Networking and Relationships

What role do networking and business relationships play in the current job market?

The application and hiring process costs companies both a significant amount of time and money. Due to these factors, companies first consider whether it is possible to avoid or shorten the process. All employers, regardless of specific branch or field, first attempt to recruit potential new employees that they, or someone they know, know or with whom they have personal experience. The more positive and prolific the experience the employer has had with the potential candidate, the higher the chances of employment will become.

Is it morally acceptable to get a job through relationships?

The employment and application culture is rapidly undergoing change. Only approximately 30% of all jobs in Germany were given away through job advertisements. This percentage is shrinking every year; with some experts even going as far as to say that job advertisements are becoming obsolete.

The various specific entry points into the job market which are associated with the terms "networking" or "relationships" are extremely diverse. When employment is reached through one of these ways, it is usually due to the fact that significantly more time and work was invested compared to what would be possible through simply writing up a job application.

It would be a mistake to solely rely on job advertisements when looking for a job. There are many alternatives available for you to consider when searching for a job.

From a moral perspective; seeking employment and using personal relationships is perfectly acceptable.

How can I build up a professional network?

Building a network from scratch is a lot of hard work. To build an effective professional network, you have to immerse yourself in an environment which allows networks to grow, be it through:

  • Active participation on excursions and conferences in your field of interest
  • Long term social commitment
  • Alternative employment through short term contracts or trial internships

Through these means you will automatically become acquainted with experts in fields potentially interesting to you. The more people you know in a certain field, the better the chances of getting a job in that area are.

Networks are not a thing you can concretely plan, as detours are commonplace. Contacts that are believed to be incredibly useful can often result in dead-ends, yet contacts which are seemingly unimportant can still be quite useful in the end.

Useful tips are often not only from those in high-tier management positions, but rather from insider information, in which the individual standing in the corporate hierarchy is of little relevance.