Published: 3 February 2022
The world has come a long way from that old film stereotype of looking for a job by taking a highlighter to the help-wanted section of a newspaper or walking door-to-door with your CV.
The only way to find work these days is to do it on the internet, which means you’ll need to become familiar with the process to stand a chance at getting the job of your dreams.
There are thousands of job sites, plenty of tips and loads of confusing advice, so we thought we’d make it easy for you and present some of the most important things you need to do when finding work online.
Start with what you know
It’s tempting as you begin the job search to go straight to websites that put everything all in one place for you.
It makes sense, that’s where you’re likely to find the career you are looking for, right? While these sites can be useful, there is a more fundamental step you should take first.
If you know of a company in your field (which by the time you come to finishing your degree there’s a good chance you do) your job search should start with them.
The biggest and best companies do not always advertise on the general sites because they simply don’t need to. You’re not likely to find Google or Apple places paid ads on newspaper sites.
Instead, visit the company website and look for the phrase ‘working with us’, ‘careers’, ‘join the team’ or similar.
Often, you’ll find these at the bottom of the page in the footer where all the most important site links can be found. But if you struggle try the website search bar or the ‘About us’ section.
Once you’ve exhausted your list of top companies, that’s when you use job search sites to increase your field.
Then, make sure you input the kind of job you want to do, the hours (full-time or part-time), location and salary at a minimum.
Many sites let you include extra fields to help narrow down the often huge number of postings that wouldn’t be suitable for you.
You can state your experience, whether you’re a graduate, if you want to work from home or the office and filter out jobs posted by recruitment companies.
Once you have done all this, there’ll probably still be quite a big list of places to apply for so it can be difficult to know where to start.
We would recommend sorting by the application deadline so you don’t accidentally come across a posting you like too late.
Spend some time looking at the company website before you apply to make sure it’s the right fit for you.
The above are the two most common ways of finding a job online, but the internet is full of possibilities, especially since it connects us with people.
Try using social media sites like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to find job postings.
In particular, use their search functions to look for work in your industry. Follow major companies and people associated with the sector as they will often highlight jobs you might not otherwise see.
And of course, social media is the ideal place to build your network. Some statistics suggest up to 80% of jobs are never listed so the only way to access them is through the people that you know.
Start conversations, make it clear where your interests lie and that you are looking for work. You’ll be surprised how quickly things start coming your way.
Of course, the biggest place to both search for jobs and build your contacts online is LinkedIn. Take a look at our article on this social media site for professionals and get working on finding work.
Whatever you decide to do with your future, the University of Sunderland in London Careers and Employability Service is here to help.
To have a one-to-one chat with them, book a meeting through Compass or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.