Approaching a New Company
Yesterday, we looked at building a CV; with this in hand, you are ready to take the next step and look forward at new opportunities.
Some companies chose not to advertise their roles on the wider market, and thus this can make them difficult to find. Ensure you research carefully and look at various job boards, LinkedIn and company careers pages when looking for a new role, to give yourself the best opportunities.
How you approach a company is also particularly important and outlined below are some suggestions for you.
Replying to an advertisement
This would be the most obvious thing to do.
If you see an advert for a role that you are keen on, or think you would be most suited too, click Apply Now. Submit your CV through their online system, or through the portal itself. Ensure you have read the advert properly and that you do in fact have the required skill set for the role. There may be pre-screen questions that the company needs you to answer as part of their process , so ensure answers are to the point and concise.
Do your research
Look at the company itself. Is there an available job description for the role you want that you can look at? Can you find the person in the role currently on LinkedIn and look at their background, where they gained experience previously? Look into the company themselves and find out more about them, their values, and what exactly it is that they do.
Reaching out to the HR Department
This can be done through a number of different channels. LinkedIn is a great example, and the best way of doing this, or if you can find an email address. Reaching out personally can increase your chances of getting the role. Make it formal (don’t act like you have known them forever), introduce yourself, do not make yourself sound desperate (please I really need this job or I will do whatever it takes), let them know that you have prepared for this and know as much as there is to know about the role and the company itself, and keep it positive. You may get some rejections, you may even be ignored by some, but adding this extra step may increase your chances. Even if you are not right for the role you have applied for, this could also mean that they would look at your application for another role they have.
Although this is tougher at the moment, there are still ways to network. Get online, join groups, start talking to people. You are not the only one with a little more time on your hands, and by reaching out to others, you may find you spark a conversation with someone that has a role you may be suitable for or who will perhaps share your CV with others in their company. Try and be measured in your approach, be confident but not aggressive. Even if you are not actively looking for a new role now, it is always good to socialise, and maybe it will have its benefits for you in the future. It’s a longer process, but it could be worth it in the end.
Getting someone you know to ‘put a good word in’
Having friends/acquaintances that work in the company you are targeting already will be of a benefit to you. If you speak to them, and they feel comfortable in doing so, they may be able to speak to the person in charge and tell them a bit more about you. If they don’t feel comfortable with speaking to the hiring team it is always worth asking them about the culture, their role or department and how they feel about the company in general to gain further insight into your potential future employer. There is a well-known saying, ‘it’s not what you know, it’s who you know’, and although this may not seem fair sometimes, make sure you are the one it is working for.
DO NOT bombard the contact person for updates
One of the most common ways of getting yourself blacklisted by a company is constantly looking for an update. At the end of the day, if you are successful, or the company want to move further into the process with you, they will let you know. There is no need to constantly send emails or try and call. Sometimes the recruitment process does take time, and you should send an email after a few weeks if nothing has been said, but keep in mind that with every role you apply for, there could be hundreds of others also applying, and the hiring manager will not be able to respond to everyone!