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Boolean Search Operators:

Operator

Definition

Example

Quotes

Placing quotation marks around a search term or phrase limits your search to that exact term or phrase. Without the quotes, your search engine may return all results that contain each separate word.

"project manager"

AND

Placing AND between your keywords will return results that only include both or all your keywords. This will limit your search results.

engineer AND "project manager"

OR

Placing OR between your search keywords or terms will broaden your search results by returning all possible combinations of your search terms.

engineer OR "project manager"

NOT

Placing NOT between your search keywords excludes the term after NOT from your search. Any result that has the search option you excluded will not show up in your results.

engineer NOT "project manager"

Parenthesis

Parenthesis can be used to combine other Operators for a more complex search. The keyword(s) within the parenthesis will be given priority. The example given returns results that contain both software engineer and software architect.

software AND (engineer OR architect)

Asterisk

The asterisk can be used for a root word, stem, or truncation. The asterisk is a time-saver so you don't have to write out long, complicated search terms. Most job boards will recognize the asterisk, but not all search engines do.

admin* = administration, administrator, administer, administered, etc.

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How to do a Boolean Search:

A step-by-step guide to using Boolean Search to find more candidates.

1. 

Pick your search terms.

1.1 

List the names of the role you want to fill.

List the names of the role you want to fill.

Write down the terms you want to use to search for candidates. If you are looking for a project manager, data analyst, and 3D artist, for example, write those terms down where you can refer to them easily.

2. 

Launch your browser.

2.1 
Open a Google search.

Click on the Google icon on your desktop.

3. 
3.1 

Type in your search terms using quotation marks.

Type in your search terms using quotation marks.

By placing your search term in quotation marks, you are limiting the search results to that exact term or phrase. For example, "3D artist."

If your search term is a single word, there is no need for the quotation marks.

Use AND or & between terms to limit your search results further. The search engine will return results including both terms.

For example, "3D artist" & illustrator.

Use OR to broaden your search. The search engine will return results containing all possible combinations of your search terms.

For example, "3D artist" OR illustrator.

Use NOT to exclude any term from your results.

For example, "3D artist" NOT illustrator.

How to Find Employees

A complete guide to finding employees.

FAQs:

For example: "project manager" AND engineer. This will limit all search results to include both the phrase "project manager" and the keyword "engineer" in each search result.

What is Boolean search in recruitment?

A Boolean Search allows recruiters to combine keywords to broaden, limit, or define their searches to more closely reflect exactly what they are looking for.

What are the 3 Boolean Search Operators used for Boolean searching?

  • AND.
  • OR.
  • NOT.

Can you do a Boolean search on Google?

Yes. Boolean Search Operators can be used on just about any search engine. However, using Google rather than a job board will return search results not only for candidate profiles, but also for articles, webpages, and reports. It is important to note that not all search engines will recognize all Boolean Search Operators. For example, the asterisk is not supported on LinkedIn.

What is a Boolean string?

A Boolean string is a combination of keywords and phrases joined together by AND, OR, or NOT.

The asterisk can be used for a root word, stem, or truncation and will return any word that begins with root or stem that is truncated by the asterisk. Therefore, the asterisk is a time-saver so you don't have to write out long, complicated search terms. For example, admin* will return search options containing any combination of administration, administrator, administer, administered, etc.

By placing the Boolean Search Operator NOT in front of the keyword or phrase you want to exclude. For example, searching for "software engineer" NOT architect will return search results that only contain the key phrase "software engineer" and will exclude all results that include the keyword "architect".

Does Boolean search work on LinkedIn?

Yes, but LinkedIn does not support all Boolean Search Operators, such as the curly quotation marks (only the standard, straight quotes are supported) and the asterisk.

What does putting search terms in quotations do?

Placing quotation marks around a search term or phrase limits your search to that exact term or phrase. Without the quotes, your search engine may return all results that contain each separate word. For example, searching for software engineer will return results that contain the keywords "software", "engineer", and "software engineer". However, searching for "software engineer" will return only those results that contain the phrase "software engineer" and will exclude all other results.

Who invented Boolean?

The Boolean search method was invented by George Boole in the 19th century.

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