These days, it’s not uncommon to see people tweeting or blogging about unemployment. In fact, it’s becoming quite the trend. With around 14 million people out of jobs, it’s not surprising that many find comfort in knowing that they are not alone in their hunt for a job.
Quite a few new hashtags and Twitter accounts have popped up by those who want to share the experience of being jobless. While some people are using social media as an outlet for their frustration and complaints, others are turning it to their advantage and landing jobs by posting about their most recent adventures in job hunting.
Sharing experiences about job seeking can be therapeutic in that people have someone who has similar experiences to talk to. Some of the unemployed may not be comfortable talking to their family or friends about what they’re going through, so having a social outlet can be useful and helpful in getting through an emotional swings of unemployment.
What Could Go Wrong?
You do have to be careful when posting about your life as an unemployed person. Remember that potential employers will be searching for information about you and if you have posted something unfavorable, it could cost you the job. Employers use social media sites to get insight into your overall personality – hopefully their investigation leads to finding a well-rounded, interesting person. Unfortunately, many people use it to vent their frustrations, completely unaware of who might view it, sending out the warning signals to any potential employers (including those who might not be hiring, but could recommend you for a position!). Venting too much, posting disparaging remarks about your ex-employer or badmouthing a company that didn’t hire you could make a contact think twice about making contact about an open position.
How People are Using Social Sites to Connect
Twitter and other social media sites are ideal for finding like-minded people in search of a job. TwitJobSearch and TweetDeck have partnered to create JobDeck, a platform that not only finds jobs on Twitter, but also sprinkles in advice for the jobless from recruiters and HR experts.
Profiles like @NJUnemployed and @unemployedsucks offer a gathering place for those united in the search for a job. Facebook has groups where the jobless can meet up with each other and network, as well. LinkedIn Groups like “Unemployed? Get a Job” also provide support and resources for the jobless. All of these networks offer a chance to connect with others in the same boat and can be helpful both in support and advice.
Blogs are also pulling in those without jobs and offering them support and advice. Unemploymentality covers the lifestyles of those without work. Another blog that follows the life of an unemployed woman is Bureaucracy for Breakfast, which covers marketing and news.
Social media is a valuable networking tool. Know how the information in your profile is your shared and how a potential employer could view it. Use it to connect with others, both employed and unemployed, and share your experiences in a positive way. Future employers will appreciate the effort and will see that you are a positive person who makes the effort to get out there, all of which are good qualities in an employee.