The use of social media has evolved from a space where people connect and engage with each other, to a wider range of activities including job search. According to HR trends, more than 70% of jobs are not publicly advertised through traditional channels, instead, there is an increasing trend of job opportunities being shared by word of mouth and through the use of social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Here are some ways you can use social media to land you a job

Let people in your networks know you are looking for a job

Undiscovered opportunities mostly lie within our own networks, in fact, internal referrals and social media rank highly in HR trends for South Africa. Make it obvious to anyone that sees your profile that you are looking for a job. It can be as easy as posting your availability for any job opportunities. Leveraging your networks through social media can be crucial for landing a job.

For example, Facebook has a recommendations feature that you can use to reach out to your friends. You can post something like, “Hi, I’m looking for a job in the retail sector. Does anyone know of any opening? I’ve made this post public, please hit ‘share’!” For Twitter, you can post: “Hi, I’m looking for a job in the retail sector. Does anyone know of any opening? Please RT.”

Create CV profiles

As a job seeker, it is important that you have a presentable profile that has your actual name. Potential employers may not be too keen to hire someone, who may, for example, call themselves “HeavyX Sungazi”, or any informal name that is not your own. Many recruiters and employers often make use of readily available CVs from job portals such as JobStarter. These completed CVs are sent directly to employers on your behalf so that your skills and experiences are matched for you with available opportunities. We know it takes time and data, but start investing in your professional online persona by creating and completing online CV through trustworthy websites, so that you are already in their databases should opportunities come knocking.

Follow relevant hashtags and companies

A great way to get you started on the job hunt is actively making use of relevant social media hashtags to see what opportunities might be available. Join conversations and engage with relevant employers about the industry and start building a network with them through the use of your social media platforms. Different hashtags such as #JobSeekerSA, #JobStarterSA, and #JobSeekerWednesday provide useful resources aimed at career guidance to help job seekers. Hashtags are an easy guidepost for a job seeker often with postings of the latest information or even conversations that are taking place within an industry; whether it is learning to write a cover letter, making a CV or the latest trends on job-related topics. So make use of hashtags, and don't be afraid to start conversing with companies and other social media persons that may give you the correct information.

The Social Network

Whilst many job seekers make use of LinkedIn to network with recruiters and access job opportunities, it’s not the only social media platform for job seekers. Facebook is interestingly the second most popular social media recruiting tool in SA. Yes, recruiters are looking at your profile!

Remember to ensure your profile is presentable to prospective employers. You might also want to tweak your privacy settings, join groups and engage with the employers online by also sharing some of their content. Also, create Facebook Lists as a way to build your professional network or search for jobs on Facebook and apply directly to them. It's a great way to also research the company you might be interested in.