Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Your Online Presence And The Job Search

It's hard to find anyone without an online presence these days. Whether it's Facebook or LinkedIn, most people have made their digital footprint. These sites are invaluable for many different aspects of our lives, one of them being the job search.

It is not uncommon for hiring managers to Google prospective employees when they receive job applications. The rise of social media has created the expectation that employers should be able to search for an applicant's name and find out everything they need to know. If your name doesn't show up in a simple online search, it will raise questions in their minds. They'll start to wonder why they can't find any information about you on the Internet, and if you are potentially hiding something. These little doubts could be the difference if there are other candidates who have just a slight edge over you.

Disconnecting digitally also cuts off opportunities to connect directly with employers. It's almost impossible to find an organization that is not using social networks, and their pages can hold key information to help advance your cause. Being active in discussions on the organization's Facebook or Twitter page can earn you extra consideration if the hiring manager remembers your name while going over your application. Nonprofits are always eager to hire someone who is passionate about their mission.

It's certainly your prerogative if you don't want to be found online. There are legitimate reasons to want to be invisible online, with privacy being a major factor. When it comes to getting a job, however, having no online presence puts you at a major disadvantage.

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