There was once a time in the job world when you could simply walk into a building, ask to speak with a manager, hand over your resume, and likely get an interview right on the spot. Things are much different these days, though, as a majority of available jobs are never even published and these positions are typically filled through recruiters and networking. One major study showed that more than 80 percent of jobs are filled via networking, so it’s important to establish these connections.
The best way to establish these connections is through the internet, and with each passing year, it’s important to establish yourself online so that these connections can hook you up with jobs while recruiters can see your skills without you even needing to submit a resume. Let’s take a look at some ways to optimize your online presence so that you can establish these online connections and find the career that you want.
Clean Up Social Media
For those of us who were born during the 1980s and 1990s, social media came out at a time when we were very young. As such, we used our social media accounts exclusively for personal use and may have some pictures or posts that could be deemed unprofessional. While you could spend a lot of time cleaning up your social media pages so that there isn’t anything that could be misconstrued or seen as unsavory.
What more people are doing to establish their online presence, though, is to completely get rid of their personal social media pages and create all new ones that are focused primarily on their professional careers. While sites like Facebook aren’t really considered premier destinations for building a professional presence, there are still websites like LinkedIn where it’s important to establish connections and make sure that your resume is up to date and that all posts are professional and well-written.
Create a Website
Your resume can say a lot about you, but it can’t really show what you’re capable of. Now more than ever, it’s important to create your own website that also doubles as a resume. This will be the chance to showcase your skills and will make resume writing a lot easier. Instead of writing a resume that’s several pages long and trying your best to describe your skills, a website shows firsthand what you can do without needing any references or contacting previous employers.
Thankfully, it’s also easier than ever to create your own website. Wix, Squarespace, WordPress, GoDaddy, and more offer easy website builders, and many of them have free options. You don’t have to be incredibly well-versed in HTML to be able to build a good-looking website thanks to the tutorials and user-friendly tools that are offered. Even getting a professional website these days costs just a few bucks, and websites like Fiverr can get you access to people who can help you operate your site for cheap.
Respond to People
While you could have the best-looking resume, website, and social media page around, there’s still a chance that people may never even find you if you don’t interact with others. On websites like LinkedIn, you’ll have a newsfeed that contains suggested posts from people either in your circle or those that are suggested to connect with.
When these posts pop up, make sure that you’re interacting with them more than just simply hitting the “like” button. Make some comments that pertain to the post or talk about business. Also, don’t be afraid to send messages to people in the field that you’re interested in. The worst case scenario is that they simply don’t respond, while the best case scenario is that you open up a dialogue with someone who can advance your career.
Earlier we said that you don’t have to be an HTML expert to bring attention to your website, but it doesn’t hurt to know some ins and outs so that your website and social media pages will be better optimized for search engines. When recruiters and executives are looking for someone to fill a position, they may simply pop up the skills in a Google or Bing search.
If your website is optimized for these search engines, you’re more likely to appear toward the top of the list and get noticed by these important people. SEO even applies to social media sites including LinkedIn, which is even more paramount for success. The more your profile sticks out above the rest in the eyes of the algorithm, the more views you’ll get.
Don’t Forget Mobile Users
You can spend all day working on things that are optimized for recruiters who are going to access your resume, social media pages, or website on their personal computers, but don’t forget those who are using mobile. More than half of all web page traffic comes from mobile users, but not all websites are optimized for this.
Make sure that you are creating separate templates for both PC and mobile so that it’s user-friendly no matter how your information is accessed. Almost all of us have been on a webpage on our phones and immediately backed out because it wasn’t optimized, and you don’t want that to happen to your webpage.