Make it easier for employers find you – not only during this frightening global pandemic, but any time by being smart about how you use social media. Getting a job once involved scanning job boards like Monster or Careerbuilder – or even the classified ads in print media in what seems like a hundred years ago. Now you can get a job using social media
Data shows in order to find a job, you need to do some form of networking. According to ABC News, a whopping 80% of jobs are filled via networking; that statistic is from 2012, and there’s no evidence that the rate has declined. Attending networking events was a great way to develop personal connections with people in your industry, but while physical distancing is the new normal while everyone deals with the global pandemic, we need more than ever to networking via social media.
Of the many global social networks, I have found that LinkedIn and Twitter provide the best opportunities to find a job as well for recruiters to find you!
Here are 3 tips to get a job using social media
Upload a professional-looking photo If you’re quarantining with another person, ask him or her to take a headshot against a plain background, smiling and conveying self-confidence. If you’re weathering the crisis on your own, try to find an appropriate photo to use in the meanwhile. What you need to avoid are those awful selfies of people staring at their laptop cameras. Equally inappropriate are photos that include one’s personal life, with children and pets. Or non-professional dress. Not to mention some downright goofy ones. Remember – this is your professional brand at stake. Facebook and Instagram are where you can display your family and cute pet photos.
Once you identify a job posting that matches your career goals and skill set, apply for it through the required channel (this will frequently drop your resume into the ATS, which makes this next tip all the more critical). Next, type the company name into LinkedIn’s search engine to see who within your network works there or knows someone who works there. Contact that person directly. You can find most people’s work email addresses through Mailscoop.io or Hunter.io (both are browser extensions). When you write to that person, explain your connection, and ask if he or she is open to getting your resume directly in front of the hiring manager. Some people are reluctant to even implicitly endorse someone they don’t know, but don’t be self-conscious. By forwarding your resume to HR or the hiring manager with the note, “this candidate is in my network and may be a good fit for the [fill in the blank] position,” your contact not only helps you, but likely will receive a referral bonus if you are ultimately hired.
With regard to Twitter, check out these great tips from Career Waymark for identifying a good opening.
(Don’t) Tell people you’re looking for a new opportunity. I know – you think this is bad advice, but be judicious how you let people know. I see a lot of LinkedIn profiles that read, “looking for my next opportunity!” Given that most employers – rightly or wrongly – reject candidates who are currently unemployed, why hinder your search by putting it all out there? More importantly, recruiters often search on LinkedIn using keywords that describe the attributes of the candidate they’re looking for. And nobody is searching on the term “looking for my next opportunity,” or any variation of it.
I recommend letting people know that you are looking so they can let you know about opportunities they may be aware of, but I would limit that to Facebook, not LinkedIn or Twitter. Use Twitter to find out where employers are in real time, and consider showing up to meet them face to face and use LinkedIn to leave cogent comments on anything that your target employer posts. You can even try to connect, but you’ll have better success if you write a brief note explaining why you’d like to connect. Once people get to know you and understand your value proposition, you can explain that you are currently unemployed.