Using social media in your job search has always been a powerful tool. You can connect with a hiring manager through Twitter and LinkedIn. Both of which are powerful social media tools to show your passion about the industry you’re in and promote your expertise in the subject matter that makes you an ideal candidate.
But how will that change this year as unemployment becomes more of an issue? Will social media be a great route to find employment? Let’s go into what might be changing in our current economic and public health conditions and how you might be able to use social media to advance your career.
What’s the biggest change?
The biggest change is not your access to communicating with hiring managers and employers, which social media provides. But it’s the notion that unemployment rates may stay the way they are. Causing more employers to have intent to hire but not truly decide to hire. This is a common occurrence. And one that’s entirely acceptable for employers to do. They can place a job search hoping they find an ideal candidate. But if they aren’t comfortable with what the job market is providing them, they can certainly decide to go another route— like hire internally.
Social media can provide you a great inside lens to this. If you can connect with the hiring manager on a 1:1 basis, you can learn more about the status of the position. And gain insights like the one provided. Try to find the hiring manager’s name through the job ad and look them up on Twitter and LinkedIn. If you can’t find their name, search for the department head and then connect with them.
Methods of connecting
When you’ve found the right person to speak to, it comes time to make a connection. Try to think about the connection you are about to make in a neutral way. You aren’t looking to connect with them simply to learn more about the job. The hiring manager or recruiter is going to direct you back to Human Resources.
Instead, try to find a shared common ground. And connect on that level. Is the hiring manager sharing a lot of articles about a particular subject matter? Share your interest in that and connect with them about your mutual passions. Does the hiring manager know people you know? If so, connect with them through your mutual contacts.
Use some type of bridge and reasoning to connect you two. Use this as a form of networking, first. Then ask for the job at a later date. This not only shows your ability to conduct yourself professionally but shows you aren’t simply asking a stranger to do you a favor.
When connecting on LinkedIn, be sure to list your reasoning in a less than 150 character note during your connection request. And on Twitter, try to @ mention the hiring manager multiple times before you decide to send them a direct message or send them an email.
When you decide to send them an email (if you have their email address), be sure to link and refer to the conversations you both have been having on social media. Your email should be similar to a thank you note you would send after a job interview. It should revitalize that person’s memory of who you are and the conversation you had together. Then proceed to your “ask”. Think of this like having a brief introduction over cocktails at a social event. You have some mutual connection and that starts the conversation on the right foot.
Should you continue using social media for your job hunt?
Yes, absolutely. Now more than ever your network will matter. And expanding your network can be far easier utilizing social media than you might think. Including the fact that social events and regular business conference events might be slowing down.
Social media may allow you to access those who are engaged in having a conversation with you more than they may have been before. And it could provide the only opportunity in the foreseeable future to have a social interaction with someone who isn’t your close family member or friend.