Have you felt it?
Believe it or not, there has been a radical shift on how we conduct transactions, both business transactions as well as transactions where personnel are being hired. The Internet, long held at arm’s length as far as not being a bastion of credibility, is starting to flex its power. What was once held with skepticism is now being viewed as weighted credentials.
Building your online profile adds to boosting your credibility with prospective employers. Put the shoe on the proverbial other foot: If you were looking to hire someone, and were doing some preliminary vetting of candidates by researching them on the Internet, and one candidate had a sterling profile that showed a dynamic career track whereas the other had none at all… which would you be more inclined to hire?
Keeping your brand consistent from your resume to your cover letter to your online credentials adds fuel to your power as a candidate. A well-written and complete LinkedIn.com profile including client, colleague, supervisor and co-worker testimonials can launch you light years ahead of other candidates. And believe me, employers in increasing numbers are using this Web site and others like it to winnow their candidate pools down to the top industry talent.
Another thing to be aware of is that many companies now are actually trolling sites like LinkedIn.com to proactively recruit as well. The people that have taken steps to embrace technology and integrate themselves into it are positioning themselves to be noticed. And if you don't have ready access to the Internet at home, try stopping by the public library, working off a friend's computer, or using one in a job resource center.
By staying on top of your accomplishments, involvement and professional development on your online profile, you are conveying that you have taken charge of your career destiny and are investing yourself to be the best in your field. And in this crowded marketplace, that’s what it is going to take to stand out among a sea of applicants.
Take the time to carefully and thoughtfully put together your online profiles, and remember that even the social media ones can pop up in background research for potential employers. Keep your information on those sites personal, yet always professional. And of course, always tell the truth, and be ready to back up any accomplishments you state with facts.
You never know who may be viewing your online credentials, and it could prove to be worth its weight in gold!