Kathmandu, April 18, 2016:Â As a young urban professional, or one soon to be, and more importantly a millennial who has witnessed the technology boom and accustomed oneâ€™s lifestyle to it accordingly, the professional world may seem intimidatingly daunting to venture into, and job-hunting an insurmountable task. If this held true before the advent of the information technology revolution that has swept the world by force and shrunk it into our smartphones, it no longer retains as much magnitude as online job recruitment websites and other tools that conveniently connect prospective applicants with interested employers and provide customised opportunities that match oneâ€™s profile and professional standing. This has greatly minimised the job-hunting process much to the convenience of both party, and its growth is felt even by longstanding conventional forms of recruitment such as through advertising in local newspapers and magazines, as it takes up a sizeable segment of overall recruitment. Given its dramatic growth in the last decade and potential for further expansion, here is what our leading human resource gurus have to say on the online job market.
Mohan Ojha, Managing Director of the Human Resource department at Growth Sellers Pvt Ltd, believes that the online job market benefits both clients and candidates by allowing for easy access to finding suitable jobs or employees appropriate to oneâ€™s professional standing. He shares, â€œOnline job hunting has made the job process incredibly quick and very convenient thus reducing the time and effort for both parties in their search for the right candidate or employer. Whatâ€™s more, companies can directly post jobs on online job recruitment websites at a minimal cost that can then be visible to everyone who visits the website and potentially reach thousands of prospective employees.â€ He further adds, â€œOther than largely increasing the visibility of available vacancies, job hunting websites provide a variety of options to both employer and job seeker to customise their search and reach appropriate segment of visitors. You may even stumble upon companies you never even knew existed and be surprised they fit your match perfectly.â€
Paras Kharel, Managing Director at kantipurjob.com, associates the boom of online job hunting to that of online retailing and shares, â€œThe rise of online job recruitment is symmetrical to the rise of online retailing. Online retail stores such as Amazon and Alibaba have taken over most online retail as have online jobsites such as monster.com and naukri.com.â€ He identifies certain factors to which he attributes their growth and confides, â€œTime is not the only factor enabling the rise and expansion of online job markets. The merit of online job recruitment lies in the fact that it bridges the existing gap between job seekers and job providers and allows either party to reach out to multiple opportunities at the cost of a click. This gives access to job seekers to place their candidacy by submitting their online application and resume in a matter of minutes and invite interested job providers to measure their candidacy against appropriate job requirements and expectations. Employers also get access to a large number of candidates at minimal costs, increased visibility and exposure for their vacancy announcements, and get to screen a larger input of resumes and match the candidacies they represent against job responsibilities. This saves time and cost for selection processes the benefits of which are felt immediately by both parties.â€
Kharel comments on the potential for online job recruitment in the future and shares, â€œOnline job markets have not yet matured in Nepal and hold much potential for growth. The usage of smartphones and the internet is still growing and impressively so at an exponential rate. Yet, technology is still in its baby phase in our country and we are slowly accustoming our lifestyles to suit its convenience. Regardless of the boom of technology, one cannot expect jobsites to completely phase out conventional ways of recruiting although its monumental importance will gradually reduce with the growth of online job recruitment.â€ Kharel reckons that while jobsites will prove to be crucial in shortlisting candidates, conventional face-to-face interviews will still prevail to finalise shortlisted candidates and confirm hiring at least in the context of our country where we have yet to accustom to online interviews via Skype and other video chat options that have made their mark in the global job market. He supposes jobsites will be most popular among fresh university graduates and soon to be young urban professionals who will be on the lookout for jobs on their smartphone either through visiting the webpage directly or using mobile applications.
Ojha agrees that while the online job market has an undeniably bright future, it cannot replace conventional recruitment practices entirely. â€œThis is because online job markets are more effective for junior to mid-level job seekers. Online job markets arenâ€™t nearly as effective for senior positions as the procedure for hiring senior-level candidates differs significantly and requires building personal relationships with the company you are applying for which can only be established off-screen. Besides, people who are in senior positions do not spend as much time looking for job alternatives as professionals fresh into the job market do as they usually have an established career that bolsters their job hunt.â€ Ojha is quickÂ to note that not all job applicants have the technical know-how to apply for jobs online and neither may their jobs require technological adeptness. He illustrates with an example, â€œPeople applying for the position of plumbers, sweepers and other manual labour do not necessarily require technological literacy and may avoid online job hunting altogether and opt for more traditional forms of recruitment such as through personal connections, word of mouth or responding to ads.â€
Here are a few tips on applying for jobs online:
- Identify if the jobsite is trusted; review theÂ company profile, services offered and the clientsÂ the company has.
- Prepare your profile on the jobsite and add relevant information such as your name, address, educational and professional experiences, training and certificates. Some sites also ask you to upload a resume; itâ€™s recommended that you do. It is crucial to provide accurate and true information and update your profile regularly to keep track of your professional life.
- Do not apply for vacancies on the job portal at random just because it is convenient and quick; conduct brief research of companies that you are applying for to check if they suit your interests and if you would be a suitable candidate for them. Customise experiences to highlight professional achievements that fit certain job requirements.
- Sign up for newsletters and requestÂ for alert emails or messages from the jobsite to provide you with customised information on new openings that match your profile and job selection. This is especially helpful if you are unable to visit the website regularly to check for openings yourself.
Five steps to managing your online persona
If you are looking for a job, you need to be aware of your digital footprintâ€”the information connected with your name online. Companies and recruiters routinely check search engine results to learn more about potential employees. In fact, 90 percent of executive recruiters say they conduct online research of potential candidates. This suggests that job seekers should be thinking as much about their online persona as their interview attire. Questionable content and social media red flags can take a promising candidate out of the running, but the savvy job seeker can cultivate a positive digital presence. Hereâ€™s how to screen and protect your online reputation and avoid ending up in a potential employerâ€™s pile of rejected candidates:
Do a Google search for your name and also a search for your name in Google Images. Do set up a Google alert on your name to keep track of any new
content. You can have notifications mailed to you once a day, so as not to
overwhelm your inbox.
Buy your domain name
This costs $12 a year to do on sites like GoDaddy. Opinions vary on how much effort, and money, you should put into this. Pick one domain name and put some effort into creating content that will live on the site. You can write a short bio of yourself, a story from your life, and include your CV. This is also a place to post interesting articles and your own commentary about them.
Put all your content in one place
There are a number of sites that let you do this now, including Tumblr, WordPress and About.me. You can also â€œapplyâ€ your domain name to these sites, which means that anyone who goes to rameshkhatri.com will be routed to your Tumblr page or your WordPress page. Thatâ€™s convenient because Tumblr and WordPress offer nicely designed templates where you can set up what looks like a professionally designed website without having to hire a designer.
Join social networks
Even if you donâ€™t feel like you have time to be active on these sites, do join them and take the time to fully fill out the profiles. As most of us know, the major sites are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+. You donâ€™t have to be active but donâ€™t be completely dormant either. Add new content at least once a month. That can be as simple as attaching an article and writing a short comment about why it interests you.
Keep private things private, whileÂ assuming nothing is truly private
Even a 16-year-old knows that itâ€™s unwise to post pictures of himself chugging beer or dancing shirtless, but he also knows he canâ€™t control the pictures other people post of him. You can, and should, put privacy setting on all content you want to share only with a select group of friends and family. However Facebook and other sites are constantly changing the rules about how much you can protect your content, and your friends can forward embarrassing pictures of you without your consent.
That is the key to managing your reputation online: Create your own domain, establish a clear, fleshed-out presence on multiple social networking Â sites, post to each of them at least once a month and keep monitoring the web for unflattering photos or mentions. If they come up, do your best to bury them with positive content.