Is your online job search being monitored?

By Debra Wheatman

On August 17, 2010

In Job Search Strategies

About career advice


You are planning your next big career move.  You’ve had your resume professionally re-written and had your LinkedIn profile updated; you have posted on all the job boards, and you have even submitted it to area recruiters. Your boss calls you into the office and asks you point blank why you are looking for a new opportunity.  How did he know? What do you say?

Don’t be caught off guard.  It could cost you your job.

There are many ways that your current employer can find out you are searching for a new position.  If your firm uses contingency recruiters or even if HR runs regular searches to find candidates with a similar background to your own, beware!  If you post your resume online without safeguarding confidential information, there is a possibility you will be discovered. 

While it’s optimal to put your full contact information and company name on your online resume, if you have any fear that it will be seen by either an internal or external recruiter, it is best to suppress your name and your current company name when posting to the major job boards.  If you don’t choose to do this, be prepared with a very good explanation for why your resume is now out there.

Another thing to be cautious of is your email account.  You should never, I repeat never, use your work email to respond to a career opportunity or submit your resume. Also, if your firm has a “big brother” program that lets them see everywhere you have surfed, be sure to send your resumes out on your personal computer, so there is absolutely no chance of being monitored. 

Lastly, there is nothing wrong with updating your LinkedIn profile, soliciting referrals from trusted colleagues, and participating in discussions.  To the contrary, you want to do this. However, be aware that if you accept or send invites to a bunch of recruiters and/or hiring managers at competing companies, the other people you are linked to may receive that information unless you take special steps to modify your privacy settings.

All of this said, it is important to get yourself out there even if it means taking a small risk.  Just submitting your resume to postings you see online is not going to do the trick when it comes to planning an aggressive job search.  Most jobs never even make it to the job boards, so you do need to take a comprehensive approach.

Conduct your career search WISELY!

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