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Don't leave a stone unturned in search for your next job.

The common wisdom is that you're always better off looking for that next job when you already have one. What may not be so commonly known is the best way to conduct a successful job search.

According to Ken Cole, publisher of The Recruiting & Search Report, Panama City Beach, FL, a survey of 1500 of his company's recent job-hunting clients points to four proven routes to finding that new position:

* Networking through personal and professional contacts--a method that produces a solid 40% of the jobs.

* Using executive search firms, which is responsible for 30% of the new jobs.

* All forms of directly approaching prospective employers that the candidate does not have intimate knowledge of. Companies that look like good employers turn up 20% of new positions for candidates.

* All forms of help-wanted advertising account for 10% of the successful job searches.

On average, according to the survey, it takes about six months to find a $75,000 position. Mr Cole says that job searchers surveyed were looking for manufacturing executive and management positions with salaries of between $50,000 and $500,000.

A time for looking

From the job hunter's point of view, it's a good time to be looking because there is a certain amount of pent-up demand for manufacturing executives and managers in basic metalworking industries, Mr Cole believes. "The economy can take uncertainty and vacancies in important job positions for only so long. You can see it happening in the Midwest, especially in the basic metalworking industries, including fabrication and basic manufacturing, where employment figures are decidedly up as job vacancies are being filled."

Mr Cole, who has been an executive search consultant assisting senior executives with job campaigning strategy since 1979, says that picking the bright spots in the economy isn't as difficult as it may first seem. He uses what he calls the "head-hunter index." Job categories that are attracting a lot of interest from head hunters are hot; ones that aren't are not.

Some currently hot hiring areas include medical device manufacturing, which is "going great guns." The environmental business is very busy, especially in areas that are still labor-intensive or where there isn't a lot of technology to handle the tasks at hand. Those tasks generally involve meeting governmentally mandated requirements. The telecommunications industry continues to look promising due to technological developments like interactive TV.

Geographically, the Southeast and the Carolinas score high in Mr Cole's estimation for good job opportunities. The Mountain states are showing some growth, but it's from a relatively small base. "It always amazes me that people who want to work in one part of the country or another never quite make the logical connection about getting a hold of the local papers to see just what jobs are available. They seem to keep looking in the Wall Street Journal or the New York Times."

Mr Cole, who was the founder of the National Association of Executive Recruiters, has built his business by creating highly specialized information resources to aid "job search consumers." The information includes an up-to-date listing of executive search and recruiting firms in about 110 areas of functional and industry concentration, a newsletter called The Recruiting & Search Report, and books on formulating job search strategy.

Executive recruiters are listed by job search category and region of the country, although most recruiters have access to positions available nationally through participation in various computerized networks. "The number of categories that the directory covers has resulted from simply asking recruiters what job categories they cover. When there are enough in any one category, it is added to the directory. Examples include engineering, health/medical, high technology, manufacturing, robotics/automation, and sales/sales management."

The need for continual updates to the recruiters directory is caused by the turnover in the business, which Mr Cole says has been about 40% over the last 24 months for recruiting companies. The high rate of turnover is due to a struggling economy.

If you're considering a job search, here's what Mr Cole says you should do:

* Increase your activity level.

* Campaign in all four marketing channels, i.e. network, headhunters, direct contact with companies, and classified advertising.

* Develop a better strategy and improve your interviewing skills.

* Produce the most professional looking package of resume and letters possible.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Nelson Publishing
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Job Outlook
Publication:Tooling & Production
Date:Sep 1, 1993
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