Posting your resume online can assist you in your job search by making your unique qualifications known to thousands of employers who scour the Web for job candidates. But simply posting an online resume won’t get you hired. Find out how to leverage your online resume to help you find the job you’re looking for with these tips.
Why should you have an online resume?
Online resumes are fantastic job search tools because they’re efficient. Just think how long it would take for you to mail a copy of your resume to every potential employer - the time and expense would be staggering!
But with an online version at the ready, you can distribute your resume to hundreds or even thousands of potential employers and networking contacts quickly - and that’s an important advantage. In a job search, speed counts.
Online resumes are also convenient. Let’s say that you start your job search by informing all of your friends and contacts that you’re on the lookout for a new job. That’s a great beginning-of-job-search strategy, but your friends aren’t going to carry around paper copies of your resume with them everywhere they go. If a friend has a contact with a potential position for you, however, that friend can easily share the link to your online resume with a potential employer. Online resumes really can help your contacts help you.
Online resume tips
Once you realize how important it is to have an online resume, it’s good to know how to make your resume stand out in a crowd. Start by making sure that your online resume is filled with strong keywords. If you post a resume to a large job board like CareerBuilder.com or Monster.com, you should know that employers search for candidates on these sites by scanning resumes for keywords, specific search terms that illustrate the qualities and skills employers want. If you want to work as a software engineer, for instance, then a few good keywords to include in your online resume might be:
- Master’s degree
- Software design
- Network security
These terms are good keywords because they are specific to a software engineer’s job. Remember that employers will be looking for different keywords applicable to skills required in their industries. If you have created a well-crafted resume, the right keywords should be there.
Keep in mind that you can do more with an online resume than simply post it on job boards. You can attach the link to e-mails for quick responses to job inquiries or for dispersal among networking contacts. (If the print version of your resume has fancy formatting, you may need to convert your resume to plain text format so it is easily readable when copied and pasted into an e-mail.)
Remember to keep your online resume current. You should always keep your current resume online so that it accurately reflects the breadth of your skills and achievements. Certain job board sites also push newly-updated resumes to the top of the heap for employer searches - another reason why keeping your current resume online is a plus.
Get the most mileage out of your online resume
In addition to keeping your resume current, you can help make your online resume work for you by maintaining active status on social networking Web sites where you post your resume. Each time you update resume information on one of these sites or interact with other uses in some way, the site informs all of your contacts that you’re active. LinkedIn, for example, does this via a weekly newsletter; Facebook uses a live feed. If a former coworker repeatedly sees your name in her weekly LinkedIn newsletter, for instance, she’s more likely to think of you when she hears of a job opportunity. In this way, networking sites like LinkedIn, Plaxo, or Facebook keep working for you even when you are not actively job searching.
An online resume really can be a tremendous asset to a job seeker. Follow some basic guidelines to keep your resume current and well-written, and you may dramatically increase your chances of finding employment.