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Your online presence

Social media is becoming an increasingly popular recruitment tool amongst graduate employers. For them, social media provides an effective means for targeting a large graduate audience and growing their brand. For graduates, social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are a great way to quickly find out about unadvertised positions, industry news and inside company information.

Be consistent across all your social media channels - use the same username and image across all, highlight your location and state what kind of job you're looking for to optimise your online presence.

Your online presence should work to help, rather than hinder, your job hunt. As a modern job seeker it's essential that you understand how to create, develop and promote your personal brand online. Here are our top tips for the three most popular social media channels used for recruitment: LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

LinkedIn

This is the most obvious social tool to use during your job hunt. Your LinkedIn profile is essentially your shareable online CV - the only difference being that whereas you need to tailor your CV to each role you apply for, your LinkedIn profile is all-encompassing.

  • First things first, be sure to keep it updated! Make the most of your headline and personal statement by outlining what kind of job opportunities you are interested in to help make yourself stand out.
  • Secondly, make sure you have a profile picture. Although some believe that having a photo allows prospective employers the chance to discriminate based on appearance, our view is that a professional headshot is better than no photo. Not having a photo suggests an inactive or incomplete profile. Remember, if you're trying to build up a social media presence one of your main aims is to be recognisable - your photo represents your brand and will help you stand out.
  • Thirdly, LinkedIn provides you with a very easy way to expand your network. Remember that on LinkedIn you can not only research but also contact anyone you like. Be sure to follow your target companies and begin reaching out to people in your chosen sector. If you request to connect to someone who doesn't know you though, it's a good idea to send them a message along with your connection request briefly explaining who you are and why you'd like to add them to your network.
  • Finally, once you've built your network start gathering recommendations and endorsements to boost the strenth of your profile and give it validity.

Twitter

The key to Twitter is to curate your account carefully making it as specific to your interests as possible. Follow figures and companies in your sector/s of interest and join in relevant conversations to get yourself noticed by the right people. It goes without saying that you shouldn't tweet anything inappropriate - tweets are very public and if an employer looks you up on Twitter they'll be able to see everything you've tweeted.

It's no secret that companies tend to tweet about their current job openings. Try search for hastags such as: #jobopening, #nowhiring, #joblisting, #graduatejobs, #recruiting. Make sure you make the most of your personal description - include your university, degree, graduation date and what kind of job your looking for. You can also add your own hastags to make you more searchable, e.g. #jobseeker.

Facebook

Almost everybody has Facebook these days - it's the world's largest social network. You will have heard this before but it's so important that you make sure that there's nothing incriminating on your profile or that you wouldn't want a prospective employer to see. It's still very common practice for employers or recruiters to check out candidates on Facebook so make sure you've set your privacy settings high and have an appropriate profile picture (ideally the same professional headshot as your LinkedIn and Twitter profiles).

Similarly to LinkedIn and Twitter, there are plenty of job related groups that you can find and join on Facebook. Make the most of these and use your personal connections too! Try updating your status to describe you current situation and you may be surprised who pops up providing a contact or advice.

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