Effective Job Search Techniques: Expanding Your Reach Beyond the Internet

You’ve prepared a great resume; now, where should you use it? Many job seekers use the Internet as a primary source of job listings. However, you will see that there are many reasons to diversify your search.

Make the most effective use of your time using these job search method findings and success rates, as published by a major career research firm, as a guide:

· 69% Effective – Conducting a Career Search in the Unadvertised Market. There are several reasons why this method works best of all. First of all, employers who are NOT posting jobs are also not swamped with resumes! Therefore, your application can more easily stand out. Second, applying to companies where you would like to work is flattering to a potential employer. Last of all, assuming that these companies are doing well in the global marketplace, they will have an ongoing need for personnel at all levels. The bottom line? Strongly indicate your interest, follow up, be patient, and you might just be first in line for the next opening.

· 47% Effective – Traditional, In-Person Visits to Employers / Knocking on Doors. Remember the term “pounding the pavement?” This slogan was popular for a reason—it is quite effective! One reason for this is that job seekers are much harder to ignore or turn down in person than they are with email or phone calls. The other? See above—employers are most interested in candidates that target their company specifically.

· 33% – Networking with Friends, Alumni, Family, etc. Of course, it is frequently “who you know” that is as crucial as “what you know”—meaning that a recommendation can carry the day. While you need not tell the dry cleaner or babysitter that you are looking for employment, getting the word out in your professional circle can work wonders. If you don’t have a circle, now’s the time to create one! Join an industry association.

· 5-28% – Using Employment Agencies or Search Firms. A recruiter by definition locates candidates for a client company (who typically pays the recruiter’s fee). Therefore, the recruiter is working for the company, not the candidate, and is seeking only people who fit the company’s requirements. Use this type of avenue as a part of your search, but not as a complete solution.

· 7-12% – Answering Newspaper, Trade Journal , and Industry-Specific Website Ads. Posted ads of any kind by an employer are a draw to job seekers, and therefore produce more responses—and more resumes. While this method can work, keep in mind that you are playing a numbers game against all other applicants.

· 4% – Internet-Only Searches. As mentioned before, posting a job opening on the Internet practically ensures that an employer will be inundated with resumes. While it is true that a compelling, keyword-rich resume can trigger a response, the sheer probability factor outweighs many possible advantages of relying solely on this method.

The key? In job searching, as in your financial life, it can pay to diversify. Refrain from limiting yourself to one method by using the Internet as only part of your overall strategy. You could soon find yourself singing a new tune about effective searching—while working in your new job!

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