MySpace is a social networking website offering users the opportunity to connect through personal profiles, blogs, groups and other features. MySpace is one of the most popular social networking site, and if you have a MySpace page and you're job searching, you may have heard that you need to be careful about the information you post.
Hiring Managers check the web for anything they can find about prospective candidates, and MySpace and Facebook are among the sites they check.
You do need to be careful, but it's also important to consider the flip side to job searching and MySpace - the companies who use it to find candidates for employment.
Employers Looking for You
In addition to companies that use career networking sites, like LinkedIn, to recruit, there are employers who use MySpace and other social networking sites to scope out candidates for employment. According to SimplyHired (one of the top job search engines) Vice President of Marketing Phil Carpenter, "These companies look through the right lens, understand the communication skills of this generation, and are willing to set aside their biases."
You might be surprised at some of the companies that have MySpace profiles. Some of them are companies that are known for being very traditional. However, they are all cognizant of the fact that they need employees, and they are willing to think outside the typical recruiting box to attract this generation of job seekers.
How to Connect with an Employer
There will be information on how to contact the employer or recruiter on the MySpace page. In many cases, there will be a variety of options for contacting the recruiter, because they want to make it easy for you to get in touch.
How Employers Recruit on MySpace
Companies don't just put up a MySpace page and expect you to find it, though, of course, they will be thrilled if you do. They also use MySpace and similar sites to look for potential new hires.
Employers who set up MySpace profiles do it in the language of the people who use it (which can be a different language from those of us who are a generation older). SimplyHired's Phil Carpenter says these companies, "Understand the language and use it to effectively communicate."
Companies like these also understand the assertive side of the younger generation. They know that communications (instant message, cell phone, email, social networking) are much more instantaneous than they were in the past. This population doesn't want to mail in paper resumes and wait weeks for a response. So, employers communicate on the same level by using video, blogs and blog comments, and instant messaging, as well as email and phone.
In addition to putting up profiles to see what interest they can generate, employers also actively seek applicants on MySpace. Phil Carpenter noted these employers are aware of the difference between a public persona and a private one. They look holistically at the entire candidate and are interested in what they can learn about the person. For example, a cutting edge employer, especially in less traditional industries, may not mind a creative profile and will understand the distinction between that person's private life and the employee they may hire.
Not always though, so that's why it's going to continue to be important to be careful what you post online. There is a very fine line between what's acceptable and what isn't, and that line is hard to define.
There's another way you can use MySpace to find jobs. The Jobs section (powered by SimplyHired) has over 5 million job postings. You can search full-time jobs, part-time jobs, and internships, by keyword and location. MySpace members can also post a resume using SimplyHired's resume posting service.
Tips for Using MySpace for Job Searching
- Don't put up anything you'd be embarrassed to have your Grandma find (she might be online too!).
- Consider whether you will want to read what you wrote today twenty years from now, when you're at a different stage of your life. Would you want your (future) kids reading it?
- Realize that there is a difference between what you and a recruiter might think is appropriate.
- Be thoughtful about what you post, and, most importantly, think about whether you need to post it.