In Blessing White’s 2008 "Sources of Hire" report, they summarize the following:
Key findings for 2007 include
Internal Transfers and Promotions constitute 30.0% of all the positions a company fills. 15 firms are at or approaching 50%. We note that no firm markets the specific details of this fact openly to their prospects as proof of their value proposition to develop their employees. This is a missed opportunity.
This would mean that being inside a company would increase your opportunities of getting the job. A great example of this is Wegmans. In order to really see what jobs are available in their corporate offices, you need to be an employee. I know a woman who was looking for supplemental income so she took a job in the Bakery at Wegmans. Her real occupation was Marketing, so when she saw a job posting for a marketing job in the main office on the internal posting board, she applied. This woman got the job. Could she have learned about it from the outside, NO.
Referrals (employee, alumni, vendor, etc.) make up 28.7% of all external hires and are arguably the number one external source. (Employee referrals make up between 80-90% of the hires attributed to this category. Alumni and other types of referrals appear to be growing rapidly). The efficiency of referrals i.e. every third referral turns into a hire is one of the single most important characteristics of US hiring practices and not leveraged as well as it might be.
Employers are using employee referrals to attract almost 28% of
the external hiring they do. I know of at least one company that
rewards its employees with a pay out for referring successful hires- Paychex. Are there others, I am pretty sure there are. So if you are looking for a job at Paychex, find someone who works there to forward your resume. There is a process, so make sure you follow it.
Hires attributed to Job Boards (including the Company site as a job board) represent 25.7% of external hires.
Hires attributed to the Company Website are suspect (we maintain that the company website is a destination not a source). If one of every eight external hires that are tagged with the company site as a source were to describe how they got to the website, then other sources might be significantly elevated.
Employers are cheap and lazy. I say that tongue and cheek. Really what I mean is that it costs nothing for them to put their job postings on their websites. They can also put it up and take it down whenever they want. All this for free. The other reason they may chose to do this is because they really don’t want to sift through 500 resumes. It’s easier to look through the several as they slowly trickle in. Though Blessing White has discouraged this method, it’s pretty commonplace at least in Rochester, where over 80% of the businesses here have less than 100 employees. It just makes sense for them.
There is no silver bullet for diversity hires. Affinity groups, employee referrals and dedicated recruiters are considered the most productive means to reach diversity candidates.
The most visible trend in 2007 was the growth of Direct Sourcing (and a related reduction in agency hires).
While it appears that hiring through agencies is down, I wouldn’t discourage contract work. It’s great for skill development, evaluating different companies cultures and networking. Plus, you just never know what can happen.
For the first time in seven years of conducting this survey, more firms are predicting that they will make fewer hires in 2008 than 2007.
The last point is no big surprise. It doesn’t mean that companies won’t be hiring replacements for those retiring, relocating or being promoted.
In summary, understanding the mindset of companies and analyzing how they have been hiring will hopefully help you to understand the necessity to network. If you are not out there talking to other fellow employees, you MUST.