Resumes on Personal Websites

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Always know where your target candidates are! If you are sourcing for certain roles, they may be likely to have their own website with a resume. I have found that people on the front-end of web development and some marketers will have their own sites with personal information. Let’s take a look at how to farm out this information.

The challenge with this search is getting around sites that provide resume services.

To start, target your Boolean towards resumes. People may use “resume” or a similar word, such as curriculum vitae (cv), portfolio, or have an “about me” section. What other terms do you find people use? Always pay attention to the vernacular you see being used and incorporate it into your search string.

On Google, you can use the “inurl” designator; “intitle” is another option. Remember that the title of a webpage is that part that appears in the tab of the web browser. In many blogs the information will be redundant. For example, on WordPress (where this blog is written), the title of the blog will be incorporated into the title of the page and the url.

The base of my Boolean looks something like this:

inurl:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact | intitle:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact

This is the base, so it is replacing the xray or site search portion of my Boolean string. I will try and keep it towards the back of my Boolean string. We will need to evaluate if it is necessary to include spaces between the keywords. If so, the search string is going to be much longer:

inurl:resume | inurl:cv | inurl:vitae | inurl:portfolio | inurl:about | inurl:contact | intitle:resume | intitle:cv | intitle:vitae | intitle:portfolio | intitle:about | intitle:contact

FILETYPE

Next, we will target the file the resume (or equivalent) is created in. This may not be necessary if you are targeting someone’s profile information. However, I have seen many times people load a pdf version of their resume onto the website instead of having the resume as a separate page. They may have both. What is more prevelant in the field you are sourcing? You will want to try the search with and without the following portion of the search string:

filetype:pdf | filetype:docx | filetype:doc

The operator “filetype” works on both Bing and Google.

Let’s put together what we have so far:

filetype:pdf | filetype:docx | filetype:doc inurl:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact | intitle:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact

As you can see, false positives, mostly about writing resumes, are returning.

resume1

LOCATION

For the location portion of the search string, I am going to use a zip code search and a city name search. For this example, I will use Nashville, TN. When searching zip codes, I like to use www.mapszipcodes.com. To find the appropriate codes, I use a site search coupled with the name of the city:

site:mapszipcode.com nashville

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Click on the top link and we get this list:

resume3

Zip codes are listed sequentially, and in this case, range from 37201 to 37250. The issue with this technique, is that it does not include the surrounding areas of Nashville. If you source within a specific field, you will want to invest the time to get a more accurate range of zip codes.

We might also include an area code portion to the search. The area code in Nashville is 615.

We will represent this portion of the search in our string with the following:

37201..37250 | nashville | 615

Add that to what we currently have:

37201..37250 | nashville | 615 filetype:pdf | filetype:docx | filetype:doc inurl:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact | intitle:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact

resume4

I am actually seeing “contact” more than I would like. I might remove that from my Boolean, as long as I am searching for resumes. I might leave it in if it is pointing me to appropriate people to contact!

You will notice that we already have a pretty long string, and we haven’t even added any keywords to our search! To shorten the string, I may remove the inurl or intitle portion.

KEYWORDS

And finally, keywords! For this example, let’s take a look at User Experience Designers.

uxd | ixd | “user experience” | “interaction design” | hci | “human computer interaction” 37201..37250 | nashville | 615 filetype:pdf | filetype:docx | filetype:doc inurl:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact | intitle:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|about|contact

This only has one section of keywords, yet we get some decent results:

resume5

It looks like some false positives are course material related to the term “human computer interaction.” Curriculum vitae is also commonly used for a course syllabus.

Also, since the base of my search string has moved so far down, it is not being weighted as much as I would like. I am going to rearrange the information a little and see if that helps with my results.

inurl:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|contact | intitle:resume|cv|vitae|portfolio|contact uxd | ixd | “user experience” | “interaction design” 37201..37250 | nashville | 615 filetype:pdf | filetype:docx | filetype:doc 

This is actually giving some pretty good results. We hit on someone’s WordPress site, a couple of personal websites named after the person, and our false positive is a doc file.

resume6

There are some tweaks I might make to the string: remove some portions , add some more keyword sections, perhaps only look for pdf files, but I think you get the general idea here.

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER

To summarize, we want to include the following sections in our search string:

  • filetype
  • inurl or intitle target for resume
  • location
  • keywords

Remember, you can change the order of your sections depending on how the results are returning. If you want something weighted more, put it closer to the beginning of the search string.

Pay attention to your results. You want to match your search string to how people are using search terms. For example, I saw a few times that the term “vita” was being used instead of “vitae”. I would adjust my string accordingly. If this is something that people are doing in Nashville, I am going to search Nashville using the correct terms.

If you search a particular area frequently, take the time to uncover an all encompassing zip code and area code list. With our Nashville example, I know that the surrounding suburbs are not included in the list used. This is going to leave out a lot of results. Therefore, I would want to research the surrounding areas and their zip codes and area codes to include into my search.

Be creative; be perceptive; and adjust as necessary! Don’t be afraid to share; let me know how you personalize this type of search.

Happy hunting!

Boolean for Sourcing Emails

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One very popular item Sourcing Specialists are asked to find are email addresses. I often start my sourcing process with an email search to network within the industry of the position I am staffing. What Boolean String is going to return email addresses?

The most obvious technique would be to include the term “email” within the string. However, this brings very limited results.

email1

We could try to hit on the email address specifically. Remember, Google does not recognize the @ sign. It also is supposed to support the * only with spaces on either side of the asterisk. However, it appears that some versions of the @ sign are being supported. I did hear that it was being integrated due its use by Twitter.

*@gmail.com | *@*.com | @*.*

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You are going to get some hits on this. However, you are likely to pull a lot of false positives as well.

We can target some specific, popular email addresses in our boolean. This will only be limited by how many root emails you can come up with.

gmail.com | me.com | hotmail.com | yahoo.com site:linkedin.com nashville tennessee mechanical engineer

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This is actually a pretty good strategy if you know the root for a company email. Email Format is a good source for this project. It will also provide you the format of the entire email, ie firstname.lastname@companyroot.com/edu/net. Let’s try out an email for Citibank. Their root is citi.com. Pair it with a site search.

citi.com site:linkedin.com

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This technique is actually giving us pretty good results.

Next, let’s think more about the syntax people would include when writing their email address on a web page. This is actually one of my favorite ways to find contact information. What type of phrase might people use when giving out their email address?? What I have found to be popular: Contact me at, Connect with me, etc. In fact, it is my standard to use “contact me at” in a search when looking for contact information. This is not specific to emails.

email5

In this example, we did not pull any emails! And it looks like “connect with me” may be somewhat of a dead end.

I want to take this one step further. Some strategies may be better than others depending on what you are trying to accomplish.  Are you looking for a specific person’s email address? Are you looking to network with a company or in a specific location/industry?

If you are building an email list, I suggest using an email grabber. There are many versions FOR FREE. I use Outwit Hub. All you have to do is plug in your boolean and let the software do the work. You can grab the emails and then export them to an Excel spreadsheet for further use.

Here, I have opened Outwit Hub and entered the Google search screen.

email6

Next, I input my boolean string. I’ll use one from above and press search.

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To see what emails are on the page, I select emails from the upper left hand corner.

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From here, I make sure I am going to collect the information. I then begin to scroll through the pages of results and collect data.

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Once I am happy with the number of results, or I have exhausted the search, I simply press export. Select Excel and save the spreadsheet to the appropriate location.

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Whew…that was quite a bit to cover! As always, regardless of the strategy you use, make sure you pay attention to the results you pull. Tweak your search string to better serve the purpose you are currently sourcing.

Happy Hunting!

 

 

 

Order of Operations on Google

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When I found out that Google does not recognize parentheses, I was perplexed! I immediately had a flood of questions about syntax. I posed a question on LinkedIn concerning the topic. How does Google see the search: a b | x y?

Unfortunately, according to my poll results,  it appears that many of the participants  do not completely understand Google’s syntax either!

So how DOES Google view a b | x y? Is the string split in half by the OR symbol?

Google does not determine whether to OR or AND first. It simply reads the string.

a

b | x

y

So our desired results with this stringwould be:

aby

axy

That being the case, how could you produce results that present (a b) OR (x y)?

Attempt to get a results of
ab
xy
and NOT
abxy
aby
axy

A couple of suggestions were made in reference to the poll in the Boolean Strings group on LinkedIn:

“a * * * * * * b” | “x * * * * * y”

Theory: Quotations group the variables, asterisks allow for plenty of space between variables. However, this does bring up an issue of order of the variables. a and x will come before their counterparts in the search. If the b or y come first, it may not pick up.

x/y | a/b

Theory: Placing the / in place of a space will link the variables. It was pointed out that this gets the same results as “x y” | ” a b”. This is very limited.

Essentially, parentheses help us group our strings. Google ignores them, but the string still works since what is left after the parentheses are taken away is a string in a format that Google recognizes.

Let’s look at a string that has parentheses:

(site:linkedin.com/in | site:linkedin.com/pub) (xml | html | uml) (programmer | developer)

We are grouping by site, skill, title. This still works when the parentheses are removed.

site:linkedin.com/in | site:linkedin.com/pub xml | html | uml programmer | developer

The OR operator checks what is to the left and right of the operator. If there is a space, an AND is recognized and that is where the chain is broken. The results above are in the same order and appear to be the same with one exception. The string with the parentheses actually returned less results. I have yet to determine the underlying issue here.

Writing strings without the parentheses can be somewhat confusing at first, but I absolutely prefer it at this point. Thus far, I have not seen how including parentheses in your string hinders it in any way.  The most important aspect is that you keep your grouping correct, with or without the parentheses!

Happy Hunting!

Keyword Stemming

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Keyword stemming refers to the process of taking the root of a word and using all the different endings that exist for that word.  It is a very popular topic in SEO. That has some relevance for sourcing experts, since SEO is what drives results to the top of our search results.

 

For example, we want someone to MANAGE our business, we might search for: manage, manages, managed, managing, etc.  Instead of creating a search string that has manage | manages | managed | managing, there should be a simpler way, right??

Some job boards support a root word search. You can enter manag* to return manage, manages, managed, managing, etc. The only one that comes to mind that I have used is Dice.

I mostly use Google for my Xray and Boolean searches. Google does NOT support the root word format used above. The asterisk is ignored unless there are spaces on either side of it, and it represents a missing word or words.

Luckily, the major search engines have a built-in stemming function. If you enter manage into your search, results will be returned that include manages, managed, managing, etc. However, according to Google Guide, the stem words contribute less to the score of the result. I.e. manages, managed, managing will be lower on the list than manage.

 

 

You have to specify if you do NOT want to use keyword stemming by placing quotation marks around the word. “Manage” will only return results for manage.

 

In order to amp up the synonyms and stem words found, you can use the tilde in Google. ~manage

 

 

 

Hopefully this helps you makes sense out of your Google results! Happy Hunting!

Searching Connections on LinkedIn

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Okay. You’ve been making calls on a search for a week, and you have managed to make a few connections on LinkedIn. Or maybe you specialize in a field and you have been building a vast network within that niche. You’ve built your network on LinkedIn. Now how do you use it?? You need to leverage your contacts by searching THEIR connections.

To do this, from your homepage click on “advanced” in the upper right hand corner.

 

 

 

 

Now change tabs from “Advanced People Search” to “Find People.” I have a basic account, so I do not have access to the other 3 tabs.

Clicking on that brings you to a screen of profiles. Once you have identified the contact you are going to search, click on the icon that looks like a few androgynous profiles with a number by it. (I have noticed that not all contacts have this icon.)

Once you click on that, the next screen will be a search of those connections. You can sort by various categories including relevance, keyword, and connections.

Now you can take advantage of the filters on the left side of the screen. You can boolean search in the appropriate field (which even has a drop box for more fields that pretty much encompass the advanced search features). The top of the page will indicate your filters.

This is a great way to network. 2nd degree connections tend to be more trustworthy and likely to have a conversation with you.

This is a simple search that will help you leverage your network and make all of those connections pay off!