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Job Hunting Guide & FAQ

Searching for employment online has now become the most popular method of finding work. It enables the job hunter to cover a lot of ground very quickly. Here we look at the three main methods of searching online.

Online Job boards
Social Media & Networking Sites
Recruitment Agencies

Online Job boards

Online recruitment is fast becoming the normal method of job hunting for hundreds of thousands of people every year.

Will using job boards work?

The short answer to this is probably yes however you do need to approach this method with the right attitude, tools and realistic expectations.

How many "job boards" are there?

There are literally thousands from the really big players eg Monster, Totaljobs and CV Library to very small. You will normally find that the bigger the company the more generalist they are. If you are looking for a job in a particular niche then using a specialist job board would probably be more effective.

How do they work?

Basically there are two parts to the online job board operation. The first part is for them to get jobs listed on the site so that we can apply. They approach employers and recruitment agencies direct and charge them to show job adverts online. This is their bread & butter as the more adverts they can show the more money they make. The good news is that you also don't have to pay anything to use their service. The second part is for us, the job hunters. The job boards need to attract a large number of applicants to make it attractive to the advertisers i.e. more job seekers = more applications and this is what the recruiters want.

How do I find a job with the job board?

There are 2 main ways to go about this, Search - This involves searching through the jobs listed. Once you have found a role that interests you simply apply using your CV. Additionally some job boards offer a very useful service whereby you set up an email alert based on your requirements i.e. location, salary, hours, type of work etc. If/when a job is placed online that matches your profile they send you an e-mail. This is really useful as you can be quick off the mark in terms of applying for the job. Note if use this option, make sure your CV is up to date and ready to go. CV posting - This way you register (post) your CV online with the job board so that the employers and recruiters can then search through all the CV's online. This way the employers and recruitment agencies can find you when they have a job that fits your profile i.e. location, type of work, salary etc etc

Should I register?

This is of course your decision however with most boards you will be able to see the job advertisements but you won't be able to send your CV to apply. Therefore registration becomes essential.

Should I post my CV?

This is a good idea. This can be an effective method for 2 reasons, employers will be able to call you if interested and recruitment agencies can ask to get you on their books. Please bear in mind though that all the details that you include on your CV will be available to ALL the subscribed recruiters and agencies. One word of warning however, if you are looking for a role in a competitive area be prepared for a lot of agencies calling you on the "off chance" that you might be interested in something they have.

Would my own web CV be better?

You should consider this as an option if available to you as you can control who has access to your CV. The way this works is that you have a unique web address where your CV is stored thus you only need to give the web address to the people you want to see it.

What does "Online Job Hunting" really mean?

In effect it is a very modern way of going about recruitment both for employer and employees alike. For the employer it means that they can reach hundreds of suitable applicants relatively cheaply and for us, the employee, it means that we get access to a huge range of opportunities.

Should I apply for jobs that I see online?

That is really up to you however what you have got to lose. It doesn't really cost very much to apply and you never know you might get invited for interview.

Do I need to get a good CV for online applications?

Definitely yes. It's exactly the same as applying for jobs offline i.e. the CV should be designed to get you the interview.

Social Media & Networking

It may be a surprise to you but a large number of jobs in fact never get advertised but are often filled through other methods including networking, employee referrals or recruiters searching through social media sites.

This does confirm that using online social networks including Google+, Facebook and Linked-In can be a very effective additional job searching method however you should use this with care.

The bad news is that more and more employers are using the social media sites to quickly screen and obtain a “background check” on applicants before the interview process begins. While you may feel that this is not fair, this is the way it is!

The good news is that although your personal posts as well as your online persona can harm your hunt for the perfect job, properly managed you can turn this round to help land a great Job.

Top tips when using Social Networks for job hunting;

Make sure that you don’t post anything that you wouldn’t want a prospective employer to see.

Consider acquiring an additional and separate “work” based persona that includes your relevant skills etc.

Clean up your online profile e.g. delete any bad language, lewd jokes or strange photographs.

Make sure that your profile name and e-mail addresses are not offensive.

Create a positive online presence by talking about your industry or business within your profile. Show that you are genuinely interested in what you do or what you want to do.

Use sites like LinkedIn which is a network for professionals to connect to people with similar interests and skills.

Use your online friends by telling them you are looking for work. If you have cleaned up your profile to create a professional image, they are more likely to recommend you or let you know about any opportunities they come across.

Activate your privacy options so you make sure that you only show people what you want to show in your profile

Enhance your online profile and make it as compelling as possible to employers.

Don’t accept invitations to join the network of someone you don’t know.

Search through some social networking sites. E.g. Linked-In . There will probably be lots of contacts from your current and previous employers, customers, suppliers etc. etc. All of these people have the potential to help you find a new job and possibly act as a reference or recommend you.

Think about using twitter to ask those following you if they know of any opportunities.

Make sure that you don’t post anything that you wouldn’t want your boss or other co-workers to see.

Using Recruitment Agencies

Many employers will use a recruitment agency to do the work rather than advertise the jobs themselves. If you do your homework carefully using an agency can be quite a painless and mutually beneficial approach.

Which recruitment agencies should I choose? You need to make sure that:

• They understand your industry, your current job and the role you are looking for.
• They will be proactive in finding you a job.
• They can advise you on what salary and benefits to expect.
• They have good contacts within your industry. There are specialist agencies for just about every industry,

Overall, make sure that you feel comfortable with the employment agency you have chosen, as they will be dealing with your personal details.

Will they charge me?

It is illegal for a UK employment agency to charge you for finding a position. The employer for whom they are recruiting pays the costs. The agency can however charge for additional services for example creating a CV, supplying interview question examples etc.

What is their policy relating to the marketing of my skills and my CV?

Make sure that the agency is not going to send your CV to employers without understanding your requirements. Most reputable recruitment agencies will have a definite policy on this for example the consultant should carry out a registration interview at which point they create a personal profile. YOU should decide which employers will receive your details.

Candidate testimonials?

Ask the consultant for evidence of satisfied candidates and clients in your industry for example if you are looking for a job as a design engineer, make sure they have placed candidates in the engineering or technical arena. This will also give you a good idea of how experienced the agency and their consultants are in your chosen field.

Are there any trade bodies or service level agreements?

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation represents the recruitment industry within the UK. It will help you to make sure that the agency is a member and conforms to the REC code of conduct.

Finally, recruitment agencies are in business to make a profit by placing candidates. You need to make it easy for them to market you. You should remain in control and avoid being talked into taking unsuitable jobs. It is always a good idea to build a relationship and keep regular contact with an agency.

Do not expect the recruitment agency to write a CV for you. has a reputation for excellence. Our high quality and affordable service gives you the advice, help and tips you need to create the perfect CV.

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