In this article we examine the pros and cons of various social media and online tools for your job search.
When looking for a new job, there are a number of ways to research a company. Online is the best way to start, and more often than not you will be referred to social media to support your search. That said, it’s not without its draw backs.
Here is a guide to the various social media sites you may come across, both good and bad.
The Good: – It’s Big! There are over 11 million companies on LinkedIn so far and an even bigger number of employees on there too. This means you have access to a vast network of people. You also have the opportunity to see who is influential in the areas in which you work, as well as the opportunity to be seen by the people that matter.
Also the process of seeing and applying for jobs on LinkedIn is quite easy; it allows you to track your application process when you send your details out
The Bad: – As there are so many members on LinkedIn, it’s quite easy to get lost in the crowd and surround yourself with connections that don’t add value to your network. I would never just rely on LinkedIn for a job hunt – sometimes a personal / outside perspective helps. Although it is good to see how a company communicates, it’s a platform for companies to promote how they want to be seen rather than how they might really be. You won’t have access to all the employers and employees, and you may find that if you use this as your only tool, you won’t get the chance to hear about confidential briefs with, for example, those every exciting smaller specialist companies that don’t like to advertise their jobs on there.
The Good: – Twitter is a great place to get up to date information on a company you want to work for. You may even find some jobs advertised on there. It’s useful to see what they do and what they are talking about. Some industries (PR, Publishing, Marketing for example) expect you to be active on Twitter and will ask you what your Twitter feed is called.
The Bad: – If we’ve learned anything from the weird world of celebrity, it’s that your tweets will stay with you and in some instances come back and haunt you. Many people use Twitter for work and play but it’s not always good to mix the private and the professional. If you aren’t sure about whether to tweet about something sensitive then beware. Companies can and will check your Twitter feed if they use it themselves!
The Good: – Facebook is known for being more of a social platform than a professional network and most companies have a Facebook presence. A company’s Facebook profile usually talks about the culture of the company and its people. You can sometimes get a good indication of what their values are.
The Bad: – The majority of people like to keep their work separate from their private life and tend to keep use Facebook for social use. Unfortunately this can mean that not all pictures or posts are appropriate for work setting and if you don’t manage your privacy settings very tightly you may find some things in the public domain that shouldn’t be there. Have a look at some of the tags and photos from 10 years ago for example. They might not reflect who you are today and you may decide they are better deleted.
The Good: – Companies share on Instagram all things social, and, let’s be honest, we all love dog photos. Instagram is a great tool for building a visual profile, and can be extremely powerful for building you as a brand.
The Bad: – Again check your content, and make sure that there isn’t anything there that you would not want to communicate to an employer.
The Good: – Glassdoor is a site designed for work seekers to share information about their employer. You get to see what some employees really think about the culture, environment, management and working conditions. In addition past interviewers can share their experiences there.
The Bad: – Glassdoor is a bit like TripAdvisor. You only tend to get extreme reviews – very good or very bad. Candidates who are generally happy at work don’t seem to review as much as they could. Opinions can be very subjective. Furthermore, there are very few checks in place to confirm the validity of the comments made. I could easily review a company, for example, that I have never worked for before and there is nothing the business can do about it. You can’t be sure that what you are reading is true. You would probably be better off checking out what is being said on google reviews.
I hope this information is helpful. Feel free to get in touch if you have anything to add or need advmailto:email@example.com on how to build your profile online or feel free to check out our current vacancies.