The internet has changed the nature of job applications and the way we approach them. It plays a pivotal role in the recruitment process, not simply in the application stage but in the interviewing and decision making stages too.
Online footprints are something that people are only just beginning to learn how to manage, but you can not only avoid negative consequences, but use social media and the internet to your advantage and publicise yourself online to employers in a positive way. These quick tips will set you on the road to online application success…
- The use of a well targeted blog, your own website, work published online or your comments on other blogs, can all demonstrate your interest in the sector you’re applying for.
- The internet is also a tool harnessed by employers to check you out. Any application can be verified by a few easy searches on Facebook, Twitter or Google. Make sure your profiles are completely closed. Any ranting blogs, especially if about previous employers, will automatically rule you out for an interview. Note that Facebook frequently relaxes privacy settings without informing you, so your profile pictures are often viewable to complete strangers. This is a public domain, and employers really will utilise it. Search for yourself online to see what they’ll find!
- That said, employers are increasingly looking for skills in IT and social media, so having these can actually boost your chances when used correctly. If you do choose to make these public, make sure you use them to portray a positive image of yourself and your interests – interact with prospective employers on Facebook and Twitter, as well as sharing and commenting on relevant issues that interest you. When making these accounts public, remember to avoid swearing, making angry posts or strong political statements, as these could alienate a potential employer if they don’t share your opinion.
The online revolution certainly has posed new potential problems and pitfalls for job seekers – but with the right awareness, time and preparation, it also has the potential to help you get ahead and grab that dream job.