Josh Tolan is the CEO of Spark Hire, which aims to enrich interaction between job seekers and employers by integrating a cloud-based video platform with an online job board. Connect with him and Spark Hire on Facebook and Twitter.
There is extensive competition in today’s job market in almost every profession. However, the outlook for job availability in 2012 looks promising according to an infographic by Course Hero. It illustrates that 50 percent of the 8,000 employers surveyed plan to hire in 2012. That is fantastic news if you’re on the job hunt. But the question still rings true, if jobs are on the rise, how will you stand out among the competition? When Google posted a few job listings last year they received 75,000 resumes in one week! How would you expect them to find your lone resume out of that many? How about jumping into the new age of resumes with online portfolios? There are some different ways of creating an online portfolio, depending on the type of industry you are in; here are three key components of building a strong portfolio:
- Build a website. If you don’t already have your own personal website, get one (i.e. www.johndoe.com) because your name will most likely rank higher when the recruiter types you into a search engine. When they see that you have taken the time to create a branding website, you can seriously wow them! For example if you are a website developer, you can showcase your talent by creating your own site entirely, or if you are a writer, you can develop a blog to guide a recruiter through your published work. But you don’t have to be a developer or blogger to showcase your talents. Be creative in deciding what you should use to best showcase your skills.
- Make a video. In addition to the above-mentioned online portfolio options, you will also want to create an online video resume. This will provide a more complete self-portrait of your achievements and expertise as well as let your personality shine through to prospective employers. The focus here is to sell yourself! Take the guess work out of the equation by demonstrating your charisma and communication skills via an online video. In addition to using the video to compliment your resume, research the company culture and echo that through your work experience, values, and ethical standards. If you appeal to the person who is doing the hiring, you will most likely stand a really good chance of landing an interview. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, you want to radiate a positive upbeat attitude in your video to give you the likability factor companies are always looking for.
- Leverage your social networks. Ninety-one percent of recruiters will look at your social networks according to a study by Reppler. So you need to integrate your social networks into your online portfolio to streamline the process for the prospective employer. Keep in mind it is crucial to ensure that all of your profiles are up-to-date and to not have anything on them that will make you appear unprofessional. Take precautions by checking each site’s settings, and if possible make it so you have to approve anything that anyone wants to post to your page. This will protect you from friends putting incriminating or embarrassing information up that you do not want an employer to see.
By utilizing these three tips, you can differentiate yourself from the other candidates competing for your dream position and be more accessible to employers. And who knows, by taking pride in your personal brand, you may just land the job of your dreams!
What do you need to do to get started on your online portfolio? Do you already have one? What tips would you share for those looking to get started?
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