Do You Utilize the Hidden Job Market?

Even though the news reminds us every night that more and more people are out of work, I am here to tell you that there are jobs being fill every day – in the hidden job market – it’s just a matter of knowing where to look and how to find them.

While estimates vary as to how big the hidden job market really is, most people tracking these things agree that it makes up about 75% of total employment opportunities. Yet, many job seekers have their heads stuck in the job board postings that make up about 3% to 5% of job opportunities, and really yield few results. So you see, you have a much higher chance of landing the right job when you seek out the hidden job market – there are many more jobs and there is much less competition.

How do you find the hidden job market?

  • Focus on several target companies you would like to work for, rather than on specific job openings
  • Research these companies, thoroughly, finding out what their challenges might be and learning about the people who can help you get in the door – look on the Internet, in general publications and trade journals
  • Look for articles written by people who work at your target companies and begin building relationships with them by email, LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook – ask them to recommend others who might talk with you
  • Talk with vendors, customers and employees of your target company – they can often tell you about upcoming jobs and opportunities (these are the hidden sources in the hidden job market)
  • Finally, call the target manager at each of your chosen companies – briefly explain who you are, what you know about their business, and how you might help with some of the challenges they are facing. Ask for a 12-minute meeting so you can demonstrate you ability to contribute to the bottom line – stick to 12-minutes. Be prepared to offer ideas and solutions the manager needs.

Using this approach can lead a manager to create a new job for you, once you’ve shown how talented and self-motivated you are.

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