Networking for your career
There are more vacancies in the hidden jobs market than there are advertised vacancies. Employers have many reasons for not advertising these vacancies, including the fact they may know somebody who could do the job or they ask their contacts for recommendations. You could be that ‘somebody’.
Whether you’re actively looking for a job or not, you’ll find yourself in situations, both formal and informal, where your networking skills could enhance your chances.
In face to face situations at job and careers fairs, conferences and workshops
It can feel daunting to walk into a room full of employers, delegates and others but don’t worry, they're there to promote their organisation and answer your questions. Try these tips:
- Go prepared: Look at who will be there and research those you want to approach.
- Talk to employers: Introduce yourself and explain what you can offer them.
- Show you’re interested: Use your research of the employer to ask good questions and ask for details of any department or type of role you’re interested in.
- Keep in touch: If you collected business cards and leaflets, send thank you emails after the event and ask if you can connect on LinkedIn.
- Connect with others: Connect with and follow employers, speakers and delegates.
Follow our news and social media pages, we regularly post news about careers and job fairs.
Use LinkedIn to create a great impression
Using social media isn’t just about searching for job opportunities, it's also about creating a good impression. Recruiters use LinkedIn to search for people who have the skill set they’re looking for. The following tips will help you get the most out of LinkedIn:
- Create a professional looking bio: Complete your profile and use a professional-looking photo. Employers search through profiles for the right candidate.
- Gather LinkedIn endorsements for your skills: Endorsements are an easy way to list your skills especially when other people validate them.
- Ask for recommendations: Written recommendations from people you have worked go further to endorse your skills.
- Connect with prominent people in your sector: The more connections you have, the higher profile you’ll have but make sure your connections are valuable and expand your network.
- Find out about specific employers: It’s more likely to be up-to-date with their latest news and allows you to build insight into what’s important for that business.
Use Twitter and Facebook to support your career
Employers are unlikely to search through Twitter and Facebook for suitable candidates, but they may come across your account if they're researching your background. Look after your online presence to support your career.
Other opportunities to network
Widen your network by: