Pinterest: cupcakes, and… careers?

Lately I have been experimenting with how Pinterest could be used for our Careers service. Pinterest is the hot new social networking trend, with a reputation for content mostly including cupcakes, recipes, and home interiors. Participants “pin” images they find/like from across the web onto “boards” of different categories; e.g. ‘home’, ‘stuff I like’, ‘clothes’, and the images link back to the page they came from. Essentially “bookmarking” links they like in a visually appealing way, which they can share with their friends. Alternatively, they are also simply curating boards of images they have found which appeal to, or inspire, them.

I hadn’t really paid it much attention, and wasn’t even sure what it looked like; however, inspired by this blog post from Andrew Preater and its accompanying photograph of the Mnemosyne-Atlas boards, the idea came to me that it could be used like a ‘jobs noticeboard’, to easily display jobs in a ‘novel’ noticeboard format. I quickly began to curate a board of various of our leaflets and and plasma screen slides; ones which I had previously been emailed, or had saved on my computer.

Events

This…?:

Our current events feed

Our current events feed

…or This?!

Events page on Pinterest

Events page on Pinterest

Of course, we won’t be allowed to replace our current page with Pinterest, but we can at least link to it, and show it to students, and also tweet/facebook the images easily from there.

The images are those that have already been created, either by careers advisers etc or myself, to distribute as flyers or in an email to students, so there is not a huge workload involved. I have created some extra images for the Jobs board, but once you have the PowerPoint template in place it’s easy to replace the text with a different job; save as a jpeg; upload to photobucket; …and PIN! Then I edit the link so that it actually links back to our event booking system / jobs vacancy database. If you’re lucky enough to have student social media assistants, then creating the images is a task they could perhaps help with.

 

So this is how I am using it at the moment – maybe not quite the way it was intended, more as:

  • a jobs noticeboard, linking to applying for the vacancy
  • a visually appealing catalogue of resources
  • a visual display of events, allowing students to book on right there

I have started to see a small number of other careers services using it, sharing infographics, ‘what to wear to work/interview’ images, so there is also scope for creating boards of shared/found content related to careers.

I was also interested in this board What does an Archivist do?, liking the idea of creating boards about specific careers, or degree-subject-relevant careers.

Also, for future users of Pinterest, us ‘already being there’ gives us an innovative image.

How to decide which jobs to include, when we have so many on our database? For ease, those which have been specifically pointed out to me to promote on social media. These are often bespoke opportunities just for our students, but can also be other jobs the team particularly want promoting.

Have you seen any innovative uses of Pinterest?

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