Leveraging Your Network

June 30, 2017

Everyone has a network. Big or small, we all have one. Whether your job title reads chef, dietitian, finance or retail, being part of those networks gives us the ability to connect directly and recruit talent, because we are all recruiters. A 2016 survey revealed 85% of all jobs are filled via some form of networking. In this case, the age-old expression rings true: “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.”

Some people may perceive social networking through a screen to be awkward or impersonal at first, but consider that new employees source through LinkedIn is 40% less likely to leave the company within the first six months. Suddenly the screen-mediated communication feels a little less awkward. When candidates are contacted by their prospective manager, 94% of people report that they will accept a job offer faster. So what does all this mean when your team is short a person? Networking via LinkedIn is essential in today’s digital landscape.

For example, in a previous role, Amit, a Morrison Healthcare Regional Director of Operations faced a problem: his team was missing a chef, a key team member in any food service account. Despite a formal search to fill the position, no candidate was found. In Amit’s words, he was desperate. “I needed to do something myself,” he said.

While it’s much easier to say with a shrug, “I just don’t know anyone,” Amit resolved to use the resources and network he had through his LinkedIn profile and began searching for chefs. “I looked for chefs and the name of the city I was working in.” Just like it would be custom to introduce oneself with a handshake at any networking event, Amit took the initiative to reach out to chefs who appeared in the search results and establish the connection. Amit introduced himself via LinkedIn’s InMail, extended an invitation to connect and told them about the open position at his account.

He made a handful of phone calls which produced three interviews. One of the candidates, he said was hire material. His proactive attitude combined with LinkedIn’s networking tools yielded more results in less time than other more “typical” recruiting efforts had. This, however, is not surprising. According to LinkedIn, over 75% of people who recently changed jobs used LinkedIn to inform their career decision.

When it comes to finding the right people, we’re all recruiters and LinkedIn can be a managers’ secret weapon in bringing great people on board and supplement the ongoing recruitment efforts.