How to Better Use Job Search Engines

If you’ve recently started the job hunt, seeing the thousands of different listings on online job search engines can be overwhelming.

Some keywords might yield zero results, while others might produce too many. Job search engines are the number one way employers advertise the positions at their companies, so learning how to use these sites is a must if you’re looking to find a job.

There are ways to improve your job search experience, and you can do so by following a few useful pointers. Your search can become more personalized and utilize features that save you time and energy.

Here are some tips and tricks for optimizing your job search using website search engines. They will improve your results and land you a new career before you know it.

Search by Industry, Company, and Location

Most job search engines offer the option to search by company and/or industry. By doing this, you allow yourself to see which companies and fields are hiring before looking at specific job titles. Acquiring a comprehensive view of a company and its positions is often more helpful than the single snapshot offered in a job listing.

Some job search websites, like Glassdoor, even allow users to review companies where they were previously employed, which allows searchers to see which employers are the best to work for.

If you can target a few companies in your area you want to work for based on your research, then you can narrow your search. At worst, this helps you decide what kind of company you want to work with. You might be looking for somewhere big or small, relaxed or professional, and so on.

This seems obvious too, but a lot of people miss it. It’s important to decide where you want to work. If you’re looking for jobs in Buffalo, for example, it doesn’t make much sense to look in New York City.

Localizing your search to companies in your area is the best way to go.

Utilize Advanced Job Search Options

Most jobs listed on the large-scale job sites, like Indeed or Monster, have a quick search bar where you can type in a keyword, location, and hit enter.

Not everyone is aware that there are often more options available that help narrow down search results even further. By clicking on “advanced search settings” and adjusting your options, you can receive more specific job listings.

Common advanced options include preferences regarding full-time, part-time, contract, or remote work, as well as salary, company, exact phrases, and distances. Take a moment to play around with these optional settings and make your job search more personal.

If you’ve taken the time to create a profile, the search engine will remember your advanced settings and you won’t have to keep adjusting them every time you open the site.

Upload Your Resume

Job search engines often give you the option to create a profile. You can fill in details regarding your skills, accolades, and aspirations. Don’t leave any important fields blank, and upload a picture if you can. A profile also allows potential employers to message you through the site, which is an additional convenience.

Another useful option is the ability to upload your resume to your profile. When you upload your resume, employers then have the ability to access your information and find your resume on their own.

After all, employers use job search engines too: they create profiles, job listings, and seek out employees who fit their needs. By posting your resume, you create an opportunity where an employer can find you instead of the other way around. They may be actively searching for candidates with a very specific skill or experience, and that keyword may be sitting in the text of your resume.

To that end, it’s important to clean up your online presence, even off the site you’re applying with. About 80 percent of job recruiters are required to look candidates up online when trying to find suitable employees.

Just remember to delete your resume once you do find a job. If your current employer finds your resume months later, that could create for an awkward office conversation.


If you can create a profile and upload your resume onto these job search sites, then you should spend some time networking as well. Employers may receive hundreds of applications for a single posting through job search engines, so it’s important to take the time to make your name stand out.

One of the easiest ways to network is to create a professional profile on LinkedIn. Once you have your profile completely filled out and reviewed, search for the company’s higher ups and hiring managers and connect with them on LinkedIn. This allows them to see additional information on your end, and also recognize that you put in the extra effort to seek them out and find out more about them.

Join discussions involving information in your field and industry. The more of a public presence you have, the more information your employers have to work with when making their decision.