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As commencement nears, all graduating seniors are likely thinking about the same thing: finding a job. Whether you’re thinking of moving out of state or staying close by, utilizing social media can improve your personal marketability, and help you score your dream job! Not sure where to start?

Screen Shot 2014-04-17 at 12.16.50 PMGoogle Yourself. Chances are, your potential employers are going to be doing this too. Although you may be unable to change aspects of your online presence, knowing what is out there will allow you to be proactive, instead of reactive, if you are in an interview and get asked. Additionally, you can remove any profiles that may be outdated or inactive. If you don’t have any results, you may want to consider creating a Linkedin Profile or About.me page to populate search results. I’ve even been in interviews where they’ve Googled me during the interview to go over my online presence, so it’s always necessary to know you’re up against.

*Pro Tip* Google yourself from a computer you don’t normally use, or an incognito window. If Google is your primary search engine, your results may be customized based on your previous history.

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Update Your Linkedin. 97% of recruiters say they use Linkedin to find job candidates. Furthermore, 67% say they solely use Linkedin for recruiting. If you don’t have one, now is the perfect time to create your Linkedin profile. Linkedin has a great step-by-step tutorial for filling out your profile, and tracks your profile strength, plus tips to help you get noticed by recruiters. Aside from connecting to recruiters, previous employers and coworkers, and classmates, utilize Linkedin Groups to connect to Michigan alumni, and others with similar career interests. Networking with other professionals, and connecting with those who have viewed your profile (which Linkedin lets you see), will help you make the most of your professional network. As the above graphic states, be sure your profile is displaying the proper information about your professional qualifications via your summary and skills, that you have a professional profile picture, and have the correct privacy settings to display the information you want potential employers to see. Linkedin has a mind-blowing 260 million users, so it’s a great place to connect!

*Pro Tip: Ask previous employers from any of your jobs and internships, your mentors, or professors to write you recommendations on Linkedin. These help build out your profile, and are like mini letters of recommendation.

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Take Advantage of the Alumni Association. Every new graduate receives a free, one year membership to the Alumni Association. Take advantage of it! With over 500,000 living alumni working everywhere from Silicon Valley to the White House, India to Australia, never underestimate the connections you can build as a Michigan Alumnus. The Alumni Association offers career services for members, and has their own job portal, in addition to the University Career Center job boards. You also have access to digital learning resources, and get some pretty sweet discounts!

*Pro Tip: Feel free to reach out to Michigan Alumni via social media, or contact your local alumni association group if you are planning to move after graduation. Often times, this connection will spark a conversation, and will maybe even lead to a job connection!

jobs-sites

Check Our Job Posting Sites. Don’t wait for a job to come to you, go find it! There are hundreds, if not thousands of job posting sites, and many offer alerts that will email you lists of jobs every day. It doesn’t get any easier than that! A few job sites to note: Indeed, Simply Hired, Monster, Career Builder, Doostang, Glassdoor, Idealist (for non profits), Angel.co (for start-ups).

*Pro Tip: There is a market-specific job posting site for almost ANYTHING. Do a simple Google search of ‘[industry] jobs’ and you should be able to find one. You can even search jobs by cities using this method.

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Create a Website. What better way to show off your expertise and talents than with a site that’s all about YOU! For those without web development or design skills, there are several sites that allow you to create websites using templates. Squarespace, About.me, Wix, and Strikingly are a few good examples for portfolio-type websites. You can also host your resume and contact information here. It’s best to have the URL be the closest to your first and last name as you can, so if a potential employer Googles you, your website will come up.

*Pro Tip: Starting a blog on a service like Medium will allow you to show off your knowledge about the industry you want to work in. It’s also a smart idea to follow industry professionals and brands you respect on blogs and Twitter, so you can stay up-to-date with the news, offer your opinions, and maybe even find a job!

Searching for a job can be a stressful process. We hope these tips help make your search a little bit easier! If you have any tips to add, leave a comment, or Tweet us @umich!