Boost your odds of finding a job

By Jen Haley, producer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Jobs continue to be out of reach for unemployed Americans as the latest jobs report indicates. To compete in today's tough job market, you may need to update your search habits.

1. Get the lowdown

Look -- sitting in front of your computer and e-mailing out resumes isn't going to cut it.

It's reported that the percentage of online applications viewed by an actual human being ranges from 5% to 25%. A lot of companies use software programs that screen and rank candidates. So, when you craft your resume, keep this in mind.

You may consider including the same phrases or pick out keywords found in the job description.

2. Make sure you keep up your networking

That doesn't only mean joining associations and subscribing to trade journals -- it means putting yourself online through social networking sites like linkedin.com, Facebook.com and Twitter.com.

3. Craft an Internet-based resume

When it comes to your resume, your regular old printer paper may not be enough. Check out visualCV.com. A VisualCV is an Internet-based resume that let's you include video, pictures, audio components and graphics to your online resume for free. So, you can show off your talents and skills in a more dynamic way.

4. Narrow your Search

You really want to target your job search -- especially if you're on the Internet.

If you're a teen or a recent graduate and you're just looking for some part time work for the summer, check out snagajob.com or teens4hire.com.

If you're looking to do some freelancing or contract work, you'll want to look at sologig.com and guru.com.

And of course, one of the hardest hit populations in this recession are older folks since these folks are out of work longer than younger people. Check out AARP.org/RealRelief. This site is designed for older workers and it lists employers who have age-friendly hiring practices.

No matter what career field you're exploring, do your homework. Glassdoor.com has anonymous company reviews and employee ratings as well as real time compensation data.

Talkback: Have you optimized your resume for keywords? To top of page

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