Make sure companies can find you…

Even though many companies still post jobs on the job boards, others are recruiting more creatively. That’s because there are so many applicants for every job and because companies are interested in getting candidates via referral or niche job sites, so the candidates who do apply are a close fit for the position.

If you’re aware of where companies are seeking applicants, you can position yourself to increase your chances of getting found by hiring managers. How can you be sure you’re job searching where companies can find you?

First of all, it’s not enough to simply post your resume on a job board and hope for the best. Instead, it is important to proactively seek out job opportunities. The more active you are in the places where companies are recruiting, the better shot you’ll have at getting an interview – and getting hired. There is also less competition on the smaller niche sites, and you’ll find more jobs that are a good match for your background.

There are a variety of ways to apply for jobs and how you submit your job application depends on what the company wants applicants to do.

Applicants for employment can apply online for positions at a large number of job sites or apply directly at company web sites. At many businesses, especially in the retail and hospitality industries, employment applications can be completed in person. When companies do not require a formal job application, your resume and cover letter will be your application.

The most important rule to remember when applying for jobs is to follow the directions. If the employer tells you to apply in person, don’t call. If the job posting says to mail your resume, do not send it via email. When the job listing says apply via a form on the company web site, don’t email your application.

Be sure include everything the job posting asks for, and don’t include information, like references or salary history, that the company doesn’t request.

The other thing that’s important is to be sure your job application is complete and accurate. If you’re not sure about the information you’ll need to complete it, download a sample job application form and fill it out. That way, you’ll know exactly what information you need to apply.

Especially when you’re just starting to job hunt, job searching can be really confusing. There are hundreds of job sites, plenty of job search engines, and lots of social media sites you can use to job search.

One way to avoid the confusion, is to limit the job sites you use. More isn’t necessarily better when it comes to job searching. What’s most important is to use the best sites for you personally – the sites that have job listings that are match for your skills and experience and the sites that will help you connect to people who can help with your job search.

There are also sites you can use that will help you do everything at once – find job postings, connect with contacts, and apply for jobs. On LinkedIn, you’ll be able to build a Profile, which is the equivilent of an online resume, search for jobs, and see who you know at the company that has posted the job.

Gadball.com users can create a Profile, then interact with other users, get recommendations, network, create a resume, and search for and apply for jobs.

When you create a Profile on KODA.us, you’ll be able to highlight your skills, personality and experiences. In addition, you can share videos, images, and links to websites that showcase your background. Your profile, employer profiles, and job opportunities can be shared on Facebook and Twitter. Plus, you can view and apply for jobs and see similar opportunities that you might be interested in.

The important thing to remember is that one job search size doesn’t fit all. It’s important to take some to check out job sites to see which ones are a good fit for you. Would you rather use a job search engine and get direct to the job listings or a job board where you can upload your resume and apply for jobs online, or a social media site where you can spend time building relationships and connecting online?

They all have a role in successful job searching, but, again, there is the question of which is best for you based on where you are in your job hunt and building your career. You’ll find some that really expedite your job search and others that aren’t a fit – at least not yet.

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