Crowdsourcing the Job Search with Social Media

While playing around on Google+ today I saw a post by Chris Brogan.  Because of the sheer volume of followers I have in my own tweet stream, I’m sad to admit that I miss out on some of Chris’s insights.  But thankfully for Google+ and Chris’s post, I saw this great video and blog post from DJ Waldow (@djwaldow) and his Job Search Social Media Experiment, titled #projectawesome.  It’s right up my alley, and I felt compelled to share.

You see DJ was laid off from his marketing and community job at Blue Sky Factory on July 1st, 2011.  Like most people when they receive news like this they have a choice, either do something or do nothing.  DJ chose the former.  He used his contacts and relationships to create a 4 minute video testimonial that he has posted on his blog as well as youtube from some of the most influential online marketers and social media thinkers.  DJ is being very open with his job search and relying on testimonials and crowd sourcing techniques to fuel interest from employers and elevate his job search.

I like it.

Crowdsourcing the Job Search with Social Media

Creative job search tactics have gotten good press since the recession in 2008.  I’ve seen more stories on guys who have used billboards, sandwich boards, and even sell themselves  on e-bay to find work.  DJ’s approach fits his industry (marketing and social media), demonstrates his expertise and credibility not just because of the testimonials but because of the quality of edited video which he put together.

Included in his blog post are different mediums of his resume to appeal to different audiences, while elevating his blog post at the top of search engines — youtube and slideshare.

The concept of crowd sourcing your resume is one that I like.  It’s smart.  It bypasses the traditional long and often frustrating job search and interview evaluation process.  His hope is to reach a company or industry influencer without using an applicant tracking system or working with the first point of contact usually the HR professional or recruiter.

Early case studies like this are interesting because they make use of social media and the micro celebrity in a new and interesting way.  The stigma that is sometimes still associated with being laid off by prospective employers is lessened because he is able to demonstrate his own skills in action as a online and social media marketer.

Question is how can you use social media to elevate your job search?  Can crowdsourcing tactics help or hurt your job search outside of the social media and marketing industries?  And is being completely transparent a strategy you’re worth gambling with?

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.

Reader Interactions


  1. AvatarDJ Waldow says

    Wow, Jessica. Thanks so much for all of your kind words. Sorry that I’m just seeing this post now – 11 days after it was published. Dang Google Alerts did pick it up!

    Anyway, really appreciate you taking the time to dedicate an entire post to #ProjectAwesome. Honored, humbled, and wow’d!

    Glad we’ve connected on Twitter too. Hoping to share more about the process – before, during, after – as soon as this whole thing plays out.

    • Jessica Miller-MerrellJessica Miller-Merrell says

      No worries, DJ. I saw something in the twitter stream and thought I would pop over and see what your up to on your blog, and I was very excited for you. I’m approaching my two year anniversary as independent. Call me if you ever need anything. I know you have a lot of very good folks in your corner who are rooting for you. Congrats!


  2. AvatarJob Search UK says

    He used his contacts and relationships to create a 4 minute video testimonial that he has posted on his blog as well as youtube from some of the most influential online marketers and social media thinkers.


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