Social media sites are a great way of keeping up with current events and staying in touch with friends and family, but many students still aren’t making the most of these tools when searching for employment or work placement opportunities. Increasingly employers are turning to social media sites for recruitment, so how can social media help you in the job hunting process?
Here are our top 5 tips to help you use social media to get ahead in the job market:
- Keep up to date with the latest developments in your subject area
Textbooks and journals are essential for your studies, but they won’t keep you informed of what’s going on right now. Use social media to follow your lecturers, other academics and key players in your subject area for the very latest research findings and topical discussions.
- Research potential employers and start networking
Most organisations now have some social media presence so start following the ones you would like to work for to find out more about their current objectives and future plans. Ask questions and get involved in industry discussions to get yourself noticed. Then, if you are lucky enough to get invited for an interview, you can dazzle them with your up-to-date insights!
- Find out about the latest vacancies as soon as they are advertised
Follow recruitment sites and get all the latest vacancies delivered direct to your newsfeed. Start off with Queen’s Careers, Employability and Skills @CareersatQueens and KTP at QUB @KTPatQUB. Follow hashtags like #careersadvice for tips on completing your CV or applying for jobs.
- Clean up your digital dirt!
Use search engines to check what information and images appear at the top of the search results when you enter your name. Take a look through all your online profiles and remove any posts or photographs that might make prospective employers think twice about offering you a job. Don’t forget about your profile pictures or usernames – what do they say about you?
- Start managing your online identity
Having no online profile is almost as bad as having a negative one, so start building a social media presence that will impress future employers. Set up a professional profile on LinkedIn and include the link to it in your CV or your email signature. You might even want to start your own blog or create an online portfolio to showcase your skills. By taking control of your online identity, you can direct prospective employers to the information you DO want them to see and start building your digital brand!
For more advice, check out our Managing Your Online Identity resources. If you have any more tips to share, add them to the comments!