Job Hunting

Job Hunting IMG: via Shutterstock.

In news that is neither shocking nor unbelievable, most open positions cannot be found on job boards, help wanted ads or even company websites. It’s a practice that was put into play a long time ago, but many people still believe (or would at least like to) that blindly applying for jobs is an effective and efficient way of obtaining gainful employment. Unfortunately, it’s not.

Career matching site TheLadders found that only half of available positions are publicly posted, but the secrecy of the other 50% have little to do laziness and a lot to do with attracting the right candidate. Recruiters want a potential candidate to have two things: experience in the proper field and the desire for the job. Recruiters find that advertised positions attract the masses but not the qualified, making it difficult to wade through hundreds of applicants in hopes of finding a few “good” ones. The more attractive candidates are the ones they seek out themselves.

While most of these “hidden” jobs are at the upper-management level, it’s still common enough to see people in all positions hired in-house or because they knew someone who knew someone. Shankar Mishra, Vice President of Data Science and Analytics at TheLadders, stresses the importance of networking and using your online presence to attract recruiters and hiring managers.

“The conclusion is that people who are looking for jobs have to have a visible brand,” Mishra said. “Without a visible brand they’re missing out on almost half the opportunities.

The number of professionals who have been courted through LinkedIn shows that Mishra is on to something. While it’s intimidating for job seekers to have to put even more effort into networking and branding, getting involved in different online groups and organizations (many can be found through LinkedIn), while putting a lot of work and effort into your LinkedIn profile, will attract recruiters’ attention.

Job seekers have to change their strategy. Instead of looking for that perfect job, let the recruiter look for you.