Job hunting: Helpful tips for a safer job search

Applying for jobs can feel daunting. Where should you start your search? And how do you know if a job listing is actually legit? Know the signs of a scam before you submit your next job application.

Here's our advice if you're just hitting the job market:

Search job boards

Looking through reputable online job boards is a great place to get started. Job boards often have filters, like location, job type, experience level, etc., to help you narrow down your search. Try searching different keywords and phrases. You can also set up alerts for newly added job listings based on your searching habits to be first in line to apply.

We recommend these job sites:

The Cronkite School has a job alerts newsletter that Cronkite Nation alumni are encouraged to subscribe to. The weekly email sends open job listings in markets all over the country right to your inbox. Sign up today!

Verify the job listing

Job applications often ask for quite a bit of personal information, like your home address, email and phone number. Scammers can create fake job listings to get this information from you for nefarious purposes. If you're using a job board, like Indeed or Monster, be sure to google the name of the job position and the name of the employer to see if the job also appears on the company's website.

  • Pro Tip: While job boards are a great place to look for open positions, we recommend always applying for a job listing directly through the company's website. This ensures your application doesn't get lost.

If you're unable to verify the position via an Internet search, contact the company's Human Resources department to confirm the job posting is legitimate. This contact information is usually readily available on the company's website or via a LinkedIn search.

Check out the employer

A quick Internet search can reveal a lot about a potential employer, especially if it's a company you've never heard of. Does the company have a professional website? Are their social media accounts active? Can you find any employees who work there now?

We recommend:

We also recommend reading through a company's mission and vision statements to see how their morals and values align with your own.

Watch out for scammers

Be careful. The web is primed with scammers looking to make a quick buck on unsuspecting victims. These scams are often elaborate and look legitimate, but doing your research and watching for red flags can help you avoid falling into their trap.

Here are some red flags to watch out for:

  • Never send personal information, like your social security number, through an unencrypted message like email.

  • Never send an employer money. Scammers may ask you for a deposit on company equipment or money to secure your employment. These are not legitimate requests. A company will never charge to hire you.

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