Allow the Job to Find You

honey
Want to increase the odds of getting an interesting job offer? I found a very effective way that requires minimal effort. Does it work for anyone? I cannot claim that but I am sure it works well if you have a unique skill-set. Does it work right away? No, it may take several months before you start getting interview invitations. Still interested in the idea of allowing the job to find you? Read on and learn how to set up a honey pot!

 

Let’s do a quick experiment. Imagine that you are a head hunter or a hiring manager. You are looking for a person with specific combination of education and software engineering skills  For example, you’re looking for someone with PhD education, who can program in the language Haskell, and has experience in software modeling (whatever all of that means). Below are two sets of keywords that you could type.
  1. phd, haskell, metaprogramming, modeling
  2. phd, haskell, software modeling
Let’s use two popular search engines to search for the keywords. Check out the two queries:
Wow, Kacper is on the very top in both search engines! What do you do as a hiring manager? You go to his professional homepage and drop him an email with job interview invitation. Pretty simple, eh?

 

What’s going on there? Kacper has a googlable webpage that attracts head hunters and hiring managers. If you want to start getting job offers, create a good personal webpage! The key idea is to set up a honey pot that allows head hunters to find you. Here are some tips:
  • Figure out what specific skills you have, what kind of job you’d like to get, and how these skills relate to the job. Add a short paragraph that summarizes what you’re doing and what you’ve done.
  • Present a vision of the world and the job. Be honest.
  • Think about different types of visitors and tailor information accordingly. This is very important. On my webpage you can see that I’ve got separate paragraphs for students who want to work with me, people who want to hire me, and entrepreneurs who look for hackers. I assume that students would be looking for projects in my lab and research. People who want to hire me would like to see my resume, the projects I worked on, and awards. Entrepreneurs would be looking for the startup spirit and source code to judge my programming skills.
  • Include important keywords that describe your skills, completed projects, awards, and anything else that may convince someone that you are qualified. A good way of doing it is to write a resume directly on the website. Attaching resume as a file won’t help much, because the information is not directly visible.
  • If possible associate your website with a professional institution. For example, my website is associated with the website of my research lab.

 

How effective are these tips? I believe they are very effective. I redesigned my website last year according to the guidelines above. I didn’t apply for any job. I’ve never had a Linked In account, yet I’m receiving very solid job inquiries every month. I also ask recruiters how they found me, and they say that through the website.

 

Now, what do I mean by very solid job inquiries? First, they are tailored to my specific skills. There is no bullshit and I know that the company or the head-hunter is serious about me. Second, they came from Google, MathWorks, multiple Wall Street financial institutions and head hunters, and a Silicon Valley startup. Some of them even wanted me to cancel PhD and start working for them as soon as possible. Finally, I actually signed a contract with MathWorks and I’m going to start working this year after finishing PhD. I think that’s enough evidence that this method works and brings benefits in the long run. Convinced?

 

So what are you waiting for? Want to get a great job? Allow the job to find you!

2 thoughts on “Allow the Job to Find You

    • Nothing besides the points I mentioned. I think the most important is a rare combination of skills and giving keywords to each skill. It also seems to me that putting my resume on the website (as opposed to the PDF file) much improved the page rank. Finally, it obviously takes a while for a webpage to get at the top… Maybe there are webdesigners who can better explain the phenomenon?

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