Social media hacks to start and progress your career
Social media is an unavoidable part of life these days, including in the professional sphere. Us Aussies are some of the most active social media users worldwide, with 60% of us active Facebook users. Instagram and LinkedIn are next up, taking out number three and five in the top five most-used platforms.
Not only that, but according to the Social Recruiting Survey, two out of three employers actively use social media to recruit new hires. If you haven’t jumped on the SM train, it’s time to get on board.
Many of us have grown up using the internet, but as digital natives we may not be completely up to date with how our accounts make us look from an employer’s point of view. So, how do you go about using social media to both find and land a job, all while putting your best foot forward?
Here are some of the ways you can use social media to start and progress your career.
Looking for work
Before you even start applying for jobs, social media can help you find a whole host of opportunities. Universities’ career services often have accounts (ahem, like our Facebook and Instagram) where they post relevant jobs for students at all different stages of their degrees.
Organisations are also likely to post their job openings on LinkedIn. You can search for these as you like, or even set up alerts so you receive an email when a business you’re interested in working for advertises a position.
Not only can you find organisations through LinkedIn, they can find you! The #OpenToWork feature shows businesses and recruiters that you’re looking for a new opportunity, and allows them to easily contact you if they think you could be a good fit. All you have to do is make sure you have a stellar profile – check out our LinkedIn resources to learn how to do just that.
A lot of us find the prospect of networking a little daunting. I’ve found it more helpful to think about networking’s benefits more as making connections, followed closely by a kind of referral system.
What I mean by that is that thinking more casually about networking can take some of the stress out of the process. There have been times I’ve recommended jobs to my connections, and they’ve recommended some to me, and others where my networking efforts have led to new friends, ideas, or experiences.
And how else do you reach a large pool of potential networking contacts easily? Through the magic of social media! It’s understood anywhere from 60 – 80% of jobs are obtained through the hidden job market, meaning networking is more important than ever.
So, add people on LinkedIn who have career paths your interested in, post about opportunities on your Facebook account, or message that person you admire on Instagram! You never know what could happen from a few taps on your phone.
Show your good side!
Yep, you guessed it: a blog about social media and work couldn’t not talk about privacy.
You’ve probably been told a million times that the internet is forever. Sage advice is to think before you post, and to think about what a future employer might think about your next status or image online.
But, social media can also be a great way to show off your interests, hobbies, and general non-work self! Employers don’t just want a drone who comes in to work, does their job silently and alone, and leaves at 5pm on the dot. They want someone who will fit in with their company culture, and make a great addition to the wider team. You can use this to your benefit, and show your good side on social media before you even meet a prospective employer.
Ace your application and interview
One of the most advantageous qualities of social media is its ability to help us be a li’l ✨sneaky✨.
If you’re applying or have even managed to secure an interview for a new job, part of your research should definitely include searching up your prospective organisation, interviewer, and management on social media. After all, they’ll be looking up your accounts to learn more about you, so you may as well do the same!
When you’re writing your job application, you could try searching up the hiring manager or potential interviewers on LinkedIn, and even Twitter and Facebook. That way, you can gauge an idea of what they’re looking for in an employee.
You can also learn a lot about company culture from an organisation’s social media presence. Read their captions to get an idea of their tone of voice, and to figure out what they find most important. In your interview, you can cite some of their accounts so they know you’ve put in the work and really care.
Featured image courtesy of Unsplash
Lily Cameron is a writer and editor based in Sydney. She is a UTS Communications (Creative Writing) graduate, and current Communications Assistant at UTS Careers. She is passionate about telling stories, both hers and others’, and the way digital and social media is changing the literary landscape. Her writing has appeared in Voiceworks, The Brag, and elsewhere.