Tools of the Hunt: Job Search Secrets from Recruiters

As part of FindSpark’s national career conference, Find & Follow Your Passion, recruiters from top NYC companies shared their secrets for the job hunt. The members of the panel were Antoinette Miller, Recruiter at HBO, Deanna Curri, Director of Recruitment at VaynerMedia, Bridget O’Neill, Talent Acquisition Manager at Siegel + Gale, Renee Harper Lee, Head of People and Culture at Rent the Runway, and Marny Smith, a HR Generalist at Intent Media Inc.

FindSpark Recruiter Panel

Photo courtesy of Jenny Seto

It was a great panel of individuals from top companies. It was essential to hear their input because as a college student, I know that the ultimate aim is to obtain a job. There’s a reason why we work hard to maintain that GPA and get those internships.

Now the main issue is, how do we obtain the job, that full time employment? What can we do to put ourselves out there? You have to utilize and make these three things look really good.

The Resume

When you send out your resume, make sure you are not sending out something that’s generic. There is a specific job position that you are applying for, so make sure that your resume is tailored to the industry that you want to go to. This means making those skills that are necessary for the job visible in your resume.

Also, do not be afraid to let your personality shine on your resume. Employers look to your resume to identify what makes you unique. So add that quirky fact, or format your resume in a way that shows you belong in that company or industry.

The Cover Letter

When it comes to cover letters, just as resumes, you should not send out something that is generic. You have to make sure that you are also tailoring your cover letter to match the company’s interest. This means doing your research on the company and letting that shine through in your cover letter. Employers can tell when you’ve sent the same cover letter to multiple companies. That shows a lack of interest or passion to work in that company. So take the time to tailor your cover letter to match the needs and skill sets of the company.

FindSpark Audience

Photo courtesy of Jenny Seto

Your Online Presence

Yes, like it or not, employers are using social media to obtain information about you.

LinkedIn: If you are not on LinkedIn, you need to be on it. When employers want to find information on you, they first go to LinkedIn. If you are not on it, it’s a big disadvantage because that is a way for them to access you. Some employers will discard you because this day and age, LinkedIn is known as a professional tool to connect.

If you want to connect with employers on LinkedIn, you can look them up specifically. Or you can look up the industry that you are interested in and the individuals that are working there will show. You can and should send them a message if you want to connect. However, before you connect, think. You should sit down and think about the reason why you want to connect with that particular individual before you construct the message. Make sure you message has impact or else it will be discarded.

Facebook and Twitter: It’s best to always have the same name for your social media accounts. Employers look for you through social media, so you make it easier for them to find you with the same name. If Twitter does not allow you to use your name because it’s common, pick a name that’s unique but still professional. You do this by thinking about adjectives that describe you or the industry that you want to go into. Picking a unique name can be a form of branding yourself, so be creative but also strategic.

When it comes to Facebook or Twitter, you have to cautious about the content that you are putting up because you will be held accountable. So before you post something, think about the impact. Ask yourself questions such as, is this necessary? Is this how I want to represent myself? Is it worth the 10 likes? When you post something, the content is out there and the content you post is a reflection of who you are, so be wise.

Use your social media platforms as portfolios. Use it to put your best work out there. Tell people about your work. Your network could contain employers or friends of employers.

So there you have it, if you want to obtain a job, you have to be smart about your hustle. Don’t just send out any resume or cover letter, take the time to tailor it to the industry. If the position is important to you, then make the time to make sure that the employer sees how valuable you are. Now when it comes to social media, use it but use it wisely. Use it to showcase your best work, use it to show you passion and interests. Use it connect with employers. That’s it folks, that’s how you get hired.

For more career advice, check out this piece below on how to land and keep a job

Do you have any tips? Feel free to leave me a comment below!

About the Author

Isioma Ononye is a Blogger at Crossing Over, Contributing Writer at Her Daily and Social Media Specialist. She's passionate about communications and working on causes that pertain to supporting women and girls. She's often found discussing literature, politics or her dream of meeting Oprah. Follow her on twitter @IsiomaOnonye and read her blog at

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