Starting a job hunt from scratch is an overwhelming and daunting task, to say the least. However, once you develop a routine, it’s easy to kick off every morning with a plan and a positive attitude. Depending on the industry you’re interested in, there are thousands of websites dedicated to posting jobs that are the best fit for your field.
When I started my search for a full-time job last April, I was overwhelmed by the amount of resources available. In addition to scouring the web on my own, friends and family members constantly recommended sources that their acquaintances had used in their searches. After sending out nearly 250 applications over the course of a year and just receiving a job offer, I have a true sense of what websites are worthwhile, and which one are not.
While the Internet should never be your sole resource (hello, networking, jobs fairs!) there’s a wealth of opportunities available online. It can be difficult to distinguish the good from the bad (read: shady) so I’m going to break it down for you. In no particular order, here are some of the best and worst sites for job searching:
LinkedIn is not only the world’s largest professional network, but it’s a great resource to use while job hunting! Job postings are frequently updated, easy to apply to, and the site has a section for students and recent grads! While you’re on LinkedIn, join your college alumni group and keep an eye out for positions that might be a good fit for you. In addition, tidy up your personal profile page. Add a new headshot for your profile picture, update past job descriptions, and concisely summarize your work experience. Remember, if you apply for a job on LinkedIn, the employer can see your profile!
It’s not the first place you might think of in your job search, but hear me out! The job section is easy to navigate – you can look by industry, region, or employment status. Plus, there are hundreds of new positions added every single day. Of course, you have to be leery of offers that are too good to be true, but there are plenty of positions that are completely legitimate. The best part? To apply, most employers only request an e-mail with a resume. How easy is that?
Indeed makes your job search easy. Just by filling in what kind of position you’re interested, and where you want to be, you’ll turn up hundreds of results. From there, you can refine your search: by salary range, company, job type, and more. Then, take the next step and add your resume to their database. Even when you’re not actively searching, recruiters and employers can find you.
This won’t apply to everyone, but for those looking for a career within any facet of media, this is a must visit! There’s a whole section devoted to positions within the social media field, as well as listings for traditional journalism, editing, and marketing jobs. The only downfall is that the majority of positions are located in major metropolitan areas. So if you don’t live near a big city and aren’t interested in moving, you can skip this one.
Monster touts themselves as “One of the largest employment websites in the world.” While this may be true, I’ve always referred to them as scam city. Unfortunately, many of the postings on the website are not exactly what they seem. General searches pull up positions that are probably not what you had in mind. In a search for social media positions, I turned up several listings to be an Aflac insurance sales representative. Try again, Monster.
Much like Monster, CareerBuilder is also known for the multitude of scams and illegitimate postings. Even though there are some honest listings on here, you’ve probably already seen them on another website. Plus, the website is desperately in need of a face-lift. Expect to spend a lot of time clicking around, and make no progress in your search.
While this might a hot-spot for some, I had a horrible experience using The Washington Post. In the couple of months that I used the website, I noticed several things. Number one – the positions were not frequently updated. A job would be added in March, and still on first page in September! Most of the positions are for the government (read: must have a clearance). So if that’s not your thing, stay clear. Finally, almost 75 percent of the listings are for internships! In fact, I received several e-mails immediately after sending an application to let me know the posting was for an internship, and was that okay? Um, no!
I want to like USA Jobs, but in all my attempts to find a job, I just couldn’t change my mind. Even though it’s constantly recommended for anyone looking for a government related job, the website just doesn’t make it easy. In any given search, you’ll turn up dozens of results. Great! But as you browse, you’ll notice they start to look familiar. That’s because they probably are – the same position has been listed countless times. Despite all this, you’re able to submit an application. Unfortunately, you probably won’t hear anything back for about three to six months.
If you do a quick search on Google for “the best websites for job hunting,” you’ll return more than 2,550,000,000 results. There will never be enough time to sort through several billion websites, so this concise list should give you a good place to start. Bookmark your favorites, and check back several times a week for the newest postings. Before you know it, you’ll be hearing back from potential employers about scheduling an interview.