How to Get a Job without Applying

job market

Everyone says that social media has changed everything, but sometimes it seems as if the social revolution has completely restructured the galaxy. The way we do things has changed on a fundamental level, and the way we find jobs is no exception. Sending in a cover letter and a resume on high-quality paper doesn’t cut it anymore. Even responding to job postings is becoming less effective, as more and more people are figuring out better ways to prove their worth to their target employers. Here are some of the methods that are quickly gaining steam.

Spread the word

Whether you do it the old-fashioned way by picking up the phone or chatting people up at parties, or by starting a viral campaign on social media, let everyone you know you’re on your job hunt. The more people who know you’re looking, the more likely it is that one of them will have that all-important connection that helps you land a job.

Bring the recruiters to you

No longer satisfied with just sifting through the candidates who apply for jobs, recruiters are snooping (in the best sense of the word!) around on LinkedIn and Google to find the candidates who haven’t applied. A carefully written profile on LinkedIn or Google – plus occasional posts about business and career topics – can bring a recruiter straight to your inbox.

Find the names behind the titles

LinkedIn, Google, and search engines in general are a great way to find out who the decision-makers are in your target employer. Say you want a job as a marketing manager at Company X. If it’s a public company, finding out who the top executive is in Marketing is a no-brainer (it will be on the annual report, which is probably on the website). The job you want probably doesn’t report to the Chief Marketing Officer, but that’s no problem. Look up the CMO on LinkedIn, and find connections that work at the same company. Chances are you’ll be able to identify the person you’d be working for, and you can move on to your strategy for making contact.

Get in touch

You can always use the tried-and-true tactic of calling your target on the phone. It becomes a little more difficult if you have to go through an assistant. You don’t want to lie and pretend to be calling from his attorney’s office, but neither would it be a good idea to come out and tell the assistant you’re looking for a job. Instead, say that you’ve been impressed by his accomplishments and would value a few minutes of his time to talk about career opportunities for those working their way up the ladder.

Use a matchmaker

Sometimes it helps to have a go-between…someone working behind the scenes to match your interests with those of an employer. Enter Poachable, a U.S. company that’s altering the job-search scene yet again. Catering primarily to passive candidates – those who already have a job but would make a change under the right circumstances – Poachable works sort of like a dating service. Candidates fill out a profile – not just their work history, but things like their likes, dislikes, and what it would take to get them to change jobs. Poachable searches through its database to see if there are any employers who meet those requirements. Then, the candidate gets the right of first refusal – no further action is taken unless the candidate indicates an interest in pursuing a particular opportunity. Poachable then presents the candidate’s profile (anonymously) to the employer. If the employer is interested, and both parties agree, Poachable arranges an email introduction, which is often followed by an informational phone call.

The world of work – and of finding work – is constantly changing. Trying these tactics will put you at the head of the pack and give you a distinct advantage over candidates who are still conducting their job hunts the way they would have five years ago.