Survey shows only 28% of jobs found through networking (an Unmoderated post)

I trust Gerry Crispin.  So should you.  He is not a career branding "expert" or any other type of new media blow hard.  He has data.  Real data. Dare I say "Big Data"?    He doesn't make up stats and figures to promote his business.

Why do I bring this up?  Well - it seems some people in the "how to network" coaching business want you to believe that 80% of the job openings are being filled through networking.  And where does that stat come from?  Who knows....?  Not Gerry Crispin.

Where does Gerry get his info?  From 35 GIANT companies that (combined) filled 1.2 million + vacancies last year.  I'd call that "substantial"?  Wouldn't you? 

I found the info on his site - Career X Roads quite informative.  Take a look under the "Resources" tab - and you'll find this survey under Articles.

(In case anyone wants to know how companies really hire people)

Views: 1214

Comment by Bob McIntosh on April 2, 2012 at 11:57am

What's the name of the article? Do you have the exact link. I'm interested. I think the real discussion is the disparity of percentages attributed to networking. And who proclaims the stats.

Comment by Jerry Albright on April 2, 2012 at 12:02pm

I found the info on his site - Career X Roads quite informative. Take a look under the "Resources" tab - and you'll find this survey under Articles. It's a slide show - so I don't think I can link directly to it. Pretty easy to find though.

Comment by Karen Siwak on April 2, 2012 at 12:48pm

I first found the 80% number in a Forbes article about MBAs and their job search, circa 1991. There was no study cited as the source of that stat, but it has been repeated frequently since then.

The CareerXRoads annual survey is a resource that I use frequently with my clients so that they can understand how much time to invest in various kinds of job search activities. However it has some limitations, the main one being that employers report a single source of hire for each position - when a friend/associate alerts you to a job ad in their company that you might not otherwise see, this is reports as a "Job Board" source of hire, rather than referral. Another study worth looking at is Right Management's survey of 68,000+ successful job hunters,   which found that roughly 40% of them landed their jobs through networking. 

Comment by Jerry Albright on April 2, 2012 at 12:57pm

Karen - perhaps your insight into the world of corporate world of hiring has not had quite the spotlight on it as it deserves.  My mistake.

However - any company resume/ATS/Job system I've participated in - clearly asks "How did you hear of this opening" on the application of other addendum, etc.  I would think they ask this for a reason.

Comment by Karen Siwak on April 2, 2012 at 1:25pm

They may ask it for a reason, but that doesn't mean candidates spend all that much time answering it. I know I always skip over the "how did you hear about us" questions. And source of hire statistics are notorious for being inaccurate.

Comment by Bob McIntosh on April 2, 2012 at 1:51pm

I think "networking" is a broad term. Does anyone have a comprehensive, agreed-upon definition of career networking, which I believe would include online and social networking?

Comment by Karen Siwak on April 2, 2012 at 2:40pm

I'm not sure it matters whether we have a single agreed upon definition of networking. The concept of networking has changed in the past 20 years. The stat that keeps getting cited hasn't.

Comment by Sandra McCartt on April 2, 2012 at 4:34pm

I hate stats and percentages because they are always developed from some control group.  But i know damn well that 80% of jobs are not found through networking.  A large % of what people want to call networking is when a position comes open inside a company.  the boss or HR says "does anybody know anybody who would be a good fit."  People call their friends or people they know who do that, tell them there is an opening.  Normally not the 4000 people who  are in their linkedin connections or twitter followers.  I don't call that networking.  Most of the time they only refer people they know well or have worked with in previous jobs.


I don't see online or social networking as being of much benefit in terms of being referred by an online contact.  My opinion is that networking is to let people who know you know that you are looking for a job not get on the internet and slam a bunch of connection requests out to everybody in a certain field.  Time better spent applying to real jobs. 

Comment by Bill Schultz on April 2, 2012 at 4:46pm

85% of all statistics are 76% false.

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on April 2, 2012 at 4:52pm

How many potential jobs are lost due to networking? There have been candidates who may have had a better shot at a position if they had just taken the time to apply and appeal to the recruiter and/or hiring manager's hot buttons instead of begging their buddies to "get them in".


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