As the reach of social media expands, more job seekers are using this medium to find jobs. Whether you simply post your resume on your blog, tweet about your job search, or leverage your social networks in job hunting, this can be a great way to connect with potential employers and find the job you really want.
Some job seekers decide to become bloggers expressly for the purpose of building their personal brand and increasing their job marketability.
But social networking and blogging is a double-edged sword for job seekers. There are numerous benefits, but the downsides can have a dramatic impact on your job search success.
Blogging for Jobs
Blogging can provide many benefits during the job search process. A job seeker can design their blog to showcase their professional knowledge, expertise, and represent their personal brand. When searching for a job, candidates must be able to sell themselves to employers. By having a blog, candidates are able to showcase their qualities with various forms of media including text, photo, and video. Blogs allow candidates to tell their story beyond their resume.
For example, by listing a blog on your resume or cover letter, an employer may take a look at your site. They will be able to see your past experience and projects that you have posted without calling you in for an interview. If your work is impressive, it may lead to an interview and further discussion of your skills and past results.
Blogs also allow employers to see that you stay on top of industry trends. Bloggers tend to cover recent news and how it affects their field. With an ever changing world, employers are looking for candidates who constantly read up on trends and are able to apply them to their business efforts.
By creating an engaging blog, job candidates can present their skills and experience on a professional yet creative platform.
The Pitfalls of Personal Social Networking and Blogging For Your Job Search
What if you aren't blogging for your job search, but just for your personal life? While we don't like to think we're being judged on the quality and content of our personal blogs, we are. If you happen to be job seeking, keep in mind that employers may find and read your posts, regardless of whether or not you created them with your professional life in mind.
Be on the lookout for these potential trouble areas on your blog or in your social media networks:
1. Poor grammar and content. Your communication skills are being judged when a future employer reads your blog or your social media posts. They want to know what you can contribute to their company and it is vital to make sure they don't see shorthand acronyms used in your writing. No one is perfect and the occasional spelling or grammar slip probably isn't going to cost you a job. Numerous grammatical errors and a failure to communicate effectively; however, will turn them off of hiring you. This is even more important if your position requires communication with the public. Employers will not want to hire someone who can't spell and communicate effectively to represent their company.
2. Issues with photos. Numerous job hunters have found out the hard way that their personal photos of partying or silliness have cost them a potential job. Make sure these pictures do not appear on your personal blog and that they are not available to the public on your social networking profiles. Ideally, they shouldn't be online at all. Go through your profiles and remove all compromising pictures if you can. If you prefer to leave them up for your friends, just make sure that your privacy settings will not reveal them to potential employers.
3. Issues with content. Content is another issue on blogs and social networking sites. If you've bad-mouthed a former employer, posted negative or racist comments on other peoples' profiles or have engaged in non-professional postings, it will harm your job search. During this political season, keep your political commentaries courteous and constructive. You present yourself as a professional during your job interviews. How do you think employers will react if they see an entirely different story played out in front of them on your social profiles or blog? Simply put -- they won't want you working for them.
Avoid these common issues, but don't let this discourage you from using the power of social networking to help you find a job. It is a powerful medium that can be very beneficial -- so long as you manage it properly and ensure that you are putting the absolute best public face on your content.
Need help managing your online job search? Let Clearpoint find you're an ideal position today.
Clearpoint is a staffing agency for jobs in information technology, marketing, creative, and other professionals. We do business by building long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with our employees and clients.