How to hack the invisible job market

How can you apply for a job if you don’t know it’s there? And how is it possible to know someone who knows someone if you don’t know many people in Denmark in the first place?

In Denmark, like a lot of other places, most job vacancies are never advertised. And these days, with Covid-19 severely decreasing job turnover in Denmark, finding the right person to send an unsolicited application to has become more important than ever. But how do you apply for a job if you don’t know it’s there?

The short answer is “use your network”. How, precisely, do you go about doing that, though? The successful networker maps their network and expands it to meet their needs. They contribute to their network, and they know what its limits are.

The somewhat longer answer is that there are four steps to using your network in your job search.

1. Map your network

When we say ‘map your network’, we literally mean drawing a map of your network. Who do you know, and how can they help you? Don’t limit your network to family or close friends. Your network also includes people you’ve met at social events and your friend’s cousin who works in that company you’re interested in. Visualising your network gives a clearer picture of how it can help you.

2. Expand

If the feedback you get from your network doesn’t really jibe with the insights you ask it for, then you need to expand your network. Are you in the right communities? Do you attend professional events? Are you visible and active in on-line groups and discussions?

3. Contribute

Networking is a giver’s game; if you care for your contacts they’ll care for you. Be active and contribute. Forward job postings or share insights about upcoming events.

4. Ask for information, not a job

Danes might appear reserved, but most will be happy to meet over coffee and give you advice about your job search. But have a clear purpose when you reach out to your network, and don’t ask for more than your network can provide.

If you’re interested in a specific company, ask your network to identify its five biggest challenges right now and what the company is doing about them. The key to using your network to find a job isn’t to ask people for a job, it’s to use it to gather information that will help you spot the hidden jobs and, ultimately, to get hired.

Hopefully these four steps will be a help when it comes time for you to activate your network to reveal new professional opportunities and hack the invisible job market. 

You can learn more about applying for jobs in Denmark and get help writing an effective cover letter and CV on our website.