Lets begin with some interesting stats*:
- According to the Wall Street Journal, 90% of jobs are filled through networking on one sort or another.
- Historically, men have become more likely to learn about opportunities through networking than women.
- 26.7% of external hires made by organizations came from referrals, making it the number one external source of hiring.
- 90% of recruiting firms do a Google search on candidates.
- 85% of hiring managers use social networking sites like LinkedIn to look for potential candidates who’ve been referred by other professionals.
I help job seekers find jobs through networking; by employing two different lists. A contact list and a target company list are both necessary in conducting a job search focused on the 80% of the jobs that are not advertised.
First, assemble a contact list of all the people you know. We’ll discuss this list in another blog posting. The second list that you’ll use is a list of target companies. This list involves a little imagination and research. If one of the people on your contact list is a librarian you’re a winner; if not, you’re about to add a new name to your contact list, because the library is a great place to get company names for your target company list.
Let’s say you are interested in a career in “high performance, high efficiency, home energy.” Ask your librarian how you find the companies in that market segment that are 25, 50 and 100 miles from your zip code. Maybe you are a truck driver want to know who are the 5 best trucking companies in your area to work for. Maybe you’re interested in a bigger paycheck, what are the best paying companies in your industry? Your librarian has that information right there, ready for you to use.
Of course you can use the Internet if you were traumatized when you were a child when you paid an overdue fee to a librarian. But, then you’ll have one less name on your contact list. Most librarians are nice, even if they insist on your speaking in a whisper.
Another way to find companies to put on your target company list is to do a keyword search with any of the job boards, like Monster or CareerBuilder. See what company names come up and then add any onto your list. Whenever anyone tells you about a job, put the company name on your list, even if you already have a contact at that company. You never know who can help and as someone wise once said, “Many hands make for light work.” What companies are in the news? If you like the company or are interested, put their name on the list.
You could have 25 to 50 names on your list of target companies, and that’s okay. You can have a lot more companies on your list. However, when you print out your list to show people, keep the printout to between 10 to 15 company names so that the reader isn’t overwhelmed. Then ask them if they have any contacts at any of these companies. If they don’t have any contacts at companies on your list, ask them if there are any companies that they could suggest for you to include on your list. This way your list is never stagnant but always growing and changing.