The advertised job market is a fickle place and with between 70% and 80% of all jobs unadvertised, it is essential to get yourself known by headhunters, recruiters and decision makers. Whilst cold-emailing is not such an effective method of contacting potential employers, there are a number of other highly valuable ways of connecting with these individuals. Here are 4 unique ways to network with a recruiter. 1. Identify the decision makers It is important to identify the decision maker(s) within the company or companies that you would like to work for. There are a number of ways of doing this; via a Google search, the company’s website, on LinkedIn or by contacting the company directly and asking. In some cases, the decision maker will not be anyone in the HR department, but an individual higher up the ranks with more control. Therefore, doing your research is key and could put you in direct contact with this individual. 2. Find “warm” leads A good way of connecting with key individuals is via a mutual friend or contact, (i.e. on LinkedIn) so ensuring that you have fully utilised your existing contacts is the first step. Sometimes, a friend of a friend can be the closest link to the person you want to reach, so connecting and engaging with them can be very advantageous. Therefore, whilst ensuring you have taken the time to understand your existing connections and how they may be able to help you in your hunt for the perfect job, it is important not to neglect the power of new connections. After all, new connections equal new opportunities – and this is
explained in great detail by Mark S. Granovetter in his paper, “The Strength of Weak Ties”. 3. Introduce yourself Introducing yourself properly to others online is something that is often overlooked. Did you receive a personal message with the last connection request you received (or sent) on LinkedIn? The answer in many cases is “no”, and whilst you may have accepted the request there are many times when you may not due to a lack of understanding who the individual is. When connecting with new people it
is important to include a personal message explaining, very briefly, who you are, why you’re connecting with the person and, in some instances, what you can do for them. If you’re connecting with a decision maker regarding a potential job then request to learn more about that job, or if there isn’t a specific job that you are aware of, request to learn more about the department that you would like to work for. By doing this you might gain a much better insight into the company, how they operate and what kind of a position might be available for you. Be sure to sign off all communications with a call to action. This might be your desire to have an informal interview, or as mentioned above, a wish to learn more about a job or department. But remember, do not jump in with a direct question such as “I’d love to have a job working at your company” or attach your CV to the first (or first couple of) emails. 4. Following up It is essential to be active with your job hunt and the networking process as a whole, so ensuring that you follow up on your communications is very important. Be sure to follow up after 1 – 2 weeks if you haven’t heard anything back. But fear not, done in the right way this will not look too desperate. If the decision maker is not in a position to engage with you or offer you a job then they will tell you, they’re adults after all. Finally, be sure to contribute something new to the conversation when following up. Tell the individual what you have been up to – if you have a blog then this is a perfect time to update them on a recent article of interest. Lastly, be friendly and avoid any kind of a desperate tone. If you found this post helpful we would appreciate it if you shared it with your connections, so please Tweet about it by clicking the button below! Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter and our LinkedIn page by clicking on the buttons below!