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The Dos and Don’ts of Using Online Job Tools

TRU Staffing Partners August 29, 2023 at 7:30 AM

Online job tools and web sites are well-established supplements for job seekers today. Job seekers use them to create and refine resumes, hunt for new roles, and prep for interviews. Hiring managers use these tools to review resumes by keyword, and to reach out to potential candidates. However, online tools have a limit to their effectiveness, and in some cases, can misrepresent a person or cause an employer to miss out on excellent candidates.

To set the record straight, TRU Staffing Partners’ Senior Vice President of Recruitment and Account Management Annette Habib and Vice President of Recruitment and Account Management Sarah Roberts have compiled a Dos and Don’ts list of working with online job tools.

✅ Do use online job searching tools for: 

Information gathering for job opportunities

Look at sites like LinkedIn or Indeed to see how many people have applied for a role, how long the role has been open, and for basic information about an organization.

Curating an online presence

If you are a job seeker, create a clean, well-developed profile. Roberts believes it is crucial that your online profiles match your resume. “Your resume should always mirror your LinkedIn presence,” she says. “There shouldn't be huge discrepancies between the two because when you're looking for a new job, anytime you introduce mystery into the situation, hiring managers will doubt your veracity. Always make sure that everything is aligned. If you've been at a new company for a year, that should be on your LinkedIn profile.”

Role & candidate research

When you’re seeking a new position, use online tools to get a feel for an organization before you choose what company you’re most interested in working with. For hiring managers, use online tools to get a more complete picture of a potential candidate you’re considering for an open role.

🚫 Don't use online job tools for:


Writing or refining a resume

Despite advances in artificial intelligence and online editing software, nothing can match the expertise of talent agents with decades of experience laser-focused on matching job seekers with their next best career move. Habib and Roberts say that opening your career history to a group of strangers can be daunting. However, the talent agents at TRU treat your personal information and credentials with the utmost care and privacy. We help job seekers represent the best version of themselves on their resumes. The TRU team helps job seekers to highlight important expertise, technology skills, and soft people skills employers look for. Resumes sent by TRU get reviewed by our clients before any online portal submissions, whereas resumes sent through online portals have much lower hiring success rates.

Determining if you are right for a role

Roberts says it's always better to reach out to your agent first and ask them about an open role you see. That way, your agent can tell you if the compensation doesn’t match your expectations or it requires an extended in-office presence when you want only remote opportunities. Your talent agent will give you a complete picture of any open role you encounter — something online tools often don’t or can’t provide. 

Reviewing job descriptions

Habib wants job seekers to know that online job descriptions are like a wish list of what the dream candidate would look like and are not always meant to reflect reality. “There are many times where employers are listing an exhaustive list of qualifications because there are things that they’d like to see if they could find,” she says. “But you don't necessarily have to have every bullet point on that job description to be qualified for that role. Often, job seekers will see a couple of bullet points that they don't have experience in on a job description, and so they won’t apply. At TRU, we encourage people to still apply because missing one or two things doesn't mean that you're not qualified for the position. It might be a role where you'll gain more of that experience and grow in your next role.” When you work with a TRU talent agent, you gain the benefit of their deep knowledge about which roles are flexible on requirements — and which are not.

Submitting resumes and applying for roles

Roberts and Habib say there are a lot of different things that you must consider before you apply to a role. When you're just hitting random Apply buttons, your resume may be going into a dark hole, while you are sitting there crossing your fingers and hoping that keywords are going to get your resume to the right person. Roberts says it's always better to contact your agent and ask about a role you see online or for in-depth info on a company or what type of candidates they are hiring. “I also think if you're an ediscovery project manager, and you're using Relativity every day, your agent will present those skills in a more effective manner than you just clicking a checkbox,” she says. “If those skills and those keywords aren't on an online application, you're being disqualified. Your agent will promote you and your obvious skills to their best advantage. It’s important for people to know you have experience in certain areas, skills at various levels, etc. Employers want to see when you've used skills and technology and how you've used them. Agents work that to your best advantage."

Connect with a TRU talent agent

Technology is a great tool for learning and growing, but nothing beats the human touch for finding your next role and enhancing your career. So bypass the generic Apply button and reach out to TRU when you’re ready for your next role.

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