How to use social media in your job hunt

Are you ready to create a professional online image?

Digital natives – it's likely a term you've heard before, and more possibly, something that applies to yourself. This is a collective generation of young people that grew up around digital technology, with services such as social media pretty much second nature.

While it can be extremely fun to use social media to stay up to date with friends and connect with people all over the world, the uses aren't just limited to personal entertainment. Have you considered using your social media platforms to aid your job search?

There are many ways you can do so. Many platforms are free to use, and if utilised correctly, can help to enhance your online image and back up your resume.

Are you ready to expand your network to potential employers?Are you ready to expand your network to potential employers?

Expand your network

The basis of social media is to connect with your network. There are no limits (apart from internet access, of course) and it's extremely easy to broach international borders. First and foremost are your friends and family. They are the people most likely to pick up that you're looking for a job, and may have the connections you need in your career. 

You can also use your social media platforms to expand your current network. LinkedIn is a great example, bringing you closer to potential employers and hiring managers. Make sure you are also following them on platforms like Twitter, and use your accounts to actively engage in industry discussions on forums. This not only shows that you are passionate about the industry, but also shows that you have the initiative to pursue a career before you have a job.

Reach out

Through expanding your network of connections, you can use your social media accounts to reach out to the relevant people. First, social media allows you to research. Secondly, you're able to find valuable information about a company you are interested in working for, and perhaps even go so far as to find out who the hiring managers are. 

Now that we are living in an increasing digital age, many companies have marketing teams employed specifically to manage social media accounts. For example, Facebook has a section that tells you how soon that companies reply to messages on their pages. By reaching out to a company with your cover letter and C.V., you may get a faster response than emailing them.

Also, following a certain industry or business may allow you to see job positions they post online. This could lead to positions exclusively advertised on social media, widening your scope of job opportunities.

Use your online presence to help you find a job.Use your online presence to help you find a job.

Stage your online presence

Google yourself – no, not in vain, but rather, to see what your online presence looks like from an outside point of view. Check Google Images to make sure you don't have a trail of embarrassing photos. Potential employers can and will search you up!

By staging your social media accounts to reflect the same values and branding as your resume, you can ensure that you look professional and genuine. Facebook settings allow you to choose what the public can and can't see. If you don't have a LinkedIn account listing your key attributes and skills, it's highly advised you create one. This not only hits top search results for your name, but can enhance what employers see in your resume. 

According to a survey by Jobvite, only 4 per cent of employers don't utilise social media when recruiting. And, out of those that do use social media platforms, 79 per cent hire through LinkedIn, with Facebook and Twitter close behind.

Stay active

This doesn't guarantee you a job, but can help your professional image to an endless degree. Don't be disheartened if you're not successful straight away, the key is to stay active and use social media alongside other traditional methods of job seeking to find a position in your preferred career.

If you'd like more information on searching for jobs, contact the team at Auckland Institute of Studies today.