Many job seekers only browse job banks on the internet as their sole job search technique. Unfortunately, statistics show that up to 20% of available jobs are ever published—that means that 80% or more of available jobs remain hidden in the job market.
For this reason, networking remains the number one job search strategy.
A network is an interconnected group of supporters who serve as resources for your job search and ultimately for your career. Some great network contacts might include people you meet at business and social meetings. These individuals can provide you with career information and advice.
Students often hesitate to network because they feel awkward asking for help, but it should be an integral part of any job search. Though you might feel nervous when approaching a potential contact, networking is a skill that develops with practice, so don’t give up. Most people love to talk about themselves and about their jobs, and are willing to give realistic—and free—advice.
Networking can happen anywhere, and it happens on your feet. If you find yourself at a professional conference, a local happy hour, or an on campus career fair or information session, make sure you utilize that opportunity to meet those in your field.
Other times, you will want to be proactive in finding and establishing connections. LinkedIn and Tulane Connect are instrumental resources for finding an alumni or contact in your industry. It is essential to create a thorough profile in each of these databases.
Reaching out to a potential contact can initially be an intimidating process. Click here for a helpful guide on sending outreach messages to potential contacts in your industry.