Editor's note: Inc.com columnist Alison Green answers questions about workplace and management issues--everything from how to deal with a micromanaging boss to how to talk to someone on your team about body odor.
A reader writes:
I have a job I really enjoy, but the salary is low and turnover is very high. We're constantly hiring as people cycle out -- mostly through school job sites, but also largely through one recruiter, though she's become less responsive as the turnover has stayed so high. I'm learning a ton, so I want to stay a while longer. However, mine is a really burgeoning field, so I'd also love to keep my ears open for other opportunities.
How does it work from the manager side when people post résumés on the big online job boards? I want to post my résumé so I can be visible to recruiters and bigger firms, but is this effective? Do you recommend that passive job seekers post résumés on job search sites? Is "passive" job seeking a figment of my imagination? I just want to make sure to jump on every opportunity to make sure I can be recruited next!
Alison Green answers:
I'm not a fan of posting your résumé online, for a few reasons:
1. It can make you look a little stale or like you're not being choosy. And hiring managers tend to love candidates who are being choosy. If you look like you've posted your résumé all over the internet, you risk turning off some employers -- and, at least in some fields, there is a school of thought among some hiring managers that only desperate or unfocused candidates post their résumé on job sites, because if you were great at what you do, you wouldn't need to. (You can dispute that logic if you want, but the mindset very much exists.)
2. You risk what's known as a recruiter clusterfudge. (That's the technical term.) If a recruiter spots your résumé online and submits it for an opening, that recruiter now has the "rights" to your candidacy whether you know it or not, meaning that if that company hired you, it would need to pay the recruiter's fee. But if that company doesn't use outside recruiters (and many don't), it may automatically remove you from the pool of candidates to avoid that charge.
3. You'll get a ton of spam. A ton.
There is a more accepted way to publicize your information online, though -- LinkedIn. And it has the advantage of not broadcasting your search to your employer, too.
But I'd rather see you conduct a carefully targeted job search, anyway, rather than passively waiting for employers to find you. That allows you to be choosy about where you apply, to write a customized cover letter that will strengthen your chances far more than a standalone résumé, and to avoid the issues above.
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