Bobke uses LinkedIn to unearth job opportunities. He searches for the profiles of employees, particularly in HR or those who would make hiring decisions, at companies he's targeting in his job search. He also uses LinkedIn to track IT leadership and personnel changes at his target companies. Someone leaving a target company could mean a position will open. A new executive coming on board may want to hire his own team.
Bobke says his LinkedIn strategy has been "quite successful" in connecting him with people at his target employers, obtaining feedback from them, giving him an individual to whom he can submit a résumé, and finding out whether open positions exist.
Bobke has also joined several groups on LinkedIn to expand his network and make himself more visible online. One of the groups, the Laguna Niguel Connectors, meets in person, and Bobke takes advantage of those events to get to know even more people.
"I didn't spend a whole lot of time networking in the past," he says. "I've really come to learn the value of networking in these two-and-a-half months or so that I've been looking."
Bobke regrets not having kept up with a network over the last six years. "It probably would have made my transition [into a new job] faster," he says.
Connect with Reputable Staffing Agencies
Gary Richard began looking for a new job in January. At the time, he was working as a vice president of operations with document management company Anacomp, in Virginia, and he wanted to relocate to southern California to be closer to his immediate and extended family: his wife, one of his two grown sons, a grandson (and another grandchild on the way, his parents, his two brothers, four of his five sisters, and 28 nieces and nephews.
"My wife was already out there, and one of my boys, who are older," says Richard.
By July, all Richard's job search had yielded was a few opportunities for three-month consulting positions. He realized he couldn't find a new job on his own.
He connected with Modis, an IT staffing firm that he found through job boards, at the end of July. By mid-August, Modis had lined up a job interview for Richard with a hospital in San Diego. By Labor Day, Richard had left Anacomp and began working for the hospital as a senior project manager in an 18-month contract. (Due to Modis's confidentiality agreement with its clients, Richard could not disclose the name of his employer.)
Richard says taking a contract position was not his first choice, but he did it because of the market and because the position was in an industry he was looking to move into.
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