By Caroline Levchuck, Yahoo! HotJobs
While newspapers and networking still play an important role in looking for work, the Internet is now a vital component in any job search.
According to a Gad Levanon, economist at the Conference Board, "The Internet has become the most popular method of job searching." A survey by the Conference Board, the world's leading business membership and research organization, revealed that the Internet is not only being used by more job seekers -- but it's also being used for a variety of job search functions.
Read on for some ideas as to how you can make the most of the Web's potential in your next job search.
1. Post your resume online so recruiters can find you -- even when you're not actively searching for work.
2. Join an online networking community and connect with fellow alumni, colleagues and recruiters.
3. Search the names of old friends and coworkers to reach out and expand your network.
4. Research major employers, using Monster's Company Profiles, various news/financial Web sites or search engines.
5. Tap the power of industry blogs to find folks who are doing what you'd like to do for a living and ask for advice. You'd be surprised at how many people are willing to share their wisdom.
6. Streamline your efforts by saving job searches and signing up for email job alerts so you'll know about new postings immediately.
7. Start an online job-search support group and open it up to members of your network who are looking for work and share encouragement and insights as you seek out new opportunities.
8. Visit company Web sites for additional job postings and to learn about each organization's corporate culture. This will help you determine if you'd be a good fit and provide you with insights for any interviews.
9. Browse trade associations and professional groups online for insights and new connections.
10. Patrol message boards, like Monster's Career Advice Forums, and discussion groups to connect with like-minded and in-the-know professionals. Many times job openings are not posted immediately and these people may have hot inside leads on new opportunities.