I don’t know what’s more difficult; trying to help the unemployed IT pro’s out there find quality jobs that align well with their career direction or telling them that I can’t help them because they enlisted the help of there spouse, friend or neighbor, and have had their resume forwarded around to many of the potential jobs before I ever spoke with them.
I know that every self proclaimed job search expert will tell you that “networking” is the best way to get a job, but what they really mean is that most people get their jobs through “networking”. The subtle difference being that most professions don’t have a robust number of recruiters that work within the specialty like IT (or Engineering, nursing, etc.). So in reality people get their jobs through their friends and neighbors by default.
So what you need from your network is quality contacts (no not your spouse’s friend’s brother who once worked at that company, but not within IT). Quality is someone that you know reasonably well who is currently employed by the company you’re interested in and will vouch for your skills/abilities to the hiring manager. Because if it has to travel through more than one set of hands to get to the Manager or they don’t vouch for you on some level their referral carries little to no weight, and many times company managers, who prefer not to waste their tim, will walk by your resume to view the vetted candidate’s from a recruiter.
So after hearing the news of the impending layoff, merger, outsourcing don’t start your networking efforts off by forwarding your resume to everyone you can think of because you may be doing harm to your job search prospects. Start by researching the market understanding what companies would need/want your skills and then make a plan of attack on how to reach out to them whether it be through a former co-worker, neighbor or maybe even your friendly neighborhood recruiter.
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