FORT LAUDERDALE – Being able to find a job in the middle of December can be a daunting task for just about anyone these days. Most corporate executives have to take their PTO time before the end of the year or lose it, so gaining access to the “gatekeepers” is tough from Thanksgiving through to the first week of the New Year.
Let’s face it – find a new job is just tough all over the place and then some!
Before we begin to explore the use of Web 2.0 for job search, we should clearly define Web 1.0 which was commonly known in the earlier days of the Internet as email and static web pages “read-only web”, then Web 2.0 technologies came along and collaboration ventures and communication exchange (“two-way synchronous communication”) became commonplace in corporate America where employers look to develop their talent through social networking.
Being a driver for Lyft really gives me a great opportunity to network with a lot of people in all kinds of industries in corporate America. On Saturday, December 24th, I met Quan Lee, a systems analyst from Sacramento visiting family here in South Florida. He has been out of work for three months and despite receiving a nice severance package from his last job, he was required to sign a non-compete agreement which meant he can’t work in his business sector for eight months (agreement expires July 2017). He is looking to make a transition into another field as soon as possible to stockpile more of his lump sum severance payout from his previous employer into his retirement.
So I asked him, “Have you look into Web 2.0 to build your networking with potential employers?” His response was pretty classic for most people not familiar with Web 2.0 job networking opportunities. Web 2.0 is really defined by Dictionary.com as “the second stage of development of the World Wide Web, characterized especially by the change from static web pages to dynamic or user-generated content and the growth of social media. a second generation in the development of the World Wide Web, conceived as a combination of concepts, trends, and technologies that focus on user collaboration, sharing of user-generated content, and social networking”.
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The level of 2.0 comes from the user collaboration and exchange of ideas which can easily build participants as “authorities” in their respective fields which opens the door for networking with potential employers for your job search. If you are new to Web 2.0, getting hired is tough because a lot of employers have stopped advertising in newspapers and other media because they are overwhelmed with resumes from mostly unqualified candidates. Besides LinkedIn and Facebook as the obvious first and second stop for Web 2.0 networking, most job candidates overlook the power of YouTube and Twitter to create truly dynamic networking opportunities for their job search.
One way of getting your name out there in the Web 2.0 world especially if you work in IT or a specific sector of IT like gaming is to create mini videos and post them on YouTube. YouTube videos get indexed by Google relatively quickly and they are great for SEO (search engine optimization) which can boost your Web 2.0 profile for “search” on platforms like LinkedIn. Many companies like Microsoft and Oracle use YouTube to find new talented software developers. Hiring managers gain incredible insight into the personality and communication skills of prospective talent via YouTube Mini Videos.
When communication style and personality are imperative for performance in specific jobs, prospective employers and talent seekers are turning to YouTube not only to see your work but also get a glimpse of who you really are and if you are someone who will fit in their organization.
Employers are also looking to Web 2.0 technologies to tap into underused human potential of employees already within their organization. McKinsey states that employers are looking to the underused human potential at companies as an immense “cognitive surplus” and one that could be tapped by participatory tools and they are eager to find new ways to add value and raised the productivity through the use of Web 2.0. So, companies and talent seekers are not only employing Web 2.0 technologies to find great talent for their company but also use Web 2.0 to harness the “cognitive surplus” of their current employees to maximize profitability.
The next stop in the Web 2.0 world is Twitter and its ever-expanding Tweetosphere. More and more recruiters, especially those who only get paid if they fill a job (i.e. contingency recruiters) are turning to Twitter about job openings. More and more contingency firms are using Twitter to tweet their job openings.
If you are really serious about using Web 2.0 to find a job, make a list of the top job-posting boards online and stay turned to the employers who are providing an easy RSS (“Really Simply Syndication”) feed to alert potential job candidates when new job openings are posted. Many of these job boards have in-house apps that are powered by data streams for RSS feeds rich in various #hashtags and keywords. Employers are looking for candidates who are well versed in social media and know how to use social media and Web 2.0 Tools and Resources to differentiate themselves from 99% of the other candidates. Web 2.0 is way beyond just connecting to friends. They have become powerful marketing solutions for job candidates to discover new job opportunities.
According to TalentEgg, “Now, with social networking evolving so rapidly, even traditional online job boards are struggling to keep up with the fast-changing way employees are getting hired. Candidates are no longer the only ones actively searching for jobs—employers are now hunting on the Internet to find top talent as well.” For the Web 2.0 world to work for your job search, you need to stay in touch through RSS feeds and Twitter feeds that take advantage of API real-time communication with platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter where you are notified as soon as job postings are announced in the Tweetosphere job feeds and other venues. It is a good idea to convert your Cover Letter and Resume into mobile-friendly Webpage that is 100% compatible with the latest smartphones (i.e. screen rotation). Employers and hiring managers are no longer bogged down to desktop terminals anymore – they are mobile, interacting on multiple platforms with real-time data feeds from various venues.