Did you know about 80% of jobs are found due to networking? Just by having simple conversations with family members, colleagues, friends and casual acquaintances, you – the talent acquisition recruiter – can start to build connections. From a recruiter’s point of view, you are networking and developing a strategy to create a pipeline of possible candidates. You might not even know you are networking when you start a conversation with the person next to you in line, or at your child’s school conferences, or meeting someone’s friend or stopping to talk with neighbors. These could be potential candidates, or referrals, for one of your job openings.
Each connection you make every day is your next step toward meeting future candidates. Everyone you encounter can help you move forward and explore new opportunities with potential clients. You may think people do not know anyone looking for your particular positions, but you’re wrong. Everyone has a friend who is looking for a job opportunity, and you are looking for qualified candidates to place in those positions. You know more people than you think; be positive and get connected with the right people. As a recruiter, keep in touch with those who take the time to help you or refer candidates to you. There are many different ways of networking through friends, associates and social media or by joining online groups, volunteering or getting involved in a new activity. All of these are ways to expand your network of candidates.
Job opportunities become available when meeting the people who work in similar industries. As a recruiter, explore and learn about a position and its territory, get creative and connect with these potential candidates. People love to talk about themselves and their careers and share information. Don’t be afraid to ask if they know of anyone interested in your available positions; you never know until you ask!
Networking is primarily about getting to know people and building relationships. It’s a give-and-take process that involves making connections, helping out one another and asking questions. It’s also a way to reach out to others not necessarily to ask for viable candidates or favors, but to stay connected for future opportunities that may come your way or their way. Always keep lines of communication open. When you do reach out to people, be authentic, be considerate and ask for advice, but also be prepared to articulate what you’re looking for.
For a recruiter, maintaining your network is just as important as building it. Successful networking is sharing information. If you remember this, you will establish a strong network of people you are comfortable reaching out to for support, guidance and ideas.
By Lisa Kissane | People Science Talent Advisor