Who would’ve thought it possible to land yourself your dream job in 140 characters or less? Say goodbye to obnoxious cover letters and tedious resumes, this is how clever social media use can get you that job you’ve been dying to score.
In today’s digitally savvy world, employers are taking to social networking sites to recruit fresh meat. This has its benefits as it cuts costs sourcing their own employees because they avoid paying for the ‘middle men’ involved in the recruitment process. This means no money is spent on job advertisements, recruiters and background checks. The employer sees it all first hand on your social profiles and it’s catching on, too. According to research conducted by Telstra, more than a quarter of Australian bosses are using social networking sites to screen job candidates.
Have a listen to this podcast about the interesting ways in which job-hunters have leveraged social media to get their dream jobs:
So, how can you get started? Well, the first and obvious point to make here is that you must be present and active on social media in order to obtain a job from it. This is particularly relevant for those interested in pursuing a career in digital media or marketing. Create posts that are pertinent to the industry you’re interested in, and do it on the regular to increase your chances of being noticed. If you’re time poor, it could be as simple as posting an article informing the reader of an industry update or a breaking story in the field:
Do something to show your future potential employer that you are in the know, that you have a keen interest in their industry. This of course isn’t limited to posting updates on Twitter, I would encourage you to do this across all social channels and even write blog posts sharing your knowledge (and in turn, cross promote them on all of your digital profiles!). This is a great ongoing habit to get into, especially since 78% of higher education teachers are using at least one site in support of their professional career activities (Dabbagh and Kitsantas, 2012, pp.9). Another key take home message here is: don’t just do this for the sake of getting a job, even when you do land that marketing gig you’ve been dying to get, continue to maintain that reliable presence you’ve built on your profiles. You may not be thinking about it just yet, but you never know where that might lead you further down your career path.
It is also vital that you keep your LinkedIn up to date with all of your relevant job information complete with references. I would also suggest having this information available on Facebook (enter your career or education info):
And update your Twitter bio to suit (include links to your blog/website, too!):
Hint: don’t forget a professional looking photo is the icing on the cake!
Social networks seamlessly enable existing relations and facilitate building new ones in leisure and professional domains alike (Benson et al., 2014, pp.520). They were not created to be a one-sided form of communication, it’s about the exchange. Therefore networking is a crucial element if you want to get noticed by employers. A great place to start is by joining networking groups on LinkedIn and Facebook. From there you’ll be able to interact with industry leaders and current employees of your dream company – your next role could be waiting for you within these pages!
Now your profiles are completely up to date, you’re sharing relevant articles and mingling amongst professionals. The next big step is to start creating. If you don’t have one already, a blog is a great way to communicate your knowledge and skills when 140 character limits just won’t do it. This is your chance to show off your creative flair and build an awesome portfolio to bring to the table at your next interview.
Don’t wait, start now and start your career.
Benson, V., Morgan, S. and Filippaios, F., 2014. Social career management: Social media and employability skills gap. Computers in Human Behavior,30, pp.519-525.
Dabbagh, N. and Kitsantas, A., 2012. Personal Learning Environments, social media, and self-regulated learning: A natural formula for connecting formal and informal learning. The Internet and higher education, 15(1), pp.9.