During the recent survey there was a question asking why you don't have a Careers account. Nearly half the people who answered (myself included) said they thought it was just for finding a job:

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I was expecting to get more information about what this means immediately after the survey, or maybe some explanation when the survey results came in, but I did not see any.

So I'd like to know: What is the Careers site for, if not just finding a job? Why would I want an account there if I'm not looking for employment?

...or was this the correct answer?

  • 1
    Even if not actively looking for a job, people are generally interested in being contacted with e.g. project opportunities or sideline work. Just because I have a 9-17 gig doesn't mean I won't start a small project in my own free time. Job market is dynamic these days -- it's not like you we have to work at the same place for 10+ years like our parents. A permanent presence there ensures I am contactable at all times, even if I have to turn people down. Mar 16, 2012 at 14:39
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    @mind 9-17?? Do you guys use 24-hour time over in Sweden? Mar 16, 2012 at 14:40
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    @AdamRackis: Do you guys use AM/PM in the wrong side of the pond? Don't even get me started on that imperial unit system.. Mar 16, 2012 at 14:41
  • @mind - of course :) I remember hearing Neil deGrasse Tyson lament the fact that in American elevators, floors below ground are usually labeled with nonsense like B, SB, BB, etc. He said he went to Sweden and the people there were quite smart enough to have floors 0, -1, -2. Mar 16, 2012 at 14:42
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    @AdamRackis: True story. In some universities though (Linköping Univeristy for sure) labelling starts from 2 on the ground floor. I can't for the life of me figure out why. And the academic hour starts at quarter past, besides being announced in e.g. 13:00 sharp. It's a weird country. Mar 16, 2012 at 14:45
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    I created an account just for fun and to kill time, and I am not planning to get a job (until I learn enough to have one), also I did that survey to kill time. (I think I like murdering time for some reason)
    – ajax333221
    Mar 16, 2012 at 17:27
  • @mind: In my experience, that's quite common in universities. Most of them I've been to in the United States do it, too. Must be some weird academia thing. Mar 17, 2012 at 3:51
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    I think the idea is that you're always looking for a job, even if you're not actively looking. If something way better comes along, it's always possible to persuade you to switch jobs. This is like the idea that everything is for sale, as long as the offered price is right. You might think you're happy now, but only because something twice as good hasn't come along yet. Mar 17, 2012 at 3:52

3 Answers 3


Have you ever found yourself in the position where you have to update your CV? It's not fun if it's been a long time since you last did it. If you maintain a profile on Careers and update it as you go, it's trivial to export an up to date CV when and if you need one.

It also allows for passive job seekers, people that aren't looking for a job, but would be open to being contacted by potential employers. It lets them leave their proverbial hook in the water, if only out of curiosity for what they might catch.

I use it just to keep my stuff in one place and up to date on a semi frequent basis. There are times (rare, but it happens) when a client of my company wants to see the CVs for everyone that would be working on a project. In a few clicks, I can export a copy of my Careers profile right to PDF and be done with it.

And well, I like checking my stats from time to time. I really enjoy artificially inflating my ego by noticing that more people found me interesting enough to view my experience.

  • When you say "hook in the water", does that mean it's acceptable to let employers contact me, even if I'm fairly certain I won't be available or interested?
    – user159834
    Mar 16, 2012 at 14:49
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    @Madmartigan Yes. The status is 'Not looking, but open to being contacted', and you have rather good controls over it as well. It would take a crane to pull me away from my current gig, I've never been happier. But, shutting out possibilities is stupid (IMHO).
    – user50049
    Mar 16, 2012 at 14:58
  • That's exactly how I feel about it, thanks for clearing the fog. I'm not missing anything else about it am I? You guys aren't having exclusive cocktail parties or anything?
    – user159834
    Mar 16, 2012 at 14:59
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    Well, once in a while we get really drunk, go to YouTube and start posting comments with fake accounts .. but other than that, no.
    – user50049
    Mar 16, 2012 at 15:02

I don't think there was a wrong or right answer, it was possibly just gauging how to correctly market the site in future, and possibly help in removing some myths about the careers site in general.

I use the career site as a running resume. Although I haven't been brilliant at it, I try and keep it updated as often as possible. It's always nice to have a place to send people to where they can see your experience, skills and achievements.

At the same time, as important as it is to hang on to a job, you never know what might happen in future, and having a profile already complete can be useful. Also, seeing how often you come up in searches could help in deciding if you should maybe start looking at what is out there. You may not want a new job, but sometimes it doesn't hurt to see what is on the other side.

  • I was kind of kidding about the "right answer" thing; I meant that perhaps this was a cheeky way for the survey to say that the Careers site is indeed only about finding a job. In other words: you thought the right thing. I understand you might be looking for a job in the future, but that doesn't change what the careers site is for does it? I would guess the only purpose is to get work, side job/full time/whatever.
    – user159834
    Mar 16, 2012 at 14:43
  • @Madmartigan Fair enough, although I don't think it was a bad statement. If anything, it gave me more meat for my answer. I love speculating :P Mar 16, 2012 at 14:45

What is the Careers site for, if not just finding a job? Why would I want an account there if I'm not looking for employment?

Even if people are not actually looking for a new employment, they could be interested in new job opportunities; it could also be that people are willing to change job if they get an interesting offer, but that doesn't mean they are actively searching for a new job.

The site is for finding a new job, but that doesn't mean it's an immediate necessity.

  • I guess you could just sit around and wait for some dream job to come around if you're happy with your current one. Is it accepted practice to have a profile even though you're pretty sure you don't want a new job or have no time for side work?
    – user159834
    Mar 16, 2012 at 14:52
  • I would say yes. Nobody is 100% sure he will never change work place, or accept a side work.
    – apaderno
    Mar 16, 2012 at 14:59

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