Even though job boards aren’t the most likely source of your next job, they’re a staple of the job search process. But successful use of job boards balances effectiveness against invested time.
The more you can focus your efforts, the better your ROI. Consider this:
- Choose your job boards wisely. Oftentimes jobs are posted to more than one of the major job boards (Monster, Careerbuilder, Yahoo! hotjobs). Consider choosing one that you’re most comfortable with and focusing your efforts there. Once you’ve got that decided, look for niche job boards in your field or industry. Professional organizations often offer free job postings to members, so you may find postings not available elsewhere. Plus, you’ve pre-qualified yourself by way of membership or industry focus, making your application more likely to be reviewed.
- Let the jobs come to you. Most of the sites offer a job alert function that will email you pertinent job postings as they are posted. Make this tool work for you. Select specific keywords for the search and set up multiple searches, if necessary, to make sure all of your bases are covered. Be ruthless with the parameters, so you can focus on converting good opportunities to interviews, rather than sifting through the chaff.
- Keep an eye on your privacy. You are a hot commodity. You know it (or you should, before you hit that big interview), and I know it. So don’t put yourself on fire sale. Think twice before posting your resume publicly and consider if it’s in keeping with your career goals. Recruiters may not have the time or the budget to look for you, especially when they have no idea if you’d be interested in what they have to say. If you’re looking for a position that’s fairly widely available, posting your personals may pay off. But if you are targeting a high level role or a niche industry, save yourself the spam — use your online resume for applications only.
Of course, if you’re cruising the job boards in stealth mode, you’ll have to reach out to that potential perfect employer. Keep an eye out for the next in the series for tips on how to make an impression.