5 Essential Tools for Your Job Search

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161115_3607As students prep for the upcoming school year by purchasing textbooks and school supplies, job seekers also need to prepare for their job search.

From using LinkedIn and Twitter to building a professional blog, there are a variety of tools you can use to improve your job search. If you’re wondering what job search tools you can add to your toolbox, here are five essentials to get you started:

1. Participate in social networks

Building an online presence during your job search begins with social media. Social networking gives job seekers the opportunity to get their name known online and build credibility for themselves as professionals.

To get you started, sign up for social networks that best fit your needs and interests. Networks such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ are excellent for connecting with employers and recruiters, and following online conversations.

2. Use job search apps

According to Jobvite, 43 percent of job seekers use a mobile device during their job search. In fact, 27 percent of job seekers want to be able to apply for jobs from their phones.

There are a number of job search apps available for job seekers to use. For example, job search engines such as Indeed.com and Monster.com have mobile versions of their websites to enhance the job seeker’s job search experience. CareerShift, a web platform designed for job seekers, is another great application that can be used on the Safari web browser.

3. Find a mentor

If you’re seeking guidance during your job search, enlisting in a mentor can help you answer your questions and find job opportunities.

A mentor can be a colleague, an old college professor, or even a professional you met through LinkedIn and Twitter. This person is typically someone who has experience in your industry and has been in your shoes at some point.

You can find a mentor through networking online, in-person, or using our “My Contacts” feature. This feature enables job seekers to create organized lists of contacts and have access to millions of employers.

4. Create business cards

Although business cards may seem like an old school tactic, they still serve as an important tool for job seekers.

Business cards come in handy when you’re on the go or at networking events. This way, when you meet a new professional, you don’t have to worry about entering contact information into your phone or hoping you’ll find the person on LinkedIn.

For job seekers looking to create traditional business cards, VistaPrint and MOO are excellent options for creating sleek business cards. If you don’t want to worry about carrying cards with you, mobile apps such as CamCard and SnapDat allow users to scan business cards into their phones.

5. Start a blog or online portfolio

Every professional should have a blog or online portfolio that showcases their expertise and accomplishments. Not only is this a great tool for you to use during a job interview, but it will also help you get noticed by more employers.

To get you started, platforms such as WordPress, Blogger, Wix, and Weebly are easy-to-use options for job seekers with little or no experience in blog design. You can create a professional blog on these platforms using pre-made templates and features.

Any of these job search tools will make you stand out and get noticed by employers. Even if you use just one of these tools, you’ll be able to get ahead in your job search and quickly land a job.

What tools are you going to use during your job search?

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Val Matta
Val Matta
Val Matta, Managing Director of CareerShift, co-founded the company in 2005 to help individuals bridge the gap between education and employment.  As a recognized expert in the field, Val is a frequent speaker on career management, networking, and job hunting strategies.  You can connect with her and the CareerShift team on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.