There’s no stopping you from searching the job boards. So if you must do that, then know how to find the back door for a job posting.
You’ve been told that networking is the best way to secure a new job, and yet, you revert back to job postings.
I get it. It’s a habit. It makes you feel productive. And heck, you’ve got a 6% chance of getting contacted.
But the best thing to do is to get a referral.
That’s why you want to use LinkedIn to get in the back door for a job you find posted.
And here’s exactly how to do that!
Steps To Using The Back Door
I searched Indeed.com for a buyer job (in Rochester, NY and sorted by date posted). Here’s the job posting and it clearly says to apply on the company site.
But I’m not going to do that yet. I want to talk with someone who works for the company to learn more about the role.
I went into LinkedIn and searched for the company name.
Not every company is listed on LinkedIn, but the majority are. Just make sure you are selecting the correct company.
This is what the company profile looks like.
See if you have any connections. In this case, I have 3 first degree connections.
Email (yes email, not LinkedIn message) each of the people you know.
Since you are reaching out to someone you know, ask first how they are doing.
Then explain that you would love a brief phone call to learn more about the company and what’s going on there right now. You can include you saw a job that interests you if you want.
Finally, thank them for their help.
No First Degree Connections? No Problem
If you don’t have any connections, you can still see the names of employees on LinkedIn.
Get introduced by a mutual connection
- Explain who you want to meet and include specifically why (is it their role or something else that makes them a good person to speak with).
- Give your contact an option to either introduce you to them through email or permission to use their name when you reach out.
- Finally, thank them for their help.
If you don’t know any of these people, you can click on their profiles and see what groups they belong to, what companies they used to work for and see if there are any commonalities. If you share a group, you may be able to connect with them through that avenue.
Another way to interact with someone is to see if they’ve listed their Twitter handle or personal website. I have found Twitter to be a great “stalking tool”. You can/should follow them on Twitter, observe their tweets. And look for an opportunity to start a dialog with them based on their tweets.
While you are at it, “follow” the company on LinkedIn. This should add their status update to your home feed.
Why Invest Time Going Through The Back Door?
A referral from someone inside a company carries a lot of weight. It is worth every minute of your sleuthing to try and find connections to a job posting!
- 40% of hires come from the referral pool, which is only 7% of applicants.
- Referrals have a 50% chance of getting an interview and 20% chance of landing the job. (Those not referred only have a 3% chance of an interview and 1.2% chance of getting hired.)
- 65%+ of job seekers recommended by a current employee were hired. That number increased to 91% if the referral originated from a director-level employee or above.
Use LinkedIn to go in the back door for a job posting. Or better yet, proactively reach out to people BEFORE there is a job posted.
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.