The Traditional Job Search is Dead
Note: This post was originally published in August of 2015 and was updated in May of 2020.
If you want to stay employed, you will need to use new strategies and tactics to deal with the disruption that social media and technology have had on the job search.
Many companies no longer post positions publicly. Depending on who you talk to, 50-80% of positions are no longer listed. Check out these articles:
- Why The Best Jobs Are Never Advertised And How To Find Them
We will soon be living in a post-coronavirus world – or at least we hope it will be soon. Many have been thrown out of their jobs for the first time in many years; for many others, for the first time ever.
You must be careful in understanding how the hiring process has changed.
Risk Mitigation in the Hiring Process
When a company needs to fill a position, they want to mitigate risk. In the post-coronavirus world, risk mitigation will become even more important.
The safest hire is an internal candidate. Many large companies may post their position publicly, even though they already have an internal candidate. An internal candidate is a known quantity with a proven track record. The company knows their level of compensation. The internal candidate does not need to be onboarded. Hopefully, you can see why an internal candidate is preferable.
The next safest hire is an external candidate with a referral from an existing employee. A candidate with an employee referral will almost always be called for an interview. Employee referrals are golden. History will tell the employer that employees who come with an employee referral have a higher retention rate with the company. Remember what I wrote above about risk mitigation.
These two groups of candidates make up over 90% of hires.
Does this change your attitude and strategy for your job search?
Let’s discuss a new strategy that I call the Social Job Search.
Social Job Search Defined
There are a few clearly defined steps to the Social Job Search:
- Defining your personal brand—I published my book “Personal Branding for Baby Boomers – What it is, how to manage it, and why it’s no longer optional” back in 2015. Who are you? What talents and skills do you want the world to know about?
- Implement your personal brand—Create an online presence using LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, e-books, blog posts, and other mediums that promote your personal brand. This is all about making it easy to be found. Listen to the podcast episode How to Pivot Industries Using a Blog and a Podcast [Podcast] when I interview Daniel Elizalde about how he used his blog and podcast to build his brand.
- Build a target list of companies that potentially need your services to solve their problems. Who do you want to work for next?
- Network strategically with recruiters, hiring managers, and potential peers at your target companies. Make yourself known to people who can either hire you or affect the decision to hire you. Networking in the post-coronavirus world is different. You will have to focus on doing this online. Check out my podcast episode with Hannah Morgan called Career Sherpa, Hannah Morgan, Teaches Online Networking [Podcast]
- Investigate your target companies—are these companies a good place to work? Is their public reputation true or just a facade? You will need to properly vet these companies. In the post-coronavirus world, you need to understand whether or not the company and industry will survive.
- Negotiate the hiring process—act as a corporate negotiator to discover what the real issues are that the company is having so you can properly position yourself to be hired. I defined this process in the negotiator job search series.
What You Do Not Know Will Hurt You
I cannot emphasize enough that doing your homework is critical. However, do not suffer from what I refer to as MSU (Make Stuff Up) disorder. There will be a lot of things about the hiring process that you will not know without having a contact on the inside. These include:
- When a position will be available
- Whether the position will be posted
- What it means if they do post the position
- How do they select candidates to screen
- Who does the phone screens
Logic may tell you will figure all of this out, but you will more than likely never be able to answer any of these questions without an inside connection. You can read more in my post 5 Things You Will Never Know About the Hiring Process
The days of the traditional job search are over. May it Rest in Peace!