Optimizing a job search helps job seekers attract prospective employers and jobs. Take advantage of tools and resources to get more employer responses and interviews. Before using job search tools, prepare a plan to maximize results and lessen timelines.
Job Search Tools
Authors Jay Conrad Levinson and David E. Perry suggest ways to stand out from the crowd in “Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 3.0” (2011). Online networking sites, including LinkedIn, represent today’s “800 pound gorillas.” Networking sites are essential tools for job seekers.
Levinson and Perry recommend using LinkedIn to full potential. Some ways to achieve greater success with LinkedIn include:
1. Search Engine Optimization: “Keywords” drive search engine optimation (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM). When a new employer with jobs in hand searches for for a software engineer, he usually performs a keyword or key phrase search to identify potential candidates. Other employers use a scanning tool to identify resumes with certain keywords.
Job seekers interested in optimizing a resume, profile, or blog’s keywords like Google Analytics. This fast, free tool provides job seekers with single words or phrases frequently used in the national or local market place. Employing an often searched-for phrase–called a “long tail” in SEO/SEM–may assist job seekers in helping employers to find them.
Professional SEO writers assist job seekers in preparing an “SEO” resume, cv, profile or blog post. (Note that job seekers may also get an extra career boost by offering “guest posts” or comments to blogs written by thought leaders in their field.)
2. LinkedIn: Sophisticated job seekers know the importance of optimizing a LinkedIn page for title, functional duties, skills, affiliations, education and previous employers.
In addition, when a job seeker details his skills, contacts on his LinkedIn network may “endorse” him. When combined with recommendations posted on the job seeker’s LinkedIn page, endorsements favorably impress the employer’s representative.
Depending upon the kind of jobs for which the potential candidate may qualify, employers say that the number of LinkedIn connections also affects their decision to schedule a personal interview.
Finally, employers may decide to limit the posting of certain jobs to LinkedIn! LinkedIn users may ask contacts to introduce them to a hiring manager or send a hiring manager a LinkedIn In-Mail.
3. Online Presence: Before initiating a new job search, perform an online self-check. “Googling” a prospective employee is part of the candidate evaluation process. For that reason, make certain any online photos, posts, documents, presentations, videos, etc., appropriately present. Some high profile candidates use online management reputation services to evaluate and maintain their collective online image.
Other services, such as VisualCV, help job seekers to consolidate an online presence. The job seeker may post a resume, video, presentation, and/or link to published articles and recommendations.
4. Polish Your Resume: How a resume or cv appears–down to the font, composition, and subtle use of design or color–affects the job seeker’s likelihood of getting an interview. Use online resume template services to create a great-looking resume that gets results.