Networking or Job Boards? Nine Strategies to Find Your Next Role

CareerPro Inc.Forbes Coaches Counsel

It can be difficult to decide what the most effective strategy is when searching for a new job. It can also be difficult to decide how to prioritize your efforts. Read below as nine of the Forbes Coaches Council talk about job search strategies.

This article originally appeared on

As you take advantage of the changing job market to find a new or better position, there are a lot of options to consider. Should you spend time on sites like LinkedIn or Craigslist, or should you send out a call for aid to your personal network to see who can offer referrals?

Experts say to do both, with a focus on networking: Personal interaction can generate stronger results than responding to posted ads. However, online sites have their own advantages: Candidates can gain a broader sense of what type of help companies need and how much they’re willing to pay. Job seekers can also establish their own blogs or sites, in order to help establish a personal brand.

Below, nine Forbes Coaches Council members talk about job search strategies and how you should prioritize spending time between online resources and networking.

1. Share Your Branding Via BeBee 

Hunting and applying for jobs online is frequently frustrating and fruitless. The best way to search for jobs online is to become “the hunted” by developing a strong online personal brand. LinkedIn is currently the go-to place to build your online presence where you can showcase your talents. BeBee is a fast-growing network for building your holistic brand of personal and professional interests. – Larry BoyerSuccess Rockets LLC 

2. Get Off The Job Boards To Find Your Next Job 

If you have spent the last eight hours posting for jobs online, you’ve wasted seven hours and 50 minutes. Job boards are the least effective method of search: less than 5% of people find their jobs that way. Even the LinkedIn jobs section is only as good as the strength of the relationships you have with decision makers on LinkedIn. Get off the job boards and start talking to people. – Barbara SafaniCareer Solvers 

3. Optimize Your Network To Get First In Line 

The best way to land a new job is networking, which offers a success rate much higher than any job board, including LinkedIn’s (which is run by Simply Hired). Build out your networks in your target industries, and leverage connections and thought leadership to boost your visibility in the market. Gain access to key decision makers before they advertise open jobs. Get first in line! – Cheryl Lynch SimpsonExecutive Resume Rescue 

4. Interact With People, Not Machines 

What percentage of people get hired online? There are many statistics on this, and they are universally abysmal. But by all means, search online to research what kinds of jobs you might like. Then network, network, network. Tell everybody you comfortably can about the type of work you are seeking. Interact with people, not machines. Seek and you will find. – James LopataInnerOvation 

5. Attend Events 

By the time a job is posted anywhere, you’re already at a disadvantage against the candidate who has a relationship with the hiring manager. Attending events in your industry is a good way to make new connections, while Shapr helps you connect with relevant professionals who are actively networking. – Taylor JacobsonFocusmate

6. Tap Into Aggregator Sites 

For executives, I suggest focusing primarily on building your brand on LinkedIn. Aggregator sites like should not be ignored, and a gem or two can be found on Craigslist. But LinkedIn carries the brand promise and power for most people. Recruiters can see your bio, find out about you as a professional and volunteer. They can see your professional behavior and interactions in groups. – John O’ConnorCareer Pro Inc. 

7. Automate The Search 

The strength of a job board lies in the number and validity of posts, searchability and relevance to your career goals. Identify three sites that are relevant for you and set-up weekly search agents to deliver new results to your inbox. Automating this step will keep you informed about new openings, but will free up time and energy for more lucrative job-seeking activities, like networking. – Lindsey DayMagnetic Career Consulting 

8. Job Hunting Is A Numbers Game 

I always relate job hunting to dating: It’s a numbers game. If we knew what worked, we would all do it. What’s most important is a consistent, dedicated and diverse effort of online and offline activity. Set goals for time spent online searching, as well as in-person referrals and meetings. Remember: Just like dating, it only takes one to be the right one. – Julie ColbreseHot Coffee Coaching 

9. Attract Your Next Opportunity, Do Not Apply! 

When only 10 to 15% of job seekers’ results come from advertised openings, there is no best place to look. Creating a niche that speaks to your target audience’s pain points, and building relationships with their needs in mind, is best. This replaces scanners with a human, and also gives you the competitive advantage as you sidestep the vortex of other job seekers who may look like you on paper. – Grace TotoroTransitionsByGrace. LLC