Do you think that LinkedIn is for business and Facebook is for friends? You’re partly right; but the line between the two is very, very fuzzy when it comes to job searching. I found some stats on Mashable that says as of December 2011, over 18 million people have gotten jobs through Facebook. 18 million.
Even with that many success stories, a lot of people are afraid to talk about their job search on Facebook. I talk to candidates all the time who shy away from posting that they’re looking for a job. They have all kinds of reasons: they don’t want to worry their families, they don’t want to look “needy,” or whatever crazy idea they have. And it is crazy. The majority of jobs are landed through networking, and Facebook is the biggest network on the planet. It’s that simple. If you don’t take advantage of it, you’re just shooting yourself in the foot.
Everyone finds themselves in the job search at some point in their careers. It’s not embarrassing. It’s a transition. Wouldn’t you want to know if you had a friend who was looking? Wouldn’t you want to try to help them? Think about how many times you’ve heard about a job opening that you weren’t a fit for and you tried to think of someone you knew so you could tell them. Other people are hearing about open jobs, too. Maybe one of them is a good fit for you.
If you’re serious about your job search, you’ve got to pull out all the stops. Use all your resources. Facebook is too big to be missed.
Facebook has more avenues to a job than just your friends:
Facebook has groups like LinkedIn does where people have discussions and get to know each other. The more people in your industry circle who know who you are, the better… and groups can be great sources of information.
Recruiters search for candidates on Facebook AND they post when they have a job opening to fill. I have used Facebook often to say, “Hey, I have a job in this location, is anyone interested?” Find the recruiters who specialize in your field and friend them. A recruiter’s business is people. I can almost guarantee you that they will be interested in connecting with you on Facebook.
Companies maintain Facebook pages where they talk about what’s going on with them, and what jobs are available with them. You can “Like” those companies, or “Friend” those companies, however they handle that, and then you’ll be one of the first to find out when they have something open up.
Don’t forget about Facebook Applications. Check out Branchout, BeKnown, and Facebook Marketplace for job-specific information.
Here’s my Facebook warning for you: Make absolutely sure your Facebook profile is cleaned up, polished, and professional-looking. If a company or recruiter checks you out and sees the party picture with a beer in your hand, or you holding the sign calling for the overthrow of the government, it will scare them away and you’ll miss your chance. It’s not just the photos you post; it’s also the ones your friends post that you’re tagged in. So, carefully and regularly monitor all photos that tag you. Anything unflattering or unprofessional in any way needs to come off. At the very least, untag yourself. A better idea is to contact your friend and ask them to remove the photo.
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