Job seekers often ask, “Which is the best job board?” The Internet is filled with thousands of them. With so many to choose from, which one is right for you? Is there such a thing as a right job board for you?
Although job boards can lead to employment, the reality is most job leads are not found this way. To be an effective job seeker, you must use strategy and networking to uncover hidden jobs. If you are going to invest time on job boards, here are some techniques to using them as effectively as possible.
- Limit your time A good rule of thumb is to spend no more than 20% of your job search time looking for advertised jobs. Focus the rest of your efforts working on a targeted job search and networking.
- Stay away from sites requiring payment for access to jobs – While employers often pay to post jobs, job seekers should not have to pay to look at job openings.
- Find specialized sites – Monster and Career Builder are large sites with thousands of listings across all job types. Focus instead on job boards that are built for specific industries. They will have better quality job leads. A quick online search can provide you with a list of these niche job boards.
- Use local and regional sites. Smaller sites specific to your geographic region may offer better opportunities closer to home.
- Set up e-mail alerts – Many job boards allow you to save search criteria and will notify you when jobs are posted that match your specifications. Services such as Google Alerts allow you to enter search topics such as a specific job title and receive notification via e-mail once a new job matching that title is posted. Setting this up will allow you to get a jump on applying for jobs matching your criteria.
- Use LinkedIn – LinkedIn isn’t a job board, but it does have job postings. If you find a job that’s a good fit, you can use LinkedIn to find people you know with connections to the company. Network with them for an inside edge on the job. Need help with LinkedIn? Read our complete guide to using LinkedIn in your job search.
With so many options online for job boards, it’s easy to find yourself spending significant time on them in hopes uncovering job leads. However, you’re far less likely to hear back on an application done through a job board than you are on a lead uncovered through networking. If you’re going to use job sites, limit your time and make it one small piece to your overall job search strategy.
For more, read “Break Your Addiction to Job Boards”.