WorkSource offers social media classes for job-seekers

KENNEWICK, Wash. -- In the age of social media, more employers are turning to social media to scope out potential employees.

It's why our local WorkSource developed a program to help job seekers use those sites to their benefit.

Omar Sanchez served in the Marines for more than a decade. When he got home, he knew what his next step would be.

"My number-one goal right now is to finish out my degree," he said.
"I'm trying to get my bachelor's in human resource management."

He's already in the job hunt and came to WorkSource to attend the "Linked-In" program, a social media orientation.

"Over the last three to five years, the whole process of looking for a job has changed dramatically," said WorkSource Director Cos Edwards.

He says, two years ago, professional networking and online resume sites like LinkedIn weren't on their radar. Now, they're packing people like Omar into computer rooms to show them just how useful - or harmful - your social profile can be to your professional life.

"We want to expose not only veterans, but the general job seeker to the advantages of using LinkedIn, how to use it and, equally important, how it can hurt you if you misuse it," Edwards said.

On top of helping them upload their resumes, the program helps job seekers navigate the vast maze of social websites and helps people who might not realize that picture of them doing a keg stand in college might be a turnoff to potential employers.

"You want to act, dress and present yourself the way your next employer would want to see you," Omar said.

Classes are partially taught by representatives from PNNL. They work with students on networking and how to put your best social media foot forward when applying for a job.

Omar says the program was enlightening and useful.

"There's no real face value to it. It's very productive."

The next Linked-In class is at WorkSource on May 28th at 2 p.m. It's free, but most classes have been standing room only. So, if you plan to take it, get there early.