Of course I suggest point #4 as being a strong one as a good recruiter can get past most HR red tape and right into the hiring managers hands AND then provide you feedback as you go through the process!  Of course you have to be a fit for the client – but if you are, the recruiter will guide you through the “Mine Field”.

What is the hidden job market?  Everyone knows you can find jobs posted on the internet on all the job sites, but how many people are trolling those sites? Millions! 427,000 resumes are posted on Monster every week.

Here are the numbers: 1,000 individuals will see a job post, 200 will begin the application process, 100 will complete the application, 75 of those 100 resumes will be screened out by either the ATS or a recruiter, 25 resumes will be seen by the hiring manager, 4 to 6 will be invited for an interview, 1 to 3 of them will be invited back for final interview, 1 will be offered that job and 80 percent of those receiving an offer will accept it (Talent Function Group LLC).

Your chances of even getting an interview are infinitesimal.  So what can you do to move your job search?

  1. Network with everyone you know – ask them for names of two more people they can introduce you to.  Keep track of all your contacts in an Excel spreadsheet.  First, list all your current connections: family, friends, past colleagues, current colleagues, past supervisors, personal accountant, personal lawyer, hairdresser, masseuse, trainer, etc.  Then keep updating the list as you follow the rest of the tips below.
  2. Expand your network – If you feel you are constrained by the few number of people you know, expand your network by joining a professional association, an alumni association, or a club.  Follow your interests.  Join a group of like-minded people who enjoy doing the same things as you, whether that may be playing tennis, poker, hiking, biking, museum going, concert going, etc.
  3. Write directly to employers – Do your research and find out the names and titles of people two levels above your job position at the companies where you would like to work.  Write directly to them expressing interest in their career advice and learning more about their company and their industry.  You are not looking for a job.  You are requesting 15-20 minutes of their time, either by phone or live, to share information.
  4. Work with a search firm – If you are in a technical field, or at the executive or C-suite level, develop a relationship with one or more search firms that specialize in your field.  While search firms work for the company and not for you, it does help to get known by the search firms in your industry so they know who you are and what you have to offer.
  5. Search online ads for interesting or relevant companies (even though they don’t have a job for you) and write to the person two levels above you to get the information meeting.