The Hidden Job Market and Strategies for Finding a New Job

Mar 8, 2021 | Finding a New Job

When searching for a new job, most people tend to look at online job sites. They are certainly a good starting point, but not all jobs advertise via this medium. There is a huge hidden job market. Taking a more multi-pronged strategy to find a new job, it is incredible what opportunities you can find.

What is the hidden job market? I hear you ask? Simply it refers to jobs that are currently available but are not directly advertised. So how do you find these jobs? Listed below are some simple strategies to help you find the hidden job market.

Before trying any of the methods listed, it is essential to make sure your CV looks good. A typical employer will spend less than two minutes looking at a CV. Any hard work in finding a hidden job can be wasted if you send a CV that lets you down.

A CV is like an advert for you. If it contains little relevant information, it is poorly presented or full of spelling mistakes that badly reflect you. Before sending your CV, make sure all contact details are updated, do a spell check, and get someone to proofread it. Not everyone is good at writing CV’s so if you are struggling, you can find lots of help online or may want to use a CV writing Service like CV Made Better.

Canvassing for a job

Marketing yourself to prospective employers can be one of the best strategies for finding a hidden job. If you speak with them directly, you will be amazed by how you can quickly find yourself a new job. Even if they are not hiring at that time, many companies keep peoples details on file, which could lead to a job later down the line.

Canvassing can be done over the phone, face to face or by email. Start by getting a copy of your local listing directory (yellow/white pages) or the online versions. Then, compile a list of companies your skills might be suited to. For example, if you are a mechanic, then a list of local garages. Once you have a list of ten, try to find out the name and contact details of who deals with recruitment / hiring for the business. You can usually get by a quick call / email to the company.

Now that you have your list and name, you can move onto the second stage contact. Depending upon the type of business, you can either do this face to face or via phone. Before contacting the company, rehearse what you will say a couple of times or, if via phone, maybe have it written in front of you. It does not need to be a speech below is an example.

Hello, my name is… I wanted to speak with… who I understand deals with your recruitment?

If the person is not available, ask when they will be around or if they can call you back if you leave a number. At this point, you may get asked to hand over or send your CV / to the company representative you are speaking with. Do not do this unless you must. This is a standard fob off and may result in your details never getting to their intended target.

Once you manage to speak to the correct person, be polite / friendly and aware, this may not be the best time for them. Start by explaining you are currently looking for a new job and feel that your skills / experience may be of interest (have some examples to hand, e.g. I have worked as a mechanic for the last five years). Ask if they are currently hiring and, if not, when jobs may be coming up in the future. Try and build a rapport with the person you are speaking with but don’t be too pushy. Most people will be empathetic to your situation and generally like to help. You just have to be nice. The conversation’s goal is to find out about any current jobs and get yourself into a position where you might be considered, or they will at least keep a copy of your details on file for future employment. Make records of the people / companies you speak with. If you are asked for a copy of your CV / resume, make sure you follow up within a week to determine what the person thought.

Repeat this for all the companies in your list. As previously stated, keep a record of whom you spoke to, what happened, and if you need to follow up about a job coming up in the future. The results of this process will lead you to have not only got your CV out to ten companies who may come back to you in the future but increased your network and hopefully found some of those hidden jobs.

Register with Recruitment Agencies

Recruitment agencies handle many vacancies exclusively for their clients. Many vacancies don’t get advertised and are filled via people registered with them on their databases. As recruitment agencies work across many industry sectors, you could be missing out on hundreds of hidden jobs. Register with five recruitment agencies that deal with the type of work you are looking for. This will increase your chances of finding a job massively by allowing you access to jobs you didn’t have previously. Ensure you keep in touch with the agencies and give them a call once a week to inquire about their new jobs.


If you are looking for a job, your social network is one of the best tools you have at your disposal. The expression “It is not what you know but who you know” can be true when looking for work. Lots of companies have employee referral schemes and are more likely to look at your application if it comes from someone who already works there. Speak with friends, family and other people you know. Ask them to keep an eye out for you or whether they know of anyone who is hiring. This is an excellent method of finding a job and will help you discover hidden jobs that may not be advertised.

The Internet / Social Media

The internet can be an excellent tool for marketing your skills to potential employers. Firstly, you can register your details with job sites like Monster, Indeed and Jobsite. They have substantial CV databases, which you can have your CV placed into. These databases are being used increasingly by employers /recruitment agencies before placing an advert to find new staff.

Social networks like Facebook / LinkedIn can be beneficial, as well. Send a message to your friends or contacts, letting them know you are looking for work. You can also try changing your status to “looking for a job. Please get in touch with me if you hear of anything” make sure your boss or colleagues are not friends.

One other thing to try is placing your own job advert in the work wanted section on sites like Gumtree, Facebook and LinkedIn. When writing your advert, just put the types of jobs you are looking for and any relevant experience / qualifications

If you need help regarding a new position, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Take a look at our services below.