Why building a personal website can put you ahead of the jobseeker game
25 September 2020 at 5:40 pm
We share some reasons why building a great website will help you stand out in the crowd
Developing your personal brand is incredibly important as a job seeker.
You might be already doing this by regularly updating your LinkedIn or Twitter account to show potential employers your interests, skills and personal strengths, but one thing that many job seekers don’t think about is pulling together a personal website.
Research shows that while 56 per cent of hiring managers are more impressed by a personal website than any other personal branding tool, only 7 per cent of job seekers actually have one.
And with the job market more saturated than ever before, it’s important to stand out from the crowd.
What’s good about having your own website?
There’s a few things. Because you can customise it however you want, it’s a great opportunity to show off who you really are in a way that you can’t do with social media platforms such as LinkedIn.
According to Richard Green, the CEO of NGO Recruitment, a website is also a great way of reflecting your personal brand.
“It’s ideal because a personal website can be hosted in the candidate’s own name, designed to reflect their personal brand and be search engine optimised,” Green says.
It also gives you an opportunity to better showcase expertise and skills. Is there a report, or project that you are particularly proud of? Showing it off on your website is a great way for a prospective employer to really understand the work that went into it, and the skills you could bring into their organisation.
What should you include on your website?
There’s no strict rules around this, but most personal websites include an about me page that gives viewers a little background on who you are and what you have achieved professionally. It’s also a good idea to slip a few personal details in, such as your hobbies and interests outside of work.
Links to media articles, portfolios of work, and even a blog are all important things to include on your website. You can also have a dedicated page for your resume, so that if someone is interested in hiring you, all the information they need is in one place.
It’s also really important to include contact details and your social media accounts so that future employers can get in touch with you and find out more about you.
Will creating a website mean you land your dream job?
Not quite. While a personal website is a nice little bonus in a job application, it’s important to still follow the job application process.
For Kimberly Gardiner, Save the Children’s head of campaigns and public affairs, substance should always be the focus.
She noted however that for some roles, such as media and multimedia positions, a website was a good way to showcase work.
“There may be times where having a personal website may be the best way to communicate a portfolio of work and in those instances a website could be advantageous,” Gardiner said.
How can I create my website?
WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace are among some of the most popular and user-friendly website-builders.
You can set up a website for free, but if you want to create a custom url or get your hands on fancier features there will be an extra cost.
If you’re interested in checking out your options, check out this website for an overview of all your options.