Job seekers today are likely to begin their search in front of their computers as online job searching has become extremely popular. With such a vast network of job postings and networking opportunities, online job searches have allowed individuals to find their next job from the comfort of their own home. Navigating your way around a digital job search may appear intimidating at first. Here at Career Loans, we will take a look at some useful strategies to help you get started with your own online job search.
Have a strong LinkedIn profile
A good job search begins with a good online profile. LinkedIn is the most used social media platform for professional and career-related networking. Having a strong LinkedIn profile will drastically increase your chances of being noticed by top hiring managers in Canada – they’re all using LinkedIn. Read our previous blog for more tips about how you can make a strong LinkedIn profile.
Where do you go to look for work? The Internet is a huge network of resources which can help guide your job search. You will need to know where to look for work in order to begin your first step. Here are some sites which could help you get your search started:
- The Government of Canada has an online job bankwith over 60,000 job postings
- The Government of Alberta has an online job bankas well
- Those in Saskatchewan can benefit from browsing SaskJobsfor thousands of new job postings daily
- LinkedIn is not just a networking platform, there are also many job postings available
What to Search For
When searching online, it is best to narrow your job search to avoid spending countless hours filtering through jobs unrelated to your training and experience. Many online job boards allow you to filter out job postings by searching for your desired job title and location. Use different keywords when filtering your search because similar jobs may have different job titles.
Search for job postings which align with your skills, values and abilities. This means looking for job postings which interest you and account for your own realities. For example, search for jobs in which you have the necessary training, experience, or transferable skills. Your current location is also a large part of your reality. Consider if you are able to commute or willing to relocate to another city to pursue a job.
Analyze Job Postings
You’ve been scrolling through the various job bank resources and found a few postings which draw your interest. Save these job postings so you can easily access them again if needed. Before you apply, make sure to read the entire posting carefully and that you understand the full requirements of the position. Furthermore, make note of some important keywords used in the job description – you’ll want to use them later on.
Consider your initial reactions after reading the job posting. How does this job make you feel? Consider doing further research about a particular job title or company if you feel that the job posting did not provide enough information. Looking up specific job titles or companies on Glassdoor for an inside look.
Even if you come across a perfect job positing, do your research before you apply. Spend the time so that your application can be as strong as possible.
One Size Doesn’t Fit All
Online job seekers are actively sending out applications to different job postings. That doesn’t mean you should use the same resume and cover letter over and over. For the purposes of your online job search, originality matters, because you are competing against many other applicants.
Cover letters are your chance to explain why you would be a good fit for the role. Submitting a generic cover letter would not make you a strong candidate. Talk about how your experiences and skills would make an ideal fit for the job posting and how you could contribute to the success of the organization.
Personalize your application and make it stand out to the hiring manager. They’ve most likely read the same generic letter before.
Applicant tracking System
Larger companies will most likely use software in order to filter out the thousands of job applications they receive. This means your application could have been removed from the hiring process even before a person actually laid eyes on it.
When applying online, it is good practice to ensure your resume is scan-able. Keep the format of the resume simple and avoid using charts, pictures, or graphs which may not be read properly by the scanning software. Make sure that you apply in the format requested by the employer. This may mean saving your resume as a well-established file type like Microsoft Word (DOCX) or PDF to minimize problems. Use a clear font like Times New Roman or Arial with a font size 12.
Remember those keywords from the job posting I asked you to note? Including the right keywords in your resume will make it easier for the tracking software to acknowledge your resume. Look to include things like: job titles, skills and responsibilities, education and certification, transferrable skills, and even commonly used industry terms.
Keep It Up
The goal of any job seeker is to find a job as soon as possible. The reality of the situation is that securing the right job may take more work on your part. As a job seeker you need to keep positive. The right opportunity will be yours; you just need to put in the effort.
How We Can Help
Career Loans is pleased to offer free career support and options for microloans to help people return to their career. We work with internationally trained newcomers who wish to continue or advance their careers in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Visit our registration page to learn more and to sign up for our free services!