Career Builder - Frequently Asked Questions

Jul 20, 2007
Career Builder - Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can I search by type of job?

A: Yes. You can choose up to three job categories (for example, consultant or professional services) that fit your search using the "Modify this Search" option or, once you have search results, you can use the "Zoom in" feature in the left-hand column of your screen. You can also "Zoom in" on company name, city name, state name, or pay/salary.

Q: Can I search a geographical area?

A: Yes. However, location choices are optional. If you type in a city and state, Careerbuilder will automatically search within approximately a 30-mile radius of that specific city.

To change the radius size, use the "Modify this Search" option. Here, you can select a radius area of 5, 10, 20, 30, or 50 miles from your specified city (you can choose up to three city/state locations). Again, if you have search results based on city/state, you can then use the tabs at the top of the results screen (also labeled 5 miles, 10 miles, etc.) to focus your search.

Q: Why is it that when I search for a particular city, I get other cities around the area I chose?

A: The search engine returns results for an area of approximately 30 square miles surrounding your identified search city. Unfortunately, this sometimes results in nearby cities being included in your search. You may eliminate jobs in those outlying cities from your search results by designating a radius area (see Can I search a geographical area?)

If you notice that results for a particular city are repeatedly shown in your job search, you may eliminate those results by adding a subtraction sign [-] to your keywords field. For example, if you were looking for positions in Manhattan, NY, but did not want jobs in Brooklyn, you would add -Brooklyn to the keywords section in the job search.

Please note that there is no space between "-" and the city name.

Q: I know of a specific job opening in my area but when I search for it, it is not there. Why not?

A.: Most often this is because the employer has not posted the position on This is an advertising service, and employers are charged a fee to include their positions. If you are aware of a position, we recommend contacting the organization's human resources officer (or the hiring authority, if there is no human resources department) to request a copy of the job description and the interview procedures. In addition, you may use ACA's Preferred Job Listings, also featured on the Job Center page.

Q: Can I look for jobs only within a specific salary range?

A: Yes. The "Modify this Search" feature lets you choose the pay ranges you want to see. If you do not select any, all applicable jobs will show.

Note: Many major corporations are prohibited from showing salaries online, so if you check the box that reads "Exclude jobs that don't include salary information," jobs from these major corporations will not be identified in your search results.

Q: Can I use education as a search criterion?

A: Yes. In the "Modify this Search" feature you can choose your highest degree. The ACA specialty searches include only advanced degrees as the default for the search criteria; however, if you want to see jobs for your degree and also include all lower degrees, you can check the box underneath that reads "Include all lower degrees." If you do not check the box, you will only see jobs with the degree you selected.

Q: What are keywords and what is the best way to use them?

A: Keywords are specific words or phrases that are used to search for a job. A search looks for these words in job postings and, if it finds them, includes the posting in the user search results. The more keywords that are used, the more closely the job will match your criteria.

For example, if you type the word counselor into a search, literally thousands of results will be returned to you. But if you type the words counselor and substance abuse, there will be fewer but more useful results.

You can use any mix of upper- and lowercase characters; the keyword field is not case sensitive. To search for an exact phrase, keywords must have quotation marks around the phrase. So, to search for postings containing the exact phrase substance abuse counselor, you can type the exact phrase, within quotation marks, as your search criterion.

Example: "substance abuse counselor"

To eliminate certain words from your search, you can use the minus (-) symbol with no space before the word that you would like to exclude. If you do not want nurse to be included in your search results, you can use the following keyword format:


This will prevent any job postings that contain nurse from appearing in your search.

Example: "substance abuse counselor" –nurse

If a word is essential to generate the results you want, you can include it by putting a plus (+) sign in front of it. So if licensed is essential in your search, you can use the following keywords:


Q: How are search results sorted?

A: The default sort is by "Relevance," which is computed by the system based on several factors and reflects the likelihood that the information will be an appropriate match to your inquiry. Items with the highest "Relevance" are listed at the top of the search results. You can also sort information according to when the item was last updated by changing the "Sort by" to "date" (this appears in the upper-right-hand corner of your search results screen). The most recent item is then listed first. You can also search or "Zoom in" by job category (see Can I search by type of job?)

Q: My search results did not match my keywords. Why?

A: There are several reasons why this may be the case. (a) You did not enclose your keyword(s) in double quotes, and the search mechanism located words related to your keyword(s) but not the exact keyword itself. (b) The employer who posted the job chose to display a shortened version of the job's description, and the missing keyword can only be found in the portion of the job description not displayed. (c) The job description contains your keyword(s) but not in the context you were expecting. For example, you may enter the keyword phrase "college counselor" and receive a job posting for a college counselor that contains the phrase "You will need a degree from an accredited college to be a counselor…" If this is the case, make sure you have selected a job description as part of your search criteria.

Q: How can I make the search engine find the exact phrase?

A: In the "Modify this Search" feature, you may select the way in which you want to use the keywords in your search. If you select ANY WORDS, you will see jobs that contain at least one of the keywords you listed. With ALL WORDS or EXACT PHRASE selected, the resulting jobs must contain all of the keywords or the exact phrase you listed. We have attempted to find the best keywords/phrases for your counseling specialty with the ACA Specialty Searches; however, you may find a keyword/phrase more suitable for your specific employment needs. If this is the case, please let us know, and we can modify our specialty searches to benefit all ACA members. Forward your suggestions by contacting Rebecca Daniel-Burke at

Please note: ACA specialty searches have been designed with specific "defaults." These defaults work only on the initial search results. If you use other tools associated with Careerbuilder after this initial search, the defaults will not be active. The defaults include specific keywords/phrases, degrees (graduate degree), and employment type (full-time, part-time, contractor).

Q: Why are so many social worker positions coming up when I search for counselor positions? Should I apply for them anyway?

A: Just as you should not judge a book by its cover, you should be careful to avoid judging a job by its title. If a position is titled "Social Worker" but came up on your search, then read the job description. In many cases, an LPC is listed as an appropriate background. Even if it is not, if the job sounds like something that would be appropriate for your professional training, then go ahead and apply. Most advertisements describe the "perfect" candidate, who sometimes does not exist in reality. Because of this, many career professionals refer to "the 50% rule": If you meet 50% of the requirements, apply.

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