If you’re a media, digital, or creative professional—absolutely! Same goes if you want to otherwise establish yourself as an expert in anything and don’t already have your own professional blog. If you’re in a traditionally non-creative field with structured recruitment and hiring methods, such as accounting or law, a personal website might not help you as much professionally. But if you have a side hustle or hobby and you’re active in the online community, then a personal site can be helpful to grow that online influence, too. Here are three reasons why:
Most personal website services allow you to customize everything from background photos to fonts and text placement—so, unlike LinkedIn’s uniform profile, your personality and brand can shine through. When someone finds you, they’ll have an instant, visual representation of who you are.
People are visual, so the more you can show (rather than tell), the better. Your resume may say that you “built a company blog following of 15,000 engaged readers,” but with your personal site, you can take someone straight to the blog and show why it’s so engaging and what sets your work apart. By featuring work samples, sites you’ve worked on, articles you’ve written, whatever, your personal homepage can act as a digital portfolio of your online work and identity.
Though only 40% of companies use social media as part of their screening process, many more use it informally (and in my experience, hiring managers and interviewers who may not be on the HR side usually do their own research, too). So consider this: If a recruiter sees your resume and tries to find you on LinkedIn or Facebook, you could get lost among the other professionals who share your name. But if you have a personal website aggregating your various networks (and put that URL on your resume), you take all the guesswork out of finding you.