Keeping Up With Job-Hunting in the Internet Age

By Stephen Wycoff

The Internet and social media have changed hiring practices, leaving job-seekers confused about how to maximize their chances of landing a position.

As the owner of a staffing agency, I want to share an insider’s viewpoint.

Over the past five years, my approach to screening applicants has changed, and many other people who are hiring are approaching their work like I do. If you want to succeed, you need to keep up with the new reality of recruiting.

In 2006, when I purchased the Ocala Remedy Intelligent Staffing office, we opened our doors every day and hoped 20 or 30 people would walk through them looking for work.

We had each applicant fill out a paper application and take skill assessments. Then we called references, checked criminal history and administered a drug test. At the end of the day, we would have a couple candidates who we could send out on assignments.

Now the first thing we do before we post an opening for a new position is search on LinkedIn to see if we can find a match. Surveys now show that recruiters are using LinkedIn about 90 percent of the time before they begin a job search.

If recruiters can find a suitable candidate without posting the position, it saves them a lot of time and energy.

Remedy Intelligent Staffing screens candidates and now records a video interview that can be sent directly to the client. Utilizing this service helps speed up the hiring process.  A video interview can almost eliminate the first interview step. All the decision-makers in the hiring process can review the video interview before the candidate ever sets foot in their office. We have had clients hire a candidate based only off the video interviews sent to them.

As a job-seeker, your LinkedIn profile is your online resume. Make sure this profile is optimized for people who are searching for job candidates. You run a much better chance of companies approaching you about a future opportunity if you can be found online.

Here are some tips for optimizing your job search through LinkedIn.

  • Optimize your profile 100 percent. Remember that everything in your LinkedIn profile becomes searchable on Google.
  • Join a group and ask an intelligent question. By starting a conversation and engaging with others on LinkedIn, you will gain creditability within the community.
  • Ask the people you know, like and trust to write a recommendation on your LinkedIn profile. Recommendations from people who work in your target career area help.

Looking for job openings has changed as well. No longer is reading through the classified section of the Sunday newspaper high on the list of ways to search for openings.

I teach job-seekers to use “job aggregators” such as Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com. What they do is search millions of different job boards on the Internet for the keywords that you enter.

They not only search the big job boards such as Monster and CareerBuilder, but also they search individual company websites.

You can set up alerts on these sites. Once you build your alert, you’ll be emailed every day all the new jobs with the keywords you entered. Both Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com are free.

Start off by searching for yourself on the Internet with some keywords.

Remember: if you cannot find yourself, someone looking to hire you might not be able to find you.

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Stephen Wycoff is the owner of Remedy Intelligent Staffing in Gainesville and Ocala. You can learn more at stephenwycoff.com.

 

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