Saturday, November 3, 2007

Job Search Websites: A User's Guide

Summary: Learn these three steps to an easier online job search, plus discover four kinds of websites that show you the hidden job market.

You spend all day in front of the computer looking at job listings and fine-tuning your resume. But all you get is a headache. How can you give your online job search an advantage?

An Easier Online Job Search: 3 Steps

1. Brush up on your job-hunting skills. The internet has excellent inside tips on the state of the job market in numerous industries.

2. Learn all the keywords and categories relevant to the position you're seeking, or the special skill set you have to offer. For instance, if you want to write technical manuals, you might want to try terms such as "help docs" or "documentation developer" in addition to the more standard "technical writer."

3. Once you've learned the important keywords associated with the position you're seeking, make sure to put them in the information you upload to the jobs search websites. If these keywords aren't in your profile, how is a potential employer searching through the database of applicants going to find you?

Where to Start Online Job Searches

Are you looking in the right places? Everyone goes to the major job search websites like Monster and Hotjobs--and well they should, since these sites have more jobs than anyone. But here are some other sites you should also check out to find jobs online:

• The website for the

company you would like to work for. There are even "meta" job search websites that include the online job postings of large companies.

• 'Meta' online job search sites, which collect listings from numerous other jobs search sites. That means thousands of listings without having to go to hundreds of sites.

• Recruiters' websites. Mass-emailing resumes to employers can be a waste of time--and might technically violate laws against sending unsolicited messages. Instead, use one of the web services that will send your resume to recruiters, rather than employers. Recruiters are actually happy to get your resume since they know what to do with it.

• Good employment agencies, which are often simply two or more recruiters or headhunters working together, can be hard to find. The good news is that they usually advertise on job search websites. If you see a job listing that is unusually vague, it may be an employment agency. If you apply, you may be considered for other jobs that the agency has to fill.

About the Author

Joel Walsh recommends you read another of his articles, a cheat sheet for online job searches: [Web publication requirement: create live link for the URL/web address using "online job searches" as visible link text/anchor text.]

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