Traditionally the first quarter of a new year is the ‘boom’ hiring season of the year for companies with calendar year reporting (January through December). New budgets can mean newly approved job openings. This means if you don’t have a great and complete profile on LinkedIn, resumes and profile information up to date on Monster and CareerBuilder, and any other major sites for your particular occupation, you will probably be missed if you are an active job hunter. Being found is 65% of the hiring process in my opinion. If you are not found in time, no one will ever see your credentials or work history.
Companies and recruiters have been gearing up for the past 30 – 60 days for the ‘right’ people to hire for critical roles. New growth roles or replacement positions are also open to you. Your professional background should be posted on multiple sites since you never know who or how someone will find you to discuss the opportunities at hand.
Next, you get a call or two, review the job description, and send your resume and cover letter off to human resources or the recruiter, now what? Should you wait patiently for the next call, call every other day, or keep sending out resumes?
My best advice is never to stop sending our resumes if you are actively looking, as a high percentage will never make the first cut. My next thought is to follow-up about once a week unless you have instructions from your contact to the contrary. When anyone would tell me they will call you when they are ready, the translation code I heard is ‘We are looking at someone else first, and if they fallout we may get to you.’ This also means it is OK for them to make you wait in the dark, but not OK (for them) if you find another position as they have to keep looking. Do what is best for you. You owe a new company nothing if they didn’t jump on the initial opportunity to make you their number one candidate.
Workforce has a different slant on the follow-up activities for candidates. Their internal company survey showed 100% of the hiring managers wanted the job hunters to follow-up with them. As a former engineering supervisor through executive levels, I strongly disagree. If I have an opening due to growing business demands or someone just left the company, I am probably in a reactive mode and don’t want phone calls or emails from applicants all week every week. I may have also pared the group down, and you aren’t in it. Most hiring managers are not allowed to tell someone this over the phone with all the legal ramifications involved in equal opportunity hiring and company rules. Unless someone from the hiring company tells you it is OK to follow-up directly with them, check in with your recruiter or the designated contact at the company. Recruiters get paid for finding and follow-up activities. If you do your part and get an interview, let them do theirs so they can work some magic with their clients.
In summary, if you are in an active job search and follow the instructions I laid out at the top of this article, you have a much better chance of being found for the right opportunity, than a passive search that could take months to years to be found. If no one can find you, they can’t speak with you!
If you would like to jump-start your search, click this link and sign up for a free consultation session (if you are in the medical device engineering sector.) You can have my three top articles (or any other three) for working with LinkedIn, Monster, and CareerBuilder after you complete the session.