Weddle’s Research Factoid

Weddle’s Research Factoid

Weddle’s Research Factoid

We recently asked the visitors to the WEDDLE’s Web-site to tell us how they found their last job. A total of 708 people participated in our survey. Here’s what they told us were the top ten sources of hire:

31.2% Answered an ad on a job board

10.6% Sent their resume to the company

9.3% Answered an ad in the newspaper

8.5% Responded to a tip from a friend

6.8% Were referred by an employee of the company

6.6% Received a call from a headhunter

5.1% Answered an ad posted on the company’s Web-site

4.9% Attended a career fair

4.8% Used networking at a business event

2.7% Received a call from a staffing firm

2.7% Responded to a tip from a family member

In addition just 0.04%-four-tenths of one percent-found a job by using a social networking site.

What the Findings Mean

First, for those who think newspaper advertising has gone the way of carbon paper, please think again. Almost one-out-of-ten of our respondents found their jobs through the print medium.

Second, for those who have bought into all of the hype about finding a job on MySpace and other social networking sites, please think again. Almost no one among our respondents was hired that way.

Third, for those who think that a job search is simply doing the same old thing time-after-time, please think again. The top five methods of finding a job in our survey-responding to ads posted at job boards, sending your resume to an employer via the mail, answering a newspaper ad, networking with friends, and networking with others in the workforce-provided the greatest assurance of employment, producing two-thirds (66.4%) of our respondents’ jobs.

Fourth, headhunters and search firms work on real jobs and definitely fill them. When taken together, they accounted for almost one-in-ten (9.3%) of the job offers received by our respondents.

Fifth, for those who think that employers rely more on their own Web-sites than on job boards, please think again. Our respondents were six times more likely to find their jobs through the ads posted on a job board than through openings posted on a company site

Bottom Line: Landing the job of your dreams is best accomplished when you:

  • use a multifaceted job search strategy that maximizes the number and diversity of employment opportunities to which you have access and
  • identify and prioritize (with the time you devote to them) the methods that consistently yield the best results for job seekers.

    Since 1996, WEDDLE’s has been surveying both job seekers and recruiters on the Web. We’ve amassed hundreds of thousands of data elements probing:

  • what they do and what they don’t do,
  • what they like and what they don’t like,
  • and most importantly,

  • what they think works best.
  • We are pleased to share this research with you.

    To add your insights and opinions to our findings, please visit the Polling Station at the WEDDLE’s Web-site.

    Section Two: From WEDDLE’s Archive

    Peter Weddle has been writing columns for his own newsletter and for the Interactive Edition of The Wall Street Journal since 1999. The following column has been drawn from that work and updated for 2006. You can also find many of Peter’s tips and techniques in our book WEDDLE’s WizNotes: Finding a Job on the Web.

    It’s “Deja Knew” All Over Again

    We’ve all experienced “déjà vu,” that eerie feeling that we’re seeing or experiencing something in the present that we’ve seen or experienced at some indeterminate point in the past. It’s like doing reality all over again. Now, these past episodes probably won’t do us much good in a job search, but our past contacts will. The trick, of course, is to find them, and that’s best done in a process I call “deja knew.” The goal is to connect in the present with the people whom we knew in the past.

    Most of us are aware that the best opportunities in the job market are often filled by networking. And, most of us, as a consequence, make a genuine effort to reach out to whatever contacts we have when we’re looking for a new or better position. The problem is that we limit the scope of our effort.

    Basically, we all have three kinds of contacts:

  • People we know and are in touch with;
  • People we don’t know but with whom we are put in touch by someone we do know; and
  • People we know and are not in touch with.
  • Experience suggests that we tend to focus on the first and second category of contact, probably because we feel as if they are more near-at-hand and, therefore, potentially more useful. That third category, however-the people we knew in the past but have lost touch with in the present-can be a wonderful source of information and job leads.

    Who are these candidates for “deja knew?” They include former:

  • Teachers
  • Bosses
  • Colleagues at work
  • College roommates
  • Teammates
  • Sorority sisters
  • Fraternity brothers
  • Club friends
  • Significant others, and
  • Others less significant.
  • How can we connect with them? The Internet offers a number of tools that can be very helpful. I recommend that you start with the following three free resources:

    The Ultimates. This resource offers a White Pages, a Yellow Pages, an e-mail directory and more. If you know where a former contact lives, use the White Pages to find the telephone number and address of anyone living in the United States. If you know where the person works, use the Yellow Pages to find the contact information for any business in the U.S.. If you don’t know where your former contact lives or works, try the e-mail directory.

    The Google Residential Phonebook. This resource lists the residential telephone number for just about anyone living in the U.S., including many numbers that are supposed to be unlisted Although, The Ultimates also claims to provide unlisted as well as listed numbers, I’ve found that the Google directory is better.

    To use this feature, visit the Google Home Page and enter the following command into the Search box: rphonebook: the person’s last name, the city where they live. For example, if your first boss, ten years ago, was Jane Thomas and you think she is still living in Austin, Texas, you would enter the following: rphonebook: Thomas, Austin.

    ZoomInfo If you have no idea where your former contacts are living or working, try searching for them by name in the ZoomInfo database. If they’ve written a paper for their professional society, been promoted at work, given a talk to the local Garden Club, had a baby, hit a hole in one at the local golf course … done practically anything other than breathe and eat, it’s probably been recorded on some document somewhere among the 500 billion documents floating around the Internet. And if that’s the case, ZoomInfo is likely to have a file on them.

    Finally, a word of caution about the “deja knew” process. Be aware that your former friend or colleague may not remember you as well as you remember them. Therefore, when you first communicate with them, begin your e-mail message or phone call with a brief but clear reference to your prior relationship. Then, explain why you are contacting them. As with face-to-face networking, however, don’t put them on the spot by asking them if they can connect you with an employment opportunity. Instead, ask for their counsel and suggestions on how best to advance your job search. Show them that simple courtesy, and your contacts in the past might just become some of your most important contacts all over again in the present.

    Thanks for reading,


    P.S. Please don’t keep WEDDLE’s to yourself. If you like our newsletter, please tell your friends and colleagues about it. They’ll appreciate your thinking of them. And, we will too!

    Section 3: News You Can Use released the results of its survey of how senior professionals and executives view the impact of gender on a person’s pay. Although males out-number females by three-to-one among the site’s 400,000+ members, more than three-fourths of the survey respondents (78%) said that they believe that there is a disparity between compensation for men and women. Almost half (44%) said that pay inequality was more egregious in some industries than in others, a view borne out by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data. According to the BLS, the largest disparity exists in the construction and manufacturing industries, while the smallest gap occurs in the education, health services, professional and business services and financial sectors of the workplace. Whatever your gender, however, it’s important that you have the information necessary to assess the reasonableness of an employer’s offer. Check out any salary surveys that may be posted on the Web-site of your professional or technical association and use the resources of such sites as and the Monster Salary Center.

    The National Hydrogen Association announced the launch of its job board for hydrogen and fuel cell industry professionals. The site offers both a job and a resume database as well as a job agent. There aren’t many opportunities posted just yet, but if this is your field, it might pay to keep an eye on the site.

    Harvard Business Review published an unusual-no, a downright weird-twist on the old saw, “Crime doesn’t pay.” Three academics (Carlo Morselli and Pierre Tremblay of the University of Montreal and Bill McCarthy of the University of California at Davis) released the results of their study of mentors among criminals. Yep, there are professors who feel that this is a topic important enough to be worthy of intellectual pursuit. Anyway, they found that criminals with mentors had higher earnings than criminals who did not. They conclude that their findings “suggest that strong foundations in crime offer an advantageous position for continuous improvement and the presence of a criminal mentor is pivotal for achievement over one’s criminal career.” These guys-the three professors, I mean-have way too much free time on their hands.