First Person: How I Used the Internet to Get Hired for My Dream Job

Yahoo Contributor Network

Applying for a job online offered a lot of benefits to me when I was searching for work. I was looking for a job as a writer. Not only did it save me the hassle of walking into recruitment offices but it saved time, effort and money.

I expected it would take me a lot of job applications before I finally got hired; but I was pleasantly surprised. Online job application does not decrease your chances of getting hired, but rather, it increases your opportunity to work for the company you have been dreaming of. Let me share some tips for using the Internet to get hired...

Sign up for newsletters.

There are many services online where employers post job openings and potential employees and apply. Monster(dot)com and CareerBuilder(dot)com are two examples. (You can find more of the online job platforms by searching for "find jobs".) These online platforms allow you to sign up for newsletters or alerts for specific jobs. It definitely helps when you are alerted to new job openings. Make sure that you tick only the sectors that you are interested in.

Choose the right keywords.

Avoid using irrelevant and nonsense terms. Most of the employers, nowadays, use a tracker to pick up on the important words or the keywords. It helps them find the best applicants to work for their company, but it's your responsibility to help them for you. I used search terms such as "writer", "content writer", "copywriter" and "blogger".

Clean up your social profiles.

Social networking sites are also a great source of job postings, so "like" the pages of companies that would be great employers. Keep all your information up-to-date including your email account, employment history, contact information, and personal data. Potential employers will look for you online. Clean up your social profiles by deleting unnecessary posts which may portray your negative image. Your personal social media profiles may be linked to your employment profile, so keep in mind that they show you at your best. I made a point of posting links on my social media profiles to articles I had published on various websites.

Have an online portfolio.

Showcase your skills and talents on a personal website. Create a compilation of what you have already done; especially work that is relevant to the job posting. For example, if you are a photographer, make an online gallery and upload the best of your works. Show them how great you really are! I signed up for a free WordPress blog and posted samples of my writing along with my resume.

Personalize your CV and cover letter.

There are some employers that require applicants to write a cover letter. In doing so, make sure to express how you would benefit the employer if you were hired. Demonstrate your expertise by including examples of your accomplishments so employers can see you have a proven track record. Most importantly, remember that the cover letter addresses the job description. I took the time to read the mission statement for each potential employer and tailored my cover letter to show how I fit the company's vision.

Keep it error-free.

A potential employer will read the digital version of your application, so "spellchecker" makes it very easy to detect errors. Keep it accurate to maintain a professional image.

I got the job I wanted for a national company that provides data storage for the media industry. Their head office is in New York, and I was located in another state. I did not have to fly to New York to apply, because my online application and a subsequent telephone interview gave my new employer everything they needed to make a decision.