Is it a good move or not?
I have clients ask me is soliciting organizations that aren’t currently hiring a good idea. Well, the truth is—it depends on your approach.
When it comes to career transition there are too many mixed directions for job seekers to understand what is good or bad in your approach. It doesn’t matter if your intentions are to:
- Find your first job
- Make a job change
- You need a job immediately
- You’re just testing the waters
Some professionals think the more jobs you seek out or the more resumes you submit, the better your odds will be. Might be true for some industries, but most of the time your success depends on your approach. But, what about those employers who aren’t currently hiring? These employers are even more delicate to deal with. You must have a rock solid game plan and know exactly what your projected outcomes should be.
I suggest having the following job seeker goals for employers who aren’t currently hiring:
- Fact Finding Mission. You just want to know more information on their hiring cycle and where are they at the moment.
- You’d like to submit your resume but want to know the protocols. Find out where the resumes go, what portal to use, and how to formally follow up.
- If they take walk-in applications? If they do, find out the best times and location to apply in person.
- Do they have internships, OJT, or training interviews. I know, I know—this is old school but trust me, certain industries would love to have someone come in for a ½ day or a few hours to see what you bring to the table. It’s free and you get the opportunity to show your stuff.
If you’ve always wondering if chasing hiring managers or employers who aren’t hiring is a good idea–you are not alone. Everyone ponders that question. Again, it’s up to you.
When it comes to determining whether or not you should target clients who’s not hiring or simply dropping off your resume to a place that clearly indicates they can’t hire you right now, there are a number of important factors you need to take into consideration.
The most important factor is knowing for sure they are or are not hiring
When it comes to soliciting companies you should always be looking for information about their hiring cycles. If you happen to stop by a local business (that you’ve researched) or call to ask about hiring and get a negative response–you may not want to submit an application anyway. Most workplace environments that are open to job seekers are typically great places to work. More often, the more negative response you receive from inquiring about opportunities tend to be the culture of the organization. Don’t take the negative response as a disappointment, take it as a blessing that you don’t work there already. There’s too many companies that would love to have you in the market. You just have to kiss a log of frogs to find that prince or princesses.
I’m a true believer of walk in breakthroughs! I’ve coached too many clients (with success) on walking into an establishment and asking key questions about the hiring process to include asking for a “working interviews”. It’s not for the weary, but those who are comfortable with executing a strong strategy are confident enough to expect a no and are prepared for a yes. I consider these job opportunities the local “hidden jobs” or “hidden job market” opportunities. Meaning, they are jobs that are not published to the open market but are considered internal needs for the right candidate. Keep in mind—just because its not on the major job boards, doesn’t mean they aren’t hiring.
Now, there is a difference between knowing in advance that a business isn’t hiring versus being told the company isn’t hiring. If you are told by a hiring manager there’s no jobs when you inquire about opportunities, ask about the future. Simply asking if the company projects to hire in the future. There is nothing wrong with looking ahead. You just need to be organized so you can follow up at the right time. It’s perfectly ok to also them to hang on to your business card or ask if there’s an online portal to submit your resume. You want to be on file when they do decide to start considering clients.
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One of the few downsides to being proactive with companies that aren’t hiring is the timing of your inquiry. If you’re able to submit your resume or apply online, many organizations collect that data and search those candidates when the needs do arise. There isn’t a specific timetable for how long your resume is stored but most recruiters and HR personnel like to keep resumes on file for 12 months before they consider your information outdated. If you can get a hiring manager to commit to follow up inquiries, you’re ahead of the game. However, most of the time, you’ll be directed to the website for updates. That’s ok as well. Just be persistent and have an iron clad plan for each activity.
Today, most organizations are very savvy when it comes to hiring. Depending on your expertise, many recruiters or internal HR representatives have access to global databases and use them effectively. Therefore, many will revert to their own internal database of candidates before going outside and soliciting talent to fill a need. This activity is also considered a “hidden” job market.
Here are a 5-quick tips when considering applying or approaching companies who are not hiring at the moment:
- Make sure you go with value added gifts: Showcase some value. Indicate where you solve a problem, offer expertise, or show that you are a perfect fit for their organization.
- Be extremely professional and not desperate: Desperation is highly visible when employers are approached by candidates. Don’t get black listed because you’re overly eager to get anything at the moment.
- Do your homework: Make sure you completely understand their core competencies. Know the company, their clients and be prepared to provide a direct connection to your skill capabilities. Every employer loves to meet someone who understands where they fit in.
- Know “your personal or professional” skill level value: If you are talking to other organizations or competitors, don’t be afraid to create competition for your services. Opportunities can come organizations know you are wanted somewhere else. If you are a market authority on a specific subject—create options. In most cases, that’s when the hiring manager will create an opportunity for you. (be careful not to come off arrogant)
- Lastly–If you are aggressive in your approach, be prepared to make a decision: One thing any hiring manager hates is a candidate who hawks you for a job only to find out they aren’t serious about making a decision when an offer is made. Be prepared to get moving if you’re soliciting employers.
As a reminder, the decision as to whether or not you want to solicit a place that isn’t hiring is totally up to you. However, be advised that you proceed with caution and with a strategic plan. If you don’t feel like the company isn’t being as warm or welcome to your inquiry—chances are you don’t want to work there anyway. Cut your loses and move on!
Opportunities are in abundance! You just need to get aligned with the ones that benefit you and the employer the most. The last thing you want to do is create a reputation of being overly aggressive or the person that keeps bugging the hiring managers. Remember, jobs are like any other success in life–they are everywhere. You just have to stay focused, confident, and have the MINDSET for discovering the right one for you.
As always–Dominate the Day!