How technology can be your best friend or worst enemy when you are job seeking
Updated: Jan 20, 2019
More and more employers are embracing new technologies to prioritise and filter candidates quickly. Whilst technology may be disrupting the way that hirers recruit, it can also influence your ability, as a job seeker, to get noticed by increasing your visibility. By using technology wisely, you can boost your potential and give yourself the best chance of success in your job search.
However, a few words of caution. Whilst it has the potential to be your best friend, it could also be your worst enemy. So here are some guidelines to consider ensuring you achieve the former, not the latter.
Be aware of your digital footprint and what it leaves behind
Creating a positive online presence with well looked after social media pages is essential. Not that long ago, our lives were much more private. Job seekers applied for a new job using a traditional CV and cover letter. Nowadays, with less privacy and more access to peoples on-line day-to-day lives, employers are starting to trawl the internet to learn more about candidates than ever before. Companies are looking for employees who will represent their company positively both on and off the job. Therefore, being aware that you may or may not be selected for your dream job based upon your online presence is critical.
- Post responsibly and have a good social media etiquette.
- Apply privacy settings to your personal pages.
- Remove any controversial photos or posts.
Your entries on social media reflect you. Let them be an indicator that you are a reliable and hireable candidate to a prospective employer.
Use Social Media to help you tailor your application
Social media can be an incredibly useful tool in a job seeker’s armoury. Social media platforms can be used to create valuable links with employers, join in conversations, develop your knowledge, gain industry insights, develop your commercial awareness and even find out about live job opportunities.
- Prior to an application or an interview, research a potential employer to ascertain their brand identity, company culture and values, growth opportunities and salary/compensation
- Research your interviewers to find out more about their preferences to leverage your influence during your interview.
- Learn whether the job is actually right for you, so you don’t waste your time.
Don’t underestimate the power of LinkedIn
It’s no secret that LinkedIn is the top professional social networking site. With over 500 million users worldwide, many hirers and recruiters trawl through LinkedIn to search for the right employee. Creating a strong profile with great connections can really support you in your job search.
- Hirers and recruiters use algorithms to look for talent on LinkedIn, so you need to optimise keywords in your profile to make it easier to find you. Review your niche and highly prized skills and ensure that they are mentioned more than once.
- Keep your profile up to date and be comprehensive about current skills and objectives.
- Highlight recent experience and ensure your headline reflects what type of position you do or what type of position you are looking for.
Grow your online presence
There are many benefits to growing your online presence. The main advantage is that it increases your visibility to prospective employers. To get started, think about ways to contribute to the industry sector you work in by writing articles or blog posts that reflect an interesting, innovative approach. Employers will then be able to see tangible evidence that you really understand your field of work and are someone they should hire. This will make you appear knowledgeable and qualified.
You may also wish to investigate some personal branding sites too, particularly if you have examples of work to share. Have a look at sites such as ‘about.me.com’, where you can showcase who you are and what you do. You can embed videos, add a bio, link your social media sites and more. Add a URL link to your CV for easy access for employers.
Online applications require you to format your CV differently
It is highly likely that you will need to navigate online application processes during your job search. However, this brings on a few challenges when it comes to formatting your CV. Hiring Managers are normally very good at scanning CV’s extremely quickly so don’t expect them to read your CV from cover to cover because they won’t. Instead, ensure that the formatting of your CV allows for quick scanning and get everything you want to say across clearly.
Advances in technology could open up more job opportunities for you
Previously, an employer’s location was the be all and end all. Nowadays, technology makes working remotely from anywhere in the world easy and convenient. Depending on the area you specialise in, remote working could be something that suits you and your employer better than a daily commute so open your mind to these potential possibilities.
Familiarise yourself with the upcoming growth industries
Advances in technology has resulted in growth for many industries. Due to developing technologies such as Blockchain, Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) to name but a few, there are a lot of new industries that you need to keep your eye on and you should expect to see a high increase in job openings becoming available in these areas over the coming years too. However, that doesn’t mean you should become complacent if you’re job hunting for a new position. Try to identify technology that will create new jobs and get in there earlier than your competitors. Getting hired by a pioneering company is likely to put you in a great position for the foreseeable future.
In summary, whilst developing technology can make it harder in some instances to get the job you want, it can also provide you with a greater opportunity to market yourself to prospective employers. Utilised in the right way, you can absolutely turn technology to your advantage to showcase your skills and talents to prospective employers and make yourself stand out in an increasingly crowded market.