Does networking really work in the job search? Absolutely, positively and without a doubt YES! Just go to Google, and you will find article upon blog upon statistic proving that networking is the number one approach to job search success. Nearly every resource you uncover will state that networking is the key to at least 75-80% of all jobs secured today and many resources note a higher number than that. I would say that networking shouldn’t just be in the top five strategies you incorporate into your job search; it must be NUMBER ONE! Here are three examples that prove networking works and is the most vital component of any job search and future career management success.
1. Networking uncovers the hidden job market: Only a fraction of available job opportunities are posted online. Many opportunities are either still in the development stage within the departments or within the signature and company red-tape process. By the time those positions are posted, if they ever make it online at all, a candidate has already been chosen. Has that ever happened to you? Isn’t it frustrating? Wouldn’t you love to be the person the company choses? How, you ask, does a person find out about these positions that are filled before being posted online? NETWORKING! The candidate chosen capitalized on drive, creativity, great communication skills and savvy to connect with the hiring manager and close the deal.
2. Networking provides word-of-mouth marketing you just cannot buy: Hiring is a cumbersome process. Reading resumes, idenifying candidates for interviews and conducting interviews is rarely on the job description for most hiring managers. Direct referrals or recommendations from colleagues is a far more appealing approach for those who have a need for talent. Anyone who can facilitate the process and make the job for the hiring manager easier will be the squeaky wheel to get the oil–the job.
3. Networking estatiblishes you in your chosen profession: The more established your reputation is within your profession for a career, the more likely you will be noticed and recruited when seeking employment. It is your profession, say marketing, that will appreciate your skills the most. Your profession is where you will be remembered for your talent. And when seeking employment, the hiring managers within that profession are those who will make the hiring decisions. Company departments consistently look to their professional associations and organizations to post positions or “put the word out” for talent. The search for talent is more targeted within associations. Active association members knows the major contributors within the profession. A well established reputation within your chosen profession will provide you the most effective network available.
A effective and successful job search campaign cannot be successful without marketing. And networking is the number one marketing strategy towards a successful career. When seeking a job ask yourself where is the source or creation of the positions available today, who within your profession can provide you the best advice and direction, and where can you connect with the most influencial people within your profession. You find all of the answers through networking.