Landing a Job In The Digital Age

If you’re searching for a new position and bouncing from job board to job board, you may be missing opportunities (think social media and creating your own blog) to help in the process.

If you’re in the market for a new job, are you making use of social media and other online resources to help get a leg up?

When it comes to social media, for example, networking via your connections can prove pretty fruitful. Case in point: A University of Texas researcher found that there’s a 25 percent chance a hiring manager will look at a resume sent through an online portal, but there’s a better than 90 percent chance that a hiring manager will take a look at resume passed along via a shared connection on LinkedIn.

Also, more than half of human resource managers reported it was very important for job seekers to have a presence on LinkedIn, and 40 percent said it was very important to have a presence on relevant professional or association social media networking sites, according to a new study from the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM).

That same study found that, in the last year, two-thirds of organizations had sourced new hires through social media. A finding backed up by a 2014 study by Jobvite [PDF] that found 94 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn as part of their recruitment efforts. Meanwhile, 65 percent reported using Facebook, and 55 percent are using Twitter to locate potential employees.

“Job hunting today is a highly dynamic, very active, lightning fast endeavor,” notes a whitepaper from talent mobility firm Lee Hecht Harrison.


Both the “Get Social and Get Hired” whitepaper and SHRM study pointed out several tips for utilizing online resources, including and beyond social media, to land a job. Here’s a quick look at some of the advice:

Tap your social networks for referrals. Beyond using networks to find open positions, you can also call on your social media contacts to gain introductions and referrals.

Almost 60 percent of new hires come from internal recommendations, and employee referrals are also a top source for interviews, according to research cited in the Lee Hecht Harrison whitepaper. “Social networking channels will help you to map your contacts and the contacts of people you know, making it possible to identify those you need to meet and provide the information you need to uncover opportunities and gain introductions,” the paper noted.

Complete your profiles. One of the key pieces of advice in the SHRM survey of 400 HR professionals was to fill out social media profiles with your employment history, education, and skills. The next most common piece of advice was to keep public content professional.

Create a personal, branded website. This online calling card can act as your resume and a place to show off your expertise via a blog—just remember to keep your content fresh, noted the whitepaper. If you go this route, some things to highlight include samples of your best work, links to your social media profiles, and a brief summary of yourself.

Try a virtual career fair. Another digital resource: online job fairs, which can help job seekers save the time and money that comes with traveling to an in-person event.

If you’re a newbie to the world of digital job fairs, here are a few tips for both job hunters and employers. One big tip for those seeking employment—don’t slack on the dress code because you never know never know when an informal chat could turn into a Skype or video interview.

Have you landed a job via social media or another online resource? Please share in the comments.


Katie Bascuas

By Katie Bascuas

Katie Bascuas is associate editor of Associations Now. MORE

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