Have you Googled yourself lately?

It’s a good practice to Google yourself about once a month; especially if you’re job searching.

To begin, open a search engine (e.g. Google); enter your name in the search box and review the first few pages of the search results.

A.    Review the links
B.    Note what’s missing
C.    Evaluate the images connected to your name

You can count on an employer Googling you at some point during the hiring process, so it’s important for you to know what they’ll see.  You want employers to find something about you; otherwise they may be suspicious; however you only want them to find things that are positive and professional.

“Social media” is a term that describes the tools that allow you to connect and communicate with others online; for example, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Social media is the best way to build and manage your online presence (your SEO).

Search Engine Optimization” or “SEO” is a term used to describe online search results. In most cases, you want your name on the first page of the search pages produced by a search engine.  The more information there is about you online, the better your personal SEO will be.

If you haven’t started using social media yet, try selecting one tool as a starting place.  Job seekers often say that LinkedIn is a good choice because it is a professional networking site and looks the most like an online résumé.

“Recent statistics indicate that 87 per cent of North American companies use LinkedIn for recruiting and 64 per cent of organizations use more than two social networks to recruit,” Brock News

To get started you will just need a bit of time and a good digital picture that you are willing to share with the world.

We recommend setting aside 1-2 hours every day for about a week to build your LinkedIn profile and to become familiar with all of the LinkedIn tools and resources.  You will want to add your employment and educational background and highlight your skills.  You can also join groups, connect with people and learn about companies and job postings.

For more information, try searching using phrases such as “LinkedIn for Job Search”.

Note:  Because social media helps you to connect with people online, you can use the same “rules” you use for in-person networking.  For example, social media tools need to be used on an ongoing basis; social media is not something you only use when you need help.  It is also good to remember that social media isn’t about self-promotion; it’s about connecting with people, building relationships and offering help.

Globe and Mail article “Making the most of social media on your job hunt