Web 2.0 adds a twist to job search strategies

Tips to outshine your competitors in today's job market

Negotiate wisely. "What's your salary range?" That can be a loaded question, and there are do's and don'ts when answering it. A number too low can cost you thousands of dollars, but a figure too high might take you out of the running.

Do have a clear range in mind. This involves doing your homework. Since salaries are usually tied to the competitive market, it's important to know the average pay of others in a similar field, position, experience and geographic location. Fortunately, there are a number of reliable sites to keep your salary expectations in line with market offerings.

At Glassdoor.com , visitors can view salaries of more than 14,000 companies for free. The site features candid company reviews, including detailed pros and cons of everything from work hours to culture, as well as opinions about senior management and tips on how to rise through the ranks. All posts are anonymous, but here's the catch: It's a "give-to-get" model, so be willing to share insights about your company in order to receive those about others.

PayScale.com also provides the inside scoop for job seekers, employees and employers. After visitors complete a personal profile and multipage survey, the site delivers a free PayScale Summary Report tailored to the visitor's requested company. Like at Glassdoor, profiles are anonymous and forthright.

So continue to follow that tried-and-true career advice you've relied on for years.But to leverage it for success in today's market, use social networking sites and the wealth of information on the Internet to your advantage.

You can expand your opportunities, differentiate yourself in the talent pool and tap into new resources to more effectively network, apply for positions, interview and, of course, close the deal.

Dan Cobb is senior vice president, West region, for Yoh, a leading provider of high-impact talent and outsourcing services and a unit of Day & Zimmermann. For more information, please visityoh.com.

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Dan Cobb

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