The Internet is a fantastic business tool. Many of you have used it to buy books, CDs, and even electronic equipment.
Unfortunately, like most tools, the Internet can be misused to cheat and mislead. When you visit a web site or view a
job listing, there's no way to be certain that you're dealing with a reputable person. There are, however, ways in which
you can reduce your risks.
Is there a fee: Stay away from any web site that requires you to pay up front. In fact, before you pay for a job listing
or resume bank service, check out the free ones. There's really no need to pay in today's job market. The employers
are willing to pay, and you don't need to.
Are they selling services: . Be wary of any offer to "find you a job" for a fee. No one has a corner on the market or
special access to employers. Employers are reaching out to find new talent and you don't need to pay to find them.
Stay away from sites that promise to write your resume. No one knows you better than you! If you need help with
grammar or spelling, go to your spouse, friends, or the professionals at the Transition Assistance Office.
Are they selling "secrets": Don't buy job search books or cassettes unless its from a reputable and well-known web site.
In fact, don't buy a job search book over the Internet unless you can't get to a bookstore to look it over first. Unscrupulous
people have been selling books on how to lose weight, get girls, get guys, improve your memory, and get high-paying jobs
through the mail for years. Now they've learned how to do it using the Internet.
Are they trying to sell training: Be leery of any job listing that requires you to pay for training. The only way to figure out
if you need training is to check out job listings and talk to experts such as your Transition Assistance Office counselors.
If you conclude that you do need training in order to achieve your occupational goals, then check with your Education
Office for assistance in identifying reputable schools and training institutions. Stay away from any training institution that
has to lure you in with false promises of a job.
Do they want you to invest in a new business: This is probably one of the fastest ways to get ripped off on the web. If you
really want to start a business, don't depend on anyone who attempts to lure you with an offer of a job. Start by visiting
the Small Business Administration Veterans web site at http://www.sbaonline.sba.gov/vets/. Find out where the nearest
Small Business Administration Office is and research your opportunities. Make sure you're ready to survive as a business
owner and then and only then begin the process of looking for business opportunities. As you review opportunities, do your
research. The web contains a number of scam busting web sites containing information on business scams and you can
usually search the web using a business name to find information on fraud. Ask for references - names of other investors.
Check the references out and make sure that you're not talking to another member of a fraudulent team. Look for the
company name in Internet phone books. Find the company web site on the Internet. If you can't find them, stay away.
Finally, get it in writing. Don't invest unless you get the details in writing. Once you do, don't forget to visit your Judge
Advocate office for legal advice.
TIPS ON USING THE INTERNET
The way in which employers and applicants interact has undergone a dramatic revolution. In the past, applicants had to
rely on newspaper ads and networking to find job opportunities. The ability to find job opportunities was limited by
geography, and it was difficult to explore distant job markets. Employers had the same problem. They could reach
local job seekers but found it difficult to tap qualified job seekers in distant locations. Employment agencies, headhunters,
and state employment services helped to some extent, but even they were hampered by distance and communication
limitations. Today, the Internet allows employers and job seekers to interact almost instantaneously regardless of
geography and time zones.
As a smart job seeker, you have explored occupations, industries, companies, and locations. You have inventoried your
skills, training, education, and experience. You know what you want and for you, the Internet is a powerful tool in achieving
your objective. As powerful as the Internet may be, you cannot rely solely on electronic job search activities. The best
job search campaign is a balanced one. Not all job opportunities will be found on the Internet -- not even all of the best.
While this web portal is designed to help you get the most out of the Internet, you should continue to build your career
transition team through networking. Don't be afraid to use newspaper want ads and never forget the value of your
local state employment services office. Most of all, don't be passive. Don't post your resume on the web and expect
employers to beat down your door. Take charge of your job search and fight to win!
FOCUSING YOUR SEARCH
The beauty of the Internet is its sheer size. America's Job Bank and its affiliate DoD Job Search can legitimately
claim access to well over one million jobs. Other job listing web sites claim tens of thousands. As impressive as that
may be, too much of anything is bad for you. Searching through tens or even hundreds of thousands of job listings is
\not going to be easy or very productive. All your work in developing an objective should have taught you that there
is a very limited number of jobs for which you are qualified and meet your personal and family needs. Similarly, there
are a great number of resume bank web sites. You could spend a great deal of time submitting resumes to all of these
sites and not improve your chances of finding a great job by much. The fact is that many resume banks don't have a
large number of employers using them, some charge for their services, and many focus on specific occupations and
employers that do not match up well with your objectives.
The key to effective use of the Internet is to focus on the web sites that promise the best return for your effort.
This web site is designed to get you started. Our links have been carefully screened and represent an excellent range
of web resources. Still, even this list may exceed your needs. Here's a basic set of rules that you can use to focus your
Internet job search related activities.
Know yourself and your objectives: Some web sites focus on job seekers with a specific set of skills such as computer
programming. Still others focus on a specific geographical area within the United States or overseas. Read the web site
description carefully. It is generally the first thing you will see on the web site, but, in some cases, you may have to click
on a button labeled "job seekers information" or something similar. Make sure that the site is consistent with your objective.
Big is better than small: For most job seekers, the key is to start with the big sites and work your way down. In general,
web sites with a large number of job listings, resumes on file, or employers using the site are superior to those with lesser
statistics. However, be skeptical. Look carefully at some interesting job listings to see how old they are. While starting big
is the best approach for most, there are exceptions. If you have unique job interests, you should skip the big guys and go
straight to the most relevant web sites. For example, if you want to work for a specific company, go the company web site.
New is better than old: Once you begin to use a web site, make sure the merchandise is fresh - check out the dates on job
listings to make sure that the web site is kept current. There's no law that requires a web site to delete out of date job
listings and some employers don't even tell the web site administrator when a job is filled.
Keep your options open: If you're using a resume bank, make sure that you can submit changes to your resume. Resumes are
never final. As you learn more about what employers are looking for, you will want to revise your resume. Stay away from
sites that won't let you change your resume.
Avoid sites that charge you a fee. Job listing web sites are almost always free to job seekers, but some resume listing sites are not.
In general, successful resume bank web sites don't need to charge job seekers. They have a large number of employer customers
who are willing to pay money to get their hands on high quality resumes. If you are considering listing your resume with a web site
that charges a fee, check the site out carefully and compare it with other, similar sites that don't charge a fee.