Everyone hates applying for jobs. Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could just sit back and wait for the jobs to come to you?

The better you are at your job and the more senior the position being filled, the more likely this is to happen. People don’t usually go out searching for an entry-level office assistant. But they do for a CFO. That being said, there are tips and tricks we can all use to get jobs without having to apply for them.

Recruiting Animal – a well-known personality on the HR scene – gave me some tips for getting contacted by recruiters. Here’s what he said:

    Get your profile on Linkedin. “Fill it out in detail,” says Animal. “This is the most important thing.” Unless you’re an engineer getting approached by too many useless recruiters, you have to have a LinkedIn profile. It’s a necessary evil. Just do it if you’re one of the three people who hasn’t already.

    “Use the standard keywords for your profession,” Animal adds and, an important note: “Use generic titles even if your company has its own idiosyncratic ones.” So, if your organization calls you something cutesy like the “Mayor of marketing,” but you’re really the “Marketing manager,” call yourself the latter.

    And “check your spelling,” he says. Nobody will be able to find you with misspelled keywords or titles.

    “If you’re a software developer make sure you’ve got some stuff on github. Recruiters stalk people there,” he says.

    Also, “Call headhunters who specialize in your profession and tell them you’re in the market. Find them on LinkedIn or by word of mouth. Don’t bug them but touch base once a month.”

Common suggestions Animal doesn’t endorse include starting a blog. “Everyone tells you to start a blog. The idea is that Google will bring up your blog and everyone can see how smart you are. But it’s time consuming and most people are not good writers.”

I would say start a blog if you are able to regularly update it and if you are a good writer. Don’t start one that is just going to sit there with nothing on it or that isn’t going to be any good. That’s worse than no blog at all.

More tips from me:

Network. Yes, it’s cliche, but the more people who know and like you, the more likely you are to be top of mind when the time comes to recruit someone.

Post your resume on Workopolis – 16,000 resumes are viewed a day on Workopolis – and on industry specific job boards. There are dozens (examples: the aforementioned github, Sales Gravy, Jobs 4 Actuary).

Let people know you’re open to new opportunities. Don’t put this on your LinkedIn. It looks desperate. And you have to be careful, obviously, about letting people know you’re looking if you’re already employed. But if you can, make sure people know you’re on the market so they will contact you if anything comes up, rather than assume you’re all set.

Be active on social media. According to Animal this is a waste of time when it comes to getting headhunted. “Like blogs,” he says, “social media sites are just not that important. Almost no one gets recruited from Twitter or Facebook.”

I know several people, however, who have gotten gigs through Twitter and Facebook, and have both hired and been hired through social media. So, I can assure you that being social online can definitely get you job offers and is in fact a great direct route.

Be generous. If someone needs help or advice that you are able to offer in a professional capacity, give it. Doing people favours makes people like you, and you get the opportunity to showcase your talents and let the world know you are good at what you do.

The point here is to be visible, and make sure that what is visible is good and up to date.

Finally, and most important, be amazing. Nobody is going to seek out someone who is mediocre. Be honest with yourself about your skills and abilities and what you can improve. Then improve.

If you’re the best, people will want to find you. Make sure they can.

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