Google's new profile service could be an important tool for job seekers. Recently unveiled by the Web giant though they're still being "worked on," the profiles allow you to present yourself, in your own words and reflecting your own priorities, in Google's search results. The good news: Your profile shows up on the first page of results. The less good: It shows up at the very bottom of the page.
Placement aside, you should care about this. At a minimum, you can show off your academic and professional credentials by treating the profile like an online resume. Though it's not really set up to be formatted like a resume, it's a tool to reinforce the image you've tried to present through cover letters, resumes and interviews.
I don't know anyone who doesn't look up people online nowadays. At the very least, you have to plan for prospective managers to find your profiles on LinkedIn or Facebook, as well as in old news items you may be in, or references to you in the profiles of friends or colleagues. If you're really smart, you're tailoring your online presence to be a part of your professional persona, using social networks and a personal Web page to hammer home your message of talent and professionalism.
Also, you can't ignore the fact Google's profiles are part of - Google. As they gain traction - and given Google's sheer presence, I think they will - managers, HR folks and recruiters are sure to scroll down to find the profile for each candidate they vet.
-- Mark Feffer