Creating and maintaining an online brand is a relatively new phenomenon in the job searching world. In addition to having that stellar resume and cover letter, you should also have some sort of presence online. However, the sort of presence you have will vary according to what you’re looking for.
For instance, say you’re one of 95 million Americans who are seeking flexible work opportunities. You could be looking for part-time, freelance, contract, seasonal, or even project-based work. Your online brand should be adjusted based on the jobs you’re looking for so employers know exactly who you are. Let’s look at some ways you can optimize it.
Create a customized URL
If employers were searching for you online, chances are they’ll use a search engine to dig up the dirt. Luckily, many online platforms allow their users to create customized URLs so an online portfolio, personal website, or professional page is tailored to your name.
Benefits for flexible workers: Since the temporary job market is so fast-paced, employers may need quick turnaround when it comes to hiring, whether you’re interested in contract work or seasonal opportunities. A customized URL allows employers to find you and your professional history quickly and efficiently.
Nab those recommendations
You may think you’re skilled and experienced, but do others feel the same? The words of trusted professionals add meat to your online brand, as well as leave positive impressions in the minds of others. After all, the more recommendations you have, the greater the chances you’ll be seen as legitimate.
Benefits for flexible workers: Many temporary work opportunities are filled by referrals or word of mouth. Just think about the many catering workers, event coordinators, or even movie extras who nab jobs because of the opinions of others. Plus, with many temporary jobs needing to be filled immediately, an instant recommendation or vouch can be your one-way ticket in the right job.
Keyword it up
If you don’t use custom keywords in your online platforms, you may want to start. Many employers search for quality candidates through these keywords, which allow them to find the right workers in the shortest time period.
For instance, your Twitter page may list that you’re located in New York City, work in a marketing, and are looking for non-profit opportunities. These are all keywords which help you to stand apart from others.
Benefits for flexible workers: From the employer perspective, finding the right — and not just the right now — temporary workers can be difficult. Keywords such as “part-time opportunities,” “seasonal work,” or “project-based candidate” can help you to stand out in an online search, which 92 percent of recruiters are doing right now.
Use your online connections
Your connections are gold in the job search. Your online connections, however, may be worth more. Social networking has allowed us to easily connect with people all over the globe, which may not be possible with traditional network building. In addition, because so many people are accessible, so are the abundance of temporary work opportunities. This not only benefits your online brand, but also the outcome of your search.
Benefits for flexible workers: As I’ve briefly highlighted, knowing someone in your temporary job search can be a great way to land work fast. Your online connections work the same way, except they can spread the word to more people and more companies. Traditional methods just can’t compare.
Maintaining an online brand for temporary work is important, but the way you create, present, and follow-through with that brand does needs to be tweaked slightly. Understanding how to do so will result in not only a great flexible work opportunity, but the right one.
What do you think? What are some other ways to optimize your online brand for temporary work?
Lynn Dixon is the co-founder and COO of Hourly.com, an employment network that quickly matches people who are interested in flexible positions with the right opportunities. Connect with Lynn and Hourly on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.