COVID-19 changed life as we know it. One of the devastating impacts of the pandemic was on the job market. In fact, U.S. citizens experienced job loss on a scale akin to the Great Depression. Now that the mass layoffs are in the rearview mirror, the economy is experiencing a swing which favors job seekers, with millions of openings and not enough people to fill them. This puts job candidates in a position to be pickier in their job search before deciding on something that aligns with their salary goals and workplace needs.
Whether you’ve been part of the professional work force for years or you’re just completing your bachelor’s degree, it’s important to know which job search sites to scour for the best opportunities. Keep reading to learn more about these websites and for tips on applying for jobs.
Before Applying for a Job
There are certain steps all applicants should take before they start applying for jobs. The most important preliminary measure is to polish your résumé by making sure that all relevant, up-to-date job and education information has been added. Ask a trusted friend or professional mentor to look at your résumé and make recommendations for improvements. You can also check out these Google for Education résumé resources.
In many roles you’ll be asked to provide a portfolio in the application process. A portfolio is a collection of work samples that you can bring to an interview, send to a prospective employer, or even post online to show evidence of the work you’ve done. It should include any work that you’re proud of, especially pieces that are relevant to the role you are searching for. Also, keep in mind that employers usually want to see recent work.
Next, write a cover letter template that can be adjusted and used to match the requirements of the jobs you want to apply for down the road. While cover letters can be tedious, their purpose is to give you a platform through which to elaborate on your strengths and your most impressive and relevant experiences. As you tailor your cover letter to a specific role, make sure to include the most searched-for keywords in your industry. Do not simply restate your résumé.
Now that you have your credentials and examples at hand, consider setting up a separate email account on which to receive job alerts and communicate with recruiters. If you have past employers or teachers that can speak to your great work, creativity, and problem-solving skills, send them an email before you put them down as a professional reference. Finally, as you keep reading, create an account on each job search site you plan on using. Upload your photo, contact information, résumé and other materials so you can apply for jobs more quickly.
The Best Job Search Sites
No matter where you go to search for open positions, the most important factor in getting an interview is the contents of your application, starting with a rock-solid résumé. You should also find a connection between yourself and the company you’re applying to work for, which you can mention in both the cover letter and interview. This can sound like, “I’m a firm believer in your product as a customer because...” or “I’ve been subscribed to your newsletter for years.” Better yet, show the employer what problems you’d be eager to solve if you worked for them. This means doing research on what their goals and standards are, and what kind of people they are bringing in or working alongside. Showing a true passion for the job will signal to the employer that you’re someone who will stick around and put their heart into the work. Here are some of the best job search sites available to U.S. job searches.
Indeed is one of the leaders in the job board market. With tools for job search, résumés, company reviews, and more, Indeed allows you to search millions jobs online. Indeed is universally considered an excellent job search platform for many reasons:
- Comprehensive job listings: Indeed collects job listings from a wide range of sources, including company websites, job boards, and staffing agencies, which makes it one of the largest job search engines in the world.
- Excellent user experience: Indeed's makes it simple for job seekers to find jobs and apply for them right on their site by offering a user-friendly interface.
- Advanced search filters: This job search site provides a range of search filters that allow users to distill their search results based on the factors that are most important to you, such as location, job title, and company.
- Salary information: Indeed offers comprehensive salary information for most job postings so job seekers know right away if the compensation aligns with their expectations for a certain role.
- Reviews and ratings: Indeed encourages employees to leave reviews and ratings of their employers, providing valuable information about the work culture and other details that can impact a job seeker's decision to apply for an open position.
- Mobile app: The Indeed mobile app makes it easy for job seekers to search for jobs from anywhere, save job listings, and apply for jobs on their phones.
Glassdoor is another prominent and trusted platform for job searching. It offers millions of jobs, employee reviews, personalized salary tools, and more. Glassdoor is an effective job search tool for a variety of important reasons:
- Company information: Glassdoor provides information about a company's culture, employee benefits, salaries, and more. This allows job seekers to get a better understanding of what it's like to work at a particular company before applying.
- Reviews from current and former employees: Glassdoor features reviews from current and former employees, which provide important insight into the company culture, work-life balance, and other factors for job seekers.
- Salary information: Glassdoor provides salary information for a wide range of jobs, which can be helpful in assessing if a job offer is fair and competitive.
- Job listings: Glassdoor also has a job search function that allows job seekers to search for jobs based on keywords, location, and other criteria.
- User-friendly interface: Glassdoor's user-friendly interface makes it easy for job seekers to access the information they need and quickly apply to job listings.
While LinkedIn is a professional networking platform first, it’s also a very effective tool for finding jobs. Since it’s a networking tool, LinkedIn allows users to learn which skills help represent themselves as better candidates and find a person that can inspire them or even be their mentor. To use LinkedIn to find jobs, you’ll first need to create a profile. Your LinkedIn profile is more than just a résumé. It’s a place where you can manage your professional brand, create opportunities, build your network, and track your professional milestones. LinkedIn can be a good place to look for jobs for many important reasons:
- Professional Networking: LinkedIn is the largest professional networking site, with hundreds of millions of users, making it an excellent place to connect with potential employers and recruiters.
- Company Pages: LinkedIn has company pages that provide information about a company's culture, products, services, and job opportunities. Job seekers can use these to learn about the companies they’re interested in working at.
- Job Listings: LinkedIn has a job search tool that gives job seekers the ability to search for jobs based on keywords, location, and other factors.
- Endorsements and Recommendations: LinkedIn allows users to endorse each other for specific skills and write recommendations for one another, which shows future employers and recruiters that you really know your stuff.
- Recruiter Outreach: LinkedIn creates a direct line of communication between job seekers and recruiters, making it easier for job seekers to connect with jobs that suit them.
In your search for the right job, you should cast a wide net, and this includes CareerBuilder, which boasts a variety of career resources and salary tools. Reasons why CareerBuilder is an effective job search tool:
- Job Listings: CareerBuilder has a massive library of job postings, making it easy for job seekers to find opportunities that align with their skills, experience, and salary expectations.
- Resume Database: This job site allows job seekers to upload their resume to their profile, which makes applying for jobs easier and helps recruiters find them.
- Employer Information: CareerBuilder offers critical information about employers, including company profiles, reviews, and ratings. This gives job seekers a better idea of what it’s like to work at a particular business before taking the time and energy to apply.
- Advanced Job Search: CareerBuilder has an advanced job search tool, which allows job seekers to use keywords, location, job type, and salary to yield more relevant search results.
- Career Resources: CareerBuilder provides a host of career resources, including templates for résumés and cover letters, interview tips, and compensation data.
- Mobile App: CareerBuilder’s mobile app makes it quick and simple for job seekers to find jobs and apply on-the-go.
Monster has great career advice materials and résumé -building help, which might be a great choice for those entering the job market as an entry-level professional. Monster only covers job opportunities in the U.S., unlike Indeed, LinkedIn, and Glassdoor. Monster offers a few unique tools compared to other job search sites:
- Salary Calculator: Monster has a salary calculator that allows job seekers to estimate their salary based on their location, job title, and experience level.
- Career Advice: Monster offers career advice and resources, including articles, videos, and webinars, to help job seekers with their job search and career advancement.
- Career Path Finder: Monster has a career path finder tool that allows job seekers to explore different career paths based on their skills, interests, and experience.
- Company Insights: Monster provides information about companies, including company culture, employee reviews, and salary information, which can help job seekers make informed decisions about potential employers.
SimplyHired is another great job search engine you should consider using in your hunt for your next career move. SimplyHired offers job opportunities across the U.S. that candidates can browse by job category, city, state, employer, and more. SimplyHired is another great job search tool for a variety of reasons:
- Salary Estimator: SimplyHired has a salary estimator tool that allows job seekers to get an estimate of what a job might pay based on the job title, location, and experience level.
- Company Research: This site provides information about companies, including reviews from current and former employees, which can help job seekers make informed decisions about potential employers.
- Job Alerts: SimplyHired allows job seekers to set up job alerts, notifying them when new job listings matching their search criteria are posted.
- Skill Mapping: SimplyHired's Skill Mapping tool allows job seekers to identify and highlight the skills they have that are relevant to a particular job or industry.
ZipRecruiter lists more than a million job opportunities across the world. You can also create job alerts and receive notifications when a job matching your profile is published on the site. ZipRecruiter is an effective job search tool for many reasons:
- Job Matches: ZipRecruiter’s algorithm matches job seekers with relevant job listings, making it easier for job seekers to find job opportunities that fit their skills and experience.
- Mobile App: ZipRecruiter has a mobile app that allows job seekers to search for jobs, receive job alerts, and apply to job listings from their mobile device.
- Employer Ratings: This job search site provides ratings and reviews from current and former employees, helping job seekers make informed decisions about potential employers.
- Resume Database: ZipRecruiter allows job seekers to upload their resume to their database, so employers and recruiters to find them.
- Interview Tips: ZipRecruiter provides interview tips and resources to help job seekers prepare for job interviews and make a good impression.
Honorable Mention: Google for Jobs
Google isn’t just the leading search engine in the world... It also has a job search tool! Google extracts information from various online sources, helping candidates find more job opportunities that match their profile.
How to apply for a job on Google:
Finding job listings on Google is as simple as a Google search! Type the job you want in your area, “marketing jobs in Boston,” for example, and Google will serve you the most relevant job postings to your query above all other search results.
Are Job Search Sites Worth It?
Most employers now publish their job ads on websites like the ones mentioned above because it simplifies their recruiting process and allows them to accept a larger pool of applicants, sometimes even nationwide. This is a more efficient method for job candidates as they can apply from the comfort of their home to as many job listings as they want. No matter what degree you hold or where you are in your career, job search sites are a great tool for seeing all the different jobs that you’re qualified for and that match your preferences.