Job hunting: let your modem be your guide
September 12, 1996
Web posted at: 8:30 a.m. EDT
From CNN Interactive Writer Kristin Lemmerman
(CNN) -- It seems that in this age of rapid business change
and corporate downsizing, even people who say they love their
jobs are on the lookout for a better opportunity.
There are now a countless number of sites on the World Wide
Web which compile job openings, useful whether you're "just
looking" or in hot pursuit. For those of you who have a
computer and a modem, the days of "pounding the pavement"
during times of extreme need may be over -- unless your job
hunt is so frustrating that you feel you need to pummel your
This site, according to its developer, started out as a set
of sites he bookmarked while he was a Stanford University
graduate student conducting his own job hunt. It now
includes over 600 links to different job information sites,
and is still growing. Any sites that were deemed especially
useful are marked with a little yellow smiley-face. This is
a good place to check when you're first getting started on
your job hunt, particularly if you are looking for a job in
academia or new technology.
What a beautiful, organized, informative site the Monster
Board is, providing job hunters the ability to seek jobs,
post their resumes for the perusal of potential employers,
and post questions on finding employment to the site's job-
That is, in theory. The site's capacity is badly wanting.
If its sister site, "The Monster Board UK," is any
indication, the site provides information on a lot of jobs --
it says 55,000 openings worldwide are posted there -- and an
easy way to track down the ones you're interested.
Unfortunately, in six hours of trying to use the search
engine on this site (between 4 p.m. EDT and 10 p.m. EDT) I
failed to get a response even once. (Maybe the search engine
was just down for the day. Your results may vary.)
Smaller but faster: The Monster Board UK
As on the larger Monster Board, the Monster Board UK indexes
all 500 or so of its available jobs by specific job
While time-outs were my main source of frustration on the
U.S.-based Monster Board, the slim offerings on the UK
version were its most frustrating point. It is as though the
United Kingdom has yet to discover job hunting on the Web!
There about 200 different job categories listed, but most of
the categories are now empty, or only have one or two jobs
Hint: to search several categories at once, highlight the
ones you want by holding down the SHIFT key on your keyboard
while choosing the categories with your mouse. And before
you have to ask, when the site refers to a CV, or "curricula
vitae," what it means is "resume."
America's Job Bank, which is paid for with U.S. unemployment
insurance taxes paid by employers, is run by the U.S.
Department of Labor and is free. Unlike the Monster Board,
it focuses specifically on jobs within the United States.
(Although it is a government-run site, most of the jobs
listed are private.)
While it doesn't have as many of the extras that the Monster
Board does -- no question and answer board, no place to post
a resume -- the America's Job Bank site boasts a search
engine that is much faster at finding jobs once a search has
Once you have a list of job openings in your field, you can
also sort them according to job title, salary, location, and
how long ago the job was posted.
America's Job Bank also outshines the Monster Board in its
database -- there is currently information on about 250,000
jobs available through this site. According to a recent
CNNfn report, America's Job Bank has been credited with
helping 70,000 people in New Jersey alone find a new job.
If you aren't in the job market right this second, but still
want to know what's available, a better option for you might
be to post your resume and see what kind of response you get
from potential employers.
You do not have to pay to get your resume posted on the Web!
In fact, many sites will post your resume for free; most of
them make their money from companies that subscribe to the
service for the privilege of searching their resume database
to find new employees.
One of several sites on which you can post a resume is
CareerMosaic, which hosts resumes from job-seekers all over
the world. It will keep your text-only resume in its
database, which is open to any employer who asks, for three
months. You may want to post your resume to a site that
specializes in your field, or to one to which employers pay a
fee, thus ensuring that your resume remains relatively
private. For a list of other sites that specialize in
posting resumes, see the Riley Guide.
Finding a job as your impending graduation hangs over your
head can seem like an insurmountable task, but with early
preparation (college seniors, start NOW) it can be easier.
The College Grad Job Hunter could be one of your best tools
to start your search. The site includes a search engine into
which you can type the career that you are interested in, and
it will spit back the names of companies that are looking for
It does seem to be heavily biased towards technical jobs
openings -- e.g., when I posted a search for writers, all the
openings were for technical writers, and for marketing, most
employers were computer-related businesses looking for people
who could market software or hardware.
However, even for the not-so-technically inclined this site
offers help, including advice on writing your resume and
getting it passed around, how to write a good cover letter, a
regular column on how to get ready for entry into the job
market, and a forum where graduates can post questions about
job hunting. It even suggests how you should dress for your
first interview, and questions to ask your potential employer
before and after you get a job offer.
The site's purpose is mostly to plug the book "The College
Grad Job Hunter," so most of the advice is excerpted from the
book. However, it is still useful. College students
unfortunately do not always get frank talk of this type from
their campus career planning department.
There are also a number of sites that focus on jobs for
specific fields, and companies often post job openings on
their own web sites. For example, the Experimental Particle
Physics Jobs Rumor Mill is only truly of use to physicists, although it is interesting and sometimes comical.
If all else fails and you just aren't finding what you want,
try doing an AltaVista search, typing in words describing the job you want, your preferred location and/or
company, and the word "opening." If you're proficient at
manipulating search engines, you might even try using
AltaVista's advanced search, which allows you to use Boolean
operators, and can give you responses more in line with your
Not sure? Compare your configuration
with each site's browser requirements.
CNNfn - Expert gives job-hunting tips - Aug. 8, 1996
CNNfn - Pounding the pavement on the Web - June 7, 1996
Trading in resumes for Web pages - May 17, 1996
CNNfn - Headhunters becoming job hunt tool for the masses -
Feb. 27, 1996
Internet growth makes webmasters hot commodity - Feb. 16, 1996
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