Using social media to find a job

24th May 2016

Shop there regularly but don’t know how to get your foot in the door? Love their books but haven’t a clue where to find their latest job vacancies? The world of work can seem like an unknown one for anyone, particularly if you’re heading backing after maternity leave. Despite its name, social media is also helping people in their work life too, by letting them make contact with businesses which may seem intimidating and unreachable from the other side of the computer. More than half of employers (54%) use social media in their recruitment process according to a recent survey by Careerbuilder.co.uk so it’s time to get yourself noticed.

Where do I start?

Think about what you feel happy doing most. If you have a hobby which you’d love to turn into a career then that’s a great place to start but other ways to find a job that suits you is to match it with your skills. Are you good with people? Do you like busy atmospheres or quieter environments? Do you like problem solving or are you more creatively inclined? Whichever field you choose to work in, these tips are designed to help you make the most of your social media to find the job that fits your life:

Make yourself known          

Selling yourself may not come naturally to everybody but the most subtle way of blowing your own trumpet is to make the most of those profile and ‘about me’ sections of your social media accounts. Be sure to include your skills and put key words as your interests so that any potential employers who may glance at your page notice what you are trying to tell them.

If you want your social media to be about your private life and kept separate from your work life then that’s your choice but if you decide to actively engage with businesses through social media channels then try to think of the best ways to represent yourself and make useful contacts.

Think about your profile photo and any other media you upload to your social media accounts. If you’re not sure you would want your future employer to see your latest photos then it may be a good idea not to upload them.

Twitter:

It makes sense to follow the people whose organisation you are interested in and introduce yourself. Showing a genuine interest in their company will always be seen as a positive, especially if there are no current vacancies with them. And if you have made the right impression on first contact, they may think of you when a future vacancy crops up. This will also lead you onto other contacts which you may never have known about. It can also feel pretty good if they follow you back!

But don’t get too carried away with the click of the follow button – tailor your search and don’t just follow everybody and anybody who is linked to the industry you want to work in. Following 500 more people than the next person won’t necessarily mean that you are more likely to find your dream job and don’t forget that it’s not a popularity contest. Some companies now have their own separate twitter accounts to list their job vacancies so make sure you are following this account so that you are alerted about jobs as soon as they are advertised.

Make use of those hashtags (#) to search for topics of interest and to make your tweets more visible to the people you are trying to reach. For example #prjobs or #salesjobs.

Once you’ve made contact, don’t hassle them and remember that, even though you are following them they are not your friends so try to maintain a level of professionalism and think about how you want to represent yourself.

Facebook:

Facebook is probably the most social platform of all of them but this can be used to your advantage. ‘Like’ companies that you are interested in and use your Facebook page to let your friends and family know what kind of job you are looking for. If things pop up on their news feed that may be of interest to you then the chances are that they will share it with you and introduce you to a new contact or opportunity. Try to always keep your status updated and relevant and keep yourself easy to spot for people who may be looking. If the level of privacy is a concern to you then you can still make yourself known on Facebook but you may have to actively search for people or companies more than on any other of the platforms.

Facebook Marketplace is a relatively new feature on Facebook which provides you with current job listings. It works by letting you search just like you would on any other job site.

LinkedIn:

Probably the only networking event you will get to attend from the comfort of your sofa in your pyjamas, LinkedIn is a professional networking site that helps you discover future employment connections. Think of it as an online CV and a professional platform, not a social platform. This means that LinkedIn can be the easiest place to highlight your skills, career history and educational background. When you request to connect with someone, try to remember to opt for a personal message instead of the automated message that LinkedIn will send to the other person as this will always give a better impression.

Set up your own blog:

Your own blog is a great way to get across exactly what you want people to know about you and express yourself your way. If you want to get into fashion then showing future employers that you love spending your free time writing or reading about the subject is the best way to demonstrate your passion. If you’ve started your own business then a blog is a great way to tell people what you’re up to. Always include links to your professional website or blog if you have one and a link to your CV. Having a blog which stands out from the crowd is also a great way to show future employers who the real you is – something which we can all find difficult to get across during an interview.

When used in the right way, social media gives you a visibility and impact that a paper CV in an envelope may not be able to compete with. If you are active across several platforms of social media then ensure they are all linked together by posting links to one on another. This also ensures your posts will not go unnoticed.  But remember not to completely neglect the more traditional routes to finding a job – if you still feel unsure about where to start with the world of work then you can use your social media accounts to find suitable recruitment agencies. That way you can let them do the searching for you.

Links:

Digital Mums 
Web: www.digitalmums.com  

A company which trains Mums to become Social Media Managers and then matches them to businesses requiring their skills. Great for flexible and remote working and being in charge of your own work schedule.

Working Mums 
Web: www.workingmums.co.uk 

A searchable site which allows you to list your preferred job and location and find something which suits your way of working.

Netmums 
Web: http://www.netmums.com/back-to-work/jobs  

We’ve all heard of Netmums but they also have a job section on their website which connects you to jobs in your local area.



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