Most employers ask candidates to submit a traditional resume and cover letter when applying for a job. These formal documents are usually one or two pages long and can be created and delivered as text files. But a growing number of employers are also conducting online searches for additional information that can help them further evaluate their final contenders. Once the candidate pool has been sufficiently narrowed down, employers can head to the internet in search of news articles about a candidate, public social media profiles, and personal websites.
So if you’re looking for ways to make this search easier for potential employers—and to control what they find—it’s a good idea to create another version of your resume that exists only online. Here are a few ways to make your online profile stand out and take the spotlight.
1. Make it VERY easy to find. Don’t just wait for employers to stumble toward your profile using a broad Google search. Insert a clear link in your resume’s contact information section. Place another clear link on the home page of your website. Put one in the “about” section of your Facebook page. And while you’re at it, include a link in the sign-off of every email you exchange with these employers.
2. Check your primary URL(and every link you include in your online resume) on a regular basis. If you find a broken link, fix it or remove it.
3. When visitors find your online resume, they should know it. Leave no room for doubt. Your name should be the first thing they see, and every additional piece of information (such as education, work history, etc.) should be easy to reach with one simple click. Organize your menu tabs and layout so you don’t leave employers confused.
4. Elaborate. A formal resume should be efficient and streamlined, which means no rambling, no excess detail, and a focus on relevance. But an online resume can provide additional material that adds dimension to your experience and your history. Feel free to provide more backstory on your greatest victories, and don’t spare any important details.
5. Be creative. Include work samples, testimonials from your clients and customers, and anything else you think might help your case for employment. Be innovative. You’ll give yourself an edge with every additional detail that your competitors will leave out.
Your formal resume and your online resume should support and complement each other, and they should present a consistent and engaging picture of who you are and what you can do. Visit LiveCareer for resume building tools, templates, ideas, and information.