What's going to happen with job searching and employment in 2012? I reached out to Rick Marini, CEO and founder, BranchOut, the professional network on Facebook, for his take on what is going to happen as online job searching and recruiting continue to evolve as new technologies are released and social recruiting expands further into mobile and social networking sites.
In summary, it's all about mobile, using social networking sites to job search, and considering a job hunt, if you are an unhappy employee, as the job market continues to pick up in 2012. Here are Rick's 2012 job market predictions:
Prediction #1: A favorable online identity will be key to employment success. With social networking playing an increasingly key role in the employment process, it's important for job seekers to clearly identify which networks they want to participate in and mold their online identities accordingly. 90% of recruiters check social networks before hiring a candidate, which means that your online persona should properly represent you and show that you're the right person for the job.
- Ensure you've activated the correct privacy settings, especially on Facebook; hide images or comments that you wouldn't want a future employer to see.
Prediction #2: Now more than ever, it's all about mobile. The explosion of mobile usage will continue to grow in 2012, causing a shift in the way people exchange information. The ever-increasing use of smartphones means people are foregoing traditional networking avenues like exchanging business cards in favor of connecting digitally. 77% of job seekers are already using mobile apps when searching, and this figure will undoubtedly rise in the coming year.
- Download apps like Bump that allow you to instantly exchange contact information with new people.
- Become an expert at using mobile versions of networking websites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
- For companies or tools that don't have mobile apps, use their mobile versions instead. For example, search jobs, look for inside connections and find tips on how to prep for interviews on BranchOut's mobile site at m.branchout.com.
Prediction #3: The "unhappy employee" group of job seekers will begin seeking better pastures. The recent economic downturn caused people to take positions that weren't necessarily ideal, simply because they needed a job. As the economy improves and unemployment rates decrease, more people will look to change jobs that make them happier. Though this group has always existed, their numbers are expected to grow since the number of underemployed is much higher now than in previous years.
- Unhappy employees should continue to make the most of their current jobs while looking for a new position since it's easier to get a job when you have a job.
- Leverage Facebook to be your catalyst for change. With 18.4 million people crediting Facebook for helping them find their current job in 2011, it's the obvious and most natural place to turn since it houses all of your true personal connections.
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