It's a well-established fact that when companies are looking to bring on a new worker, they perform extensive background checks, Google searches and online credit history reports to narrow down candidates. One study found that 75 percent of recruiters are required by their company to perform such actions.
But many companies are taking this one step further, and are scouring social networks to find anything that would set a candidate apart from the rest, making the decision to hire the worker that much easier. So, it stands to reason that if you're in the middle of the job search, it will be best to ensure your social media presence is up to date, professional and ready to be seen by a potential employer.
Social media blogger Adrienne Erin writes that the best place to start is with your LinkedIn profile. To start, simply fill out every section, jot down any relevant job experiences, use a professional photo and see what kind of recommendations you can get on your profile page. From here, you'll want to start building out your networks, which can range from people you know well, people you've previously worked with or even people who work in the same field you're hoping to break into.
"The more contacts you have, the more able you are to build relationships with potential recruiters or companies," Erin wrote in Alabama Live. "You can easily add connections based off your past employers and education, or find them by doing an email address search."
Once you've established a solid base of contacts, you'll want to join relevant industry groups, as well as recruiting and staffing companies. These groups are a great place to get in touch with contacts who currently recruit for or work in your desired field, and by asking these contacts questions and following their posts, you'll find your personal brand will grow, and new opportunities will become available.
You can also use LinkedIn to research specific companies you may want to work for. By doing this, you can learn what skills an employer or staffing company is looking for, giving you the opportunity to hone your own skills to match.
Being active on LinkedIn can really pay off, too. According to Information Week, LinkedIn also features an extremely smart query intent algorithm, which means the more you search the website, the better and more relevant each batch of results will be.