How To Job Search On Facebook For Success
As of July 24, 2019, Facebook has 2.41 billion active monthly users and 1.59 billion daily users worldwide, according to the company. While you may think of LinkedIn first for your job search, it lags behind Facebook (LinkedIn ranked #4, Facebook ranked #1) in a list of top social media sites. If you only use Facebook as a way to stay in touch with friends, know that recruiters use Facebook as a way to source candidates and get out their message about careers at their companies. While the numbers are lower than for LinkedIn, 55% of recruiters use Facebook to find candidates. Therefore, when you are devising your job search strategy, you are missing out on a great tool if you do not include Facebook as a part of it.
Your Facebook Presence: Make Sure It Is Positive
The first thing you should do, even if you decide not to use Facebook for any job search activities, is to make sure you clean up your online presence on Facebook. This is a must before even starting your job search. Recruiters likely are going to check out your social media presence when you get to the screening or interview step. They are going to be looking for a few things:
Your general social media presence. Do you actively engage in social media? For some types of roles, this may be very important. It shows how you promote your “brand” and your media savvy.
How you write. If written communications are an important part of a role, how you represent yourself on social media will be a clue about your knowledge of proper grammar, your wordiness and your ability to articulate your thoughts.
What you write about your present employer and coworkers. If you are critical of the management where you work or the people that you work with, you may turn off a future employer (even if you have legitimate gripes).
Will you fit in with the company culture. This may be very important to the hiring team. Looking at your social media presence, they will get a better idea of who you are, what you think, and your values. To play it safe, you should avoid posting around the following topics, as it might not put you in the best light.
Drinking and drug use (legal or illegal)
Posts that are of a sexual nature
Posts laced with profanity
Posts that are of a political nature (even if you feel strongly towards one side of the political spectrum, you may put off those on the other side).
Review Your Facebook Setting and Feed
Review your feed and if anything looks even a bit questionable, delete it. Untag yourself from questionable pictures on other people’s feed. Go to the Privacy Settings and Tools area of Facebook. On the Desktop version, you will see a screen similar to that depicted below. In the Your Activity area, you have the option of limiting who can see future posts. When in job search mode, best practice is to make it public so recruiters can see what you are posting. The second item in the Your Activity area is an easy way to see all of your previous posts and in any place where you were tagged. Click on the Use Activity Log link to see all activity involving you. If there is a post you want to hide, there is a hide button. If you want to be untagged, go to the three dots to the top right of the post and you have the option to untag yourself. You can also limit the audience of past posts. If you do this, public posts and those that you shared with friends of friends will only be seen by friends. Friends of friends could still see a post in which you are tagged if a friend of a friend is also tagged. If you do not want that to happen, you will need to go into your activity log and untag yourself from the post.
From Facebook desktop
From Facebook mobile app
In the How People Find and Contact You area, you may want to make your email address and phone number available so that a recruiter can easily contact you during your job search. Lastly, you may want a search engine such as Google to be able to link to your profile if a recruiter is looking for information on you. If you want this, check “yes” in this area. You can always reinstate your privacy setting after your job search has concluded.
From Facebook mobile app
Don’t put yourself at risk of being rejected over a poorly thought through post or picture from a few years back. Take action ahead of time to clean up your profile as well as making yourself more accessible to those that may want to talk to you about a job.
Fill In Your Profile
Making your profile public is only part of the equation of getting noticed on Facebook. The other part if filling your profile with relevant content that a company recruiter or third party recruiter would want to know about you. In the About area of your profile, you have several fields that are available for you to complete. On the mobile app, go to your information (click on the circle with your your picture) and then the circle below your name that says Edit Profile.
Work and Education Section (Workplace and Education are separate on mobile)
Here you can add information about your work history.
You can add the name of the company (there is also a field if you are self-employed)
The position (Job Title on mobile app)
City,Town (Location on mobile app)
A description of the job
If you are currently employed or when you worked there
The option to make the information public or restrict who sees it
In the same section, you can also add your education.
School (High School or College Name on mobile app)
The time period (not recommended to be completed, especially for more mature job seekers)
A checkbox indicating you graduated
A description field (not available on the mobile app)
If this was a college of graduate school (this field is missing from the high school area and is not on the mobile app)
The option to make the information public or restrict who can see it
From the desktop version of Facebook
Places You’ve Lived (Current City on mobile)
The most important field here will be where you currently live. Recruiters will qualify you for a position based upon your current geography. Where you live also helps when searching for jobs, as the algorithm will automatically do a search for jobs in a certain radius of that location.
From Facebook desktop
Contact and Basic Info
In this area, you will want to add and make public your mobile phone number and email address. If you are concerned about making your mobile number public, you can use a service like Google Voice to give you an alternative number that can ring to your cell phone. While you can add your address in this section, it generally is not necessary for a job search. You also have the option to add a web site, and I highly suggest you do that. This can include a personal web site or the URL of any site where you may have some of your professional work. Lastly, you can add your other social media sites, such as a link to your LinkedIn, Instagram or Twitter feeds. The information you can add is a bit more limited on the mobile app. In the Settings and Privacy section under Settings, there is a section with Account Settings. There you can add your phone number and email address and set whether you want to make it public. Adding website and social media is not available in this area on the mobile app.
From Facebook desktop
Details About You
On the desktop version of Facebook, you have the ability to write about yourself in a free text box. Take advantage of this to provide details about your career, your skills, and why you would be an asset to an employer. On the mobile version of Facebook, there is a Bio section where you have the ability to add the same information.
From Facebook Desktop
From Facebook mobile
Many companies have a company page on Facebook. As part of their recruitment strategy, they may have a separate career section or even have a separate company career page. Therefore, if you are interested in a particular company, it is important to search Facebook to see if there is career information either on their company page or a separate career page. You can follow the page, so you will see updates in your news feed. You will be able to interact with the page and this may get you noticed by the recruitment team.
Facebook for a few years has had a Jobs area as part of its bookmarks and in Marketplace. There you can find jobs in your location as well as filter by job type and category. You can also set up alerts so that you will get a notification when a new job fitting your interest is posted.
The blue link to the right of the job title (or Apply Now button on desktop) either takes you to a job description and a blue button that will take you to the company web site to apply, or there will be a form that pre-populates your Facebook information (which you can edit) and you can submit to the company with one click. You also have the ability to save jobs to review at a later date.
If you are looking for industry groups or job search groups, there is probably a group for it on Facebook. Many industry groups even have a separate group just for job seekers to post their availability and companies to post their openings. Use the search bar to find groups in your area of interest. Some may be open to the public while others may be closed groups. Once you join, postings in the group will show up on your news feed. Groups are a great way to network with others and get leads for open positions.
Facebook offers a lot of opportunities for the job seeker. Just because it is not a professional social network like LinkedIn, do not overlook it as one tool in your job search toolbox. Facebook wants to keep people on its platform. Therefore, they will continue to build additional job search tools both for candidates and employers. If you haven’t thought about Facebook for your job search give it a try and let me know how it goes.