Networking, the job search, and cost . . .

As all of us has been informed ad nauseum since we ever had to consider the remote possibility of a job search – networking is everything when it comes to finding a job.

And now, in the age of the internet and an economic downturn, we hear once again how important Networking is, even moreso now.

I'm arguing with none of these points.  In fact, I fully agree Networking is important in your career, and gets more and more important as your career goes on.  I also agree it's even more important now.  But I want to add one more thing.

Networking is also cheaper.  Today, people are going to pay even more attention to that.  More, I think it's become even cheaper because of changes in the job search.

I should clarify that I am not just talking cheaper in money when it comes to networking – I think it saves people time and effort as well.  Then again, time is money, so perhaps it comes full circle.

Networking in many ways has always been more cost-efficient.  One can get hooked up with likely candidates easier through networking.  A lot of networking is done by others, so a recruiter/HR person has comparatively less work to do.  With networking, you're more sure getting the right person, or at least not an overly wrong one.

However, the internet has given us ways to get all sorts of resumes, applicants, and attention.  A simple post to a job board means instant responses.  Networking may be targeted, but there's something to be said for casting your net wide.

Except (and those of you used to reading this can see where it's going), I think this backfired.  As you've seen me discuss (or rant) before, the wide-net approach has terribly backfired, meaning long laundry-list job posts that people ignore, and piles of resumes in email inboxes.

So, we're back to networking, because what job ad postings turned into is stunningly ineffective and time-consuming.  The networking technologies out there like, Facebook additions, etc. make the activity much easier.  One failed model, one classic model made easier – case closed.  Networking wins – even more.

So with networking more and more cost effective its going to be even more prominent – occasionally I hear HR talk that the usual job search is going to all but vanish.  I don't buy that, but I do buy networking becoming even more solidified.  It's just cost-effective.

Don't get left behind.

– Steven Savage