How to Really Find a Job Online

1. You're a job search expert, you operate About.com's job search site, and your book is very relevant to our members, who wade through the internet job jungle every day. How do people make their searches more effective, and avoid wasting time on pages full of searches?

The best way to ensure your searches are effective is to make your search as narrow and as focused as possible. Use Advanced Search options (which are available on all the major job sites and job search engines) to search by the type of position and the geographic location you are interested in. The narrower your search, the more relevant the search results will be, and the less time you will waste.

2. Your website has a lot of links to useful materials and job/career sites. What's the best way for job seekers to organize their internet resources ?

The best way to organize your resources is to keep track of your job search. There are sites like JibberJobber, where you can manage your job search online, or you can use tools like spreadsheets or organizers to manage your activities. Either way, it's important to know where you have applied, so you can follow up. In addition, networking sites, like LinkedIn, are an excellent way to stay in touch with your contacts and to make new connections to help with your job search. There's a chapter in my new book (Internet Your Way to a New Job - How to Really Find a Job Online) on managing your job search - it has lots of information on how to get - and stay - organized.


Note by CvTips.com :

You can find a free job search organizer here: CvTips.com Free Job Search Organizer


3. Online applications and well organized CVs are necessities these days. What would you suggest as the best way to compile an online CV, bearing in mind that CVs get a lot of reworking when targeting different jobs?

There is a new site - VisualCV - which is an excellent tool for creating a CV that can be easily updated and that can be shared with prospective employers. Also, have a MSWord copy of your resume or CV that you can update (and target towards the job you are applying for) to use to apply for jobs online.

4. Entry level jobs are scary. What should entry level people do, when preparing their online application and CV, to give them the best possible presentation? (We're trying to provide good orientation to our large numbers of entry level members, who need as much information and encouragement as we can get for them.)

If you're a college student or recent graduate seeking an entry level job, utilize your career services office. The staff will be able to help you, both with your application materials and with your job search. In addition, when seeking entry level employment, it's important to be aware of the fact that you can include internships and volunteer experience on your resume or CV, so even if you haven't had a 'real' job, you can still create an effective CV.

Also, when you're seeking an entry-level job, use your connections. Ask your career office if they can connect you with alumni in your career field of interest, who can help, tell your family, friends, neighbors, etc. that you're job searching. You never know who might be in a position to help you.

5. Monster.com and other sites and the other big international standard job sites are huge, and searches can be a real problem, giving a lot of information which is basically useless. Do you have some tips for effective searches?

I don't think the material is necessarily useless. Rather, it's a question of how to best get to the information you need in order to search for job. Again, narrow your job search, so you're generating listings that match your search criteria. That way, you won't get the information you don't need.

6. You emphasize the competitive nature of job applications, which is often ignored in standard job training. How do people make themselves competitive, at the application/CV stage?

The more targeted and focused your CV (and your cover letter) is, the more competitive a candidate you will be. If you have contacts at the organization, mention that you're applying - that's a good way to help make sure your CV is viewed by the hiring manager.

7. What should people be looking for in a job advertisement, in terms of career paths?

Take it a step or two further than the job advertisement when you're looking for career paths for the future. Check the other job listings on the company web site to see what types of positions are available. Review the 'About Us' section of company web site to get a sense of the company's mission and scope. Google the company to see what you can find out about it. All that information will help you determine what type of opportunities are available in the future.

8. Career changes and career moves are a very big issue on our forums. They're difficult, sometimes stressful, and occasionally drastic changes, hard to manage. What's the best way to approach these moves, and what internet resources are available to help?

The best way to change your career is to plan your move. Investigate career options (there is lots of information available online), investigate industries, and the types of jobs that are available within those industries. If you're not sure what you want to do or how to get there, get help. There are career counselors and coaches who can assist you with the process of changing your career.

9. We have a lot of mature age members grappling with job search. What should they be doing to maximize their opportunities?

Regardless of age, it's important to keep your skills up-to-date - even if that means taking a seminar or class. Stay tuned in with what's happening in your industry and pay attention to new initiatives and trends. It's also important to stay connected. Even if you're set in your job and aren't planning a change, stay in touch with your contacts, make new ones, keep your resume current, and have references you can use. Be prepared to change jobs and let your contact know that you're ready for a change, when you're starting to look for new opportunities.

10. Information quality on CVs and applications is always a potential problem. What's the best way of ensuring quality controls to make sure they're of a high standard?

There are two sides to quality control. First, job seekers need to make sure that their CV, resume, or job applications are accurate. I know too many people who have lost a job offer (and even lost their job) because they lied on their resume. They might have only fudged the dates here and there, but it was enough that they were caught when their background was checked. It's important to tell the truth, because it will come back to haunt you if you don't.

The other side of quality control is the employer's roles. Companies are becoming more aggressive in checking references and conducting background checks. The more employer's check, the less likely it is that a job seeker will be dishonest when completing a job application.