What Tools Are Available To Help With Researching Companies For My Job Search?
Effective job hunting requires in-depth knowledge of the companies you are considering. One of the ways you can acquire this information is through the use of a reference tool like an online business database.

Data Axle Reference Solutions (formerly called ReferenceUSA) contains information on 60 million businesses in the U.S. to create a list of potential opportunities! You can filter companies by geography, size, sales volume, type of business, and other criteria. 

Reference Solutions eliminates the need to scour multiple websites or perform complicated searches. The data within Reference Solutions is used to power the top five Internet search engines. Their data is continuously collected, verified and updated. 

Available Databases:
Reference Solutions contains ten unique searchable databases. The databases below are typically used in job searches.

  • The U.S. Businesses database contains data on the more established companies. 
  • The U.S. New Business database adds more than 50,000 new businesses, startups each week.
  • The U.S. Jobs/Internships database integrates with Indeed.com and provides information about the company. 

In addition to looking for positions online and networking, developing a list of companies based on your selection criteria should also be part of your job search. By setting up the appropriate filter, you can easily arrive at a targeted list of companies. This will help you focus your efforts on the best possible potential employers to meet your requirements. 

Searching the Database:
You can select from an expansive list of appropriate selection criteria to manage your search in Reference Solutions. The criteria range from very specific industry types, radius of location from an address, company size and the list goes on.

Once you complete a search based on your criteria, Reference Solutions will give you a manageable list of companies that you can use to target your search.
You can use this list for a targeted job search of these companies by using Indeed to send you alerts if a certain job becomes available from one of these firms.

This targeted list of companies can be exported into Excel. The detailed business listing contains the management directory, company descriptions, financial information, public filings and even news articles. Using the Management Directory in conjunction with LinkedIn, you may be able to make contact and possibly develop a relationship with someone from the leadership team. Who knows where that may lead!

All this data will help you determine if a company will be a good fit for you. 

Accessing Reference Solutions:
Access to the databases is by subscription only. Most libraries carry a subscription to Reference Solutions. Check with your local public library to see if they subscribe to Reference Solutions (many also still call it ReferenceUSA). If your local public library subscribes to Reference Solutions, you can typically access the library’s website and find the link for Reference Solutions, then you're on your way!

CRC Members may make an appointment for one-on-one assistance with the Online Job & Research Specialists at Career Resource Center to walk through a demo and learn more about incorporating the Reference Solutions database into your job search!

- Helen Ho, Online Job & Research Specialist, CRC
Virtual Appointments with Advisors & Specialists are now available for Members. To schedule an appointment or to learn about membership, contact Kelly Clark.
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