17 Oct What your boss wants to know isn’t on your resume
With each job ad generating thousands of resumes employers are increasingly turning to the online world to find out who really has the skills they need. So while the hours you spend crafting your cover letter and resume may get your foot in the door you need to pay attention to your online reputation if you are going to make it onto the short list.
Somewhere between 75 – 93 percent of recruiters report checking out candidates online before proceeding to the interview stage so if you aren’t landing any interviews chances are it’s your online reputation doing the damage.
So what does your new boss want to know that they can’t find on your resume?
- Do you have an online presence?
It might seem completely unnecessary. After all, what if you’re a forklift driver? How does an online presence help you do that job? But in the digital world an online presence is the equivalent of a driver’s license. It confirms you exist and live in the modern world. And pretty much every job, no matter what it is, requires a special type of skill, qualification or recommendation. So at the very least make sure you have an online presence through LinkedIn, Facebook or something else that provides the basics about your professional experience.
- Are you influential online?
You’re being hired to do a job, not promote yourself online right? So why does your new boss care if you are influential online? Well, research shows that the best performing sales companies are those with employees that actively promote the company they work for.
Maybe it’s liking or sharing a whitepaper or special report. Perhaps it’s liking a media interview with the CEO. Whatever it is the data shows that items shared by employees get 561 percent more reach, are re-shared 24 more times and receive 8 times more engagement. In general, employees have 10 times more followers than the company they work for. So your personal brand is important to the company and a powerful weapon in your job search arsenal.
- Are there black marks against your name?
The Internet remembers everything. That drunken photo, grumpy review and inappropriate post you shared are all easily found and likely to damage your online reputation. The first thing a potential employer does is search to see whether any of these (or any other) black marks exist and the extent to which they could be embarrassing to the company. So make sure you know what information exists about you online and find out what it means by getting a copy of your online reputation score.
- Is your expertise recognised?
Qualifications and experience are great. But probably half the candidates you are competing against have the same skillsets and experience. So the real question is are you a leader in your field?
How does a potential new employer decide this? Well a clear statement of your achievements as opposed to your experience is essential so make sure your LinkedIn profile is focused on outcomes not tasks. Recommendations and endorsements from your peers and colleagues also offer a big boost. They speak to achievement and credibility.
You should also make an effort to post comments and even articles in your chosen field. These can elevate you as a leader, especially if your content is being shared. Regular posts on a blog or third party platform like LinkedIn are also likely to be identified by search engines making it easier for people to find you.
- Can you be found?
Not much point being online if no one can find you. All of the suggestions above will help elevate your online profile and improve your personal brand and online reputation. But nothing will make it easier to find you then owning your own domain. No one knows for sure exactly how the Google search algorithm works but it’s a safe bet that the domain name – or URL – is a primary input into search rankings. So owning your own domain name and building a website that makes it easy to learn about your professional experience is the best way to ensure potential employers can find you easily and get the information you want them to find. And it also stops someone else from buying a domain with your name and turning it against you.
Ready to get started? Get your online reputation score