How to Revise Your Online Strategy to Find New Jobs

Are you looking for jobs in all the wrong places?

Looking for work online can be daunting. There are so many listings, but is any of them right for you? It’s a little like looking for love online: how can you tell what the person—or the job—is really like? You’ve seen the ads with the happy couples—but you’ve also heard the horror stories about creepy dates and false advertising.

The same can be true with online job listings.

So, if you’re starting out your search online, you might want to reconsider your strategy. A professional staffing firm can act as a career matchmaker, eliminating all the bad first dates and pointing you straight to your best match.

If you still want to give the online listings a try, here’s a little advice: it’s all about the search strategy. Different search terms can turn up radically different results, and unless you try a range of possibilities, you might miss out on great opportunities.

For example: if you are using the website “Simply Hired,” and you search for jobs near Maplewood, New Jersey using the keyword “secretary,” you will find about 4,500 postings. However, use the term “administrative assistant” and the number is over 11,000.

Just one more reason to retire searching for a broad job title.

On the other hand, if you searched only with the term “administrative assistant,” you might miss great opportunities listed as executive assistant, receptionist, clerk or just plain assistant. We all know that these terms are usually used to describe different sorts of jobs. Yet dig a little deeper, and you might find jobs that are miscategorized, that cross categories, or that simply do not fit in a single classification.

There might even be a good option posted as a job for a secretary.

In fact, the quest to take advantage of the easy access to information available on the internet can be filled with pitfalls and missed opportunities. Here are a few pointers:

Don’t over-limit your search. Be creative in selecting your search terms. Pull up a few job postings that appeal to you, and identify a variety of terms that describe the jobs and the skills required. Search on all those terms and screen your findings. You’ll quickly discover which search terms work best to locate jobs that may be right for you.

Try more than one site. You may think that Monster.com is the place to be, but if you want a crack at all options, you had better check CareerBuilder.com, Craigslist.com, Indeed.com and others as well. In addition, you may find that there are job sites dedicated especially to your field, such as care.com for daycare workers, mediabistro.com for journalists and writers, or nurse.com for people in the nursing professions.

Act fast. Remember that the early bird catches the worm. Don’t save all the attractive listings to a file and then send out resumes all at once two weeks later; rather, send an application as soon as possible after discovering an attractive posting.

Stay organized. Keep notes on where you have applied, when you applied, and what you sent so that you can follow up appropriately and avoid writing twice to the same hiring manager.  You can even find websites to help you with this organization, such as JibberJobber.com and JobKatch.com.

Enlist expert help. Still not finding what you’re looking for or frustrated with trying to work with a national job board? Professional Staffing Group can help. Our specialty recruiters are experts at matching skills and goals to opportunities—and are often aware of opportunities that will never show up on the Internet job boards. There’s never a fee for job-seekers to work with our staffing agency—so give yourself a break and call PSG today.