How To Snag The Job Referral of Your Dreams
The job hunt is rarely (if ever) a cakewalk, even in our world of technology staffing where many software engineers are highly sought after, finding the RIGHT job is still a big challenge. Once in a while, however, you do get lucky and find the perfect opportunity at just the right organization.
Once you have identified the role for which you want to apply, one of the first things you should do is research what, if any, connections you might have already “on the inside.” This serves two main functions. First, the best way to learn about the company and confirm that this is in fact the horse to which you want to hitch your wagon is from a trusted, primary source of information. A personal connection is the best way to get honest, reliable data about what you can expect should you end up joining the team. Secondly, however, employee referrals often have the highest applicant-to-hire conversion rate. A good word from the right person is an incredible advantage to standing out in a competitive applicant pool. Research also indicates that referred hires receive larger compensation packages than individuals hired though any other channel as well.
So, what should you do if you don’t think you know anyone at the prospective employer of your dreams? Fortunately, there are a few things you can do.
Find Friends of a Friend
You will need to embrace a laser-focused approach to networking. If nobody in you immediate network happens to work at that company, it is time to start branching out. LinkedIn is an immensely useful tool when it comes to determining second-degree connections. If you find one, determine how you are connected and leverage your mutual connection for an intro. This can seem intimidating, to ask a favor that sets you up to later ask another favor. However, job seekers are often surprised to learn how eager and able many folks are to open that channel of communication on their behalf.
Informational Interviews Face Time
The explicit purpose of an information interview is to simply learn more about the role, company, or overall profession. However, they can also be fantastic ways to connect with someone who is already where you would like to be. Come prepared and ask good questions. You want to make the best impression possible. A great contribution from your end would be to learn about challenges the company faces and to follow-up with thoughtful solutions. If the individual in question encourages you to review the open opportunities, he or she will likely also be happy to serve as a reference. If no mention of available job listings is made, give it time. If you nurture the relationship correctly, things may change in the weeks to come.
Professional Organizations Exist for a Reason
One of the main purposes industry and professional organizations serve is to provide ample space and opportunity for professionals in similar areas of work to connect. Take advantage of this! Show up to events, shake hands, hand out cards, and make a great impression.
BWBacon always encourages professionals to reach out with client and candidate referrals. With over 70 years of combined technical staffing experience on our team, we deeply value qualified referrals and work to make the referral experience rewarding for everyone involved.