Narrowing Your Search

By, 02/02/2012

When you’re on the job hunt, trying to find open positions that fit your skill set can be daunting. Internet job sites might seem to simplify your search, but a study conducted last year suggests they might not be the most effective source.

Online job boards can be helpful: They aggregate thousands and thousands of postings nationwide, and then let users narrow the field by category, location and other factors. However, because of the sheer volume of job seekers using them, firms tend to receive an overwhelming number of submissions for each post—around 219 per single hire, according to the study—which may make it difficult to stand out from the crowd.

How can you improve your chances of getting noticed? The same study found that candidates who apply directly through a firm’s website enter a much smaller applicant pool—around 33 applications per hire. So if you’re not getting much traction from the major job sites, try visiting career pages of companies you find interesting, or perhaps run an Internet search on a specific job title.