Finding Legal Jobs Through Your Social Network

Finding Legal Jobs Through Your Social Network

We all know that in this tight job market, it takes creativity and persistence to find and get a job.  Social networking is quickly becoming the most important aspect of any job search.  Knowing this is one thing.  Making the most of it is quite another.  NPR.com's Joshua Brockman looked into the best ways to effectively work your social network in a flooded job market  that recently lost 7 million jobs:
"LinkedIn used to be your professional face and Facebook was sort of your family and friends presentation on the Web.” Brockman quotes Michael Malone, director of career education and advising for the Columbia Business School. "It seems like those lines are blurring much more now." 
Brockman reports on NPR.com that recruiters are using these social networking tools to post positions because of their enormous reach.   Facebook claims more than 350 million users and LinkdIn more than 55 million.  For the legal community, Martindale-Hubbell Connected boasts 24,000 targeted users who are either attorneys or legal professionals.  It’s this type of selectivity and narrower focus that can eliminate the distractions users find when trying to develop career networks in a giant social networking environment.  In the post, LexisNexis U.S. Legal Markets CEO Mike Walsh describes M-H Connected as a combination of LinkedIn and Facebook for the Legal community, an industry where 70 percent of lawyers use social networking tools.  Brockman cites the benefits of industry-specific social networking resources such as Martindale-Hubbell Connected where users’ real-life identities are authenticated to create a secure network.   He explains:
(Martindale-Hubbell Connected ) “…provides a way for attorneys to search for future business, get legal advice and find a job. One feature allows users to cross-reference contacts they may already have established on LinkedIn. Each profile shows the law school a person attended and any articles they might have written. Users also can connect with Martindale-Hubbell's career center.”
Other industries are forming targeted social networks as well, including the medical profession where doctors network on Medscape's Physician Connect, which also authenticates its users.  The big job boards – Monster.com  and Careerbuilder have also created professional communities to target specific career communities. Brockman notes that JobShouts.com, serves as a collaborator of specific career content featuring a "social search" function that allows users to look for company information across Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Spoke and other sites with just one click.