Treat Your Job Search as a Sales Process

On a number of IT Forums I often find IT Professionals asking a similar type of question….that is….”How do I find a job at Company X or how do I find a [insert position title here] job”? One reply that may help, is that Job Seekers should treat their job search as a Sales Process. By Job Seekers, I refer to people who are actively looking for a new role, not necessarily passive Candidates who may move for the “right role”.

These days Candidates have access to much more information about companies then they have had in the past which they can use in their job search. Whether you see a company advertising a role or not, you should not hesitate to contact the company you want to work for. Sales people do not wait for potential clients to contact them and buy their products/services, similarly Candidates should not wait hoping that the company they want to work for all of the sudden contacts them with their dream job or posts a role on a Job Board. Be proactive and make things happen for yourself. You may get a number of rejections, but you will greatly increase your chances of landing a great job if you take control of your job search.

If a company is advertising a role: Despite all the doom and gloom surrounding the impending death of the Job Board I still post some of the open roles I am trying to fill here at Oracle on various local Job Boards (although candidates will only see a small portion of the roles that I may be actively recruiting if they are only looking at what I am posting on a Job Board). One of the things that still surprises me about posting open roles on a Job Board is the response and follow up I get from Candidates when I advertise a role. Yes people do apply for roles that we advertise but is it enough for Candidates to just email your resume through or press the “Apply Now” button? Should candidates contact an employer about an opportunity they have posted? I always put my contact details on any job advertisement I place including my phone number, twitter handle, and links to all my social networks. There is no harm in contacting me and introducing yourself – the best case scenario is that you have differentiated yourself from the crowd and maybe sold your skills and experience to get an interview and potentially a job. The worst case scenario is that you may be told you do not fit the scope of search we are working to for our current roles, but you have just created a contact for yourself that you can speak to again in the future.

If a company is not advertising a role: As mentioned you will not see every role here at Oracle posted on a Job Board. Just because you do not see us advertising does not mean we are not hiring. We do speak to people about potential work here, however if you want to know about our opportunities here at Oracle just as a sales person may do – initiate the conversation. Oracle has a Global Recruitment Team – we are contactable on the phone, via Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc….we are easy to find and we are happy to walk people through our processes and opportunities here as best we can. On this blog we have contact details of our Recruiters listed for each region globally (on the sidebar). As Recruiters we are here to help find the right role for you, that position may not exist when we initially speak, but whose to say it may not come up at some point in the future. It is much easier for employers to give you a call back when a role that matches your skills and experience does become available if we know who you are, then not know who you are or how to get in touch with you.

I believe that you only get out of something what you put into it. If you want to get a good result from your job search you need to put in some hard yards. Just as a good sales person has to be able to present his/her value proposition to their client, you can do similar when you are talking to potential employers. You may not be comfortable picking up the phone and cold calling someone or cold twittering (is that what it should be called) someone, however it could be one of the determining factors that lands you your dream job. Being proactive can reflect well on yourself and show you are not only interested in working somewhere but it also may show you have drive, enthusiasm and the ability to make things happen for yourself which can all be viewed as positive traits.

6 thoughts on “Treat Your Job Search as a Sales Process

  1. David,
    Very helpful article and now I can define my job search with more meanings out of it.
    “Jobsatoracle” is the location I like to visit frequently. I have really liked your article about social networking. My other likings recently are the intervw with Steve Au Yeung, The catch and release of dream and candidate.

  2. Hi Nirav,
    Thanks for your comments, I am glad that you find the blog articles helpful/informative. It was great that Steve Au Yeung took the opportunity to be interviewed for this blog, we have so many talented people here, it is good to share some of our thoughts and comments with our readers.
    Thanks again;
    David T

  3. Mostly agree with you David. However, I believe the same can be said the other way round, i.e. it’s also a sales process for companies seeking the best talents in the industry. Similar to what you said about information access, companies/recruiting agents also have access to much more information on top of the standard resume and cover letter.
    The classical approach where companies (talent seekers) advertise on a job board and wait for applications may result in mediocre candidates as the best candidates are more likely to be proactive in seeking for the companies/roles they want to work for.
    I guess my point is, the “Sales Process” should work both ways. Companies should also better market themselves in the industry as a great employer and recruiters should be more proactive in seeking individual talents. Not sure if this would be OK with industry ethical standards relating to poaching/head hunting though.

  4. Hi Tommy,
    I agree with your comments, companies no longer can rely solely on Job Boards to identify candidates, we also must be diligent in finding and talking to candidates that would be suitable for open roles. A Job Board should only make up a small piece of your overall recruitment plan. I am speaking at a conference in September and one of the points I will be raising is that Recruiters are no longer just responsible for recruitment, we also need to consider employment branding as well. The recruitment process anywhere needs to be a two way street between candidate and employer.

  5. I think you are right saying that you should be active saling yourself but you should also say you should be brave enough to face all the denials you’ll come across during your job search process. And it’s hardly an easy task to do. So, your posting is sure to make people act and it’s great but they should also learn to create as-the-devil-may-have-it attitude.

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