Hidden Use for Hashtags: Job Search!

Nelsa Uson

Like most people, you probably use social media to stay in touch with family, friends and acquaintances, but have you ever considered using your most visited platforms to help with your job search? While it won’t replace an online job board (yet), you may be surprised by the amount of job leads that can be found on these platforms.

Using hashtags, which are words or short phrases beginning with the number (#) symbol, is the best way to find job openings on social media. They enable users to categorize content by linking it to specific topics that other users can then find and access later. With presumably millions of posts being created every day on a single platform alone, hashtags make it possible to find content that’s relevant to you.

Here are some tips to ease you into it:

You can use hashtags on every major social platform: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, even Pinterest.

It won’t work if there are spaces between the words. For example, #nowhiring will not get you the same result as #now hiring, or even # now hiring (this one won’t work at all).

Stick with general words or phrases. #jobforcashierinwinnipeg might be helpful for you, but it’s likely only a small group of people, if any, are using it, which means it won’t generate a lot of results.

Some platforms give you the option of “following” hashtags. Doing this allows you to see new posts with that hashtag right on your newsfeed and saves you from having to type it into that platform’s search bar every time.

Looking for jobs this way requires a little more creativity and patience. Since employers and recruiters aren’t sticking to a set list of hashtags, you have to be willing to play around with different words and phrases in order to maximize your results. You can even try searching for specific job titles, like #teacher, if you know what you’re going for. Here are a few popular ones: #jobsearch, #careers, #nowhiring, #work, #jobposting, #recruiting.

You'll find different leads on each platform. You might strike out on Twitter with one hashtag, but get lots of hits using the same hashtag on Instagram. You don’t have to be on everything, but it’s helpful to try your luck on one or two. It’s also important to keep checking back. The list of popular hashtags change constantly because people change their minds constantly. Maybe #recruiting didn’t get you much two weeks ago, but it might have better results now. Don’t be afraid to go back to hashtags you thought were unsuccessful!

So why give this a try? If you’ve been job searching for a while, you know how tiring it can be to look at the same websites over and over. A change in scenery might be just the thing to get you motivated and excited about your job search again.

Like we said at the beginning, it’s unlikely this method of job searching will replace search engines and job boards (Jooble is a good one to try if you're looking for something new!), but if you want to learn a new skill and practice creativity and critical thinking with the added benefit of possibly finding a job, go ahead and explore the professional side of your favourite social media platforms.