Using Social Media for the Most Effective Job Search

March 28, 2012

How many “channels” are you using to get that next job? Caitlin Williams of San José State University’s faculty staff has been in the field of career development for more than 20 years and led last week’s webinar on the importance of building your online presence purposefully. With the focus on social media tools and other strategies to increase your network, Caitlin touched on countless sites from social networking sites, social news sites, sites for company information, sites that aggregate jobs, and so on, to aid in your job search. A list of these sites can be found on the ALA JobLIST site:

Networking will continue to be your main avenue to find a job. You want to maintain a presence online because you want to increase your chances of being found. 87% of organizations use LinkedIn in their recruiting process.

Strategy and research are key concepts to keep in mind when using social media. The way in which job seekers use social media can help individuals promote themselves and their skills to potential employers. Most job seekers use the plethora of job boards to submit as many résumés as possible and hope that ensures a phone call or an interview. It’s not about the quantity. Job boards can most effectively be used as a research tool. You may not find the exact job title you’re looking for but you can find other positions within your area that are suitable for you. By looking at what words, trends, or technologies are mentioned in those positions of interest, you can get an idea of what organizations think is of most value. Then you can make sure your own résumé and online profile includes these terms. Check out what companies are advertising on those job boards. Then research a particular company’s site and find people within to ask informative questions that tell you more about the organization and assist you in networking.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all of the different social media sites out there. Maintaining an online presence, using strategy, and doing your research are crucial factors in the job search. To find out more on what Williams had to say, you can listen to the full webinar here:


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