The academic job search includes several preparation components. While preparing written materials is important, online and social media preparation should not be overlooked. Academic job search presentation generally includes:
CVs: A CV is the most requested document in the academic search. CVs are not just historical documents highlighting the depth and breadth of your academic and related experience. Strong CVs are also targeted to the audience they are trying to reach.
Cover Letters: Cover letters for academic jobs do not substantively differ from those for non-academic ones. Structurally the letter is more or less the same. One trend we have observed is hiring committees asking candidates to explain their research and teaching interests in the cover letter rather than supplying separate research and teaching statements.
Research Statements: Strong research statements tell the story of your life as a researcher highlighting past, present, and future research topics as well as the methods you use.
Teaching Philosophies/Teaching Portfolios: Good teaching philosophies and portfolios highlight your strength as a teacher including the pedagogy you employ, the curriculum you develop, and how you evaluate the efficacy of your teaching.
As employers in other industries have increased their use of online and social media in finding and vetting candidates so to has academia. Entities like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. are all potential outlets for creating an online presence. It is also common for graduate students in particular to create their own websites highlighting their research, teaching, and service. At the very least check out:
Google+: An easy way to create a visible presence on the web using one of Google's own tools.
LinkedIn: We often get asked whether or not academics use LinkedIn? Many do and it is quite common for professional associations to form LinkedIn groups. LinkedIn also has high Google search recogniziability so when someone Google searches your name your LinkedIn profile should appear close to the top of search results. Here's how to get started on LinkedIn.
Academia.edu: This entity is sometimes referred to as the LinkedIn for researchers. Post research, publications, etc. and follow other researchers/scholars who are doing the same. Each time someone Google searches your name Academia.edu will let you know a search has occurred.