Posted by Brian McCullough
Too many job searching campaigns revolve around a ‘post and pray’ strategy; job seekers post their resume on a popular job board, then sit back and pray they get a call from an interested employer. Yes, it can work – occasionally. But opportunities tend to come more frequently to those who are out beating the bushes.
Job Searching On Company Websites – The Bull By The Horns
At times it’s easy to forget the basics, as we become mesmerized by the latest high-tech job search gizmo. Basics like the fact that any company of any size has a web presence, and a web presence means information freely available to visitors. And more often than not, that information includes a career page listing currently-available job opportunities.
As I write these words, I’m looking at the corporate website for drug maker Eli Lilly and Company (Google “Eli Lilly” and it will pop up first on the results page). I clicked on the “Careers” tab, and initiated a search for all available jobs in the U.S. What I got back on this particular day was a multi-page list of jobs ranging from an HR Associate based in San Diego, to a Neuroscience Research Scientist in Indianapolis. Not to mention Pharmaceutical Sales Reps, Brand Managers and Security Consultants. And here’s the kicker: on this date, we’re still in the middle of an historic recession with unemployment at 10+%.
Know some companies you might like to work for? Companies with a need for your particular professional expertise? Don’t just post your resume on some job board and wait to attract their attention; go to them and knock on their doors. Start with company websites, and you’ll likely find those doors are already ajar. Walk on in.
5 Tips For Job Searching on Company Websites
It’s easy enough to find the company websites (Google the name of a firm, and their site will usually pop up in the first one or two listings on the results page). Once there, look for the section marked “careers” or something such. See an available job you like? Before you apply online and submit your resume, consider the following:
- Browse the rest of the website, particularly sections marked “Products & Services” (make sure you fully understand what they do), and “Press Releases” or “News” (get yourself up-to-date on company happenings). The more you know about the company, it’s products/services and philosophy, the better your chances in both the application and interview process.
- Study the requirements to the position you’re most interested in. Customize your resume to highlight your specific qualifications that match those requirements. Don’t make stuff up, but if the job requires SAS programming skills, dig that nugget out of the bowels of your resume and present it front-and-center in your Profile Section. That’s the idea. Now you’re targeting.
- If possible, avoid sending your resume to the HR department. In most cases, it will be unavoidable. But in some cases, with a little bit of investigative work, you can identify the Hiring Manger for the job you’re seeking. If the position opening lists a “reports to…” try to identify that person via a “Profiles” or “Personnel” page. When at all possible, pitch to that person.
- Don’t overlook the often fine-print instructions for submitting your application. Don’t blow your chance for an interview by attaching a ‘confidential’ resume when they specifically ask that all resumes include your name and contact information.
- Application submitted? Great. Now, don’t sit back and wait for the phone to ring. Find the next company you’d like to work for, and repeat steps 1-5.
Job search success comes about by developing a campaign and working that campaign every day.
This is a guest post. About the author:
Make sure your resume is up to the task before submitting an application online. Former recruiter David Alan Carter compares the Web’s most popular resume writing services at the website TopResumeServices.com, reviewing quality of workmanship, spelling out pricing, and giving each a star ranking. C-Level executives will appreciate Carter’s take on one particular executive resume service(pricing not for the faint of heart).