Networking may not guarantee that you’ll get the job, but it certainly can help you get your foot in the door and even push your resume to the top of the stack. It’s these advantages that make creating a strong network that consists of family, friends, former classmates, colleagues, and clients so important. There are several ways that networking can pave the way to better job opportunities.
Networking is one of the best ways to find out about new job opportunities – and it takes little work on your side. In fact, staying connected with your contacts via social media platforms, like LinkedIn and Facebook may be all you need to do. It’s becoming more commonplace for employees to post links for new job opportunities on their personal social media pages. Seeing these posts will give you a jumpstart to submit your resume before many of your competitors. These posts also open the door for you to connect with your contact to let them know you’re interested in the position.
Employers trust employee referrals so much that many now offer a referral bonus for every new hire an employee brings in. In fact, studies show that 30 percent of all new hires come from referrals. Asking one of your network connections to make a referral on your behalf can greatly improve your chances of landing the job. Be sure not to nag the person to make the referral, however. Simply make the request and leave it up to them to follow through. You don’t want to jeopardize your ability to use this connection in the future.
One of the best things about maintaining a professional network is that you always have a place to turn to for advice. So, don’t forget to seek out help when you need it. Your contacts can provide resume advice, hold a mock interview for you, or help you develop a career path that matches your unique goals. When seeking professional advice make sure you turn to people who you respect and who have at least the same amount of experience as you do, if not more.
Insider Vantage Point
Having a network connection that works for the company you are interested in is golden. These contacts have insider knowledge that no one else can provide. They can provide resume tips and explain how the hiring process worked for them. If you get called in for an interview, be sure to ask your contact questions about his interview experience and for any information they have about the interviewers. Having this insider information about the interview process and the interviewer can be paramount when it comes to preparing for your interview.
When it comes to using professional references having a large network is extremely beneficial. You should never use the same references every time you apply for a job. Instead, you should pick and chose which reference provide the greatest benefit for each job. Using a reference that is connected to the company, such as a current employer or client, can make a huge impact on your chances of being hired. Don’t forget to always check with a reference before using him to get his approval and to make sure you have his updated contact information.
Of course, there are always those rare opportunities where a network contact will directly connect you to the hiring manager. Two things have to happen for this to take place. First, your contact must know you well enough to put his reputation on the line. Second, your contact must be in a position where he has direct access to the hiring manager. While it’s not every day these opportunities come along, it’s also not out of the realm of possibility. This fact is why it’s so important to nurture your connection carefully and consistently.
Grow Your Network
Network connections also have the unique ability to help you grow your current network exponentially. When utilized correctly, these connections can invite you to networking events, pass your contact information on to others, and make introductions on your behalf. It’s important to realize that networking is a two-way street. If you want to grow your own network, it’s important to offer support to your current connections when possible.
Building your network should begin as soon as you start college and continue until the day you retire, and maybe even longer. While networking does take some time and effort on your part, the rewards are well worth it. After all, the connections you make today may help you land the job of your dreams tomorrow. Discover additional ways to improve your job opportunities by contacting GoResumes today.