Today, the success of your job search depends on the strength of your network. Studies show that there is only a three percent chance of a response back when blindly applying through a job board. Most resumes are eliminated through the company’s automated tracking system (ATS). On the other hand, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has generally stated that 70 percent of all jobs are found through networking. Therefore, the key to a successful job search is to utilize your professional network.
As you build and reach out to your network during your job search, keep in mind that there are ways to shorten the process. Focus on the following key activities that can speed up your job search:
- Create a list of your top 10-20 companies that you respect and admire and that are located in your targeted location. Start here with these companies that inspire you as this will motivate you to learn more and have more to discuss.
- Use social media to research your targeted companies and to find connections via platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can follow companies on LinkedIn and look for shared connections while learning more about them.
- Create a LinkedIn profile or review your existing one to make sure that it’s updated for maximum networking and job search opportunities. Many employers and recruiters use LinkedIn as a resource to find potential candidates.
- Set up informational interviews to find out more about a profession and get career advice, while also building your network. You are not asking for a job but rather seeking information and guidance.
- Treat your job search like a job – research ways to improve your job search skills and practice to increase your confidence. Job searching is a skill that gets better with practice.
- Find ways to get experience by reaching out to companies for internship or externship opportunities; working as a temporary employee is another option that could lead to a permanent position.
- Network in your community by attending alumni events, former player meetings, game watch days, or local business events, which could lead to job opportunities. You will need to put yourself out there as you job search.
- Volunteer your time as a way to get experience, increase your skills, and build your network. Be sure to include this information on your resume as it counts.
Searching for a job is a process that takes time, effort, and commitment. Reach out to your professional network and use the key activities listed above to speed up your job search and land that position.