Networking As The Best Way To Get Your Next Healthcare IT Job

It’s no secret that we are all in the middle of one of the most dismal job markets in decades. Many people have been out of work or underemployed for record periods of time, and there are also record numbers of job seekers vying for almost every job that opens up. However, being the eternal optimist, and seeing things happening for my clients, there are jobs available out there. I see my clients get hired all the time.

That’s why networking is more important now than it ever has been before. And with the rise of social media sites like Facebook (for casual users) or LinkedIn (for professionals), networking has taken on whole new dimensions in recent years. Here are some things to consider:

  • Get an early start. If you’re fresh out of college or if you’re trying to get a foothold in a new Healthcare IT career move, the sooner you can start making those connections, the better off you’ll be. If you’re freelancing, cultivate more connections whenever you possibly can, from fellow freelancers or from your clients themselves. If you’re in school, hook up with your classmates or find student chapters of professional societies.
  • Choose your associates carefully. Unfortunately, a down job market also brings the scammers and fly-by-nighters out of the woodwork. They know that there are job seekers (and sometimes clients) who are bordering on desperation. They might be out to take advantage of you, or they might be looking for a pawn to help advance a cause of some sort. You don’t want that hung on you, so tread carefully and make good decisions. Do your research.
  • Cast your net wide. Don’t limit yourself to just your field, or to people with tastes, interests or skills to your own. It’s easy to make this mistake and to just have associates that are in your “comfort zone,” but remember that the wider a network of people you have, the more resources you can have to fall back on if things go sour.
  • Quid pro quo. Networking is a two-way street. If there’s anything you can do for your associates in return, whether it’s job referrals, professional references or anything else, don’t hesitate to do it. It will pay off for you in the long run.
  • Go online. A staggering 84% of Americans now are engaged in some sort of online social networking, whether that means forums, newsgroups, social networking sites like LinkedIn, dating groups or what-have-you. This has been a true game-changer in many ways, helping build networks among people who may never meet face-to-face. But if you’re new to a site or forum, bear in mind the culture and environment of the site, don’t be pushy and don’t be rude. You may need introductions to get your feet wet and to be accepted. Trust your better instincts in these cases, and those connections can take you far.

Note: Professional Résumé Services and Healthcare IT Central (HITC) have teamed up to provide powerful resumes and social media setup services for  Healthcare IT professionals, at exclusive prices only available to HITC members.  If you are not getting calls, Erin and her team are here to help!

About the author

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Erin Kennedy

Erin Kennedy, CPRW, CERW, BS/HR, is a Certified Professional Resume Writer/Career Consultant, and the President of Professional Resume Services. She is a nationally published writer and contributor of nine best-selling career books.

2 Comments

  • Hi Erin – Great post! The good news for those of us in Healthcare IT is that the job market is getting very active in response to ARRA which makes networking even more important!
    I have found that THE BEST single event for Healthcare IT networking is HIMSS which is coming up Feb 20-24 in Orlando. http://www.himssconference.org/

  • Great post Erin. I agree that social networking tools such as LinkedIn are mission-critical to any job search. Last week, I attended the Georgia HIT Leadership Summit at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta. My favorite panel by far was the recruiting module. These highly experienced search executives highlighted the importance of social networking as an absolute necessity in identifying quality candidates for positions.

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