Networking is one of the most valuable tools you can use when searching for a job. Networking is a great way to connect with people, whether you know them really well or you’ve never met. With successful networking, you can get personal introductions to potential employers and greatly increase your chances of getting an interview—and a job. Here are 6 steps to follow to use networking to find a job.

  1. Determine your strengths and weaknesses.

Before even beginning your jobs search, it’s important that you know what your strengths and weaknesses are. Understanding your abilities, interests and qualifications is the first step in any job search. Before approaching anyone to discuss job opportunities, know how you could be a benefit to their company.

  1. Create a great résumé

Make sure to always keep your résumé updated and polished, because this is the best way to market yourself to potential employers. In a previous blog, we discuss how to make your résumé stand out. Use these tips to make sure your résumé finds its way to the top of the pile of other applicants. If you’re seeking a job in the engineering sector, create a portfolio to showcase your work and past projects.

  1. Organize your network

You would be surprised how many people are in your network. You know far more people than you think. From friends and family to college alumni and neighbors, the list goes on and on. You can create an even larger network by attending job fairs and by taking to LinkedIn to research your industry. Begin organizing all of your contacts and identifying their relationship with you, their positions, their contact information and their industries.

  1. Reach out to your network

The next step is reaching out to your network. Informal networking is appropriate for your friends, family and people you know. Reach out to these people by sending them an email, giving them a phone call or talking to them in person. Asking for advice is the best way to let your network know you are looking for a job. Formal networking can be done at job fairs and other specific networking events, or through introductions from someone you know. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when searching for a job!

  1. Follow up

Following up is an important step to the networking process, and should not always be the last. Always keep in contact with your friends, family and other associations. Networking is an ongoing process and doesn’t stop when you find a job. Always thank your network for their help and keep them updated on your situation.

The majority of jobs are found through networking. Even people you have never met are likely willing to help you connect to job opportunities, if you make the effort. You can also take advantage of other networking resources, like staffing agencies. Staffing agencies have some of the largest networks available and they are great resources for job seekers.

If you are looking to find a job in the engineering or government sectors, contact TriMech Services to get in touch with one of our experienced Technical Recruiters.