The hidden job market leads to jobs 58-62 percent of the time. There is less competition with the hidden job market because very few know about the positions. Furthermore, only 15 percent of all jobs are advertised. Employers rely on employee referrals and other methods the other 85 percent of the time.
These are the four job search strategies that work:
1. Targeted Job Search
A targeted search means identifying specific areas to pursue that will generate the best results while allowing you to have control over your search. Today’s economy dictates that job hunters be more knowledgeable, determined and focused than ever before to reach their goals. Learn all you can about the companies for which you are interested.
Before you start any search use tools like Vault or The Muse for an overview of the organization and its industry profile. Research all you can about the company. Visit the company’s website to ensure that you understand the breadth of what they do. Review the organization’s background, values, vision and mission statement. Learn about their products, services and client base. Read recent press releases for insight into projected growth and stability. Go to LinkedIn to find the hiring manager’s name. Review trade or business publications. Seek perspective and insight into their industry standing. Develop a question list. Prepare to ask about the organization or position based on your research.
2. Face-to-Face Networking
Did you know that you are five times more likely to be hired if you have been referred by an employee than if you apply without knowing anyone in the organization? You’ll build stronger relationships and reach people in the offline world you’ve only chatted with on the computer. Communicating in person showcases your personality and helps people genuinely connect with you. It leads to learning more about the industry and might even get a job or job lead.
Make a list of people you know. Associations and school alumni groups are very useful in networking and often their websites have job postings for members. If you have worked for an employer in the past, look for an alumni group for that employer on LinkedIn groups. You’ll find many ways to connect with other alumni from FPU this way as well.
Networking – learn all the ins and outs of networking and professional networking etiquette
3. Social Media Networking
Social media can connect you to people or businesses you are interested in locally, nationally and internationally. By connecting with peers, your network will be accessible and available to you when you need it. Your connections will also be able to contact you and stay current with your professional updates.
Social media can also help you build relationships with key influential people in your industry that you may not otherwise meet. LinkedIn and Twitter are useful platforms for building rapport with people in your chosen field or specialization. LinkedIn has changed the follow-up process that takes place after networking events. Rather than exchanging business cards, you can simply take a picture of a person’s business card, look them up on LinkedIn and connect with them to be reminded of what they look like, their industry, experience and more.
With 95 percent of recruiters using LinkedIn to vet candidates and 79 percent of them hiring someone through LinkedIn, it is essential that your online public presence is professional and reflective of your experience, skills and abilities. When seeking new opportunities or looking to make a career change, your online image can help to set you apart from other applicants. You can even improve your reputation if you’re connected with industry leaders and members on social media.
Social media platforms, especially Twitter and Facebook, have become known as the first source for news and events. There are many business leaders who often share great, informative articles about the current state of business, marketing and innovation. You can also find some of the LinkedIn influences recognized by your industry. Oftentimes, they write excellent blog posts or articles to share their insights and experiences. See the LinkedIn and Social Media page for more tips.
Whatever you do, always be grateful for those who are willing to help and thank them for their time and assistance. This goes a long way towards making them want to help you in the future. Every meeting you get and the opportunities that result will be because of your networking efforts and establishing relationships. Write a thank you note, keep in contact—and pay it forward. What you give you get in return.
4. Traditional Job Search
A traditional job search is simply applying for jobs that are announced on an employer’s website, on job aggregators like Indeed or Glassdoor, job boards like FPU’s College Central Network and classified ads such as Craigslist. A word of caution: protect your privacy against scams, keep a low profile if you’re already employed and make sure to only use about 20 percent of your time searching this way. The other 80 percent of your time should be spent through a targeted job search and networking.
Don’t forget to track your job search efforts. It’s a pain, but it will provide you with valuable information on which job sites are most effective for you and which are a waste of your time, which employers are most interested in you and those that don’t seem so interested. This will help you be more efficient in your job search. There are several free job search tracking tools out there such as College Central Network, Glassdoor Job Tracker and Startwire. Jibber Jobber has several optional paid upgrade features, but the basic features are free.
Are you getting a good offer? What is your job worth? These sites can help you know for sure:
- Salary Expert – learn how much you should be paid
- Salary Wizard – find your customized salary
- Glassdoor Salaries – search salaries and compensation based on today's job market
- LinkedIn Salary Tool – discover your earning potential
Moving to a new city can be tough. Getting the right information can make it easier. If your new job requires you to move, these sites may be helpful
- Home Fair – obtain a salary calculator, city reports and cost of living for different cities
- LiveCareer Relocation – find a collection of the best relocation and moving tools and resources to assist job-seekers who are considering relocating
- City-Data.com – obtain detailed, informative profiles for every city in the United States
- Movoto – learn about your new neighborhood
- Neighborhood Scout – find demographic information and more about your new city