by Rachel Vilsack

There are many social networking tools available to expand your job search. You can network on LinkedIn or uncover job leads from friends and family on Facebook.  If you’ve already used these resources, you might be ready to add a new tool to your collection: Twitter.


What’s Twitter All About?

Think of Twitter as a way to share information – ideas, observations, links, or resources – quickly. A tweet, or message on Twitter, consists of only 140-characters, so you have to be concise. You can send tweets anytime from your computer or mobile phone, which can be seen by people who follow you.  Likewise, you can follow the tweets of people or businesses that interest you.


Signing up for Twitter requires you to create a profile, which includes selecting a username that will be visible whenever you post information and when people search for you.  You can also include a picture and brief profile about yourself, similar to LinkedIn.


Who Should You Follow?

Depending on your profession, you may want to follow people in your career field. This could include national, regional, or local professionals.  Many companies also have Twitter profiles, including some human resources divisions.  For instance, if one of the target companies in your job search was General Mills, you might want to follow @GeneralMills or @GenMillsCareers on Twitter.


You might also want to follow career experts who offer job search tips and advice or job boards that post updates on openings. is Minnesota no fee online job bank, and their Twitter profile @MinnesotaWorks includes links to jobs and other helpful resources.


Directories of Twitter uses, like Twellow, are useful to find people or business to follow, too.


How to Use Twitter for Your Job Search

Connections happen through the people or businesses you follow and those who follow you. You might tweet about your job search, the skills or expertise you have, or the field of work you’re interested in. Engage by asking or answering questions. You could post a link to your LinkedIn profile or personal blog (if you have one) so that people can learn more about you. And, of course, look for job opportunities that people and companies you follow are posting on Twitter!


Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Choose your username name carefully. Remember, this is how people will see and search for you on Twitter. (For example, my Twitter profile includes my first and last name: @rachelvilsack.)
  • Create a strong profile. You might want to include your profession or areas of expertise. Think about what you want your followers to know about you.
  • Learn more! There are many books, websites, and YouTube videos that talk about how to use Twitter in your job search and offer other great tips.


Finally, remember that Twitter – and social networking sites in general – are just one means of conducting your job search. Twitter may provide more opportunities for people in some profession, like information technology, marketing, or business.