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How to Conduct your Job Search Online

Nimish Thakkar, MS, MBA, CCMC, CPRW
Career Coach and Professional Resume Writer, SaiCareers.com

The rules of the game have changed. Job search tasks that once required candidates to commute to their local libraries, can now be performed online. For years, coaches complained about how the Internet had literally erased the “human component” from job searching. While that still holds true, there is much hope offered by Web 2.0 (social media).

I have attempted to describe a few online job search strategies in this article.

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Online job boards

Largely popularized in the 90’s, online job boards serve as large electronic exchanges for both job seekers and employers. Access to millions of qualified candidates and lower recruitment costs are driving many employers to post their job openings on these job boards. Candidates, too, enjoy many attractive benefits, such as online profiles, free resume posting, and e-mail job alerts.

The big three job boards serve a wide range of industries and professionals and include popular sites, such as monster.com, hotjobs.com, and careerbuilder.com. Over the past few years, many niche job boards have started catering to specific professions. Popular job boards for the healthcare field, for example, include biospace.com and medzilla.com. In addition to online job boards, most organizations now feature fully-functional career sites which function much like online job boards and allow you to create profiles, subscribe to alerts, and respond to job openings.

Online communities and groups

Closely mimicking the real world, online communities are essentially a forum where like-minded individuals interact with each other. Large communities, such as beyond.com and biospace.com, cater to millions of individuals through various features, such as news, job alerts, company profiles, etc.

Smaller communities function as e-groups and e-lists where members interact with each other on various issues. Recruiters and HR professionals often target these groups to post openings and solicit resumes. Groups.yahoo.com and groups.google.com are often great starting points for finding and forming groups. Many associations utilize e-list platforms provided by Google and Yahoo! to further member interaction.

Online networking and Social Media

Sites such as linkedin.com, ryze.com, facebook.com, digg.com, twitter.com, myspace.com, and many others have taken online networking and social interaction to new levels. Members on these popular sites network with each other on many professional issues, from projects to job leads. Memberships on most of these sites are free but there may be fees for premium services. Once you become a member on any of these sites, you can invite friends to join your network and they in turn can invite their friends. This chain of connections can snowball your network to hundreds of contacts within just days. You can also connect with millions of members who are already using these technologies. Imagine the possibilities.

Online newspapers and classifieds

Newspapers offer much more than free news content online. Most newspapers feature a access to their employment classifieds and also to custom-designed job boards. We have created a special resource page for finding online newspapers. Craigslist.org is another popular destination for furthering your job search interests. You can not only search job postings, but can also post your own profile and resume.


Websites of industry and professional associations function much like professional communities. In addition to links to members, they often offer forums, job boards, networking opportunities, event announcements, and more. Click here to find an association that caters to your industry or profession.

Online resume writing services

If you want to work with a professional resume writer, consider visiting online resume writing services, such as ResumeCorner.com. On completing the initial process online, you will be interviewed by a certified resume writer.

Recruiters and headhunters

The very folks you are desperately trying to reach are just a click away. Most employers and recruiters encourage candidates to submit their resume on fully-automated websites. Simply typing the company or recruiter’s name in any popular search engine will bring up hundreds of results. Company research or headhunter search could never have been easier.

An important caveat

Online job searching, as beneficial as it is, can also expose you to serious privacy risks. Always protect your personal information and avoid disclosing your social security number and any confidential information. There are also many employment scams that are targeting members of large job boards. Use caution and discretion while dealing with fraudsters.

Related Articles:
Almost 75% of jobs are never advertised -- how can you tap into this hidden job market
Layoff Survival - top six things you should do after being downsized
Online Job Search: Job Searching In The Digital Age
Common Job Search Mistakes
Career Growth: Strategies for Achieving Career Success

Nimish Thakkar is a sought-after certified career management coach. He has helped thousands of clients, including professionals at Fortune 500 companies, through cutting-edge career management tools. Thakkar has authored hundreds of articles and is regularly invited to speak on a wide range of career-related issues. Nimish edits and manages a free career information site, SaiCareers.com, and is the CEO of a professional resume writing service, ResumeCorner.com.

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