Online job search: the pros and cons
Search and you will find. Where? The Internet, of course. Why? It’s the most exhaustive source of information. This virtual guru is affordable and is there for you 24/7. So it seems very practical to turn to it first thing whenever you have a question or a problem. No exception made when it comes to a job search.
Let’s just assume that you are looking not just for any kind of job which you are capable of doing and that will allow you to get by, but for a specific satisfying in every way job which you’ve a talent and a heart for.
Now that you have decided to plunge into the waters of the web to find you special kind of a job there are a few things that you should know before we lose track of you. By giving the Internet your priority and brushing aside other traditional ways of job search, like newspapers ads, friends of friends thing and employment agencies, you must bear in mind the following advantages and disadvantages of the chosen method.
Let’s first zoom in on the advantages of online job search.
- It is convenient and comfortable.
These are so hard to trade. You get to choose and apply and have all the time in between combined with your favorite music on and your best snack at an arm’s reach. If there’s one thing that no one can ever argue against about the Internet, it’s this one – convenience.
- The options are infinite.
Every job site adds new positions daily and someday you are bound to find a job sooner or later. (Sooner, if you know how to sell yourself and know what you want; later, if you don’t know how to make the employer single out your resume and you aren’t sure what is it you are really looking for. But, we’ll discuss that another time J)
- It saves you time.
The Internet gives you a unique opportunity to apply to several companies at the same time! Forget the days when you couldn’t apply to two universities or colleges at once since you only had one passport, and woe to him who placed his bets on the wrong school! Now it’s only wise to target as many positions as you can. So, search diligently, don’t miss a chance!
- It’s cheap.
Most job search sites (hh, job, avito) offer a free registration and don’t take a dime out of your pocket for helping you find your dream job. When money is tight this can come in handy.
- It’s a great filter.
Employers often provide an extensive amount of information about their companies and their requirements for a successful candidate. Things like salary, social packages, office conditions and specific responsibilities are usually clear enough and you can see at once whether it’s something you want to consider without having to feel uncomfortable asking all these questions yourself.
Ok, now let’s deal with the disadvantages of online job search.
Disadvantages are those ideas that come after good ideas. They hunt them down and plain smash’em. We don’t like to hear about disadvantages ‘cause they take all the fun out of every deal. However, without being fully aware of disadvantages we can fall prey to some very serious ramifications.
- It creates an unhealthy competitive spirit.
Guess what? You know who else is looking for a job in the net? Everybody else is doing just what you are doing. You apply for an interesting position in LinkedIn, you find out you’re number 150 in line! The day you hit the “send your resume to an employer” you get a notice the position was archived! Someone out there is way faster than you or better than you… The idea of losing can be very frustrating… A friendly HR shared with me that she doesn’t read through a resume if there is no higher education in it. And we all know that a higher education doesn’t mean you an expert, and there are so many people out there who have a degree in one field, but became great workers in a totally different field. However, you’ll be filtered out due to strict resume forms.
- It has a scarce list of jobs.
In spite of its vastness the job lists simply aren’t all-inclusive. Among hundreds of offers there is always a chance that the one job you are made for wasn’t presented to the wild masses. The saying goes, ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know’. As much as you’d hate bothering your friends or finding your way into the narrow circle of the field you are interested in, it’s always worth trying. Don’t limit yourself to the Internet list of proposals, be bold to use all other available ways to find your dream job. We do live but once.
- It robs you of time.
Think about it this way. When you send out your resume you tend to overlook the specific requirements that each company wishes for a candidate. You think your resume is impeccable, that you’ve written out all your achievements and skills, but with every employer the emphasis is different. If you want to be noticed by the employer, you will have to alter your resume for every employer, depending on their needs. A generic resume that fits one for all leaves a sour aftertaste, and is usually not taken seriously. It’s hard to impress when you can’t talk (remember the little Mermaid? Walk no talk? Yep, that’s you and your dumb good looking resume). Besides, you can come across real scams – you do the test work, they use it, pay you zilch and you never hear from them again. Waste of time. Yikes.
- It creates an extra step between you and the employer.
There is a lot I’d like to say on this one but I’ll stick to the essential. The person on whose decision your career depends isn’t always the person who should be deciding that. There is a decision-maker and then there is a real decision-maker. And 99% of time you don’t get a chance to talk to the latter. An unprofessional or unmotivated DM can be a cornerstone on which you will stumble over and over again.
- It doesn’t improve your character.
All those comfort zones and quick results may say something about you that you wouldn’t like to hear. But it is very important that we grow in maturity and work on our character qualities as we age. Choosing the Internet over any other form of a job search may point to certain weaknesses that you are unwilling to admit or afraid to deal with. Staying in your comfort zone may indicate that you are:
- lazy (it’s rude but it’s true that sometimes we all need to just pull our s…t together and do something other than scrolling down the screen)
- proud (I can find whatever I need without anybody’s help, I am smart enough to figure it all out on my own)
- too shy (it takes guts to negotiate the price of your skills or your social package looking the boss in the eye, maybe it’s time you step out of you box?)
- impatient (sending out resumes in piles without thorough consideration of each position and ending up with a second-best job, which you will quit anyway later on)
- fearful (rejection is our worst fear, and it’s so much easier to handle it when you are rejected by an email, a voice which you will never put to a face, a short notice that the position was filled by someone else. Fear can keep us in a cage of failure for a long time, while we reassure ourselves that it’s just not prudent or effective anymore to actually interact with people about your job. When fear takes control, we start justifying ourselves, blaming the circumstances for our misfortune, instead of trying to rise above the circumstances and becomes winners)
So, do not be afraid and try ALL possible ways of finding your dream job, because it is true that we spend the better part of the day at work! That’s why it is crucial that we don’t take this process lightly. Don’t join the club of those who spend their days doing the work they hate with the people they despise. It’s not worth it. Rather, consider your skills and passions and write them out in black and white, learn how to sell yourself to the employer (don’t be shy about your strengths and think about ways to go around your weaknesses), explore your opportunities and use every venue to find your dream job, not limiting yourself to just one or two. Dream big and you shall have big results! Good luck!