9 Tips For Using Social Media In Your Job Hunt

linkedIN blog

Most of us use social media on a daily basis, but did you know that used strategically, social media can also be a great job search tool? Here are some tips to get you started.

Develop a professional presence

What do people find when they Google your name? This is something you need to look at, as most employers these days will Google potential job candidates to see what comes up. If the results bring up unprofessional pics or posts, then it’s time to clean up your online image. Start by taking down anything you wouldn’t want an employer to see, and set up a professional profile on LinkedIn, and make sure you include a professional-looking photo. Do the same for Twitter, Google and Facebook, and any other social media you use.

Know what information to include

Look at how other professionals in your industry present themselves online, what social media networks they belong to and what information they include in their profiles. This will give you insight into industry ‘best practice’ and will help you to develop your own profile. Make sure all your social media profiles include keywords that a recruiter or hiring manager might use to find a person just like you.

Be careful what you say

You need to present the best image of yourself online. Whether you’re blogging, tweeting or updating your Facebook status, it’s important that you maintain your reputation and professional credibility. The last thing you want to do is destroy all your hard work by making a careless Twitter comment. What you do on social media is there to stay, so think before you tweet, blog, post or share.

Activate your privacy settings

You need to effectively manage the information that’s available about you online. That means you should make sure your personal information on Facebook is private. Use the Privacy Settings and Tools menu to manage what’s visible to others and ensure that it’s set to Friends and not Everyone! This way, if an employer Googles you, they won’t be able to see the details of your profile and delve into your personal life.

Establish your own URL

Add the URL for your LinkedIn profile and Twitter handle to your CV (but not your Facebook profile). This provides an employer with another avenue to connect with you and allows them to see you in a professional light. It also demonstrates that you are social media savvy, which is an increasingly desirable asset.

Engage in online conversations

Participating in online conversations and discussion forums helps you to establish yourself as an expert in the field. It also demonstrates that you are serious about contributing to your industry, so you should share content, forward links and answer questions whenever it’s appropriate.

Connect with the right people

LinkedIn can be a great resource for finding information on organisations and the individuals who work there. If you’re looking for opportunities that aren’t advertised, put together a list of companies that you’re interested in. Use LinkedIn and your investigative powers to find out the names of people who work there and then look at ways that you can start connecting with them.Follow them on Twitter, repost their tweets, and look at who your shared connections are.

Let people know you are looking

Make sure your connections know that you’re looking for a job, as your contacts are the best people to provide you with referrals. You want people to think of you when a position becomes available and for them to let you know when they hear about a position they think you would be interested in.

Follow industry news

There is not one social media network that works best for all job seekers. The important thing is to know which platforms are most used by your industry. Find out the latest happenings by joining specialist industry groups on LinkedIn, following industry blogs, signing up to newsletters and participating in discussion forums. This helps you stay up-to-date with the latest industry information and provides you with the opportunity to make connections that could result in job leads.


Graduate Policy and Planning Officer Vacancy

The University of Stirling for a Graduate Policy and Planning Officer. An exciting new opportunity has arisen for a Graduate Policy and Planning Officer to support the work of the team. The post-holder will learn about and contribute to a wide range of University activities by undertaking policy research and data analysis as required. The purpose of the post is to support the work of the team and enhance the skills and capacity that will enable us to deliver the University’s vision.

Find out more at


A recruiter’s view point helps with application forms…….

If you try to see the graduate recruitment process – and your own part in it – from the employer’s point of view, it will help to clarify what you need to show in your application. Understanding what the recruiter is looking for will help you to get the graduate scheme place, internship or job you want.

The recruiter wants to take on the best and brightest graduates, both to meet current staffing needs and to develop the company’s future leaders. However, even if you’re right for the job in every way, your prospective employer doesn’t know it yet. You have to succeed at each stage of the recruitment process in order to get your chance to show what you’re really capable of.

Recruiters have checklists, so help them tick them off

Whether they’re going through applications, interviewing, or observing at an assessment centre, graduate recruiters will be looking for a specific checklist of qualifications and skills. You know what it is, because it will be set out in the job description, and you will also be able to use the company website and literature to find out more about what they want. Make it easy for them to work down that checklist and put a big tick next to every point. Be clear about how you meet each requirement.

All employers want the best… but they have to sift to find it

The recruiter may have numerous other applications to filter out before coming to the conclusion that you’re the one to go for. How many graduate applications do employers in different sectors expect to receive for each vacancy? Here are the figures, according to the most recent edition of the biannual membership survey carried out by the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR).

From a job-hunter’s point of view? These are intimidating odds. From a recruiter’s? Hard work.

  • AGR average applications per vacancy 2011-2012 recruitment cycle: 73.2
  • Retail: 153.8, up from 71.2 in 2012-11
  • Investment banks or fund managers: 141.8, down from 232.5 in 2010-11
  • Fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) 134.1
  • Insurance company 98.9
  • Energy, water or utility company 94.8
  • Transport or logistics 84.6
  • Banking or financial services 78.6
  • IT/telecommunications company 76.3
  • Accountancy or professional services firm 55.1
  • Engineering or industrial company 50.8
  • Construction company or consultancy 50.3
  • Consulting or business services firm 44.5
  • Law firm 44.5
  • Public sector 43.7

Bear in mind these stats are likely to be on the high side, because AGR members tend to be large graduate employers that attract a high volume of applications. Also, these are average figures, and mask variations between employers, so can be misleading.

Don’t overlook the small and medium sized enterprises who are also on the lookout for graduate talent; they may offer great opportunities for early responsibility.

Give your application the best possible chance of getting through

If you were a recruiter, how would you work through all those applications to find the best candidate? Chances are you would:

  • Be disinclined to tolerate spelling mistakes, grammatical errors and any other signs of sloppiness.
  • Weed out applications that don’t follow instructions.
  • Stick to your checklist, looking for applications that are a good clear match for the criteria you’ve set out, and rejecting any that aren’t. Are the candidate’s skills and experience described in a way that shows he or she has the right qualifications and aptitudes? If not – why not? Courtesy of Target Jobs.

Don’t forget you can get help with your applications by checking  out our Careers webpages on this subject and when you have a draft application ready, pop in to see a Careers Advisor for advice.

How To Get The Job When You Know You’re Under-qualified

An interesting article written by a former head hunter, I can see parallels here on how  to prepare for a graduate interview:

If you don’t have the exact skills or experience that an employer is looking for, you still may have a chance if you do adequate research.

Andrea Sobel,  a headhunter for more than twenty years who’s now a hiring manager at Parsons Corp., said that since you only have a limited amount of time to impress the interviewer, you need to market yourself strategically.

The key to this is doing your homework.

“You’re not completely ruled out if you don’t have what they’re looking for, but come in prepared with a strategy,” she says. “Don’t just sit there, and act like ‘Oh, I’ve never worked with that, so I’m not going to talk about it.’ ”

It’s acceptable to admit that you don’t have exactly what the interviewer is looking for, but it’s also vital to make the connection between what experience and skills you do have to what the company needs.

Sobel detailed that, if you can make the connection sufficiently, the manager might be persuaded to thinking they can train you on the rest of the skills needed since you already have experience that’s similar.

The bottom line is that you need to appeal to the person interviewing you, and if your experience falls short, you need to show that you’ve come close enough. Whether you can adequately make that argument or not, you’ll still get credit for doing research ahead of time, and the interviewer notices that.

And don’t waste your time discussing irrelevant skills or experiences, which Sobel says happens often and that she’s had several experiences of wasting valuable time trying to get interviewees back on track when they “go on these tangents.”

“You want to make sure you’re talking about the topics that they want to hear. If you have five skills in your current job, but the company that you’re interviewing for is only focusing on three of those skills, don’t waste too much of your time discussing the other two.”

“It’s being conscious of what the company wants, what you bring to the table and making sure you don’t waste too much time talking about what they don’t care to hear about.

Courtesy of Business Insider.

Don’t for get that you can book a mock interview with a Careers Advisor to help with your interview preparation. We generally need 3 days notice and at time of booking need to receive the Job Description and Personal Specification for the advertised role, along with your CV/Application Form as this helps with question preparation.

The Pros and Cons of using Social Media for recruiting

Speaker’s presentations from the ‘Recruitment using Social Media‘ event at the University of Aberdeen

Saw this very topic article in LinkedIn about social media recruiting from the University of Aberdeen and thought that I would share it with you. It gives some very useful pointers from the recruiters point of view along with perspectives from students/graduates in the job-hunting pipeline.

Check out the various contributors’ slides below:

Campbell Urquhart – Urquhart Partnership: http://prezi.com/3aikzdhgkix3/aberdeen-university-join-up

Alex Barton – Student Designers: http://www.box.com/s/si1mspn1471s62l9ko9a

Robert Holland + Lisa Jackson – Balfour + Manson:http://www.box.com/s/yyzo1rqbapgxurpy0vu8

Rachel Jeffers – University of Aberdeen: http://prezi.com/j907qj_elfbl/recruitment-using-social-media/?auth_key=66278a19b45217bddc4ac397b9056b655036cabc

Top Tips for Panel Interviews…

For many of us, hearing that we are facing a panel interview can immediately fill us with fear, dread and trepidation. For some reason, facing a group of people is so much more daunting than facing one interviewer on their own. However, like all interviews, with the right preparation and mindset, there should be absolutely no reason why this need be the case. To help alleviate those fears and improve your performance, we have put together our Top Tips for Panel Interviews.

Prepare In Advance
As soon as you are notified that you will be interviewed by a panel, try and establish who they are. Ask the HR Manager, the recruiter if they can advise you who will be on the panel. In most organisations, the panel will consist of at least 3 people, generally including a HR Representative, a Line Manager and perhaps even a potential team colleague. It can be worthwhile researching who the interviewers are in advance simply by using google, the company website, industry publications or even Linkedin or other social media sites. Getting some background knowledge in advance about the people you are meeting will actually help to boost your confidence  and minimise the “fear of the unknown” element of the interview.

First Impressions Count
As soon as you walk through the door, like it or not, all eyes will be upon you. And each member of the panel will be immediately making up their initial first impressions of you. In order to make sure it is a positive one, you should ensure that you enter the room confidently, that you make eye contact and shake hands firmly with each of the panelists and that you remember standard interview etiquette, waiting until you are advised to sit down etc. Your aim is to establish and build a rapport with each of the interviewers.

Eye Contact and Body Language
The format of panel interviews can vary. Some will have a lead interviewer who asks most of the questions, some will give each panelist an equal number of questions whilst others will have questioning panelists and others who are simply there in an observational capacity.
No matter what the format, the fact is you should always make eye contact with each of the interviewers, whether they ask you a question or not. Obviously most of your focus should be on the person who asked the question, but the other panelists should be included too, even just with a few glances. Likewise, be mindful of your body language. Do not turn away in the direction of the person questioning you at that point. Even if there are panelists who remain silent, make sure you have not subconsciously angled yourself away from them.

Ignore the Distractions
It is commonplace in a Panel Interview for at least one of the panelists to be a note taker. In fact at times, several of them may do this. Don’t let yourself get distracted by someone scribbling notes and saying nothing. Likewise do not be alarmed if an interviewer breaks eye contact with you in order to write down some notes. This is common practice and you should not let it unnerve you.

The Interview Itself
Although there are more people present, the actual interview itself and the questions you are asked and how you answer them is no different to a normal one on one interview. Your interview preparation should therefore be exactly the same. Check out some of our our previous posts on interview tips, here and here.

The End
When the interview has come to a close, much as you may want to get out of that room as quickly as possible, it is important to again remember your manners. Politely thank and shake hands with each one of the interviewers. If you know and can remember their names, then of course you should use them.

Overall, the only real difference with a panel interview is that you have a few more people to impress. You need to prove you are the right candidate for the job in exactly the same way, no matter how many people are at the other side of that table!

Courtesy of  ‘The Employable’.

Remember, if you have any other tips for panel interviews, that you feel should be shared, then please let us know via the Comments section below.

Audience Members Wanted For “Up For Hire Live” BBC3

Struggling to find work? Want to start your own business? Or have some forthright opinions on the job market? Then why not join the audience of the new BBC3 show Up For Hire’ with Richard Bacon and Tina Daheley at their London studios. The fun kicks off on 17 October, and runs through to 20 October the graduate special is now on the 19th.  


What’s it all about?

Well there’s been a lot of gloomy news about unemployment recently with latest figures showing nearly a million 16 – 24 year olds are out of work. But a new BBC3 series called UP FOR HIRE LIVE is trying to do their bit and give individuals an opportunity to find the right employer, get their foot in the door and hopefully kick-start their career.

The show will be hosted by Richard Bacon and Radio One reporter Tina Daheley and is a great chance to get some inside information show from seasoned professionals, entrepreneurs and celebrities.

The show will run over 4 nights on the 17th, 18th, 19th (graduate special)and 20th of Oct 2011 so if you would like to come along then please contact us below;

RSVP – dan.smith@loveproductions.co.uk

The show will be filmed live at BBC Television Centre, Wood Lane, London W12 7RJ. Nearest Tubes are White City (Central Line) and Wood Lane (Hammersmith and City Line)
Doors open 8.15pm but we advise you to be there from 7.30pm as allocation is a on a first come first served basis.

More info at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/upforhire