they dont help very much for someone in my profession.
What I mean by decent leads is that you can see if there are companies looking for people with specific skills but your resume is going to be thrown into a pile of 1000 others that may or may not get looked at even once. As a person looking for work, you need to track down the HR or hiring manager on your own to make initial contact. (Well that’s how I go about it.) Then the boards can give you information on what companies are hiring and if there is a company that stands out you can check them out in more detail to see if they have other positions that are only listed on their corporate website. See…leads.
I’ve been focusing more on LinkedIn than the other sites and I’ll explain a process and what I like about it.
Initially you can go to the “job” tab and see what open positions LinkedIn thinks would be a good fit based on the experiences you already have listed in your profile. These are helpful and relevant but the positions that pull up for me are located all over the US and it doesn’t make sense for me to apply for a position in Wyoming. But that’s not even scratching the surface, here are some great features to looking for a job on LinkedIn.
Search by Keyword
Like the other sites, you can search by keywords. You can get very specific and only look at job posting within the past few days, job function and industry. The greatest benefit from having a network on LinkedIn is that you will immediately know if you know someone at the company or is you are closely connected to someone that works there. This is great because you can apply for the job on LinkedIn and then reach out to the people you are connected to through the same site and ask for a recommendation or for some inside information.
Search by industry
One of the features I have been excited over is the ability to search by a specific industry keyword. For example “Storage”. I found companies that were hiring much faster this way and you can open up the search to find companies in the specific industry that do not have postings on LinkedIn. That’s important because some companies obviously recruit new employees through other job boards or only recruit from their own websites. Searching based on keyword gives you all the names for companies in LinkedIn and now I can go to the company sites to see if there is anything posted there. Also even with no jobs posted on LinkedIn, I can see if I know anyone that works there currently and better yet, if I don’t know anyone, I can drill into the company profiles and FIND the people I need to contact.
I’ve been using LinkedIn for years, mainly to keep in contact with old coworkers that I don’t have connected on other social media like Twitter or Facebook. Until this recent job hunt, I didn’t dig into the robust features that LinkedIn allows for. Maybe these are all old news to most of you but I thought it was awesome so I figured I’d share.