Since Mark Stelzner asked his Twitter followers on January 29, 2009, if they could make a dent in unemployment by helping one person find a job, his neighborly movement known as JobAngels has skyrocketed with a strong social media foothold, a newsletter, and soon to be non-profit status. Stelzner has even tweeted about someday taking the group offline via localization to reach all of those people who don't use Twitter and other web social media.
Currently run remotely by a handful of volunteer officers who have never met, its momentum is mighty. As of late April, JobAngels had more than 7,600 Twitter followers, 2,600 friends on Facebook and nearly 4,800 group members on LinkedIn.
Self-described as a "vibrant ecosystem of hope," JobAngels is working to collect success stories and a fully operational and upgraded website, JobAngels.org, that will pull all of their resources together in one place.
Although Stelzner admits that it's an imperfect system where users have to do a lot of wading through not so relevant posts, at least right now, he does stress that it's really all about making a connection. Aside from finding a job, you can get your resume and cover letter critiqued, network your way into a company, or get some advice from a mentor in your field.
Here are four ways you can use JobAngels today to find a job:
- Try a search on Twitter for the following terms, including the state ID to narrow your results:
- Include the #jobangels hashtag in your Twitter resume tweet; that way you'll be more likely to come up in a helpful job angel's search as well.
- Join the JobAngels LinkedIn group. Stelzner advises: "Comb through the membership and seek those who match your desired industry, geography, market segment or position. Be polite in your initial inquiry and let your Angel determine their level of comfort in providing assistance, advice, guidance and/or introductions." You might want to start with a question about a particular industry or geographic area.
- Search for JobAngels on Facebook. You can join or just browse. Go to the Discussions section and click Select All. Then perform a search on each page for your industry. Read up on those discussions and contact those willing to help accordingly. Post your own discussion to get the word out about you.
Now that the audience is there, up next for JobAngels is extensive profiling on their website for more efficient connections, including a questionnaire where users can enter their location and areas of expertise and choose a profession and other categories from drop-down menus. Until the new website is launched, JobAngels is running on a hope that the right people will find each other and connect. Other future plans for the site include offering job related content and local listings of job boards.