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Are you pinterested? No, that’s not a typo. Pinterested. If you’re looking for a job or seeking to leave the one you’ve got, you probably should be. Among the 400 or so social networking sites (SNS) categorized globally, Pinterest is one of the hottest. Created a few years ago, the site now is now reported to have almost 12 million users and that number is constantly growing.
So, what exactly is Pinterest? In short, it’s a social networking site that allows you to store photos from news stories, blogs or websites which can be organized into folders that you create called ‘boards.’ You can follow the “pins” of other people and they can follow yours. The initial attraction of this SNS was based on the ability to pin images and share them immediately and without text. Puppies, poppies and panoramic views were among those things frequently ‘pinned’. Not surprisingly, once the novelty wore off, people began to look for other applications for this application, so to speak. Which brings us to job seekers.
At first glance, a social media site the primary purpose of which is to share images hardly seems an effective tool when looking for a new job. Of course, first looks can be deceiving. In fact, Pinterest is ideally suited for researching careers and connecting with potential employers. Why? Because it’s a visual medium and internet marketers have long told us that images (still or video) are much more likely to hold the attention of someone viewing a page than are words alone.
Pinterest is, in essence, a virtual message board, allowing you to create pinboards on issues and subjects of your choosing, providing you an almost unlimited opportunity to pin things you find interesting on those boards you’ve created.
Still not sure how and why Pinterest can be helpful to job seekers? Let us try to identify (pinpoint!) some things about Pinterest that are likely relevant to those looking for new jobs:
Present your resume. Build a board for not just the CV itself, but samples of your work, photos of you in action, images associated with your past employers, etc. H.R. people hate reviewing the standard resume, especially if a job opening generates a large number of applicants. Pinterest will help make your resume distinctive and someone may actually want to look at it.
Produce your portfolio. If you are engaged in design or other creative work, Pinterest functions in much the same way as a website without the work and cost building a website entails (remember to protect your work by using a watermark or copyright).
Create your own information clearinghouse. Job seekers frequently miss out on opportunities because they aren’t able to adequately update themselves on careers that interest them or keep such information organized. Creating a board where you can pin anything job-related makes for an effective and highly portable filing system. In other words, a job-search pinboard.
Follow the leaders. Set up boards for companies for which you’d consider working or that are at the cutting edge of your industry. They frequently share things such as Instagram pictures which gives you a better feel for their culture and environment than does their website (not to mention dress code!).
College isn’t just for students. A board with information from university career centers, job-related pinboards or other resources can be extremely useful.
It’s still the internet. Remember, what goes on the internet stays on the internet. Puppy pictures and resume pinboards don’t mix. Stay professional.
These are just a few things you should know. Hopefully, we’ve piqued your Pinterest interest to find out more.