Can Instagram help you get your ideal job?
You might have thought Instagram was a snazzy way to impress your friends and flaunt your holiday photos, and you’d be right. However, it has far more useful applications besides.
For one thing, it can be a useful tool in your arsenal when searching and applying for jobs. With competition for vacancies increasingly fierce, it’s a way of telling your personal story in a unique and compelling way that will help you to stand out from the chasing pack.
This can be especially useful for those looking to demonstrate their skills in a creative field, such as fashion, design, photography or even nutrition, offering an easy-to-use platform to showcase your portfolio or recent projects you’ve worked on. You can link your Instagram feed to your email footer and other social media accounts, or even your personal website.
Among its many virtues, Instagram is generally seen as being more genuine than the rival social media platforms, and a profile on the site can feel less forced than the polished image people present of themselves on Facebook and LinkedIn, for example. And because the platform is not typically associated with job hunting or recruitment, employers may feel they are getting to see a different side of your personality.
Just as Instagram allows recruiters a true sense of who you are, it can be a very effective tool when researching potential employers. Most larger companies now have an official Instagram feed, which often provides a softer, more honest take on life at the firm and what it’s like to work there.
It’s all good ammunition – a glimpse into an employer’s latest charity initiative, for example, can give you something to draw on when describing what first attracted you to the firm, or why you think your values align with theirs. Even if your dream employer doesn’t have an official Instagram account, with a little digging you should be able to uncover the profiles of people who work there and build up a picture of what their work life is like.
While Instagram is unlikely to provide the centrepiece of your job search strategy it can be a very handy accompaniment to your other application materials while adding that little bit of extra spice to your personal branding.
Thomas Wharton is President of LIFOCUS, Inc, a human resources consulting firm in Rhode Island, providing Career & Transition Coaching, Outplacement, Executive Coaching, Assessments and
Leadership Development. Tom can be reached at 401.884.7959 • firstname.lastname@example.org. • www.lifocus.com •@careercoachTW