Thursday, October 8, 2009

Unlisted Jobs

There's a pretty good post up at the Career Rocketeer about finding and acquiring jobs that are never listed on job boards. I think that the advice is generally good, but I sometimes wonder if we are reaching a point where there are fewer unlisted jobs than before.

Before the internet, companies relied on the newspaper classifieds if they needed to advertise a job, and many jobs went unlisted because of the expense in advertising. Headhunters were fat and happy. As the internet developed, things didn't change much because it still cost hundreds of dollars to advertise a job on a major job board.

Now, it is still expensive to advertise a job on Monster ($395 or so), but almost every company has a careers section on their website (which is free), and many if not most of those jobs get picked up by Indeed and/or SimplyHired. Additionally, most OFCCP programs require posting to certain state employment and/or diversity sites to remain compliant.

So the question is: How many jobs are filled with an external candidate without ever being posted to a readily available internet source. I'd venture that the answer 4-5 years ago was well over 50%, but that today, the answer is probably closer to 25-30%. I can't find any sources that have actually studied this, but I'm fairly confident that the trend is correct.

Networking will always be important, and even 25-30% is a lot of jobs, and these are generally jobs at small, growing companies that offer a lot of opportunity. But the takeaway is that you need a strategy to address posted jobs in a similar way to rise above the heap.

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