Vanessa King, a third-year journalism student, writes about the six easy steps that students can take to become the perfect candidate and get their dream job after graduating from Carleton.
I recently read a blog post written by my boss, William Johnson. As a social media aficionado, Will is an expert at all things online – including the use of the Internet to further one’s career. I have summarized his blog post for a quicker read below.
Step 1: Change your thinking towards your degree
Although there are more students in university, the demand for us and our degrees hasn’t disappeared. Employers are still looking for people with higher education than high school, and university graduates on average earn 50 per cent more than those with only a high school education. Jobs for graduates aren’t disappearing, either – there are over 600,000 more jobs for university graduates in Canada now than before the 2008 recession.
Step 2: Prepare for battle
Obviously, the value of a university degree isn’t a secret. More people are going to university than ever before – about 50 per cent more people are graduating from Ontario universities now than in 2000. This means that the competition to get on the 5:30 bus at Carleton is nothing compared to the task of getting a job after graduation. So be strategic in your job hunt way before graduation. Take initiative in your job hunt, network, and find out what employers want well before you start applying.
Step 3: Social media and the job hunt
It’s also not a secret that what you do online is being seen by other people. More than ever before, recruiters are using the Internet to find the best applicants for available jobs. Beyond the traditional resume and interview, companies may also be looking at your social media profiles to screen you against other applicants. Think of how your Twitter or Facebook would fit into a professional setting, and get a LinkedIn account to showcase your professional qualifications.
Step 4: Make sure your online self is an accurate representation of yourself
Basically, don’t put anything online that you wouldn’t want your grandmother or a hiring manager to see. Employers are still looking at the specific skills and experiences that you’ve listed on your resume, but realize that they may also use your social media profiles to confirm or deny things that you’ve put in your resume. For example, if your resume says that you’re a great writer but your Twitter is riddled with grammar mistakes, an employer may think twice about trusting other qualifications that you claim to have.
Step 5: Give employers what they’re looking for
In a recent Reppler Survey, a majority of employers said that they have hired a candidate simply because of what they saw on his or her social networking site. So what do they want to find? Unsurprisingly, employers like to see positive impression of a candidate’s personality, a profile that supports professional qualifications, a creative site, and a candidate that has good references posted by others.
Also keep in mind that employers are looking for a balance in the perfect candidate – someone with the right capabilities who will fit in with the company’s culture. This is exactly why LinkedIn is so useful in job searching; it allows you to speak about unique skills, knowledge, and experiences that are difficult to fit into your Facebook or Twitter profiles.
Step 6: You should probably get a LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a free way to market your resume to any industry or employer. It’s social media for adults – it essentially puts your resume online in a way that’s dynamic, well-designed, and easily findable. LinkedIn is especially great because it lets you control what employers think of you by giving them a professional first impression. It also has a section for recommendations, which are the key to establishing your credibility online. Put yourself ahead of other graduates looking for jobs and establish yourself on LinkedIn. It’s that easy.
Submitted by Vanessa King, a third-year journalism student.
To read the original blog post by William Johnson, visit his website.