Life is full of decisions.
Often, they involve stepping out of the box and making life-changing choices.
Nothing illustrates this more than our choices around employment. For instance, if you have decided to resign or you’ve been made redundant, it’s important to find a replacement position that is a suitable next step. Our careers make up a big part of our lifestyle and identity and this raises the stakes, which can make job hunting feel challenging and stressful.
So, how do you actually find that new job?
There’s the more traditional job searching path, like looking for advertised positions, sending in applications and going through multiple sets of external Recruiter agency interviews to hopefully emerge as the most suitable candidate.
But there’s another way.
It’s called career networking and it will change your life for the better. Here’s how it works and why Recruiters won’t share this with you.
What is career networking?
Career networking is the use of personal, professional and academic contacts to aid you in job searching by widening your professional network.
Have you heard that saying: it’s all about WHO you know? This really rings true when it comes to career options. By meeting the right people through career networking and being endorsed by peers who know you, you’ll naturally come across great job opportunities and be presented with brands and companies that you’d love to work with.
How does career networking work?
While the traditional job searching path is very transactional, career networking is about nurturing lasting relationships, where people take the time to connect with you and understand you.
It can be as simple as a previous colleague vouching for your skillset, being at an event and being introduced to a manager looking for someone like you, or a contact recommending you for a position they heard about from their own network.
So, if you are looking for a career change or your next position, your career network can help you find the right connections within the industry or at a specific company, while avoiding the limitations of just relying on the job searching and Recruiter path.
5 benefits of career networking that Recruiters don’t want you to know
Career networking offers you a lot of benefits when it comes to looking for your next opportunity. Here’s why:
- Around 80% – 85% of jobs are not advertised
Think of it like an iceberg, where 15%-20% of jobs are above the waterline and the rest are below.
If you are job hunting for a job in a traditional way, then you will be competing for a small portion of all jobs – those positions that are advertised. This is why it can be difficult for career seekers to find and land their ideal new job. However, there is a hidden job market you can access. Knowing the right people can give you access to that ‘hidden’ 80% – 85% of jobs that most other candidates can’t even apply for.
- The typical recruitment process is a numbers game
The standard application process places you in a sea of applicants, which makes it hard for you to stand out. Then, if you make it through several rounds of interviews, it doesn’t automatically mean you’ll be successful because you’re still competing with other shortlisted candidates – all probably from the same Recruiter as you.
- A Recruiters’ priority is to create a shortlist of applicants
The truth behind external recruitment companies is that it doesn’t matter to them who they place into a role – at the end of the day, providing a shortlist of candidates is their only job because they work for their client and not for you.
So, without sounding cynical here, business reality means that, despite their best intentions, their main goal is to collect their recruitment fee after they provided the right number of matching candidates on their shortlist.
- Recruiters find people for jobs and not jobs for people
As brutal as this may sound, most external Recruiters are only interested in candidates when they have a recruitment brief to fill, rather than taking a proactive stance in marketing candidates to certain businesses that have vacancies. Most go by the adage, “they find people for jobs, not jobs for people.”
- Career networking will give you better control of your next professional move
If you have a strong career network, there is a greater chance for you to land a new job without relying on Recruiters, because your network will endorse you for a role. Naturally, this goes against everything a Recruiter will tell you as it takes them out of your career equation. This gives you better control over your career since you’re able to depend on the right connections.
Why career networking is important for your success
Not relying on the traditional recruitment route can significantly improve your career experience. Networking will help you meet prospective mentors, find future clients and identify people who can give you career support. Likewise, you will also play a role in endorsing others, too.
Amongst these professional networks, there is a sense of trust and reliability that potential employers value, and this is the edge you gain by building your career network. Your professional network can help you find valuable connections in the industry you are trying to break into or help you find leads for jobs at specific companies.
Career365 can help you with your next career move
At Career365, we provide career support for aspiring professionals like you through proactive services.
Our career consultants focus on you as an individual seeking career happiness.
We provide a host of resources, career books, online modules and coaching programs to support job seekers across a range of vocations and industries, supporting those who want to live a fully enriched career.
In particular our book, Career Networking, how to unlock the hidden job market, is a proven step-by-step process for honing your networking efforts, including when and how to connect with people for you career success. Wherever you are in your career, you can harness the power of networking to move to the next level.