Beyond what is represented on your executive resume and career marketing documents, potential employers, hiring managers, and recruiters are eager to see what is behind the scenes. Consequently, they will conduct online research to get the real scoop on you, learn more about what you have to offer and carefully read others' comments on your abilities and past performance.
If there is absolutely nothing about you online, you are basically hidden and invisible to those who may be trying to find you. Frequent surveys have shown that executive recruiters and employers actively scour the Internet to identify "passive" candidates that fit their hiring needs.
Having a strong online presence is simply essential in today's job search and should remain as part of your ongoing career management strategy.
Here are a few quick ways to start improving your personal online presence today:a) Create personal online profiles
Any executive or senior professional who is serious about his/her job search should have a complete, branded profile with LinkedIn, Zoominfo, Ziggs, Google and Jigsaw.
More importantly, you need to make sure that these profiles have "meat" in them, provide sufficient detail about your responsibilities and include at least one top achievement for each company. As you expand your connections, don't forget to solicit recommendations or third-party testimonials from former bosses and colleagues.
b) Create an online portfolio or personal website
Give others access to a web-based portfolio through which they can download your executive resume, career biography, case studies and other relevant career marketing documents.
Start off with a free portfolio at VisualCV.com and purchase your own URL (in your personal name) if you want to upgrade to an actual website at a later point.
c) Create a following
If you enjoy writing articles or brief columns, submit your work frequently to free websites like selfgrowth.com, ezinearticles.com and articlestreet.com.Use the opportunity to share your expertise with other colleagues and end each article with a signature byline (like the one I have below) that leads people back to your personal website, VisualCV or LinkedIn profile.
d) Create conversations
All online social networking sites have smaller, targeted groups and forums; get to talking, openly share your opinion on industry trends, offer advice to colleagues and aspiring thought leaders and frequently invite meaningful discussions among the group members.
Don't forget about adding your professional two cents to specialty Yahoo and Google groups and relevant blogs.
Are you just joining us on this seven-part series on executive job search success? Get caught up through the following links:
Abby M. Locke of Premier Writing Solutions (www.premierwriting.com) is a master resume writer and career marketing architect who helps talented professionals and senior-level executives to achieve career success through cutting-edge, brand-focused career documents, innovative job search tools, and proactive career management strategies.