Finding a job today requires a different approach than it did even a few years ago. Where companies were previously clamoring for interest from candidates, today it seems the application tracking systems they use are spilling over with resumes touting perfectly qualified job seekers, only a few of which end up landing interviews.
Competition is steep, which means landing your next job is probably going to require more energy and effort than it used to, especially if it’s a niche role or with a popular company. The digital era, where anyone from anywhere can easily apply to any job online anytime, has pitted volume (of applicants) and time (the limited amount recruiters have) against you.
So, you have to be smarter about your job search. Fortunately, as the job landscape has evolved, so have many job hunting sites that can help you find the role or the career you’re after. Here are five job hunting sites that take your job search to new levels.
LinkedIn has evolved from a business-oriented social networking platform to a robust job hunting site in many respects, with its Jobs function being one of the core areas Microsoft has continued to build out since acquiring the platform. Here’s what makes it special.
Leverage Your Network
Anyone can use Jobs regardless of whether they’re a LinkedIn member, but you won’t get the full benefits of this function if you aren’t.
What makes LinkedIn so powerful when it comes to finding a job is that you’re ideally already a LinkedIn member using the platform to network with other professionals and to stay abreast of trends in your industry. If so, you have a network of connections to leverage in your job hunt.
LinkedIn will tell you when you have connections at a company or if there are people there who previously worked for your current employer at some point.You can also drill further to see if you have any second or third-degree connections. Not only can you see if you have any connections at a company, you can see who the recruiter is in charge of placing the role.
This expands your options for getting a foot in the door through referral, which is much more effective than sending a resume and hoping for the best when the odds are already stacked against you (recall: numbers, time).
Personalize and Automate Your Job Searches
Overall, LinkedIn will feed you more personalized information regarding your career and job search than any other site or platform. In the jobs dashboard, you can tell LinkedIn your career interests, how far you’re willing to commute, what type of employment you’re looking for, which industries you prefer and more. Based on this information, LinkedIn will show you jobs that fit your job search criteria.
But you can, and should, also conduct your own job searches with LinkedIn’s advanced search engine. Like any job hunting site, you can search on role and location, then save those searches to receive alerts when new jobs appear.
What makes LinkedIn different is you can also save job searches that are specific to companies and receive alerts dedicated to positions you’re interested in knowing about at those organizations. This gives you the ability to conduct very broad or very narrow searches, then automate those to receive so you don’t have to keep checking back.
If you’re trying to land a specific kind of role or work for a specific company where competition is thick and winning requires a more tactical approach, you can activate LinkedIn Premium, which costs $29.99/month, to get competitive intelligence on other applicants, such as whether you’re a top applicant and which skills you have or are missing in comparison to other applicants.
Others features of the Premium plan include:
- Direct messaging to recruiters
- Being listed as a featured applicant to recruiters
- Online video courses to grow your skills
- The ability to see who views your LinkedIn profile and how they found you
- Access to salary details on jobs without sharing your personal data
Premium could give you a leg up against the competition, but in general, LinkedIn’s Jobs function will help anyone who’s looking for a job or career change find it.
Glassdoor is a staple job hunting site that job seekers have been using for years. While it offers a great job-search function on par with LinkedIn and other job hunting sites, there are a few core aspects of its platform that differentiate it from the rest.
See Companies’ True Colors
The most important aspect of Glassdoor, and the reason for why it was created, is that it gives job seekers the ability to understand the true culture of a company on their Glassdoor profile.
To start, you get an overview of the company from their perspective, including general details about size and sector, why they think people should work for them, and even images or videos showing the culture they claim to promote.
What’s really important, however, are the reviews others–from current and former employees to current or previous job applicants–give the company.
These reviews, sometimes in the thousands, give you a real sense of whether the company is worth applying to based on what people say about their experience with the company, including a rating scale on whether they recommend the company, whether they have a good outlook on the company, and whether they approve of the CEO.
Prep for Interviews
While on a company’s Glassdoor page, you can also access Interviews, which gives you reviews of the company’s interview process from others who have been in your position.
The Interviews feature provides some up-front graphs that give an overview of the interview experience, through which methods applicants have been successful in securing an interview, and the general difficulty of the interviews for the company.
Moving deeper, you can filter interviews by job type. This is important, as different organizations within a company could have unique ways of interviewing beyond the first one or two conversations you have with a recruiter. If you prefer a bigger picture, you can sort all interview reviews date, popularity and other filters.
Lastly, Glassdoor allows interview reviewers to give insight into what kinds of questions the company tends to ask in interviews. This makes preparing for an interview with the company a little easier, as you know to an extent what questions to expect and can work on answers to them ahead of time.
Understand Salaries and Benefits
Two more strong features of Glassdoor are Salaries and Benefits. Again, these features give you the ability to read what others say about them with regard to the company you’re interested in potentially applying to.
Salaries can be searched and browsed on by role. By drilling into a specific role, you can see the salary ranges for current or past employees based on years of experience.
This is important, as it gives you an accurate estimate to work from when considering how much money you’re going to ask for if you get a job offer or if you end up in a situation where you need to negotiate for a higher salary.
Likewise, Benefits gives you the ability to see what benefits the company offers and what people think of them. You get an average rating of the overall benefits package and can also drill into specific benefits offered for a sense of how employees regard the company’s health insurance, 401K and more.
With all this information in addition to a great job-search function, Glassdoor may be the go-to job hunting site for those who care as much about where they work as what job they want to land.
Taking an atypical route to becoming a trusted job hunting site, The Muse began as an online publication, The Daily Muse, producing content around careers. Considering what it offers job seekers today as The Muse, this job hunting site has come a long way from where it began.
Personalize Your Experience
Similar to LinkedIn, The Muse can personalize your job search, but in a different way. The Muse asks a short series of questions about what you’re looking for in your job search and why. By then connecting your LinkedIn account, The Muse has even more data to give you a rich package of:
- Jobs related to your input and based on your location preference
- Companies worth investigating in those locales
- Relevant career advice available through an assortment of articles from The Muse
One of the exceptional features of The Muse is Explore Companies. While Glassdoor provides a breadth of insight into companies from hundreds of people with varying opinions, The Muse focuses on building out high-quality, in-depth features of specific companies it feels are worthy of being highlighted.
These features include videos, photos, virtual office tours, insights from employees, and more–including, of course, available jobs. If you’re looking for a specific type of company to work for, more so than finding a type of job anywhere you can, The Muse gives you the deep understanding you may want of a place, from a cultural to aesthetic to location perspective and more.
Get Career Advice
Sticking to its roots, The Muse still puts a large focus on producing career-focused content in its Advice section. Here, you can read article upon article from The Muse’s career experts on Career Advice, Job Search, Career Paths, Management and more. Whatever you need to know to help you along your job-search journey, this job hunting site likely has some info to share.
One section that will appeal to many job seekers is Companies Hiring Now. While The Muse can’t produce an in-depth feature package equipped with photos and video footage for every company, they do a great job giving you insight into other places of employment in these articles.
There’s more The Muse offers on top of these core areas, but overall, what makes it a unique and powerful job hunting site is the vast repository of knowledge it’s able to serve job seekers who need guidance, want clarity and still want to have an easy way to find the positions they’re interested in at the end of the day.
Get Job Hunting
There are other job hunting sites out there worth investigating. Indeed is still touted as one of the best places to search for jobs. Monster is well-known for the content it produces to help job seekers learn more about how to be successful in the job hunting process. The Balance Careers is also a trusted source for this content, though it doesn’t offer a job search function.
Still, there’s something unique about LinkedIn, Glassdoor and The Muse. Regardless of which sites you prefer, it’s a smart idea to leverage them in conjunction. The job hunting world moves fast these days and is full of obstacles. If you want to win, you’ll need the smart functionality, automation and information these job hunting sites provide.
Best of luck on landing that new job!