Ever hear about someone getting a job cause they knew someone who already had a job there? This may seem unfair, but it’s a fact, and one I need to get better at taking advantage of. Many big companies have a referral program, some system through HR that let’s employees submit a friend’s resume with some nice words about what a rockstar they are. These get immediate priority in many of these systems. I was unfamiliar with this system, and actually found that several of my employed friends were unaware of the system in place as well. But, once I asked them to look into it, they found it was pretty easy to add me to the referral applicant pool- which is way better then the suckers-who-applied-via-job-boards pool. Some companies even offer a referral bonus to the employee- and that’s in addition to the cold one you’ll buy them when you get a job.
At smaller companies (>1000 employees), there may not be a formalized system, but there is still the option for an employee to forward a resume to HR, or to request a specific person’s resume from HR. I haven’t entirely figured out how to take best advantage of this behind the scenes stuff, but knowing it is there is huge. At least it explains why I’m not getting a lot of calls back about my resume: sucker-pool.