Most employers have websites that support their businesses or their mission/work. Often, the websites include job postings. It is not effective or rational to chase the jobs on every employer’s website.
A smarter approach to a job search is to pick the employers that are the best employers for you. This requires research, initially, but it enables you to focus your efforts and to avoid ending up in a dead end job or working for an employer you don’t like or respect.
So, Choose Your Target Employers
A better strategy is to target the employers (20, 50, or more, depending on your preferences) which look like places you would like to work. Having target employers is a very big advantage in a tough job market for several reasons:
- Targeting specific employers enables you to focus your research efforts. It will make you a smarter job seeker.
- It will make customizing your resume and cover letter easier – the “right” job titles (those used by the target employer), the right terminology, the right product or service names (those belonging to the target employer), the right contacts in HR, etc.
- You can focus your networking efforts to the right organizations, the right contacts, even the right LinkedIn Groups.
- Over time, you will see how jobs fit together, how the organization operates, where jobs are being added most often (which departments/divisions are growing), how the organization hires (perhaps who the hiring managers are in your targets).
- You can showcase your knowledge of the organization to be much more impressive in a job interview, particularly when answering the why-should-we-hire-you and why-do-you-want-to-work-here questions.
When you are focused on your target employers, you spend your job search efforts more effectively, and you don’t get distracted by one-off “opportunities” you might see in a job board search.
Online Sources of Target Employers
This is one of the places that Indeed.com can come in very handy. Set up queries for specific job titles on Indeed (in your preferred locations), and Indeed enables you to set up alerts so that new search results can be mailed to you.
Job-Hunt.org offers several resources for job seekers to find employers:
Links directly to thousands of employer recruiting pages. For each state, also find links to local networking and job search support and local job boards, specific to that state.
This is the 2012 list (the 2013 list isn’t out yet). Each entry links to the FORTUNE profile page (with financial info and a list of competitors), to the main recruiting pages, and to the internship/college student recruiting pages (if any).
This is the 2012 list (the 2013 list isn’t out yet). As with the Directory by Rank, each entry links to the FORTUNE profile page (with financial info and a list of competitors), to the main recruiting pages, and to the internship/college student recruiting pages (if any).
Industry/trade associations are typically groups of companies which focus on a particular industry. They often have member directories, which list all of the companies which are members. These are great places to shop for target employers.
Some industry associations focus on a specific state, for example, from Job-Hunt’s Directory of Associations:
- State Hospital Associations
- State Medical Associations
- State Bar Associations
- State CPA Associations
Many trade associations are national or international organizations which don’t limit themselves to a specific geography, also from Job-Hunt’s Directory of Associations:
- American Association of Community Colleges
- American Association of State Colleges and Universities
- American Bankers Association
- American Council of Engineering Companies
- Credit Union National Association
- “Green” Hotel Association
- National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies
For links to over 1,100 professional and industry associations, visit Job-Hunt’s Directory of Associations.
For More Information on Where to Find Jobs
© Copyright, 2013, Susan P. Joyce. All rights reserved.
About the author…
Online job search expert Susan P. Joyce has been observing the online job search world and teaching online job search skills since 1995. Susan is a two-time layoff “graduate” who has worked in human resources at Harvard University and in a compensation consulting firm. In 1998, her company, NETability, Inc. purchased Job-Hunt.org, and Susan has been editor and publisher of Job-Hunt since then. Follow Susan on Twitter at @jobhuntorg and on Google+.