Social media has expanded beyond our home lives and into the employment arena. While business-oriented sites like LinkedIn seem like obvious candidates it goes beyond just that. Today, you're just as likely to find a solid job lead in a retweet as in the classifieds. Meanwhile, that photo of you in a toga from three Halloweens ago is still on Facebook.
Job-hunters need to get serious about using social media. Here are three tips to help you get starting on wading into this brave new world.
1. Start Putting Together a Network Today
Social media lets you build a large and varied network, and you never know which contact could lead to a future position or opportunity. If you wait until you are actually looking for work you will have missed a golden opportunity. Create a LinkedIn profile, get on Facebook and Twitter and start following others. The sooner you do the sooner your network will grow giving you a vast amount of contacts to call on when the time comes to start the job hunt.
2. Don't Be Afraid of Facebook, But be Careful
While many people fear being on Facebook will lead to embarrassing photos costing them a job down the line, if you use it right, Facebook can be your job networking friend. First make sure your privacy setting are up to date. You only want your friends to see your posts, not "friends of friends." Then fill out your profile with potential employers in mind. While you certainly want personal information up there, you also want to highlight your dreams, goals and employment aspirations as well.
3. Keep up to Date
Once you have your network up and running and you are following the appropriate people in your industry, make sure you follow them daily. It would be a shame after all this work if you missed a potential opportunity for career advancement because you stopped reading that recruiter's Twitter feed.
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