Are there any tips for networking with employers through a jobs board?

All the connections in the world won't help you find work if no one knows your situation. Once you've put together your list, start getting in touch with the people in your network. Let them know that you are looking for work. Be specific about the type of job you're looking for and ask them if they have any information or know someone in a relevant field.

Don't assume that certain people won't be able to help. It might surprise you to know who they know. One of the best ways to establish contacts is to get involved in professional organizations related to your field. These organizations often organize events where you can meet other professionals and learn more about what's happening in your industry.

They can also be a great resource for job opportunities and can provide you with a wealth of resources. Experts say we could be making it more difficult than it needs to be. Rather than spending hours looking for job offers, career experts say we should spend that time networking. Yes, that omnipresent act of connecting with other human beings can help us get a job even without a cover letter.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics and Yale University report that 70 percent of all jobs are found through networks. A recent CareerXRoads survey shows that only 15 percent of positions were filled through job boards. The survey showed that most of the positions are filled internally or through referrals. People do business primarily with people they know and like.

Resumes and cover letters alone are often too impersonal to convince employers to hire you. Elizabeth Malatestinic, senior professor of Human Resource Management at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, says networking requires effort. Career experts suggest that job seekers use a variety of networking tactics, such as meeting with past and present colleagues, attending professional association meetings, volunteering in the industry, and meeting new people as often as possible. Before you put on your name tag and start shaking hands, here are some tips to keep in mind when harnessing the power of networks.

Do you know what your ultimate professional goal is? Otherwise, networking will be a waste of time. You should know where you want to be before you ask people to help you. If you don't have a strong and current resume and cover letter, now's the time to develop them. Take some time to think about what would make you a good addition to any organization and prepare an informal “mental presentation” that you can share with others.

If you can't explain why you can be hired, how do you expect a member of your network to answer for you? Networking isn't just about you and what you want. Don't just connect to your network when you need something or are looking for work. Build real relationships that provide trust, mutual support and benefit. Sending emails or a quick note to your contacts throughout your career is a good way to maintain the relationship.

When you ask for help, be prepared to return the favor. When network contacts recommend you for a job, they're putting their reputation on the line. The contacts also share industrial and professional advice. Let them know that you appreciate their time and support.

Taking advantage of the hidden labor market through networking may require more planning and effort than applying for job offers, but the results will be immensely more beneficial. Incorporating networking into your lifestyle will help you establish valuable connections that can help you find a job and much more. Subscribe to the latest news on the DC labor market Why won't you get that in-person interview The job prospects for DC's small media and communications companies before, during and after the pandemic. .