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3. Make sure your resume is compelling. Your resume is your representative. Would you hire someone to represent you if they didn't look at least as professional as you yourself? Probably not. Same goes for resumes. Make sure your resume is free of spelling and grammatical errors (use spelling and grammar check in Microsoft Word). Make sure your resume is easy to read and can be understood by a layman. If a busy recruiter has 50 resumes to look through on a job board and they can't understand within first 30 seconds of looking at your resume how you can help their company, they'll just skip on to next resume. No one wants to work any harder than they have to.
4. Keep in mind there are many job boards used by recruiters. Don't put all your eggs in one basket and rely on just one job board. Post your resume on several sites. You can use a service like PutMyResumeOnline.com which will do this for you. PutMyResumeOnline.com will let you enter your resume once and will then post it on over 90 job sites including Monster, HotJobs, CareerBuilder and many more.
5. In best case, you could have a 50% chance of finding a job through a job board. In worst case it could be as low as 10% or so. Knowing this, it makes sense to spend no more than 50% of time you're allotting for job searching on using job sites. Just like when you invest in stock market, you should diversify your portfolio and use several different job searching methods. Talk to people and attend events, for one thing. Word of mouth is #1 way to find a job.
6. Don't think of job leads you get from job boards as just potential jobs. Think of them also as Networking Leads. When you get asked in for an interview after posting your resume or responding to a job ad, go there with a networking mindset. Regardless of whether you're meeting with a third party recruiter or a direct employer, your approach should be to think of opportunities to create a long-term relationship with company or individual. If you are looking for ways to help them long-term -- whether it's referring friends to them or other potential business -- they will start thinking of ways to help you long term. They will also be more receptive to referring you to someone else if they don't think position is right fit for you.
7. Update your resume regularly on most popular sites. Most job sites receive less than 1,000 resumes per day, which spread out across thousands of counties in U.S. does not amount to an inordinate number. However, top 3 job boards - Monster, HotJobs and CareerBuilder - each receive 15,000 or more resumes per day. On these three sites, your resume will start appearing lower in search results recruiters see after a couple weeks. Therefore, we recommend logging in to each of these 3 sites about twice a month and changing one or two words in resume so it will appear as if it's updated.
8. Get Noticed. If you see a position on a job board that you feel is a good fit for you, make a conspicuous note of that in email you send with your resume. Consider coming up with a headline for message subject or top of email that will get recruiter's attention, like "LPN NURSE WITH 6 YEARS EXPERIENCE WORKING IN HOSPITALS LIKE YOURS." A recruiter may get 100 responses or more to a job ad. They're more likely to look at a resume if there's a personal note relevant to specific position. You can also consider faxing resume with a service like FaxMyResume.com to bypass recruiter's inbox. One caveat here: don't invest a lot of time with ALL job ads you see - just best ones.
Scott Brown is the author of the Job Search Handbook (http://www.JobSearchHandbook.com). As editor of the HireSites.com weekly newsletter on job searching, Scott has written many articles on the subject. He wrote the Job Search Handbook to provide job seekers with a complete yet easy to use guide to finding a job effectively.